Whenever Reichs refers to a strong, threatening or menacing character, she says he looks like a pit bull. I'd say it happens at least once-three times per novel.
Recently, while reading Fatal Voyage, I came across this scene:
A tow-truck has just picked Dr. Temperence Brennan up and she is entering the shop with her dog, Boyd, a chow-mix, who is described simply as "protective" when growling at the pit. (FYI- a breed that also may have some difficulties getting adopted because of its bad breeding practices that have led to some aggressive tenancies- read more)
"The flesh on Boyd's snout compressed against his gums. His body tensed. The growl deepened [...] Bowman met us with a length of rope. 'Had this in back,' he said. 'Flush can be peevish.' ... Crossing the lot, I stepped through the door and circled Flush. An ear twitched, but he didn't look up. Maybe pit bulls are calm because they are secure in the belief that they can kill anyone or anything that provokes them. I hoped Boyd would keep quiet and keep him distance [...] Boyd was straining at his collar, every fiber focused on the pit bull. Flush was either sleeping or playing possum, waiting for the chow to approach."
Sarcastically, she adds... "The garage had the usual tasteful garage appointments. A calendar ... a cigarette machine [...] Three kitchen chairs. A pit bull."
|This fine art photo is for sale by Etsy photographer Andra Lara for $25, click here.|
Nothing in the passage about Flush was menacing, and yet, because he is a pit bull, something is conveyed to the reading audience, that she or Boyd are in danger. Even while laying sweetly, he is somehow described as suspicious... playing possum perhaps.
I seriously recommend Kathy Reich's books, they are intriguing, scientific, have great character development, and get me through me 3 hours of commuting each day, but hope that perhaps with a well-written letter (and a picture of my sweet pit bulls) I can convince her to stop referring to them so negatively in her best-selling books.