I'm not sure how I managed to miss reading Body Trace when it first came out (it's been part of my mountainous TBR pile for quite some time), but I'm delighted that it finally made it to the top of the heap. I absolutely could NOT put it down! This is a fascinating police/CSI procedural that expertly introduces us to Madison Cross and the rest of the Philadelphia PD's Crime Scene Unit. While the novel centers around the lives and jobs of a team of crime scene investigators, its resemblance to the well-known CSI TV series ends there. Dublin's characters are original, the group dynamic is quite interesting, and the story is totally fresh and new. So, while the premise isn't exactly unfamiliar, there is nothing worn or faded about this series! As soon as I finished reading Body Trace, I went to Amazon online and ordered Blood Poison and pre-ordered Freezer Burn. Yes, I really liked it!
Madison Cross is intelligent, empathetic, and tenacious. I like her, a LOT. She had a difficult childhood but graduated from medical school at the top of her class and had been accepted into the residency program at Stanford University Medical Center. The world was her oyster, but she felt unfulfilled and unhappy, and didn't feel there was any real purpose to her life. As many of us do when troubled, she longs for the familiarity and comfort of home, Philadelphia - where her Uncle Dave just happens to be Lt. David Cross, head of the the PPD CSU. When Madison explains her doubts about her future to her uncle, he offers her a position as a technician with the CSU, and she immediately accepts.
Madison's first day on the job starts out like a whirlwind. She has barely touched down at the airport when she arrives at work, her suitcases in tow. After meeting the very interesting bunch of characters who are now her co-workers, Madison goes out on her first call as a CSU tech - an apparent double overdose in a dorm room at the University of Philadelphia. While everyone else is ready to wrap it up and call it a day, Madison voices some doubts about what seems to be an all-too-obvious cause of death. She asks a couple of questions of some of the students hanging around, and what everyone else hopes is cut and dried becomes anything but.
Maddy proves to everyone, including herself, that she has what it takes to work in the CSU - she follows the evidence where it leads, the consequences be damned! She is obstinate to a fault - and refuses to be deterred from a search for the truth, even when her job and her relationship with her uncle are on the line. She also learns not to be so quick to pigeonhole others. The book's ending couldn't have been better - it gave me goose bumps! I can hardly wait for my copy of Blood Poison to arrive from Amazon and for Freezer Burn to be released. They will go directly to the TOP of my TBR pile!
A wonderful start of a new fast-paced forensic mystery series. Interesting, real characters and a complex mystery that keeps you guessing til the end. The Phildelphia setting adds a special twist to the story and I'm eager to read the next installmen.
Crime scene investigation: The scientific examination of the physical evidence at a crime scene, including, but not limited to, evidence photography and collection, fingerprint processing, blood- and fluid-spatter interpretation, and forensic pathology.
Crime Scene Unit (C.S.U.): A group of forensic investigators who use cutting-edge technology to carry out crime scene investigations, helping to bring killers to justice.
Fresh out of med school and back in Philadelphia, C.S.U. rookie Madison Cross is as green as they come. She has a lot to learn about forensic investigation, and must work twice as hard to make her mark. But she gets her chance when two women are discovered dead at a University of Pennsylvania sorority house. Everyone, including the police, is quick to write off the deaths as accidental drug overdoses. But for Madison, the evidence at the crime scene just doesn't add up. Relying on her instincts, she embarks on an investigation that takes her from a pristine Ivy League campus to the seediest parts of town, an investigation that, in time, reveals secrets from her own troubled past. To find the truth, Madison knows she must listen to what the bodies tell herâbecause unlike the living, the dead never lieâ¦