Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Bones Never Lie: How Forensics Helps Solve History's Mysteries, by Elizabeth MacLeod

Bones Never Lie:
How Forensics Helps Solve History's Mysteries
Author: Elizabeth MacLeod
Publisher: Annick Press
Publication Date: February 4, 2013
This book is good, but it could have been great. The idea is that the author presents some of "history's mysteries" such as what killed Napoleon, the supposed disappearance of Anastasia Romanov, the identity of the Man in the Iron Mask, etc., and then reveals how forensic science helped solve those mysteries. The problem is that many of the examples she chooses were NOT solved by forensic science at all, so many chapters end with the conclusion that "we just don't know" or "using deductive reasoning this is our best guess." Why did she choose mysteries that didn't fit her theme?! It's baffling. 

The chapters that do use scientific evidence--like the chapter on Napoleon--are interesting and well done. I just don't know why she opted to include material that didn't fit the theme of the book.

Disclaimer: I received a digital galley of this book free from the publisher from NetGalley. I was not obliged to write a favourable review, or even any review at all. The opinions expressed are strictly my own.

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