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Forensics Audiobook

Forensics: The Anatomy of Crime

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Publisher's Summary

The dead talk. To the right listener, they tell us all about themselves: how they lived, how they died--and who killed them.

Val McDermid uncovers the secrets of forensic medicine with groundbreaking research and her own experience. Along the way you'll wonder at how maggots collected from a corpse can help determine time of death and how a DNA trace a millionth the size of a grain of salt can be used to convict a killer.

©2014 Val McDermid (P)2014 W.F. Howes Ltd

What the Critics Say

"McDermid has the ruthless psychological scalpel that forms part of the equipment of all good novelists, whatever their genre. And, fortunately for us, she knows just how to use it." (Guardian)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (107 )
5 star
 (69)
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 (28)
3 star
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Overall
4.6 (100 )
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Story
4.2 (103 )
5 star
 (53)
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3 star
 (14)
2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Ceris511 24/03/2015
    Ceris511 24/03/2015 Member Since 2011
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    "Excellent"

    Very informative interesting and enjoyable. The narration was good too.i would recommend this book and look forward to the next val McDermid book .

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Justin Moors Dorset, UK 06/03/2015
    Justin Moors Dorset, UK 06/03/2015 Member Since 2015
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    "Fascinating insight"

    Very enjoyable listen, shows the incredible depth of research Val has done over the years and just how far forensics have come during our lifetimes. Particularly interesting to hear forensic insights into some high profile cases that I remember from the news.

    Enjoyed, for the most part, the narration, my only criticism would be the varying accents used by the narrator when quoting passages from some of the experts. Some accents made me chuckle, some made me cringe. She has a lovely Scottish accent, very easy on the ear, I felt there was no real need to use different voices to emphasise the quotes of others.

    Highly recommend this, especially if you are a fan of any crime writers or tv shows, not just the work of Val McDermid. Will listen again.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    May-May 25/01/2016
    May-May 25/01/2016 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good book GOD AWFUL narration"
    What disappointed you about Forensics?

    The book itself was great. The narration was AWFUL.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    N/A


    What didn’t you like about Sarah Barron’s performance?

    First of all I should say that book is a really interesting, nicely written and well researched piece of popular science. I just wish I had read it, rather than listened to it.

    The problem was not with the general reading, the narrator had a nice reading voice. But when she gets to quoting people, for some reason someone thought it would be a good idea forget to attempt regional and national accents. That was s SERIOUSLY BAD idea. It's so bad!! So very very bad. She is incapable of doing ANY accent than her own. It's cringe worthy. I was embarrassed for her!

    The American accent was possibly the worst, but the regional English accents were a close second. She manages to make people, who are undoubtedly highly intelligent experts in their field, sound like dim imbeciles from a Little Britain sketch. Maybe her regional Scottish accents were better, as she is Scottish, but given how TRULY AWFUL the others were I wouldn't be surprised if they were bad too.

    It's not only that the use of accents were TOTALLY distracting (I cannot truly emphasise how distracting they were) it's that the use of them was also inconsistent and at times simply incorrect. I happen to have worked for one of the people quoted in the book - Clive Stafford Smith. He's a lawyer who has represented many people on death row in the U.S. The problem is that the narrator gives him an American accent. Stafford Smith has indeed worked and lived in the States, but he's from Cambridgeshire and speaks with an English accent. He's also relatively famous and is interviewed on TV fairly regularly, so there's no mistaking his accent. So it's just lazy that they got that wrong.

    I know I'm going on and on about it, but that is symptomatic of how blummin' awful it was and that it completely ruined what was actually a great book. I can actually only assume that the book was even better than I think because I thought it was pretty good despite the TERRIBLE narration. Imagine what I'd have thought of it had been good!


    You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    The content of the book was super interesting, well researched and nicely written.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann Watson Scotland 06/09/2015
    Ann Watson Scotland 06/09/2015 Member Since 2014

    Low Arvie

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    "ruined by the narrator"

    Why oh why did the narrator have to use such phoney, annoying regional accents? The narration completely ruins the interesting and factual content of the book. Very disappointed that I was only able to listen to the book once, as I was so irritated by this dreadful narrator. The first listen was endured because of the interesting content, but the second attempt was abandoned before the end of chapter one. Peter Arnold doesn't speak in the way portrayed at all and his expertise is considerably demeanoured by it. TERRIBLE!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul c 18/01/2017
    Paul c 18/01/2017 Member Since 2013
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    "Very interesting"

    Great book, well executed by narrator, will listen again straight away because so informative. I wonder if the author is Scottish? Just a thought because of her name!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 31/12/2016
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    5
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    "Interesting, captivating, illuminating"

    My only negative comment is the book was to short; it was so well written and full of interesting, well explained science and facts all brought to life by the human aspect of the people who work in these fields that quite frankly I wanted more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Denise 28/11/2016
    Denise 28/11/2016 Member Since 2009
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    "Great book but not keen on the narrator"
    What did you like best about Forensics? What did you like least?

    Very interesting content - fascinating forensics but the author's accent was too strong and I struggled to understand sometimes as she seemed to trip over her words, her tone was very dull, and her different accents were distracting.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Forensics?

    Listening to the Dublin fire story - very harrowing


    How could the performance have been better?

    Completely different narrator and a bit of a life in the story - I know it's a harrowing subject, but some different tone in narrating it would help


    Did Forensics inspire you to do anything?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    No

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roger 19/11/2016
    Roger 19/11/2016 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dissapointing , did not finish the book."
    If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Sadly, Some one who's deaf! I knows that's harsh, but this is one to read yourself, totally ruined by the narrator.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Val McDermid again?

    Not if Sarah Barron is reading it. Sadly as I said above the narrator ruined what could have been a very good book.


    How could the performance have been better?

    If she had just read the book in her normal voice. it would have been perfect, she has a wonderful voice.but what frustrated me and annoyed me was when she tried to change her voice to speak in the accent of the person speaking..... Why oh why do these people think they need to do this! After the 3rd chapter, I could not listen any more


    Any additional comments?

    Please, Those that read these books, I ask you to think of Dick van Dyke in Mary Popping's, and how everyone cringed at his poor cockney accent, this is what we the listener do when you the reader, try and do accents, and do them badly, it puts people of buying books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Soulsis1986 Buckinghamshire 05/09/2016
    Soulsis1986 Buckinghamshire 05/09/2016 Member Since 2016
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    "brilliant everytime"

    I've listened to it several times start to finish and every time it's brilliant the facts and stats along with the incredible detail...a must read for anyone who's interested in forensics, law or criminology

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Noushy-Pia 04/07/2016
    Noushy-Pia 04/07/2016
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    "intriguing "

    brilliant and interesting book. I thoroughly loved the change to being a non fiction piece by Val. she uses real life cases and the stories from real experts to delve into the variety of roles in forensics including anthropology, psychology and toxicology. I listened to the audio book on holiday and loved it. the only down side was it took a while to get used to the strong accent of the narrator but very quickly this isn't noticed and instead you're enjoying the world of forensic science.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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