Tory Brennan, niece of acclaimed forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan (of the Bones novels and hit TV show), is the leader of a ragtag band of teenage "sci-philes" who live on a secluded island off the coast of South Carolina. When the group rescues a dog caged for medical testing on a nearby island, they are exposed to an experimental strain of canine parvovirus that changes their lives forever.
As the friends discover their heightened senses and animal-quick reflexes, they must combine their scientific curiosity with their newfound physical gifts to solve a cold-case murder that has suddenly become very hot—if they can stay alive long enough to catch the killer's scent.
Fortunately, they are now more than friends—they're a pack. They are Virals.
The books in the series right now are:
- Trace Evidence, a collection of short e-book stories
This series provides examples of:
- Action Girl: Tory, of course.
- Adults Are Useless: Both played straight and averted.
- Badass Crew/Badass Family: The Virals.
- The Big Guy: Ben is the strongest when flaring.
- Continuity Cameo: "Aunt Tempe" occasionally shows up (usually by phone or email) to help Tory solve a puzzle.
- Evil Counterpart: Three of 'em in Terminal:
- Will Speckman to Ben;
- Cole to Hi;
- and Ella to Tory.
- Faked Kidnapping: The Gable twins, in Exposure.
- Home Base: An abandoned Civil War bunker.
- Missing Mom: Tory's was killed in a car accident by a drunk driver.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: They've got different DNA from a rogue strain of canine parvovirus. While they have the strengths and senses of wolf-dogs, they don't actually transform, in fact the only visible change is that their eyes turn yellow once they flare.
- Papa Wolf: Kit, especially in Code.
- Police Are Useless: In general, yes. Justified in Exposure because one of the cops on the case was the kidnapper. He's been leaking information to the media and obstructing police work from the inside.
- Shown Their Work: Reichs often includes details and local lore from the area, such as the story about why Charleston houses are long and narrow.
- Super Senses: When any of the Virals flare.
- It goes Up to Eleven when Tory finds herself able to read the minds of people besides her own pack, at least before they put up mental defenses.
- Team Pet: Cooper the wolfdog, who was the original carrier of the experimental parvovirus. He doubles as an Action Pet as well.
- The Nose Knows: Tory, when flaring, to the point where she can smell emotions.
- Psycho Rangers: The Trinity.
- The Team: While each of the Virals obtain an upgrade to their natural abilities once they flare, some of them have better capabilities than others.
- Tory has the best sense of smell, so good that she can even smell whether someone is calm or anxious.
- Hi has the best sight, capable of spotting a bunny from 50 yards away. Actually, at first, Hi's flare comes the easiest.
- Shelton has the best hearing.
- Ben actually becomes the physically strongest when flaring.
- Those Two Bad Guys: Investigating agents: J. Saltman, B. Rogers.
- Uncanny Valley Boy: Chance from the finale of the first book on.
- Viral Transformation: The entire premise, thanks to some experimental parvovirus.
- Yandere: Hannah in the ending of Virals.
- Enhanced in the fifth book.