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More Forensics and Fiction: Crime Writers' Morbidly Curious Questions Expertly Answered

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  208 ratings  ·  42 reviews
This compilation of medical and forensic science questions from crime writers around the world provides insight into medical and forensic science as well as a glimpse into the writer’s creative mind. How do hallucinogenic drugs affect a blind person? Will snake venom injected into fruit cause death? How would you perform CPR in a helicopter? What happens when someone swall ...more
Paperback, 423 pages
Published April 1st 2012 by Medallion Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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Average rating 3.86  · 
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Feb 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
D.P. Lyle does it again, with a reference book that is an entertaining and enlightening read as well as a useful resource to mystery and suspense authors. After reading More Forensics and Fiction, I immediately made fixes to two mystery manuscripts I was working on. Also, I found the insights into the mental processes of other crime fiction authors and screen writers to be fascinating. More Forensics and Fiction is an important addition to my reference shelf.

-- Beth Groundwater, author of the Cl
Nov 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I read an advance readers copy of this book. It was very interesting, in a morbid sort of way. Certainly would be useful to writers, or if you are planning on murdering someone.
Aug 18, 2018 rated it liked it
Around the Year in 52 Books 2018 Reading Challenge. A book nominated for the Edgar Award or by a Grand Master Author.

D. P. Lyle is a medical doctor and consultant to several TV crime/medical dramas. In this book, he answers questions from mystery writers about decaying bodies, weapons, poisons, and more related to murder mysteries. I did not care for the format of this book. The author is obviously knowledgeable, however, he did make one glaring error. The plural of genus is NOT genuses; it is g
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: did-not-finish
Fascinating book in a bit of a scary way. Glad there is a disclaimer at the start as I could imagine this book being used in rather dubious ways in the wrong hands.
Yi An
Jan 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
A brilliant book of answers. It's just the abundant terminologies that hindered me focusing...
Ashley Pugh
May 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
This and Murder and Mayhem are really helpful if you don't know much about forensics. Use it for your research.
Douglas Sandler
Mar 20, 2017 rated it liked it
It was a OK book. It did not help me with my style of writing and subject matter, If I had to do it over I would not have purchased it
Mar 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fascinating and sometimes disturbing. What I really got out of this was a good lesson in anatomy. This may be a book to help mystery writers know how to commit and solve crimes, but it also teaches how parts of the body work and why they quit working. I also know why autopsies take so long (huge back log in coroners' office and lack of money.)
Read this if you want to know how to kill your fictional characters (hopefully it's only fictional people you want to kill.) Or read it because you occasio
Dane MacPhail
Feb 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
There are three books by this author, all covering similar subjects. They are very well organized and it's very obvious that the author takes an interest in the writer's questions, providing great feedback and even encouragement. Other than the fact that the three books tend to repeat some of the topics, I would definitely recommend these to any writer who wants to create credible mysteries and thrillers.
Starr Gardinier
Feb 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Attention authors and morbidly curious readers! This is a (forgive the cliché) must-have. I own a few other forensics books by Lyle. I love those and am now adding this newest one to the forensic family on my bookshelf.

First, broaden your minds. The questions asked and answered in Lyle’s newest are not just typical how-tos. For example, who would have thought to ask: ‘Can injected alcohol kill an already intoxicated person?’ Here are few others I’ll share as proof positive of the ‘morbidly curi
Nostalgia Reader
May 19, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: ebook-amazon
3.5 stars

A must-read for any mystery/crime/thriller writers or their readers who'd just like to know more about the fascinatingly morbid sorts of things that go on in those books.

Since I read this straight through, it might have lost some interestingness for me, since many of the answers were a bit repetitive, especially when similar questions were grouped together. However, it was still interesting, I learned a lot (some I enjoyed learning, others I didn't really *want* to learn...), and the in
Jul 24, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
mystery writers (books and tv/screen) need to know how bodies look after drowning, car accidents, poisoning, chopped up, etc. ..rotting in freezers, trunks, graves, caves, under floors in wall...coma victims, accident victims, all round murder..

how to hide a murder, how to discover a murder - what were autopsies like in the past, like now, what tests are done on a body to find drugs, drowning, sex, age, etc -

here's a few examples - "what injuries can result from depleted uranium bullets?" or "w
Aug 10, 2013 rated it liked it
Disclaimer: Technically I did not finish this book. I got about halfway through, started other things, and left it behind, but honestly that's okay, because this book is truly and primarily a reference book. It can certainly be read as a morbidly fun nonfiction guide to gore, but it's best taken in small shots or referenced as needed for mystery writers or fans of the genre who just want to know how something works or happens scientifically/medically when it comes to death and other wonderfully ...more
Aug 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'm not sure if it's weird to classify this as a fun read, but for me it was. The book is written in a Q & A format, describing all kinds of different (mostly) murder scenarios from a medical perspective. It was as interesting to see the identities of some of the questioners as it was to read the expert answers to the questions asked. The only drawbacks were the similarity in a lot of the answers (some things, like the 12-12-12 rule for rigor mortis, got repetitive after a while), and the few ca ...more
Apr 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
very interesting book about ways of being killed or killing someone in the names from those who want to write detective stories/murderers minds/vampires...Lyle has briefly discussed 216 cases on how a person could be killed or how he or she felt during the trauma process..such as it takes about few minutes to be choked to death if a person decides to hang himself...or how a person turn into rotten state by the rule of 12/12/12...etc..interesting book also include the old ways of treating wounds ...more
Mar 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What a neat book! Filled with how to write logical crime scenes and written by a medical doctor! Various authors have written and explain what they want to write about and ask a question. The author replies with the best method(s) that are believable. He even provides suggestions and alternative ideas. P.J. Parrish and a few other authors that I recognized were in this book.

Nicely written and easy to look up stuff. Questions range from present day "stuff" to historical questions like how was so
Nov 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's a very practical book full of interesting medical questions and information that you may come across when you read or write fiction related to injuries and death. I learned a lot and got a somewhat basic knowledge of cases which I didn't know until I read it. It's a lot of information so it will take you a little while to finish. I think it's a must-have for people who love detective fiction, whether you just love reading that genre or planning to write it, it will come in handy and probabl ...more
Staci McLaughlin
Jul 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book is especially useful for crime writers who want to make sure their descriptions of how a dead body decomposes or how someone dies is accurate. From a reader standpoint, it was interesting to learn about the many different ways a person can be killed and what processes the body goes through. The question and answer format makes it especially easy to focus on the topics that most interest the reader.
Feb 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: research-mystery
Any mystery or thriller writer worth their salt heads for a D.P. Lyle book for their research on how to have a character die or have a character make someone else depart. This book is another in Mr Lyle's series that one picks up for research and at the same time is entertained. Even if you're not writing a mystery this is a fun book to browse for chuckles or enlightenment. Only question, how does he continue to come up with this great material?
Jay Phillippi
Sep 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
You may be surprised at how funny this book can be. Intended as a resource book for crime writers who want to get the forensics right it is also a wonderful read for those of us who just want to know.

A fun read but not really bed time reading.

Full review at:
Jun 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Interesting! I like the way questions are posed and the author answers them, often giving suggestions for what would make better sense. This is not the kind of book you need to sit down and read cover to cover. Just pick it up and read a few Q&As, or pull it out when you are thinking about a particular subject. Glad I was able to get this one for free. ...more
Sam Ho
Jul 13, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Honestly, this book is only interesting if you`re interested into mystery novels. It is a collection of the questions that the author received over the years from other mystery novel writers on whether the scenarios they pose on their own novels are scientifically possible. Although the questions posed are interesting on its own, the way the author presents the answers is a bit boring. ...more
Ally Cabella
Jul 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I loved the off-the-wall questions that were asked. Made the wheels start turning! It answered a few questions I had regarding my own plot plus gave me ideas for other story lines. All of Lyle's books are must-haves!
Chris Norbury
An excellent resource for writers of mystery, crime, thriller, suspense, or any other sort of fiction (or even nonfiction perhaps) who needs to incorporate accurate details into their stories. I own two other books written by Dr. Lyle and they too are invaluable resources for my writing.
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
I'm not sure how to rate this. The information is fascinating, clear, and helpful for a thriller writer but there is absolutely no organization which makes it impossible to use for anything but entertainment.
Nov 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
While I am not a crime writer but a fantasy writer I found the information vast and useful. At times it was even a little disturbing to read. But I enjoyed it and will likely use some of what I've learned with my own genre.
Lori Rader-Day
Mar 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2013
This is creepy, before-bed reading. Loved it. Lots of story ideas and stuff I can know, in books.
Daphne Ho
Mar 24, 2013 rated it liked it
It's more like a reference book
Jul 27, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013
Morbid is definitely the word I would use to describe some of these questions!
Sep 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I got this gruesome but informative book as a draw at a booth for Word on the Street. They are promoting a mystery writers conference coming to Halifax in 2015.
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DP Lyle, MD is the Macavity and Benjamin Franklin Silver Award winning and Edgar, Agatha, Anthony, Scribe, Silver Falchion, and USA Best Book Award nominated author of many non-fiction books as well as numerous works of fiction.

He has worked with many novelists and with the writers of popular television shows such as Law & Order, CSI: Miami, Diagnosis Murder, Monk, House, Medium, and Pretty Little

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