Cannonball Read IV

A bunch of Pajibans reading and reviewing and honoring AlabamaPink.

Archive for the tag “Patricia Cornwell”

rdoak03’s #CBR4 review 36: Trace by Patricia Cornwell

Medical examiner Kay Scarpetta head back to her old office in Virginia to solve a mystery, or two, or three. The trace evidence tells a story no one can believe, and links three crimes to one creepy dude. Read my full review here.

rdoak03’s #CBR4 Review 34: The Scarpetta Factor by Patricia Cornwell

Seeing as this was the first Scarpetta novel I have ever read, I kinda felt like I was walking into a family reunion that wasn’t mine. The characters obviously have a lot of history together, and it was somewhat of a drawback to starting in the middle/end of a series. That being said, I think their individual characters came through crystal-clear, and you got a good idea about how they interact with each other. The plot was decent, but what you’d expect from a forensic mystery. Read my full review here.

Mrs Smith Reads Red Mist by Patricia Cornwell, #CBR4 Review #17

I’m pretty sure I’ve read most, if not all of the Scarpetta novels over the years, so when Red Mist was sitting on the coffee table at the beach house we were staying in last week, I just picked it up and dove in. The good thing about these stories is, Patricia Cornwell does a pretty good job of reminding readers of the general details of what happened in the last one and getting readers caught up with current events. Within a few pages I knew I had read Port Mortuary, and I was reasonably caught up with the story where it picks up, so, on I went.

HelloKatieO’s #CBR4 Review #09: Scarpetta by Patricia Cornwell

This is my first foray into Patricia Cornwell’s novels and I’m not sure what I’ve been doing. These books were basically written for me. Scarpetta is a professionally successful female character with a realistically compelling love life. Here, Scarpetta’s extremely long term relationship with Benton, finally culminating in a long distance marriage, provides enough fuel for conflict but suits her character. Plus, the book was highly technical. I’ve always loved the Temperance Brennan novels (the books Bones is based off of) because the level of technical detail given about forensic anthropology appeals to the science nerd in me. Here, Scarpetta is a pathologist, another high powered scientist using her super powered brain to solve crimes. I love it.

I tore through this novel on my last day of winter break. The book had a lot of unusual plot points – an anonymous gossip blogger, an animal cruelty mystery, an obsessive-compulsive victim, identity theft, little people – that made it reasonably challenging to identify the ultimate killer. Portions of the book were told from the potential witnesses/potential killers’ point of view. This made it much easier to get a sense for the killer as a person, and to give the reader insight into the crime, and keep the reader guessing. While you don’t always know who’s perspective is credible, it’s a neat trick.

To read more…

Goddess of Apathy’s #CBR4 Review #01 All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell

Yesterday afternoon, I picked up this book, just to have something to do while visiting with relatives. To me, it was an easy read, the language was clear, the characters were serviceable, and the story moved along quickly. I was able to finish the entire book, 416 pages, in a few hours, and came away entertained and satisfied.

I am unfamiliar with Patricia Cornwell or her character, Dr. Kay Scarpetta. Dr. Scarpetta is a medical examiner in Richmond, Virginia. In this book, she is called in to investigate the disappearance of a couple, Fred Cheney and Deborah Harvey. Their vehicle is found abandoned in a rest area. The couple’s disappearance is similar to the disappearances of several couples, all who turn up later, badly decomposed, in isolated areas.

Deborah Harvey was the daughter of the current drug czar, so the FBI is interested in her death. Was the drug czar being targeted? Is this the work of the so-called Couples Killer? Dr. Scarpetta is feeling the pressure to find the answers, but there seem to be none. Her autopsy reports are inconclusive and she cannot be sure all the couples murdered are  connected to Deborah’s and Fred’s case.

Adding to her problems,. Dr. Scarpetta’s old friend, Abby,  a newspaper reporter, suddenly attempts to reconnect, asking questions about the murders. Can Dr. Scarpetta talk to Abby as a friend or is everything on the record?  Abby has several secrets of her own, but Kay Scarpetta has her own problems to deal with, including Benton Wesley, her FBI contact who is not forthcoming with crucial evidence and information. Add to that the police detective, Pete Marino who is having his own personal problems.

There was plenty of suspense to keep me turning the page. I enjoyed reading the story. However, I might label something like this “mindless reading” since I never really gained a true picture of the characters or felt too invested in the characters’ fates.

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