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Aftermath: Cleaning Up...
Gil Reavill
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Aftermath: Cleaning Up After the Csi Goes Home

3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  656 Ratings  ·  107 Reviews
In the tradition of Mary Roach's 'Stiff', journalist Gil Reavill has gloved and suited up in order to work alongside the Aftermath, Inc. crews. Taking his readers through a landscape of violence and heart-rending drama, this is a harrowing journey to the extreme edge of human behaviour.
Paperback, 254 pages
Published August 16th 2007 by VISION Paperbacks (first published May 17th 2007)
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Tammy Walton Grant
Jan 19, 2013 Tammy Walton Grant rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: forensic afficionados
I have always been a somewhat morbid sort, so you can see why this book appealed to me immensely.

It's an easy read, with tons of gnarly detail and incisive wit. I laughed out loud a number of times while reading, mostly from passages like this, where the author is referring to the death of a kid on his little league team when he was seven:

"You always remember your first dead body. The following afternoon at the funeral home, Chucky was a waxen figure arrayed in a coffin of polished mahogany, so
In this grisly, swaggering tale of gut-churning crime scenes and the men who clean them up after the forensics team is done, veteran true crime scribe Reavill (Beyond All Reason: My Life with Susan Smith) holds nothing back. From descriptions of crimes ("The fusillade of bullets tore through Johnson's body.... Blood, bits of flesh and bone fragments exploded everywhere") to hepatitis C "bleed-outs" ("All four walls of the bathroom looked like someone had taken a blood hose and turned it on them" ...more
Kye Alfred Hillig
Jan 05, 2009 Kye Alfred Hillig rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having done this job I was ready to be very critical of it especially because the author wrote for Maxim which I think it a magazine that plays to the lowest common denominator. This book was incredibly true to life. I related to his nervousness riding out to his first job. It really rang bells with me about some of his revelations doing this line of work. It truly does make you realize that we are not our bodies. It also is true that once you have done this job that you never look at life or de ...more
Aug 05, 2008 Renee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: CSI and crime story afficionados
Recommended to Renee by: Paul Sullivan
Aftermath, Inc.: Cleaning Up After CSI Goes Home, by Gil Reavill, is not for the faint of heart or the weak-stomached. Reavill, who is a crime story writer for Maxim, decided to do a story about a real-life company who does “bioremediation”; that is, clean-up and removal of the biological mess of violent crimes, suicides, long-unnoticed natural deaths. High Ick Factor but the story is told with humor, respect for those who do this work, and a good dose of self-deprecation (Reavill has a very wea ...more
Feb 10, 2016 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally, a nonfiction book I enjoyed! It is gory, and graphic, and gruesome. But it's also fascinating. Never have I ever thought about the need for cleanup after violent or unattended deaths. But who else would take care of it? Very interesting and very readable - just not while eating! Cons: the constant use of metaphors and analogies were bad. For example, someone's melting skin was compared to the Wicked Witch of the West??? Just say it melted. Also, there were lots of words (scientific or t ...more
Caleb Ross
Not exactly a review, but I do mention this book in one of my book vlog videos. Click the image below to watch (opens in YouTube).

Truly a fantastic and fascinating look into the cleaning of crime scenes. Though this book does do a great job at outlining the specifics (types of materials used, and such) it really shines by going into the lives of the survivors and of the cleaners themselves.
Aug 29, 2013 Kristi rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found the author's jock/Maxim style extremely grating, and his liberal use of quotes to be downright annoying, but the book eventually won me over. At times it seemed like a thinly veiled advertisement for Aftermath, Inc., but there was just enough substance to keep things interesting. I was more interested in the science and methodology of crime scene clean-up, while the book focused more on the human aspect. Not a bad thing, just not quite what I expected.
My semi-morbid streak (along with a friend's reccomendation) led me to check this book out from my local library. Reavill is a true-crime writer who decided he should go one step further and learn about what happens to a crime scene once the law is done with it. Therefore, he meets the owners of Aftermath Inc., the heavy-hitters in the field of "bioremediation" - providing cleaning services to bio-contaminated sites; usually death scenes, but not always.

Reavill jumps in with both Tyvek-clad feet
Joanne Parkington
Sep 18, 2012 Joanne Parkington rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was right up my street so a 3 star rating was pretty much in the bag already ... in Britain the thankless task of cleaning up crime scenes belong's to the local council's fumigation & pest control team's but there's no such cover in America .... step forward bioremediation companies and in particular Aftermath Inc., ... Gil Reavill shadow's the 'techs' of the title at first like a giddy kid until the unpleasentness of the task's ahead start to sink in ... never mind the smell's.
A book about the people who clean up after forensics. These people go in and do their job of cleaning up blood, body parts, and body fluids. You will not hear a lot about them in crime shows or in books.
I really wanted to like this book and it was a decent read. The author really enjoyed rambling and adding quotes here and there. It appears he tried to lighten up the subject but his humor falls a bit flat. I disliked how judgemental he seemed to people especially the victims and the dead. He tal
Dustin Gaughran
This was an interesting look at a subject no one ever really thinks about. But it was definitely educational. Some sections do not deal with clean up at all, though, and focus on the motives behind crimes, the criminal mind, or just out right philosophical musing about life and death. It all ties together, given the subject matter. But I felt it a little too far off base at times. You pick this up expecting gruesome details (which are present, don't get me wrong) about cleaning up crime scenes. ...more
Better by far than Mop Men (see last review), and with plenty of interesting details. Neal Smither, the subject of Mop Men, is a far more interesting character than the guys profiled in Aftermath, but this is the better book.
Aug 05, 2016 Sara rated it liked it
This was a really interesting read, but I did get a bit bored when he explained about the science components.
May 20, 2010 Maddy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2007-reads

For years, Gil Reavill was a true crime correspondent for Maxim magazine. In spite of the fact that he reported on dozens of true crimes, he never visited a fresh crime scene. Instead, he would rely on one of the professionals at the site for the descriptions that he would use in his articles. So when he has the opportunity to work with a company that cleans up after suicides, murders and other messy deaths, he jumps at the chance.

Two young men by the name of Tim Reifstec
After all his elaborate preparations for dealing out death, Nicholas Mazilli wound up knocking on the wrong door.

Ever wonder who cleans up the mess after CSI goes home? In this book, Gil Reavill shows the mess that is left behind after CSI is done; a mess most families have to clean up on their own. The author shadows a bioremediation company that removes traces of the crime and investigation to help families struck by tragedy make a clean start.

I remember recently watching an episode of Law a
Feb 05, 2012 Miles rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ewwww. Ick. Gross. All that and more. This is a book about the people who clean up when grandpa is found decomposing in the hallway three weeks after he died in the house where he lived alone. This is the story of people who scrape the brains off the wall after junior blows his head off with a shotgun. This is the tale of the maggots and bugs and vomit inducing stench of decomposition. You think you've got stain removal challenges? You don't have stain removal challenges. Bioremediation technici ...more
This was such an impulse buy, wow. I literally went searching for gruesome true crime books and immediately ordered this in Amazon. I have no shame, truly! But I got a lot more than I expected with Gil Reavill's Aftermath, Inc., an amusing non-fiction account of a prolific biomatter cleanup crew.

First of all, yeah, this is a gross book. There are bodies. There are bodies that have been sitting around in filth and heat and decomposition for a long time. There are people reacting to these dead bo
Eva Leger
Aug 05, 2009 Eva Leger rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: CSI fans, ppl interested in this subject
Recommended to Eva by: found it on-line somwhere
I've read that some people feel this was written in a magazine article way and I have to disagree. I'm not sure if it was meant to insinuate that this would be a bad thing or not but either way I thought it was written just fine and not like a long article at all.
I think Reavill did pretty good job with the book overall, I learned a lot of things I had no idea about during the course of reading. I had never thought once about who cleans up these crime scenes and I especially never stopped to th
Jan 10, 2011 Bryce rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
After watching Sunshine Cleaning and reading The Mystical Art of Removing All Signs of Death, I've wondered at the reality of the crime scene cleanup business. Who would get into this business and why? How gruesome can it get?

The answers: Some nice Midwestern boys. Because there's a lot of money in it and it can actually help people. And pretty darn gruesome.

Reavill trails the owners and crews of Aftermath and the reports of what he experienced with this is straightforward, interesting and a li
May 23, 2011 Joy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is not a book for the faint of heart - it is exactly as it states, a book about "what happens after CSI goes home." What DOES happen after a body is found and the investigation is over? A company in the relatively recent field of "bioremediation" comes in to clean up what's left. Blood, brains, "fluids," fingerprint powder, gunpowder residue, these guys have seen it all and cleaned it up more than once. The author is a crime writer who followed along with a few teams from Aftermath, Inc. to ...more
Welp. I think two cleaning-up-crime-scenes books is enough for me. I vastly preferred this to Mop MenAftermath, Inc. felt considerably more focused—but there's only so much blood/guts/gore a girl can take.

Reavill doesn't get super deep into the nitty-gritty of how people clean up after crimes (and non-criminal deaths, and so on and so forth), but he does detail a number of the situations that lead to the need for these services, and...yikes. Makes me glad that there are people who know how to d
Stephanie Borders
Jun 24, 2016 Stephanie Borders rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2016
Have you ever wondered what happens to a grisly crime scene once the body(ies) are removed? It never occurred to me to be curious about it, but I stumbled upon this book on Overdrive one night when I was looking for an ebook and figured what the heck.

Gil Reavill hooks up with the bioremediation teams at Aftermath, Inc. The technicians, for a hefty fee, will come in after a death and clean up. This is especially necessary after bodies have begun to decompose or after death by gunshot blast, which
interesting storys from the company and extremly informational. some funny bits. this book is worth reading. author wasnt as annoying as the person who wrote Mop Men but he also adds his boring life an selling himself, grossed out opinion, pretentious. for a person who writes storys for a magazine, he sure doesnt know how to write. there where one-liners, constantly strays really off topic (i went back an highlighted the parts having to do with the company, for the next time i want to re-read, a ...more
Feb 26, 2009 lola rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I have a stomach for gore. My father walked in on his grandmother bludgeoned to death when he was 18, and forbade me to watch horror movies or Law & Order growing up because the vicarious enjoyment of other people's pain via popular entertainment is (let's be real) fucking disgusting.* At any rate, I saw someone reading this on the subway and figured I'd pick it up from the library. It was like a long Maxim article about death with occasional attempts at depth, and the physical book smelled ...more
Mar 18, 2012 Kim-Lost-In-A-Book rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-reads
I really enjoyed this book, if "enjoyed" is the proper word to use for a non-fiction book about the people who clean up after death occurs.

While it is difficult to read at times due to it's graphic descriptions, it's also very educational and interesting to read. It's intelligently written. I think it should be required reading for all the fans of the CSI type tv shows. So they can see the less glamorous romanticized side of real life death. And see how those crime scenes are truly handled - th
Sep 03, 2010 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fascinating examination into the world of crime and death scene cleanup. Reavill explores the voyeurism and violation involved in looking at and being fascinated by death and decay. But he also discusses the compassion and respect necessary in dealing with the scenes of the dead. Once a person dies, they become an object, a corpse--with toxic fluids and body matter to clean up and obliterate. Reavill reminds us of the person that occupied that space, while explaining the fascinating bi ...more
Mirjam Penning
Feb 06, 2014 Mirjam Penning rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How two guys came up with the idea for a new business. They sort of rolled into it. One day, in their neighborhood someone died of unnatural causes and they offered to clean up after the fact when no one else would or could. When they think back about their first clean-up(s) they still shiffer. The book will tell you why.

The writer of the book was a 'volunteer' for awhile. It was research in the field for his book. He could a pretty good insight and sometimes more than he bargained for.
Some par
May 14, 2014 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2014
This was a fairly quick and interesting read. Reavill is a crime author (he wrote true-crime articles for Maxim, among other works) who accompanies the works at Afermath Inc, a "bioremediation" company that cleans up a location after a death, a hoarder situation, tear-gas use, etc. Reavill investigates the processes, describes job sites and specific crimes/clean-ups, and delves into the personalities working for such a company. He also explores his own thoughts and reactions. I don't know quite ...more
Joseph Santiago
Nov 07, 2013 Joseph Santiago rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The author was a crime writer and this story becomes interesting as you learn about him through the book. Besides anyone willing to admit they got sick on the teacups while taking their kid on is ok in my book. When I first started reading this book I was wondering if it would be a story of every aspect of a business plan. This book shares some of the crimes that bring others to a violent end. It shares the isolation of some who died without anyone there and were left until the meat of a man was ...more
Sep 12, 2016 Angela rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, work
Written by a crime writer (he usually writes for Maxim magazine) this insight in to what happens AFTER the crime was interesting to me. I have often wondered how the family deals with cleaning up after the worst day of their lives. I can't put in to words how devasting that idea must be. Yes, Aftermath is a commercial enterprise, and they do make money, but more than that, they offer a service that is so desperately needed.

I like reading about the crimes. I am a little off, part of what makes m
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Gil Reavill’s "13" series of crime novels from Random House kicked off with 13 Hollywood Apes: A Layla Remington Mystery, nominated for a 2015 Thriller Award from International Thriller Writers. Apes will be followed up in July 2015 by 13 Stolen Girls: A Layla Remington Mystery, and in December 2015 by 13 Under the Wire: A Layla Remington Mystery. He is a leading true-crime journalist, with two re ...more
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