You’re watching an episode of Bones and Brennan mentions her fictional character Kathy Reichs. You searched it and discover she is an author in real life. Now you’ve stumbled across this list of Kathy Reichs books in order.
Bones is one of the best intriguing crime fiction with millions of fans worldwide hooked. American author Kathy Reichs shot into the public limelight like a fired bullet right from her first novel Deja Dead, making her a New York Times bestseller.
This first book became the beginning of her popular series following fictional forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. Kathy’s novels inspired the successful FOX TV series Bones, whereby she is the producer.
Before we talk more about Bones or list out the Kathy Reichs books in order, let’s learn a little bit more about the authors.
Who is Kathy Reichs?
Kathleen Joan Toelle Reichs, born on July 7 1948, is among the 100 forensic anthropologists ever certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology.
She served on the board of directors and as vice president of both the American academy of forensic sciences and the American board of forensic anthropology and is currently a member of the national police services advisory council in Canada.
This American crime writer and forensic anthropologist rose to fame after her first novel Déjà Dead, and the rest is history.
Bones TV Show
Bones has captured the attention of millions of fans across the world. It is based upon the Temperance Brennan novels.
However, it was important for the hero of the series to somehow differ from the one in the books. That’s why in the TV show main character Temperance Brennan has a completely different personality. As well, in the TV show, Temperance is an author and Kathy Reichs is the main character in her books.
The series captures the issues of forensic science by showing the humanity of those who participate. Occasional humor is added to preserve the emotional balance that the participants go through.
We can attest that each episode balances both aspects uniquely. The producer has also succeeded in beautifully keeping the work of science on track.
Overall, Bones is an epic show, with each episode of play underscoring the dedication of detective and lab scientists who work hand in hand in pursuit of justice.
To help you minimize the hassle of choosing the best reading order of these books, we have prepared an outline for all of Kathy Reichs books in order of publication.
How to Read Kathy Reichs Books in Order
Now that you have a little background about the author and TV show that came from her works, let’s look at three options you can use when reading Kathy Reichs Books in Order.
- Temperance Brennan books
- Tory Brennan books
- Standalone novels
#1 Temperance Brennan Books in Order of Publication
Before we look at Temperance Brennan books in order, let’s get to know who Temperance Brennan is.
Temperance Deassee Brennan is a fictional character created by the author. She’s a forensic anthropologist with a background in physical anthropology, yet she solves crimes.
Temperance is usually called to investigate human remains at crime scenes where the flash is too damaged for a coroner to obtain evidence. The Temperance Brennan series is the longest of Kathy’s writing.
Here the Temperance Brennan books in order of publication
- Déjà Dead (1997)
- Death Du Jour (1999)
- Deadly Decisions (2000)
- Fatal Voyage (2001)
- Grave Secrets (2002)
- Bare Bones (2003)
- Monday Mourning (2004)
- Cross Bones (2005)
- Break No Bones (2006)
- Bones to Ashes (2007)
- Devil Bones (2008)
- 206 Bones (2009)
- Spider Bones (2010)
- Flash and Bones (2011)
- Bones Are Forever (2012)
- Bones of the Lost (2013)
- Bones Never Lie (2014)
- Speaking in Bones (2015)
- The Bone Collection (2016) (4-Novella Bundle)
- A Conspiracy of Bones (2020)
- The Bone Code (2021)
- Cold, Cold Bones (2022)
#2 Temperance Brennan Books in Chronological Order
Normally, I would recommend against reading a series in Chronological order, but with the Temperance Brennan books, you should be fine.
The reason for the caution is that spoilers may exist in books published later, even though they fall earlier in the timeline.
However, I think you’re safe reading First Bones before beginning the main series if that’s your thing.
- First Bones (Novella in The Bone Collection)
- Déjà Dead
- Death Du Jour
- Deadly Decisions
- Fatal Voyage
- Grave Secrets
- Bare Bones
- Monday Mourning
- Cross Bones
- Break No Bones
- Bones to Ashes
- Devil Bones
- 206 Bones
- Spider Bones
- Flash and Bones
- Bones Are Forever
- Bones in Her Pocket (Novella in The Bone Collection)
- Bones of the Lost
- Swamp Bones (Novella in The Bone Collection)
- Bones Never Lie
- Bones on Ice (Novella in The Bone Collection)
- Speaking in Bones
- A Conspiracy of Bones
- The Bone Code
- Cold, Cold Bones
Tory Brennan/Virals Books in Order
Here are the Tory Brennan books in the order of publication
- Virals (2010)
- Seizure (2011)
- Shift (2013) (Collected in Trace Evidence)
- Code (2013)
- Swipe (2013) (Collected in Trace Evidence)
- Exposure (2014)
- Shock (2015) (Collected in Trace Evidence)
- Terminal (2015)
- Spike (2016) (Collected in Trace Evidence)
Kathy Reichs Books in Order – Standalones
- Two Nights (2017)
Summary of the Kathy Reichs Books in Order
Here is a taste of the first ten Kathy Reichs books in order.
1. Déjà Dead
Her life is devoted to justice; for those she never even knew. In the year since Temperance Brennan left behind a shaky marriage in North Carolina, work has often pre-empted her weekend plans to explore Quebec.
When a female corpse is discovered meticulously dismembered and stashed in trash bags, Temperance detects an alarming pattern and she plunges into a harrowing search for a killer. But her investigation is about to place those closest to her, her best friend and her own daughter, in mortal danger.
2. Death du Jour
Assaulted by the bitter cold of a Montreal winter, the American-born Dr. Temperance Breman, Forensic Anthropologist for the Province of Quebec, digs for a corpse where Sister Elisabeth Nicolet, dead over a century and now a candidate for sainthood, should lie in her grave.
A strange, small coffin, buried in the recesses of a decaying church, holds the first clue to the cloistered nun’s fate. The puzzle surrounding Sister Elisabeth’s life and death provides a welcome contrast to discoveries at a burning chalet, where scorched and twisted bodies await Tempe’s professional expertise.
Who were these people? What brought them to this gruesome fate?
Homicide Detective Andrew Ryan, with whom Tempe has a combustive history, joins her in the arson investigation. From the fire scene they are drawn into the worlds of an enigmatic and controversial professor, a mysterious commune, and a primate colony on a Carolina island.
3. Deadly Decisions
Nine-year-old Emily Anne Toussaint is fatally shot on a Montreal street. A North Carolina teenager disappears from her home, and parts of her skeleton are found hundreds of miles away.
The shocking deaths propel Tempe Brennan from north to south, and deep into a shattering investigation inside the bizarre culture of outlaw motorcycle gangs. Where one misstep could bring disaster for herself or someone she loves.
4. Fatal Voyage
Investigating a plane crash in the Smoky Mountains in North Carolina, forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan discovers in a most disturbing way that the evidence doesn’t add up. Tripping over a coyote-chewed leg at the crash scene, she performs a little mental arithmetic and realizes that this victim wasn’t on the plane.
Once again, Brennan’s high-tech DMORT snaps into action faster than you can say, “Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team.”
5. Grave Secrets
In the searing heat of Guatemala, Dr.Temperance Brennan must harden herself against the horrors she excavates. And then four young girls go missing from Guatemala City.
When a skeleton is found at the back of a rundown hotel, only someone with Tempe’s expertise can deduce the identity and cause of death. But as she searches for answers, her path is blocked at every turn. It is clear that some people will stop at nothing to keep Guatemala’s secrets buried.
6. Bare Bones
“Down time” is not a phrase in Tempe Brennan’s vocabulary. A string of disturbing cases has put her vacation plans on hold.
Instead, she heads to the lab to analyze charred remains from a suspicious fire, and a mysterious black residue from a small plane crash. But most troubling of all are the bones. Even more disturbing is the fact that bones turn up on a family picnic in North Carolina — but are they animal or human?
X-rays and DNA may link the crimes, but they can’t reveal who is closing in on Tempe and her family. And how far they will go to keep her from uncovering the truth?
7. Monday Mourning
Temperance Brennan, forensic anthropologist for both North Carolina and Quebec, has come from Charlotte to Montreal during the bleak days of December to testify as an expert witness at a murder trial.
She should be going over her notes, but instead she’s digging in the basement of a pizza parlor, where she finds the skeletonized remains of three young women. How did they get there? When did they die?
Homicide detective Luc Claudel, never Tempe’s greatest fan, believes the bones are historic. The pizza parlor owner found nineteenth-century buttons in the cellar with the skeletons. Claudel takes them as an indicator of the bones’ antiquity.
But something doesn’t make sense. Tempe examines the bones in her lab and establishes approximate age with Carbon-14. Further study of tooth enamel tells her where the women were born. If she’s right, Claudel has three recent murders on his hands.
Detective Andrew Ryan, meanwhile, is acting mysteriously. What are those private phone calls he takes in the other room, and why does he suddenly disappear just when Tempe is beginning to hope he might be a permanent part of her life? It looks like more lonely nights for Tempe and Birdie, her cat.
As Tempe searches for answers in both her personal and professional lives, she finds herself drawn deep into a web of evil from which there may be no escape. Women have disappeared, never to return, and Tempe may be next.
8. Cross Bones
Examining a badly decomposed corpse is de rigueur for forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. But puzzling damage on the body of a shooting victim, an Orthodox Jewish man, suggests this is no ordinary Montreal murder.
When a stranger slips Tempe a photograph of a skeleton unearthed at an archaeological site, Tempe uncovers chilling ties between the dead man and secrets long buried in the dust of Israel. Traveling there with Detective Andrew Ryan, Tempe plunges into an international mystery as old as Jesus, and centered on the controversial discovery of Christ’s tomb.
Has a mastermind lured her into an elaborate hoax? If not, Tempe may be on the brink of rewriting two thousand years of history — if she can survive the foes dead set on burying her.
9. Break No Bones
Among the ancient remains in a Native American burial ground, Tempe discovers a fresh skeleton. And what began as an ordinary teaching stint at an archeology field school in Charleston, South Carolina, fast becomes a heated investigation into an alarming pattern of homicides.
The clues hidden in the bones lead to a street clinic where a monstrous discovery awaits, and Tempe — whose personal life is in upheaval, with two men competing for her — can’t afford any distractions as she pieces together a shattering and terrifying puzzle.
10. Bones to Ashes
The discovery of a skeleton in Acadia, Canada, reawakens a traumatic episode for forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. Could the young girl’s remains be those of Évangéline Landry, Tempe’s friend who disappeared when Tempe was twelve?
Exotic, free-spirited, and slightly older, Évangéline enlivened Tempe’s summer beach visits…then vanished amid whispers that she was “dangerous.”
Now, faced with bones scarred with inexplicable lesions, Tempe is consumed with solving a decades-old mystery — while her lover, detective Andrew Ryan, urgently needs her attention on a wave of teenage abductions and murders. With both Ryan and her ex-husband making surprising future plans, Tempe may soon find that her world has painfully and irrevocably changed once again.
Reading the Kathy Reichs books in order is a thrill that will entertain you even if you missed out on the Bones TV series.
Which one was your favorite?
Looking for more books in order?
Check out another crime fiction with a TV series: Peter James books in order.