Book Review: Body Language


A. K. Turner

Rating: 2 out of 5.

published: 26th November 2020
spoilers? no

Goodreads

THE DEAD CAN TALK – WE JUST NEED TO LISTEN . . .

Camden mortuary assistant Cassie Raven has pretty much seen it all. But this is the first time she’s come face to face with someone she knows on the slab. Someone she cared about. Her friend and mentor, Mrs E.

Deeply intuitive and convinced that she can pick up the last thoughts of the dead, Cassie senses that there must be more to the ruling of an accidental death. Is her grief making her see things that aren’t there, or is her intuition right, and there’s something more sinister to her friend’s death than the ME thinks? Harbouring an innate distrust of the police, Cassie sets out to investigate and deliver justice to the woman who saved her life.

For fans of Elly Griffiths’ Ruth Galloway series and Kathy Reichs’ Temperance Brennan, Cassie Raven is the edgy new forensic sleuth on the block.

Galley provided by publisher

CWs: descriptions of autopsies, murder, drug abuse and drug overdoses, mentions of domestic abuse

Body Language is a solid first book of a series, introducing a new detective/sidekick duo (or maybe I should say mortuary technician/detective-who-is-the-sidekick duo). It’s just also a book that never really hooked me.

The plot follows Cassie Raven, said mortuary technician, and the detective who she, more often than not, clashes with. There are two mysteries at play in the book, to be honest. One, following the disappearance of a corpse from the mortuary, and a second, where Cassie suspects foul play in what seems otherwise to be a routine case.

My first thought was that the writing wasn’t for me, so really, it was an inauspicious start. But the writing never quite reached the levels of mehness that some books I’ve read have, so that didn’t, ultimately (and thankfully!), factor into my feelings about the book overly much.

Instead, I think what let me down about it was the mystery. I mentioned there were two simultaneous mysteries, but, in all honesty, neither of them truly compelled me to keep reading. I mean, yes, I was curious what the denouement would be, and who would be exposed as having done it, and that twist did surprise me. But. But.

I was never really compelled. I was never burning with curiosity to find out what had happened. And finding out who did it, and that it was explained as (spoilers!!) that character being “psycho” felt somewhat of a copout.

But then again. Maybe I’ve been watching too many murder mystery shows.

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