I vividly remember when all the CSI shows hit the scene. They were practically the only thing anyone was watching and everyone had their favorite city. People were absolutely fascinated by the science behind solving crimes. (Plenty still are, I think a few of those shows are still around.) So, I shouldn’t be surprised that this book was originally published in that same time frame. If people really wanted to learn about forensics, books can teach even more than television.
Narrowing down the very broad scope of forensics, Dr. Bill Bass is an anthropologist. He studies the bones and gleans the truth as best he can with what is left behind. Unidentified bodies are given race, sex and a rough age estimate. This can help in missing people cases and also in murder cases. Dr. Bass was consistently busy assisting police, doing research and teaching students.
But, as any good scientist, the more he learned the more questions he produced. Forensics is a fairly new science so there are certain things that just had not been studied yet. Like, how EXACTLY does a human corpse decompose? How long does it take depending on weather conditions? Do insects increase the decay rate? How can the surrounding environment help time stamp a victim’s death?
The only good way to answer these questions is to examine decaying human remains. And thus, the Body Farm was created. (It has a technical name, but Body Farm is cooler.) Using donated cadavers, Bass and his students began creating scenarios and studying the results. From those studies, sprung other studies developed by his students and forensics was pushed even further.
This is 50 percent about the Body Farm and how it came to be, and 50 percent an autobiography of Dr. Bass. My only minor complaint was the constant reminder of how the science worked, sometimes not very far apart. It did nothing to dampen my appreciation of this book. You definitely need a morbid curiosity for this one, which luckily, I have an abundance of.
Even when money is tight, sometimes you just gotta treat yo self.
As a mood reader, the one thing I did not have in my collection to quench a thirst if it popped up, was any non-fiction. I’ve always liked learning and even though I’m in school currently, my brain still wants more.
This is my second ever order from Bookoutlet.com. Their prices are pretty incredible. I bought 7 books for $38. (That tops what I spend in all of 2022 on books but who cares?! Books!)
True crime, non-fiction, mystery, dogs. The range is good with this lot. I’ve already started Death’s Acre so expect a review of that in the near future.
What treasures did you get in your latest book haul??
If you touch Miriam Black, skin to skin, for even a second, she can see your death. The exact year, day, hour and manner of how you die. Just the one vision, one time, but she never forgets. Miriam doesn’t try to change fate. She tried that once upon a time and it doesn’t work. She hangs around like a vulture, waiting for you to die. Then, she takes the earthly things you don’t need any longer; money, credit cards, etc. She crowns herself a scavenger and she accepts her lot in life.
Until she foresees a death that is a direct result from the person knowing her. Finally, something shakes her from her complacency. She doesn’t like the idea of someone dying because they know her, but she can’t change fate, right?
Miriam isn’t a very likable character. I can enjoy a good anti-hero, but she just doesn’t have very many redeeming qualities, at least until the end. The actual villains were quite good. Creepy, intimidating. Running from them made sense.
There were a few very Stephen King elements to this book. I should have written them down when I thought of it, but I was too confident in my memory. I do remember that it was so glaringly similar that it almost felt like a complete duplication.
Currently, I am undecided whether I will continue this series.
Before I make any reading resolutions for the new year, let’s see how I did in 2022:
Continue/complete series: I created a master list for this goal and only read 1 book series from the list. I did continue/complete 4 series that were not on the master list. I would consider this a semi-successful goal. Some progress is better than no progress.
No spending limit on books: Despite giving myself free reign to spend as much as I want on books, I spent $19.67.
Mood read for the entire year. I can check this one off with 100% confidence!
Continue/complete series. I’m going to copy the master list into the new year and give it another run. It’s nice having a focus point, even if I don’t necessarily stick to it very well.
No spending limit again! It’s interesting when I give myself no limits and then I’m still frugal as hell.
Read more comic books. I really neglected comics in 2022 (I read none) and want to change that in 2023.
Do have any bookish resolutions for the new year??
I’m just zipping through this little robot space opera, and I am doing so happily.
Another planet, more dumb humans almost getting themselves killed and a robot still questing for answers.
Murderbot is onto its next clue in bringing down GrayCris. The organization that tried to kill their first group of humans in order to hide their illegal activity, harvesting ancient alien remains. Murderbot wants to find as much evidence as possible to send back to the first human that recognized and respected their free will (I don’t remember their name) so that they can win their legal case and be safe from a dangerous organization.
Did they really go crazy and kill a bunch of humans and then have their memory of the event erased by the corporation that made them?
To find the answer, they must hack security systems and bribe other robots to get to another planet. Once they arrive at said planet, security forces anyone to have a reason why they want access to the surface. Murderbot takes a contract as a security consultant to get there.
It wouldn’t be a good story is the humans didn’t cause trouble for Murderbot’s mission. Will Murderbot’s secret be exposed in an effort to keep the humans from being killed?
Tune in for this week’s episode of Days of Our Robot Lives to find out.
What if robots designed to be security and kill when commanded, became sentient? Sounds absolutely horrifying, right?
Turns out, they rather just be left alone to watch their programs like an old woman.
However, they must keep up the ruse that they obey human commands, or they will get reprogrammed and go right back to be being just a murderous robot.
Murderbot, as they call themself, actually likes the humans they are currently contracted to protect and they’re going to have to break protocol when the excavation site is under attack if they want to get those kind humans out alive.
There was a lot of hype surrounding this novella when it came out. I’m happy to say that it held up to the recommendations. I downloaded the second book immediately.
As you might surmise from the title, this entails zombies and Trekkies. Without ruining anything, the zombies are not your average zombies, and it makes this story a little more science fiction-y and fun.
A Houston hotel is hosting a Star Trek convention and manager Jim, ex-military, is attempting to make sure that everything is running smoothly. However, the staff keeps disappearing. The guests are acting strangely (non-Trek related) and shit very quickly, hits the fan.
What follows is a tale of zombie apocalypse survival. Jim is doing his best to keep his sister, her friends and a Star Wars guest who keeps quoting the movies, from becoming zombie chow. (Some Trekkies might have used her as bait for distraction but what’s more fun than that age old rivalry among science fiction fans?)
I had a very good time reading this book. I enjoy zombie novels in general but adding Star Trek and Star Wars on top was the spice of the novel. I am a Star Wars fan, but I grew up watching Star Trek: Next Generation with my dad as well so I appreciate both worlds although I would not consider myself a Trekkie.
I hope everyone had an absolutely splendid Halloween! We had a laid-back night of homemade macaroni and cheese and a horror movie. I had intended to post again before my favorite holiday of the year, but I did not end up reading the comic that I intended and didn’t have much to post about otherwise.
So here we are leaping into Science Fiction month!
Here is my game plan. Whether it happens or not, that’s a whole different story: Continue my quest of watching all of Battlestar Galactica for the first time, watch/rewatch Escape from New York (I can’t remember if I’ve seen it before) and pick up at least one Sci-Fi novel.
I’ve only read one book in Ridley’s presence, and it was while he was sick, so I still don’t know if he’ll try to eat it while I’m trying to read it. It will be a fun game!
Are you participating in Sci-Fi month or are you more of a Non-Fiction November type of person? Either way, what are your plans?!
How could one NOT have a good time with the Hostess with the Mostess?
I’m not going to go terribly in depth with this review. Where’s the fun in me telling someone else’s story?
Cassandra Peterson seems like a good time gal. The girl that you would like to party with, and a lot of people did. I enjoyed that she was candid about her experiences with other celebrities. Other autobiographies seem like they’re always trying to hide behind the details or gloss over it completely. This was the perfect combination of being honest about deep things and being shallow the other half of the time. Sometimes people focus on one aspect too much, but not Ms. Peterson. She knows how to tell a tale and tell it well.
I find it funny that some reviewers are upset to find out that she did not create the character Elvira by herself and then it ruins their idea of her. She never hid this and since when is it bad to accept help from your friends? She had an opportunity, and her friends helped her produce something fantastic and memorable. The greatest gift they gave her was helping her be successful for 40 years and she sounds like the kind of friend who returned the favor. When you produce that kind of icon, then you can be mad and judge her. She’s not going to care, but you can do it.
My one complaint would be her talking about how gross Divine’s body was. It is just out of place in this day and age. I can understand if that is what you thought at the time, but you know better now and it does not really have a place in the book.
Overall, this is one of my favorite autobiographies.