Saturday, May 7, 2011

Posted by azim On Saturday, May 07, 2011 5 comments

Tertulis di Dalam Tulang


How are you all doing today? All vital signs are normal? Respiratory rate ok? No attacks of tachycardia? Sudden attacks of mood swing? Hungry all the times? Well, any of this symptoms still shouldn’t manifest right now, because final exam is in another one month and two weeks, which is the rightful time for all these pathognomonic signs of a medical student in distress should appear. Should any of you experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned before, afraid not, because that proves that you are already thinking (and maybe even having one or two nightmares about it) about the coming final exam. Congratulations, you are an early planner!! =)

Oh, the introduction is a bit off, isn’t it? Heheh. Actually, I have no idea on what to write about ever since the moment it has been decided that each members of Batch Committee should write an entry for each week to be published in this lovely blog of ours. But then, when it comes to my turn, we are currently studying Forensic and Toxicology. So I’m thinking, hey,why don’t I share with all of you about a very nice(in my opinion) novel regarding this subject we are now studying. So, here I go.

The novel is called Written in Bone, a work of Simon Beckett. There are two books in this series actually. The first one entitled The Chemistry of Death but I prefer the second book more. Why? I’ll tell you later. The main character in this novel will be Dr. David Hunter, a forensic anthropologist. What is forensic anthropologist?

According to wikipedia:
Forensic anthropology is the application of the science of physical anthropology and human osteology (the study of the human skeleton) in a legal setting, most often in criminal cases where the victim's remains are in the advanced stages of decomposition. A forensic anthropologist can also assist in the identification of deceased individuals whose remains are decomposed, burned, mutilated or otherwise unrecognizable.

The novel begins with a pretty nice introduction. Let me share it here with you. Ehemm2.

“Given the right temperature, everything burns. Wood. Clothing. People.”

Interesting right? No? Okay, let me proceed. For this second novel, Dr. David Hunter was assigned to investigate a case in the remote Hebridean island of Runa. A local called in reporting finding a corpse in an abandon hut, insisting for further investigation as the body was in a suspicious state. Suspecting the body belongs to nothing more than just a drunk or homeless people who finally met their final fate, Dr. Hunter flew in to Runa, to take a good look at the body before deciding whether it’s needed or not to fly a group of crime scene investigators into Runa for thorough investigation.

On reaching Runa, Dr. Hunter was brought to the crime scene. Here are some excerpts describing the state of the body.

“An untidy pile of greasy ash and cinders lay on the floor. The fire had consumed the bone as readily as it had skin and tissue. Only the larger bones remained, emerging from the ash like dead branches from snowdrift. Even this had been calcined, the carbon burned from them until they were grey and brittle. Presiding over them all like a broken eggshell was a skull, lying with its jawbone canted off to one side. And yet, apart from the body, nothing else in the room has been damaged. The fire that had all but incinerated a human being, reduced its bones to the consistency of pumice, had somehow done so without burning anything else nearby.”

“But that wasn’t the worst of it. What had shocked me to silence was the sight of two unburned feet and a single hand protruding from the ashes. The bones jutting from them were scorched to black sticks, yet they were completely unmarked’”

Got your interest piqued yet? That was only the beginning. More bodies appeared after that. Then an Atlantic storm descended, severing all power and contact with the mainland. So, as the story unfolds, more suspicious evidences showed up. Incident after incident happened forcing Dr Hunter to solve the case with very limited resources while competing against the killer. Trapped inside Runa and no way of communication whatsoever to reach the mainland to ask for help, it’s just a matter of time before the killer would strike again and take Dr. Hunter out of the quest.

Why I like this second novel more than the first one? Because the storyline is very complicated. When I was first finished reading this novel, I never thought it will end like that. Every chapter is explained brilliantly that it makes putting down the book is impossible unless you are done reading it. I’m sorry if my may of writing makes the book sounds dull, but believe me, this novel indeed is amazing. Heheh. A lot of interesting forensics facts can be found in this book, though not as much as our very own Forensic and Toxicology textbooks provide us.

Moral of the story, read textbook like your life depends on it. Just joking.=) So, if you already finish revising textbook and need escapism for a while from hard, cold facts, I think this book will be a nice getaway material.

That concludes my entry for this and only time. All the best for the coming and final year exam. And thank you for reading my scribbles.

Nurul Shuhada Shafie
Timbalan Bendahari 2010/2011


btw ni post terakhir dari saya..
bermakna telah berjaya resign dari AN...
segala salah silap semasa jage blog ni harap dimaafkan..
terima kaseh kpd yg sudi support blog ni..
Syukran 3ala husnistima3i...