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Forensics : what bugs, burns, prints, DNA, and more tell us about crime

Author: Val McDermid
Publisher: New York : Grove Press, [2014] ©2014
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The dead can tell us all about themselves: where they came from, how they lived, how they died, and, of course, who killed them. Forensic scientists can unlock the mysteries of the past and help serve justice using the messages left by a corpse, a crime scene, or the faintest of human traces. This book draws on crime novelist McDermid's own interviews and firsthand experience on scene with top forensic scientists.  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Case studies
History
True crime stories
Nonfiction
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Val McDermid
ISBN: 9781781251706 1781251703 9780802123916 0802123910
OCLC Number: 936149992
Language Note: Text in English.
Notes: "First published by Profile Books in partnership with Wellcome Collection in the UK in 2014." -- Title page verso.
Description: ix, 310 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (black and white, and colour) ; 24 cm
Contents: Preface --
The crime scene --
Fire scene investigation --
Entomology --
Pathology --
Toxicology --
Fingerprinting --
Blood spatter and DNA --
Anthropology --
Facial reconstruction --
Digital forensics --
Forensic psychology --
The courtroom --
Conclusion --
Acknowledgements --
Select bibliography --
Illustration credits --
Index.
Responsibility: Val McDermid.

Abstract:

The dead can tell us all about themselves: where they came from, how they lived, how they died, and, of course, who killed them. Forensic scientists can unlock the mysteries of the past and help serve justice using the messages left by a corpse, a crime scene, or the faintest of human traces. This book draws on crime novelist McDermid's own interviews and firsthand experience on scene with top forensic scientists. Along the way, McDermid discovers how maggots collected from a corpse can help determine one's time of death; how a DNA trace a millionth the size of a grain of salt can be used to convict a killer; and how a team of young Argentine scientists led by a maverick American anthropologist were able to uncover the victims of a genocide. It's a journey that will take McDermid to war zones, fire scenes, and autopsy suites, and bring her into contact with both extraordinary bravery and wickedness, as she traces the history of forensics from its earliest beginnings to the cutting-edge science of the modern day.

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McDermid has not lost her early journalistic genius for telling a good story plainly -- Ian Finlayson * Times * ... she dissects the history of forensics through gripping stories of real-life crime. Read more...

 
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