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The Bone Vault    by Linda Fairstein order for
Bone Vault
by Linda Fairstein
Order:  USA  Can
Pocket, 2003 (2003)
Hardcover, Paperback, Audio, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Linda Fairstein can't write fast enough for me. I just finished The Bone Vault. I highly recommend it if your tastes run to sophisticated mysteries - ones that implant bits of history and culture into your brain as you absorb a puzzling murder. Fairstein was America's foremost prosecutor of crimes of sexual assault and domestic violence for twenty-five years in Manhattan. Talk about writing what you know.

A sarcophagus being sent by the Metropolitan Museum of Art to Cairo - and supposedly containing the mummy of an ancient princess - is instead discovered to contain the body of a modern day woman who had worked for that august institution. Attempting to discover who is responsible leads Assistant DA Alexandra Cooper and her team into the inner sanctum of that museum, as well the Cloisters and the Natural History Museum. I found it fascinating to view the behind the scenes history of these well-known edifices, while still never losing sight of the main purpose of Alex and her team.

The size and scope of the Met is almost unbelievable. It gives Fairstein every opportunity to chase her team all over the basements and various buildings, hallways, cubicles and vaults to save a woman who is helping them in their investigation. Alex is a strong character with all the human and feminine traits combined with the strength to run her department. The Bone Vault moves quickly and the wonderful background histories of the museums involved doesn't slow down the action. The various other threads that meander through the story tie into different crimes that are handled satisfactorily by book's end.

Greed and unrealistic bids for glory fill the museums and foster the crime that occurred. This is a good read. Don't miss it.

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