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Scarpetta (A Scarpetta Novel) Audio CD – Audiobook, December 2, 2008


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Product Details

  • Series: A Scarpetta Novel
  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio; Unabridged edition (December 2, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143143646
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143143642
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 5.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (883 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,260,121 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of bestseller Cornwell's plodding 16th thriller to feature Dr. Kay Scarpetta (after Book of the Dead), the forensic pathologist—who recently relocated to Belmont, Mass., with her forensic psychologist husband—is called to Manhattan's Bellevue Hospital for reasons that don't become clear until she gets there. Oscar Bane, who voluntarily committed himself to Bellevue while denying he brutally murdered his girlfriend, refuses to speak to anyone except the high-profile Scarpetta. Bane, Scarpetta discovers, is obsessed with her. Meanwhile, someone masquerading as Scarpetta is lurking in cyberspace and supplying an online gossip site with dirty secrets about the doctor. For help on the murder case, Scarpetta turns to her computer whiz niece and a macho former colleague whose shocking actions in Book of the Dead severely damaged his relationship with Scarpetta. With a plot full of holes and frustrating red herrings, this entry falls short of the high standard set by earlier volumes in this iconic series. (Dec.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Bookmarks Magazine

Critics agreed that readers familiar with Cornwell's series will find Scarpetta a weak addition; novice audiences will certainly want to skip over this one and start with Postmortem (1990), Cornwell's award-winning debut. Although Scarpetta is not one of the better entries to date, the thriller contains Cornwell's meticulous attention to detail (from autopsies to investigations) and edge-of-your-seat plotting. However, reviewers cited too much backstory, overly complex twists, and only mediocre characterization. The Rocky Mountain Newseven accused Scarpetta of becoming "something of a cipher," while the Guardianfound nothing to like at all. The bright spot? A thrilling, unpredictable ending.
Copyright 2009 Bookmarks Publishing LLC --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

In 1990, Patricia Cornwell sold her first novel, Postmortem, while working at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Richmond, Virginia. An auspicious debut, it went on to win the Edgar, Creasey, Anthony, and Macavity awards as well as the French Prix du Roman d'Aventure prize - the first book ever to claim all these distinctions in a single year.

Today, Cornwell's novels and now iconic characters, medical examiner Kay Scarpetta, her niece Lucy and fellow investigator Pete Marino, are known all over the world. Fox 2000 is actively developing a feature film about Kay Scarpetta. Beyond the Scarpetta series, Patricia has written a definitive account of Jack the Ripper's identity, cookbooks, a children's book, a biography of Ruth Graham, and two other fiction series based on the characters Win Garano and Andy Brazil.

Cornwell was born in Miami, grew up in Montreat, North Carolina, and now lives and works in Boston.

Visit the author's website at: www.patriciacornwell.com

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

735 of 763 people found the following review helpful By Anonymous on January 6, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Your sales were down 50% from last year. You failed to hit the #1 slot on the NYT bestsellers list for the first time in, like, a hundred years. So what do we, the readers, want?

1. Brevity. Your last two books ballooned to 500 pages. And you used to be so concise!!

2. The third person has to go. We all loved Kay, we loved hearing her thoughts.

3. Dump the spouse. Benton is boring. Your new forays into the mind and psychobabble are also boring.

4. Go back to the morgue. Yes, it's been done a billion times since you introduced it but readers still like it and you still do it better than anyone.

5. Take a lesson from Sue Grafton. U is for Undertow just hit #1. The Scarpetta Factor did not. Kinsey's still Kinsey. Kay is no longer Kay. There's no more sharp tone, sharp heels, dread, bad dreams, bad tempers, worry, loss of appetite, compassion, sleepless nights, wry banter with Marino, ability to work 5 days straight without changing clothes .... We want that back. None of this idealized version you've given us, with everyone lusting after her or admiring her or losing it while she floats above it all in her highrise apartments. What happened to her gardens, the fresh tomatoes, the cooking? Highrises are so sterile. Benton is so sterile. (The Scarpetta Factor had one cooking scene at the end that felt very contrived.)

6. Stop trying to elevate Kay. She got fired from Richmond. She tried and ended several apparently unsuccessful businesses. With that past no way will she be on CNN hosting the Scarpetta Factor. That would be like you hosting CNBC. Ain't gonna happen. Kay's superiority came from her brains and moral compass -- not her jobs and not her money.

7. But what's wrong with being "just" an M.E. in NY or Boston anyway?
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238 of 264 people found the following review helpful By Deborah Verlen TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover
To be frank, I was never going to read another Scarpetta mystery after the last few disasters that Cornwell wrote. However, there the book was on the new releases shelf at the library staring down at me with a silent "read me" plea. Seemed like fate that I got to the library in time to pick up Cornwell's latest entry in the ongoing Scarpetta series. I opened it and started reading with a lot of trepidation as her last few books have been truly dreadful. To sum it up--I was pleasantly surprised to find Cornwell has regained her stride in the series and has written a taut, suspenseful mystery with believable characters and situations. There are a lot of twists and turns that will keep you guessing until the end.

The series opens with Scarpetta doing pro bono work in New York City as well as fulfilling her role as senior forensic analyst for CNN. During her appearance on the CNN show she is asked about details on the ongoing case of Hannah Starr. The complexity of the mystery starts to weave almost immediately. Her husband Benton and her friend Marino are clashing. Her niece Lucy continues to waiver between the gray areas of the law. But all three must work together with Scarpetta as they race to solve this mystery.

This book still lacks some of the sparkling dialogue of the first books and rehashes old hurts and insults. However, Scarpetta comes of more human somehow as she struggles with the mystery of Hannah Starr, the offer of her own show, her shaky marriage, her injured friendship with Marino, and of course her troubled niece. It is truly nice to see Cornwell once again pick up the reigns of the series and alter course for the better!
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129 of 144 people found the following review helpful By A.R.N. on October 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover
At 500 pp this book needs serious editing. Parts of it were incredibly boring (mostly the Benton parts) and parts of it were meaninglessly techno-filled. Cornwell tries to dazzle us with all the research she does but the book would be A LOT better if Kay and her world were the focus and the Bentons and Lucys remained minor satellites. In fact, if she cut out most of the stuff she probably learned from the list of people in the acknowledgements, she'd have a stronger and more readable book. Resorting to recycling one of the most mocked and reviled characters in Scarpetta lore was unnecessary, too.

Not one of her best, not one of her worst, but I don't understand what's now a two-book trend of forcing us to swallow 500 pages. She leads us on long and detailed side trips with characters and drama that turn out to be irrelevant and unnecessary and I'm not talking about red herrings, either, but long, winding meanderings: Agee, his hearing problems, Berger and her romance woes with Lucy, the ridiculous voodoo/poo-poo bomb, Hap and his necrophilia, the missing Blackberry and the huge drama surrounding it, the RIDICULOUS and boring psycho-babbling between Benton and an old colleague in the beginning of the book that nearly had me putting the book down for good; the immature Benton-Marino tension that dissolved seemingly in an instant. It's a shame that Cornwell feels the need to keep piling on to keep our interest.

It was interesting that Lucy apparently has lost a substantial part of her fortune. It may be the best thing to ever happen to Lucy as her brattiness and craziness seemed to increase with her wealth. That was an event that I thought deserved more detail and certainly more of an emotional reaction from Kay.
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