Still Life With Bones review: Harrowing account of exposing genocide


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Still Life With Bones
Alexa Hagerty (Hachette)

NOWADAYS, we are all familiar with forensic anthropology. Shows like Bones and Silent Witness taught us to expect meticulously excavated bodies assembled on tables, elaborate chemical assays and computer-assisted reconstructions of fatal injuries. The anthropologists quip darkly over the remains and solve the case within an hour. The stories are fun, but implausibly neat.

In contrast, social anthropologist Alexa Hagerty’s Still Life With Bones is the real thing: an unvarnished account of forensic anthropologists uncovering and identifying victims of atrocities. It is moving and beautiful, harrowing and horrifying. And the horror doesn’t …