(Omnivoracious is pleased to present this guest post from Jon Jefferson, the writer behind the New York Times bestselling Jefferson Bass “body farm” novels, for which Jefferson has partnered with forensic anthropologist Dr. Bill Bass. Jefferson is a veteran journalist, writer, and documentary filmmaker. His writings have been published in the New York Times, Newsweek, USA Today, and Popular Science, and broadcast on National Public Radio.)
The latest Jefferson Bass novel, The Inquisitor’s Key, features series regular Dr. Bill Brockton, but is a bit of a departure. Inside a newly discovered chamber beneath the spectacular Palace of the Popes in Avignon, Brockton’s protégé discovers a stone chest inscribed with a stunning claim: inside lie the bones of none other than Jesus of Nazareth. Brockton arrives to help prove or refute the claim, and the investigation leads inexorably to the Shroud of Turin, revered by millions as the burial cloth of Christ. The resulting uproar involves anthropologists, the Vatican, and a deadly zealot who hopes to use the bones to bring about the Second Coming. The Inquisitor's Key weaves together a rich tapestry of religion, history, art, and science. – Jeff VanderMeer, Omni contributor
Jon Jefferson on Researching the Ultimate Forensic Thriller…
For a crime novelist whose main character is a bone detective, it’s the ultimate case, the greatest game of what-if: What if an ancient skeleton were unearthed, accompanied by the claim that the bones were those of Jesus? How would the bone-sleuth—specifically, my bone sleuth, Dr. Bill Brockton—corroborate or refute the claim? What forensic techniques would he harness? And who, besides him, might be interested in the bones—interested enough to kill for them?