Forensics: The Anatomy of Crime

Forensics: The Anatomy of CrimeForensics: The Anatomy of Crime by Val McDermid

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

An increasingly long time ago now, before I had kids, I used to work in forensics, nothing anywhere as big as the scientists mentioned in Forensics: The Anatomy of Crime (although I recognised a few names) but it was a job I loved, am proud to have done and a part of me still misses to this day. When you work in forensics, you specialise in a very small part, although you do occasionally get to go to lectures and talks about other aspects of forensics, so you pick stuff up. So a lot of this book was sort of familiar but in a nice way, it has chapters devoted to things like fire investigation, blood splatter analysis, digital crime, criminal profiling, fingerprinting, anthropology and genetics, as well as a chapter devoted to how this is all dealt with in court. It also goes back and looks at the history behind each forensic technique, as well as new advances. It covers a lot of well known cases, which was particularly good as sometimes you hear a bit about a case in the news but if something changes years later, journalists don’t always go back to report the end of the story, so that was interesting. Overall it was an easy to understand (and that’s not just because I’ve worked in the field), fascinating look at a branch of science that could serve any of us, one day.

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