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Déjà Dead (Temperance Brennan, #1)
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Déjà Dead (Temperance Brennan #1)

3.86  ·  Rating Details ·  106,320 Ratings  ·  3,063 Reviews
Dr. Temperance "Tempe" Brennan spends her days in the autopsy suite, the courtroom, the crime lab, with cops, and at exhumation sites. Often her long days turn into harrowing nights.

It's June in Montreal, and Tempe, who has left a shaky marriage back home in North Carolina to take on the challenging assignment of director of forensic anthropology for the province of Quebec
Hardcover, 411 pages
Published September 2nd 1997 by Scribner (first published 1997)
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Mkittysamom It is similar in Tempe's character but she is not superwoman as in the tv series. The cases are similar, but I think book 2 is better than the first.…moreIt is similar in Tempe's character but she is not superwoman as in the tv series. The cases are similar, but I think book 2 is better than the first. I have a feeling the more you read Kathy Reich's novels..the more addicting they are.(less)

Community Reviews

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Jul 10, 2007 Crystal rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of dry murder mysteries and forensic research
Shelves: mysteries
eh, it was okay. I am a huge fan of the TV series Bones, which is loosely based off Kathy Reichs' series, of which this is the first book. However, I realized exactly how LOOSELY BASED the series is after reading this book. what I love about the show is the romantic tension and sparkling humor and wit. these books are so much dryer and less fun. Even the lead character is less appealing--instead of being a gorgeous unattached doctor, she's an older alcoholic doctor, with a messy divorce and a te ...more
Sep 27, 2012 Samantha rated it it was amazing
Separate the tv show and this book. You will be very disappointed if you come in thinking it'll be like the tv show. The characters, setting, and story are drastically different. However, I think this book is a lot better than the show and I liked the first seasons of Bones. The lead character is more believable. She has faults like any normal human being and doesn't always make the smart choices. She isn't a superhero on crack (she actually gets pretty banged up). The character seems more human ...more
Jan 04, 2008 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Honestly, I didn't like this book much during the first several chapters. It's obvious she was a novice writer and her over-use of metaphors drove me crazy! Also, not being a French speaker, all the French (slightly excessive in my opinion) annoyed me a bit.
I am a fan of the tv show 'Bones', which is based on this series of books, so I was excited to start. There are some major differences between the tv and the book versions of the main character, which was a transition for me, but I ended up l
Andre Gonzalez
Jan 17, 2017 Andre Gonzalez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first exposure to Kathy Reichs, and I must say, I'm impressed! As a fan of the TV show Bones, I found this debut novel of Dr. Brennan much more enjoyable than the TV character. The book had plenty of twists and turns while keeping a quick pace. The only turn off for me was the French names and locations...I found it difficult to distinguish between the characters and locations, but that is understandable due to the book taking place in Montreal. I look forward to continuing the story ...more
Jul 29, 2011 Tammy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, hated, murder
Christ, was it a struggle to get through this book. When I read up on her books on Amazon it said "Better than Patricia Cornwell!!" so I thought DAMN this MUST be good, seeing as I loved many of PC's earlier novels.
It sucked. Not only did it suck... but it sucked hardcore. I was halfway through the book and still couldn't keep track of who half of the characters were. I dreaded anytime a conversation ended because that meant she was about to start one of her endlessly descriptive blurbs.
Don't g
Sep 03, 2012 Janice rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
"i was killed by curiosity like a finely tuned cat."

that was not, actually, one of the many similes this book is drowning in, but it may as well have been. some real examples:

"In my mind’s eye I could see her standing at a pay phone, scanning her surroundings, her eyes never resting, broadcasting fear like Radio Free Europe."


"She was thin as soup in a homeless shelter"


"For the third time in as many days I saw daybreak, an event I embrace as eagerly as Joe Montana welcomes an all-out blitz."

Apr 03, 2012 Kathi rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is exactly as good as you'd expect it to be when you buy it for 7 Euros at the airport out of desperation when you have nothing else to read and you need something to occupy your time on a 9 hour flight from Europe to the US. Which is to say, it was awful.

Where to even start? How about with some of the terrible similes that appear every two pages or so (sometimes even more frequently)?

"I'm as familiar with the ebb and flow of Gabby's moods as I was with my own menstrual cycles."
Apr 11, 2009 Mireille rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Someone who does not own a TV, & has therefore NEVER seen the series
I made it to chapter 4 of this book (pg45) but really had to stop. The book itself was good, don’t get me wrong… HOWEVER, I picked it up specifically because I totally LOVE the TV show “Bones” which is based off of this series of books. And as everyone knows, the book(s) that a TV show, mini-series, or movie is based upon are always better… boy was I wrong.

I love forensics stories with a good plot & this one has that, BUT I just can’t get involved with the book’s “Tempe” because she’s sooooo
May 19, 2013 Heather rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first of the Temeperance Brennan books. If you are looking for the Bones version of Temperance Brenna, this is not it. Think of this as the original and the Bones version as being the modified version designed to be appealing to a wide television audience.

In many ways Kathy Reich's books remind me of Patricia Cornwell's. Or perhaps I should say Patricia Cornwell's remind me of Kathy Reich's, seeing as KR first began writing in the forensic's genre before PC did, add to that a the fac
BJ Rose
I wanted to like this a lot more than I did - and that has nothing to do with differences in the Temperance Brennan of this series and the one in TV's Bones. This one, after all, is the original. My problems were twofold; I hit overload (often) on the lengthy and detailed explanations of the mutilated bodies of the victims, and the overly detailed scientific and forensic descriptions. Yes, we know that she's a forensic anthropologist and expect some of that, but it was often too much to wade thr ...more
Oct 23, 2013 Cherie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series
I am only sorry for waiting so long to read it. Great story! I think KR does have a sense of humor and I loved all of the technical stuff. Another series added to my list.
Amanda McGill
May 12, 2017 Amanda McGill rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
From the start of the book I just couldn't get into it. I found the writing to not flow very well and there was just way too much information.

Things I didn't like about Deja Dead:
- The French and English writing. I know the book is set in Montreal, but the author doesn't have to point out what language people are speaking. Also the author would translate some french words, but leave others. I ended up just skimming over the french words.
- The main character. Couldn't connect with her at all.
Jun 22, 2014 Paulina rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 23, 2010 Trin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, american-lit
The TV show Bones is probably the best and worst thing to ever happen to this series. The best because it’s no doubt brought a whole slew of new, eager readers to these books—including ones like me, who are really only sporadic watchers of the show. And the worst because all those new readers will inevitably be hauling all their show-based expectations with them. At which point they will discover that this book is—to me, sadly—nothing like the show.

The main character both on TV and in print is c
Ana T.
I had a good time reading this book, it's my second read by Reichs and I'm looking forward to more. I like the thriller feel, the fast paced action and even the gory details and suspense parts that keep you on the edge of your seat regarding what's going to happen next.

The plot revolves around the discovery of human remains that Brennan quickly relates to another murder whose victim she has come in contact with in the past. As the police doesn't seem to give credence to her serial murder theory
Jul 25, 2010 Heidi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
I'm happy to report I've found a new series that I really enjoyed-- although not for the faint of heart or sensitive of stomachs. It took me longer than usual to get over the opening chapters because this author is as precise in the physiological details as I've ever read-- I could practically smell the decay. Once I mastered "skimming the grossest of details," I was hooked!

This novel features some interesting characters and I love that it's set in Montreal, Quebec... a city I didn't know much a
So I went back and re-read this one because in the recent Tempe books she is started to get on my nerves. Well apparently when I was younger, her characteristics didn’t bother me but this re-read found me wanting to strangle her as much as the killer wanted to. So this will be a ramble fest – I apologize in advance.

The mystery is very intriguing and it really grips you but I found myself going “just spit it out” a lot because I felt like the characters new something but wouldn’t admit until the
Troy Blackford
Adequate Yet Strangely Unsatisfying

This book was entertaining, creepy, and engaging. It also struck me as kind of ridiculous in places and grating throughout.

The mystery was decent. The technical perspective (i.e., seeing the crime procedural from the vantage point of the forensic scientist instead of the detectives) was refreshing. The crimes were macabre and disturbing.

The main problem for me was voice. This is a first-person tale, told from the perspective of 'Temperance Brennan.' I just didn
Nov 15, 2016 Dawnie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Years ago, I read this book before I ever watched the tv show that I am not even completye Süden exsited back then.... you see it has been awhile since i read this book. Back than from what's I remember I didn't find it bad, but clearly not at all remmeberable since I forgot everything!

Now in comparison with the tv show, that I can not not compare the book to!, it's not really that great sad to say.

It's not bad, if a bit (very!) outdated feeling taking place in 1994! But the writing is good and
Jul 15, 2009 Erika rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2009, fiction
Two things first.

1. I am not a "mystery person." Therefore my review might be biased because of that.

2. This book is nothing like the TV show "Bones" unless you count the main character's name and profession.

Okay, now... This book was an okay read. I felt the only character that was complete was Tempe. I felt like the other people in the story were interesting only if Tempe paid much attention to them in her thoughts, which is how this story is filtered. I liked the plot, overall. I am a little
Jamie (The Kansan Reader)
Accidentally read the second book last year so I decided to read the first book and now getting to it.

Most of us has heard or seen the T.V. show Bones. I know I have. I love Tempe Brennan. She is just amazing (not to mention the fact that I want to have her job). Deja Dead is the first book in the Temperance Brennan series which the show is based on. Of course the book isn't the same. The only character that is the same on the show as the book is Tempe.

But this is so much more. Tempe is in Montr
Feb 03, 2013 Steven rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2013
While completely different than the Dr. Temperance Brennan from Reichs' foray into television on the hit FOX show BONES, Reichs has woven a complicated web of murders. Are they connected? Are there multiple twisted killers, or is there one masterfully demented and disturbed mind behind all of the seemingly random slayings?

Reichs' Tempe Brennan is a likeable character, with clear strengths, endearing weaknesses, and is enough of an "every man" for any reader to relate to her.

Reichs also succeeds
I really enjoyed this book; like really enjoyed it.
It was by no means a great work of literature *said in a fancy English accent* but it was fun, and very engaging.

However, as a long time Bones fan, I was slightly disappointed at how different the main characters are, BUT as I continued to read I was able to separate the fantastic TV show from this equally engaging book, and appreciate them separately.

Lastly, I found parts of the book to be a little predictable.
Brennan was constantly just putti
3+ stars, not quite 4.

It suffers from the Don't-Open-That-Door-Because-It's-Friday-the-13th-and-You-Live-on-Elm-Street syndrome (view spoiler), but it's a lot of fun, if you consider autopsies and dead bodies fun ;-)

I will read a few more in the series, but perhaps not right away.

I love Bones, so I thought that reading the series that launched the show would be a good supplement while the show was on break. I don't think it was the worst idea, but I'm not sure if I want to continue reading the series.

The plot deals with a serial murderer--and having interned with a mystery editor that didn't really like serial murders, I kind of have that distaste for these plots too. That it is more likely that it's someone that the victim knew and has a real motive to kill that person
Feb 13, 2013 Alexandra rated it it was ok
If you are reading this book because you are a fan of the television series Bones, then stop right now and don't waste your time.

I read through some reviews of this book just now and I realized that my review is going to be very similar to others where the reviewer read the book because they watch the TV show Bones.

I love the show Bones. When I heard the show was based on this series of books, I was excited to read it. Jokes on me! This book is NOTHING like the TV show. If I had read this book b
Mikey B.
Dec 01, 2012 Mikey B. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
There is resolution in this story of a serial killer for which I was thankful.

However, like much in this genre, it is way too long. How many murders of women do we need to get the point across – two or three would have been adequate; instead we are given six grisly butchered women with tabloid sensationalist descriptions. The author seems to get a vicarious thrill from these lengthy and repeated murders and the mood became more and more macabre.

The story is plot-driven and the characters and the
Feb 01, 2008 Elizabeth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This was the first book I have read of Kathy Reichs. I like the forensic science but sometimes I think she gets almost too detailed. I get lost in the science and lose the story. But I have to say that Temperance Brennan is a fun, intersting, likeable character. I am also infatuated with Andrew Ryan the hot detective from Montreal. It moves fast and is interesting. The minuses are that I think Tempe sometimes over-reacts and doesn't use her brain. Plunging herself head first into danger. But hav ...more
Oct 11, 2015 Melanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining book. Densely plotted, with exacting details of forensic practices. This book may be too gruesome for anyone who dreads the thought of reading in-depth autopsy descriptions and macabre brutality perpetrated against female victims. Though the TV show "Bones" is based on this series by Reichs, the book could not be more different from the show. Temperance Brennan is entirely different, and the overall feel of the book lacks the joviality and camaraderie of the show. Still, however, I ...more
Reichs, Kathy - 1st Temperance Brennan

When the bones of a woman are discovered in the grounds of an abandoned monastery, Dr Temperance Brennan of the Laboratoire de Medecine Legale in Montreal is convinced that a serial killer is at work. The detective in charge of the case disagrees with her, but he is forced to revise his opinion.

Very good dialogue, good suspense. Better than Cornwell recently. Will read the next.
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Kathy Reichs is a forensic anthropologist for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, State of North Carolina, and for the Laboratoire des Sciences Judiciaires et de Médecine Légale for the province of Quebec. She is one of only fifty forensic anthropologists certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology and is on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences. A ...more
More about Kathy Reichs...

Other Books in the Series

Temperance Brennan (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Death du Jour (Temperance Brennan, #2)
  • Deadly Decisions (Temperance Brennan, #3)
  • Fatal Voyage (Temperance Brennan, #4)
  • Grave Secrets (Temperance Brennan, #5)
  • Bare Bones (Temperance Brennan, #6)
  • Monday Mourning (Temperance Brennan, #7)
  • Cross Bones (Temperance Brennan, #8)
  • Break No Bones (Temperance Brennan, #9)
  • Bones to Ashes (Temperance Brennan, #10)
  • Devil Bones (Temperance Brennan, #11)

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“She wanted to feel safe. Untouchable in her home. The ultimate female fantasy.” 45 likes
“I hated myself for needing him at such times, for craving his strength whenever I felt upset.” 22 likes
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