It's been a long time since I read Temperance Brennan, yet, what makes this series so ever-green is the fact that a reader can step away for a number of years and pick up enough back story within the current read to enjoy the present day setting without feeling lost.
BONES NEVER LIES is a good example of not trapping readers into having read every preceding volume. Despite the plot revolving around a spate of murders, both from the cold case files and fresh victims matching the modus operandi of a reappearing murderer in Anique Pomerleau, I never felt like I wasn't understanding of the importance of the past and the impact present day events. Being more familiar with Pomerleau would have made the book all the more enjoyable so I would urge readers to at least track down some of the earlier books though it's not essential.
Mainstream crime fiction can at times feel stale and unfortunately there is a little of that here - though it's not to do with the investigation as Brennan and co in the cold case team try to track a killer, it's more to do with the side plot threads. Brennan is a well established character who is always busy bouncing from one drama to the next, be it professionally or personally - it's the personal elements that make the book drag for me, however, I can see how other readers may enjoy the extra padding to the character.
The plot itself is one that has plenty of twists and turns and Kathy Reichs really made me think about the murders and who was responsible - putting doubt in my mind when there really should have been none. I did experience some confusion at the volume of cold cases and the associated leads Brennan and co followed-up on. Keeping tabs on which acquaintance, workmate, family member, or corresponding police office involved in an initial investigation proved difficult at times.
BONES NEVER LIE is an average read that will appeal more to the die-hard fans over the occasional Kathy Reichs reader.