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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Bones 5.3 in Amish Country

The Amish have long fascinated me, ever since my parents took me to Lancaster on a summer trip back in 1960s. Witness is one of my favorite movies. My first novel, The Silk Code, is still one favorites, and the Amish play major role in the story. As an historian of technology, I've written about how the Amish careful selection of technology - not a wholesale rejection, as is popularly (and incorrectly) believed - provides a significant example of humans coming to terms with the technological world.

I was therefore looking very much forward to tonight's episode of Bones (5.3), and I wasn't disappointed. It was a sensitively rendered, emotionally satisfying gem. True to the principles of the Amish faith, and true to the needs of good mystery writing, with an ending that was a real surprise.

An Amish boy, on his Rumspringa - a time to get his "wild" out, before fully committing to the faith - goes from Lancaster to Washington, DC to test of his dream of becoming a great pianist. He has enormous talent. He's murdered.

Who is the killer? The father, angered over his son's apparently imminent rejection of the faith? Or the brother of the pianist's Amish girlfriend, angered that he would likely be jilting her?

Neither - the Amish are nonviolent.

Other less likely suspects prove to be innocent, too. In the end, the murderer is ... well, see the episode, if you haven't already.

Bones continues to be a series that Poe and Dickens would have enjoyed.

5-min podcast review of Bones

See also
Bones: Hilarity and Crime and Bones is Back For Season 5: What Is Love? and Bones 5.2: Anonymous Donors and Pipes

"As a genre-bending blend of police procedural and science fiction, The Silk Code delivers on its promises." -- Gerald Jonas, The New York Times Book Review
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