Beyond the Body Farm by Dr Bill Bass


Beyond the Body Farm: A Legendary Bone Detective Explores Murders, Mysteries, and the Revolution in Forensic Science

By: Bill Bass

Published by: William Morrow

Genre: Pages: 304

Author’s Website:

Author’s Twitter:

Recommendable for people who: are interested in True Crime, “csi type” NON-FICTION,  educational, forensics


Synopsis {from the authors website}:

In Beyond the Body Farm, readers will follow Bass as he explores the depths of an East Tennessee lake with a twenty-first-century sonar system, in a quest for an airplane that disappeared with two people on board thirty-five years ago; see Bass exhume fifties pop star "the Big Bopper" to determine what injuries he suffered in the plane crash that killed three rock and roll legends on "the day the music died"; and join Bass as he works to decipher an ancient Persian death scene nearly three thousand years old. Witty and engaging, Bass dissects the methods used by homicide investigators every day, leading readers on an extraordinary journey into the high-tech science that it takes to crack a case.

My thoughts:

I got a lot of reactions on Facebook when I posted I was reading this book.  So here’s the deal.  My sweet Aunt bought this book because her cousin (and thus my dad’s and my own) is one of the case files mentioned in this book.  Sad but true.

You know that story your parent’s told you, and the one we tell our children about not going with ANYONE they don’t know,  not even a cop, if they don’t know the “secret safe word”.  And then you find yourself wondering if that ever REALLY happened to someone.  If someone, appearing as an authority figure, actually said “somethings happened to your parents…you need to come with me” and then did something very bad to her?  Well, it did.  And her name was Kathy Jane Nishiyama.  Kathy’s case is discussed in chapter 4.  Succint descriptions of the last moments of my cousins life.  It was well written.  It was concise.  It was, for me, not easy to read.

All in all, I found this book to be well written.  For a non-fiction and forensics book it is, what it is.  The entire book reads like a lecture or a one day master class in the history of forensics.  The forensics that we see everyday intertwined in some of our favorite tv shows.  If you are not looking for a “novel” full of drama et all, and have an interest more in the hows its and whats it, then you WILL enjoy this book.   I do find the entire thing a little sad though.  True cases are always sad.


read an excerpt here:

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