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More Forensics and Fiction: Crime Writers' Morbidly Curious Questions Expertly Answered

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This compilation of medical and forensic science questions from crime writers around the world provides insight into medical and forensic science as well as a glimpse into the writer’s creative mind. How do hallucinogenic drugs affect a blind person? Will snake venom injected into fruit cause death? How would you perform CPR in a helicopter? What happens when someone swall This compilation of medical and forensic science questions from crime writers around the world provides insight into medical and forensic science as well as a glimpse into the writer’s creative mind. How do hallucinogenic drugs affect a blind person? Will snake venom injected into fruit cause death? How would you perform CPR in a helicopter? What happens when someone swallows razor blades? How long does it take blood to dry? Can DNA be obtained from a half-eaten bagel? D. P. Lyle, MD, answers these and many more intriguing questions. The book is a useful and entertaining resource for writers and screenwriters, helping them find the information they need to frame a situation and write a convincing description. TV viewers, readers who enjoy crime fiction, and those who want to know more about forensic science can keep up with the news and understand the science behind criminal investigation. From traumatic injuries to the coroner’s office, the questions and answers are divided into five parts, making it a compendium of the incredible information that lies within the world of medicine and forensics.


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This compilation of medical and forensic science questions from crime writers around the world provides insight into medical and forensic science as well as a glimpse into the writer’s creative mind. How do hallucinogenic drugs affect a blind person? Will snake venom injected into fruit cause death? How would you perform CPR in a helicopter? What happens when someone swall This compilation of medical and forensic science questions from crime writers around the world provides insight into medical and forensic science as well as a glimpse into the writer’s creative mind. How do hallucinogenic drugs affect a blind person? Will snake venom injected into fruit cause death? How would you perform CPR in a helicopter? What happens when someone swallows razor blades? How long does it take blood to dry? Can DNA be obtained from a half-eaten bagel? D. P. Lyle, MD, answers these and many more intriguing questions. The book is a useful and entertaining resource for writers and screenwriters, helping them find the information they need to frame a situation and write a convincing description. TV viewers, readers who enjoy crime fiction, and those who want to know more about forensic science can keep up with the news and understand the science behind criminal investigation. From traumatic injuries to the coroner’s office, the questions and answers are divided into five parts, making it a compendium of the incredible information that lies within the world of medicine and forensics.

30 review for More Forensics and Fiction: Crime Writers' Morbidly Curious Questions Expertly Answered

  1. 5 out of 5

    Fabiola

    Great content but the format (questions and their replies) made it repetitive at times and hard to keep reading. Similar questions with similar answers could have been combined rather than repeated.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    D.P. Lyle does it again, with a reference book that is an entertaining and enlightening read as well as a useful resource to mystery and suspense authors. After reading More Forensics and Fiction, I immediately made fixes to two mystery manuscripts I was working on. Also, I found the insights into the mental processes of other crime fiction authors and screen writers to be fascinating. More Forensics and Fiction is an important addition to my reference shelf. -- Beth Groundwater, author of the Cl D.P. Lyle does it again, with a reference book that is an entertaining and enlightening read as well as a useful resource to mystery and suspense authors. After reading More Forensics and Fiction, I immediately made fixes to two mystery manuscripts I was working on. Also, I found the insights into the mental processes of other crime fiction authors and screen writers to be fascinating. More Forensics and Fiction is an important addition to my reference shelf. -- Beth Groundwater, author of the Claire Hanover gift basket designer and the RM Outdoor Adventures mystery series

  3. 5 out of 5

    Yaaresse

    I'm not sure which is creepiest: the questions asked and how some people's minds work, that the author was able to answer in such detail, or the potential for this information to be used for far more nefarious purposes than a plot point. Ok. Right. The third one. Definitely the most creepy to think about. I've always been a little fascinated by forensics as a science. Chalk it up to an early job with much exposure to labs and lots of slides of human body parts. So that was my reason for checking I'm not sure which is creepiest: the questions asked and how some people's minds work, that the author was able to answer in such detail, or the potential for this information to be used for far more nefarious purposes than a plot point. Ok. Right. The third one. Definitely the most creepy to think about. I've always been a little fascinated by forensics as a science. Chalk it up to an early job with much exposure to labs and lots of slides of human body parts. So that was my reason for checking out this book. It was interesting, but tends to get repetitive after a while. Seems a lot of authors are enthralled with the idea of decapitation and doing things to corpses to try to mislead the medical examiners. Even more seem to think M.E.s have a lot more time and budget than is realistic. And the author of the Monk series really should be giving Mr. Lyle at least partial credit for writing his books because there were more than a dozen questions in this book just from that one author.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    I read an advance readers copy of this book. It was very interesting, in a morbid sort of way. Certainly would be useful to writers, or if you are planning on murdering someone.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Marilyn

    Around the Year in 52 Books 2018 Reading Challenge. A book nominated for the Edgar Award or by a Grand Master Author. D. P. Lyle is a medical doctor and consultant to several TV crime/medical dramas. In this book, he answers questions from mystery writers about decaying bodies, weapons, poisons, and more related to murder mysteries. I did not care for the format of this book. The author is obviously knowledgeable, however, he did make one glaring error. The plural of genus is NOT genuses; it is g Around the Year in 52 Books 2018 Reading Challenge. A book nominated for the Edgar Award or by a Grand Master Author. D. P. Lyle is a medical doctor and consultant to several TV crime/medical dramas. In this book, he answers questions from mystery writers about decaying bodies, weapons, poisons, and more related to murder mysteries. I did not care for the format of this book. The author is obviously knowledgeable, however, he did make one glaring error. The plural of genus is NOT genuses; it is genera. Also, I am not certain about the taxonomic rules in zoology, but I do know that in botany one is not permitted to name a new species after oneself though it is permissible to name it after someone else. The book is rather gruesome.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Terrell

    If you are a writer -- or just really curious about crime scene forensics -- this is the book for you. D.P. Lyle, MD takes on the fascinating, odd and sometimes morbid questions of writers trying to come up with ingenious ways to kill off victims and bad guys in their mysteries and thrillers. What medicines can kill someone without a trace? What type of injuries in a car accident can leave a person debilitated for a week without permanent injury? How long can fingerprints last on a body? This boo If you are a writer -- or just really curious about crime scene forensics -- this is the book for you. D.P. Lyle, MD takes on the fascinating, odd and sometimes morbid questions of writers trying to come up with ingenious ways to kill off victims and bad guys in their mysteries and thrillers. What medicines can kill someone without a trace? What type of injuries in a car accident can leave a person debilitated for a week without permanent injury? How long can fingerprints last on a body? This book is written in Q&A format. It never drags down in medical jargon. It's well-written and an easy read, with more than a bit of humor. This is a MUST HAVE book for everyone who writes or enjoys mysteries, thrillers and police procedurals.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sharon

    Fascinating book in a bit of a scary way. Glad there is a disclaimer at the start as I could imagine this book being used in rather dubious ways in the wrong hands.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Yi An

    A brilliant book of answers. It's just the abundant terminologies that hindered me focusing... A brilliant book of answers. It's just the abundant terminologies that hindered me focusing...

  9. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Pugh-Pyfer

    This and Murder and Mayhem are really helpful if you don't know much about forensics. Use it for your research. This and Murder and Mayhem are really helpful if you don't know much about forensics. Use it for your research.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Wesley

    Filled with wonderfully bizarre and obscure information that was somehow also really useful. At this point I think I would read anything this dude wrote.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Douglas Sandler

    It was a OK book. It did not help me with my style of writing and subject matter, If I had to do it over I would not have purchased it

  12. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    Fascinating and sometimes disturbing. What I really got out of this was a good lesson in anatomy. This may be a book to help mystery writers know how to commit and solve crimes, but it also teaches how parts of the body work and why they quit working. I also know why autopsies take so long (huge back log in coroners' office and lack of money.) Read this if you want to know how to kill your fictional characters (hopefully it's only fictional people you want to kill.) Or read it because you occasio Fascinating and sometimes disturbing. What I really got out of this was a good lesson in anatomy. This may be a book to help mystery writers know how to commit and solve crimes, but it also teaches how parts of the body work and why they quit working. I also know why autopsies take so long (huge back log in coroners' office and lack of money.) Read this if you want to know how to kill your fictional characters (hopefully it's only fictional people you want to kill.) Or read it because you occasionally like to be grossed out. I enjoyed it because it's good to know how brains, hearts, and lungs work and why it's a good idea to keep them working...unless you're a mystery writer where you have to kill somebody in every book. There are all kinds of ways to do it, but really, you have to wonder what goes through writers' minds when they come up with some of the weirder, grosser, more bizarre stuff. Swallowing razor blades? Really?

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dane MacPhail

    There are three books by this author, all covering similar subjects. They are very well organized and it's very obvious that the author takes an interest in the writer's questions, providing great feedback and even encouragement. Other than the fact that the three books tend to repeat some of the topics, I would definitely recommend these to any writer who wants to create credible mysteries and thrillers. There are three books by this author, all covering similar subjects. They are very well organized and it's very obvious that the author takes an interest in the writer's questions, providing great feedback and even encouragement. Other than the fact that the three books tend to repeat some of the topics, I would definitely recommend these to any writer who wants to create credible mysteries and thrillers.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Starr Gardinier

    Attention authors and morbidly curious readers! This is a (forgive the cliché) must-have. I own a few other forensics books by Lyle. I love those and am now adding this newest one to the forensic family on my bookshelf. First, broaden your minds. The questions asked and answered in Lyle’s newest are not just typical how-tos. For example, who would have thought to ask: ‘Can injected alcohol kill an already intoxicated person?’ Here are few others I’ll share as proof positive of the ‘morbidly curi Attention authors and morbidly curious readers! This is a (forgive the cliché) must-have. I own a few other forensics books by Lyle. I love those and am now adding this newest one to the forensic family on my bookshelf. First, broaden your minds. The questions asked and answered in Lyle’s newest are not just typical how-tos. For example, who would have thought to ask: ‘Can injected alcohol kill an already intoxicated person?’ Here are few others I’ll share as proof positive of the ‘morbidly curious’: ‘Can beach sand be used to connect a killer to his crime?’ ‘What substance available in 1924 would prevent blood clotting?’ ‘Before the invention of the stethoscope, how did a physician determine if someone was dead?’ (Please don’t tell me they guessed!) ‘Could DNA from spontaneously combusted vampires reveal their age?’ What blows me away is not just the questions asked. It is also that Lyle is able to not only answer them but do so intelligently and very thoroughly. He gives examples and ideas, depending upon how it’s being used in the author’s story. If you need to know how to make something “forensically-fictionally correct,” (adverb on adverb-cringe here!) Lyle is definitely the one to go to. As an author, this book is a very valuable resource, as are his other forensic books and Lyle himself. 8 STARS. Reviewed by Starr Gardinier Reina, author of “One Major Mistake”

  15. 5 out of 5

    Nostalgia Reader

    3.5 stars A must-read for any mystery/crime/thriller writers or their readers who'd just like to know more about the fascinatingly morbid sorts of things that go on in those books. Since I read this straight through, it might have lost some interestingness for me, since many of the answers were a bit repetitive, especially when similar questions were grouped together. However, it was still interesting, I learned a lot (some I enjoyed learning, others I didn't really *want* to learn...), and the in 3.5 stars A must-read for any mystery/crime/thriller writers or their readers who'd just like to know more about the fascinatingly morbid sorts of things that go on in those books. Since I read this straight through, it might have lost some interestingness for me, since many of the answers were a bit repetitive, especially when similar questions were grouped together. However, it was still interesting, I learned a lot (some I enjoyed learning, others I didn't really *want* to learn...), and the information is great for if you need a quick reference for a specific sort of event or crime. If you read it all the way through, it's best taken in small doses, so you don't get bored from any possible repetition of information (important information nonetheless, but usually best if you're just referencing one question at a time).

  16. 5 out of 5

    Debbie

    mystery writers (books and tv/screen) need to know how bodies look after drowning, car accidents, poisoning, chopped up, etc. ..rotting in freezers, trunks, graves, caves, under floors in wall...coma victims, accident victims, all round murder.. how to hide a murder, how to discover a murder - what were autopsies like in the past, like now, what tests are done on a body to find drugs, drowning, sex, age, etc - here's a few examples - "what injuries can result from depleted uranium bullets?" or "w mystery writers (books and tv/screen) need to know how bodies look after drowning, car accidents, poisoning, chopped up, etc. ..rotting in freezers, trunks, graves, caves, under floors in wall...coma victims, accident victims, all round murder.. how to hide a murder, how to discover a murder - what were autopsies like in the past, like now, what tests are done on a body to find drugs, drowning, sex, age, etc - here's a few examples - "what injuries can result from depleted uranium bullets?" or "what types of injuries would occur if a woman was strangled by a cello string?" or "will snake venom injected into fruit cause death?" You can't just read it all at once but it's a great book to dip into until completed.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Mel Rose (Savvy Rose Reads)

    Disclaimer: Technically I did not finish this book. I got about halfway through, started other things, and left it behind, but honestly that's okay, because this book is truly and primarily a reference book. It can certainly be read as a morbidly fun nonfiction guide to gore, but it's best taken in small shots or referenced as needed for mystery writers or fans of the genre who just want to know how something works or happens scientifically/medically when it comes to death and other wonderfully Disclaimer: Technically I did not finish this book. I got about halfway through, started other things, and left it behind, but honestly that's okay, because this book is truly and primarily a reference book. It can certainly be read as a morbidly fun nonfiction guide to gore, but it's best taken in small shots or referenced as needed for mystery writers or fans of the genre who just want to know how something works or happens scientifically/medically when it comes to death and other wonderfully gruesome things. While it got a tad boring in parts, which is one of the reasons I didn't finish it, all in all this was a great and super helpful reference, and a must own for any crime writer or fan.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kb

    I'm not sure if it's weird to classify this as a fun read, but for me it was. The book is written in a Q & A format, describing all kinds of different (mostly) murder scenarios from a medical perspective. It was as interesting to see the identities of some of the questioners as it was to read the expert answers to the questions asked. The only drawbacks were the similarity in a lot of the answers (some things, like the 12-12-12 rule for rigor mortis, got repetitive after a while), and the few ca I'm not sure if it's weird to classify this as a fun read, but for me it was. The book is written in a Q & A format, describing all kinds of different (mostly) murder scenarios from a medical perspective. It was as interesting to see the identities of some of the questioners as it was to read the expert answers to the questions asked. The only drawbacks were the similarity in a lot of the answers (some things, like the 12-12-12 rule for rigor mortis, got repetitive after a while), and the few cases where the scenario was not something I wanted to read about, like what happens to a person who is forced to swallow razor blades. If you like mystery and crime fiction -- either in books or on shows like CSI or Bones -- you will probably enjoy reading this.

  19. 4 out of 5

    David

    very interesting book about ways of being killed or killing someone in the names from those who want to write detective stories/murderers minds/vampires...Lyle has briefly discussed 216 cases on how a person could be killed or how he or she felt during the trauma process..such as it takes about few minutes to be choked to death if a person decides to hang himself...or how a person turn into rotten state by the rule of 12/12/12...etc..interesting book also include the old ways of treating wounds very interesting book about ways of being killed or killing someone in the names from those who want to write detective stories/murderers minds/vampires...Lyle has briefly discussed 216 cases on how a person could be killed or how he or she felt during the trauma process..such as it takes about few minutes to be choked to death if a person decides to hang himself...or how a person turn into rotten state by the rule of 12/12/12...etc..interesting book also include the old ways of treating wounds or traumas..worth the half day read!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kathrynn

    What a neat book! Filled with how to write logical crime scenes and written by a medical doctor! Various authors have written and explain what they want to write about and ask a question. The author replies with the best method(s) that are believable. He even provides suggestions and alternative ideas. P.J. Parrish and a few other authors that I recognized were in this book. Nicely written and easy to look up stuff. Questions range from present day "stuff" to historical questions like how was so What a neat book! Filled with how to write logical crime scenes and written by a medical doctor! Various authors have written and explain what they want to write about and ask a question. The author replies with the best method(s) that are believable. He even provides suggestions and alternative ideas. P.J. Parrish and a few other authors that I recognized were in this book. Nicely written and easy to look up stuff. Questions range from present day "stuff" to historical questions like how was something tested in 1812? Will teeth remain in the skull after 20 years?

  21. 5 out of 5

    Rie

    It's a very practical book full of interesting medical questions and information that you may come across when you read or write fiction related to injuries and death. I learned a lot and got a somewhat basic knowledge of cases which I didn't know until I read it. It's a lot of information so it will take you a little while to finish. I think it's a must-have for people who love detective fiction, whether you just love reading that genre or planning to write it, it will come in handy and probabl It's a very practical book full of interesting medical questions and information that you may come across when you read or write fiction related to injuries and death. I learned a lot and got a somewhat basic knowledge of cases which I didn't know until I read it. It's a lot of information so it will take you a little while to finish. I think it's a must-have for people who love detective fiction, whether you just love reading that genre or planning to write it, it will come in handy and probably inspires you.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Staci McLaughlin

    This book is especially useful for crime writers who want to make sure their descriptions of how a dead body decomposes or how someone dies is accurate. From a reader standpoint, it was interesting to learn about the many different ways a person can be killed and what processes the body goes through. The question and answer format makes it especially easy to focus on the topics that most interest the reader.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Arthur

    Any mystery or thriller writer worth their salt heads for a D.P. Lyle book for their research on how to have a character die or have a character make someone else depart. This book is another in Mr Lyle's series that one picks up for research and at the same time is entertained. Even if you're not writing a mystery this is a fun book to browse for chuckles or enlightenment. Only question, how does he continue to come up with this great material? Any mystery or thriller writer worth their salt heads for a D.P. Lyle book for their research on how to have a character die or have a character make someone else depart. This book is another in Mr Lyle's series that one picks up for research and at the same time is entertained. Even if you're not writing a mystery this is a fun book to browse for chuckles or enlightenment. Only question, how does he continue to come up with this great material?

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jay Phillippi

    You may be surprised at how funny this book can be. Intended as a resource book for crime writers who want to get the forensics right it is also a wonderful read for those of us who just want to know. A fun read but not really bed time reading. Full review at: http://theviewfromthephlipside.blogsp... You may be surprised at how funny this book can be. Intended as a resource book for crime writers who want to get the forensics right it is also a wonderful read for those of us who just want to know. A fun read but not really bed time reading. Full review at: http://theviewfromthephlipside.blogsp...

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kimberlie

    Interesting! I like the way questions are posed and the author answers them, often giving suggestions for what would make better sense. This is not the kind of book you need to sit down and read cover to cover. Just pick it up and read a few Q&As, or pull it out when you are thinking about a particular subject. Glad I was able to get this one for free.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Sam Ho

    Honestly, this book is only interesting if you`re interested into mystery novels. It is a collection of the questions that the author received over the years from other mystery novel writers on whether the scenarios they pose on their own novels are scientifically possible. Although the questions posed are interesting on its own, the way the author presents the answers is a bit boring. Honestly, this book is only interesting if you`re interested into mystery novels. It is a collection of the questions that the author received over the years from other mystery novel writers on whether the scenarios they pose on their own novels are scientifically possible. Although the questions posed are interesting on its own, the way the author presents the answers is a bit boring.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ally Cabella

    I loved the off-the-wall questions that were asked. Made the wheels start turning! It answered a few questions I had regarding my own plot plus gave me ideas for other story lines. All of Lyle's books are must-haves! I loved the off-the-wall questions that were asked. Made the wheels start turning! It answered a few questions I had regarding my own plot plus gave me ideas for other story lines. All of Lyle's books are must-haves!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Chris Norbury

    An excellent resource for writers of mystery, crime, thriller, suspense, or any other sort of fiction (or even nonfiction perhaps) who needs to incorporate accurate details into their stories. I own two other books written by Dr. Lyle and they too are invaluable resources for my writing.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kelly H. (Maybedog)

    I'm not sure how to rate this. The information is fascinating, clear, and helpful for a thriller writer but there is absolutely no organization which makes it impossible to use for anything but entertainment. I'm not sure how to rate this. The information is fascinating, clear, and helpful for a thriller writer but there is absolutely no organization which makes it impossible to use for anything but entertainment.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jasmin

    While I am not a crime writer but a fantasy writer I found the information vast and useful. At times it was even a little disturbing to read. But I enjoyed it and will likely use some of what I've learned with my own genre. While I am not a crime writer but a fantasy writer I found the information vast and useful. At times it was even a little disturbing to read. But I enjoyed it and will likely use some of what I've learned with my own genre.

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