Customer Reviews for

Scarpetta (Kay Scarpetta Series #16)

Average Rating 3.5
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(44)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

10 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

Impressive Addition to the Scarpetta Series

A great read and impressive addition to the Scarpetta series. I am awed by how Cornwell can continue to generate such suspense and mystery in the Scarpetta lineup. It is fascinating to see Scarpetta and her old friends continue to develop through the mind¿s eye of Cor...
A great read and impressive addition to the Scarpetta series. I am awed by how Cornwell can continue to generate such suspense and mystery in the Scarpetta lineup. It is fascinating to see Scarpetta and her old friends continue to develop through the mind¿s eye of Cornwell. I loved how clues are interwoven into each page in this layered Scarpetta adventure. In true Cornwell fashion the forensic detail was impeccable and the book the best yet.

posted by AzPO3 on December 1, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

44 out of 49 people found this review helpful.

Where Was the Story???

I have read all the Kay Scarpetta books. The early ones that take place in Richmond, VA are great reading. However when Cornwell moved Kay and her gang out of Richmond, the books just went downhill. This book is just plain awful. It rambles on about a murder of woma...
I have read all the Kay Scarpetta books. The early ones that take place in Richmond, VA are great reading. However when Cornwell moved Kay and her gang out of Richmond, the books just went downhill. This book is just plain awful. It rambles on about a murder of woman I didn't know or care about. Then the plot deviates from the murder story to ramble on about animal rights, breasts implants, and Lucy again has a gay relationship that has nothing to do with the main story line. After years of wanting Westly, Kay is having problems with him. Marino, one my favorite characters, changed so much it was unrealistic. Marino and Kay never resolved their problem either at least not verbally so what is the reader suppose to conclude about them. The plot is boring, confusing, has no suspense, and the ending is terrible. This is the last book I will ever buy by Cornwell. Personally I think she has gone as far as she can with Kay Scarpetta or she has lost her touch as a writer of classy readable supense thriller books. I have already traded my copy to a used book store for a more interesting book to read and enjoy.

posted by Aki on January 10, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2009

    Am I missing something?

    There was a time when I would be at B&N the day the latest Cornwell/Scarpetta was released. It pains me to say her last few books were not her best so I decided the series had ran its course and moved on. Then this book was released and the reviews were making it seem like the old Cornwell was back. So I caved in and bought the book. I have read 3/4 of the book and feel the need to ask do I have a bad copy or are some of you early reviewers on something? There is little rhyme or reason to the flow of the story, the plot is so-so at best, the characters are walking around like they just had a labatomy.... I am hoping the next page I read is the start of the greatness of this book. If not I will donate the book to the library and not look back at PC anymore.

    9 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 19, 2008

    Not what I was hoping for.

    I have read everyone of the Scarpetta books and found this one to be slow,<BR/>boring and much to wordy. I am glad she cleared a few thing up from the last novel. I am hoping for the old Scarpetta to come back in the next installment.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2009

    Lost in NYC

    Cornwell's not going to cut readers new to the Scarpetta series any slack with this entry. If you don't already know the players, or if it's been a few years since you've read a Scarpetta novel, you'll have trouble following the trials and tribulations of the characters here. You'll also have a problem trying to empathize with them, even if you're a die-hard Cornwell fan.
    This is not Cornwell's best work. It seems even she is becoming bored with the various rat holes she's sent her characters down. The plot drags down to a typical Scarpetta anti-climax. If you can make it that far.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Slow Start - but Great Finish

    "Scarpetta" is a much-anticipated addition to the series. However, the first part of the books (probably half) is devoted mostly to how Benton Wesley, now Scarpetta's husband; and former associate, Pete Marino, are dealing with Marino's attempt to rape Scarpetta. The therapy sessions replays, Pete's with actual therapists, and Benton's strange conversations with Jaime Berger, all make the first part of the book difficult to get through - it just doesn't seem to flow. The insertions of characters such as "Shrew" are well-written, but often leave the reader wondering, why should we care about this woman? Kay weaves in and out of the story, but it really is mostly conversations about Kay, not with Kay. Kay's only real participation is her examination of Oscar Bane - dealing with his dwarfism and his feelings for his girlfriend - did he kill her or not?<BR/><BR/>The second half of the book really starts to pick up. Kay takes up Oscar's torch as she truly doesn't believe he did it. We finally get back to what makes these books truly great - the crime scene examination, the conversations with Lucy, Pete, and Benton regarding what could have possibly happened and how. Fascinating crime scene treatments - no more lumilights needed. Now pieces of furniture can be shipped and placed in an enclosure and various forces are used to "vacuum" evidence and place in microscopes so powerful, only one exists! As is typical, you get the feeling you know who the bad guy is about 2/3 through the book, but it is the catching of the bad guy that always makes for a good read.<BR/><BR/>The way everybody handles what Pete did to Kay is a bit bizarre. Though Lucy has calmed down (matured, maybe?) you expect there to be some kind of blow-out between Pete and Lucy or Kay and Benton, or Kay and Pete. But everyone tip-toes around it and nothing is resolved. The strange attraction to Jaime by Benton is a little creepy, too. An allusion to the fact that Benton still is male?<BR/><BR/>A good read, once you get going. Again, leaves me anxiously awaiting the next installment.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 30, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Disappointing

    The story is very difficult to follow. I found myself rechecking to see if I'd skipped pages since the dialogue often didn't flow. I can't say it isn't interesting because it is. Just a difficult read and, though these are familiar characters, they're written as if she no longer likes them. I'm having trouble breathing life into them.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2010

    scarpetta

    i am trudging through this book, about 2/3 finished. i have found her last couple of books nowhere near as good or engaging as her previous novels

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Ok but stop the fighting!

    I have to agree with the reviewer named "CAReader". I have been reading the Scarpetta series from book one in order and while I have enjoyed the series very much with a few minor complaints, I have found that Ms. Cornwell often winds up her books with a lighting fast two page finish that always leaves me desperate for way more information. I feel cheated then and think she might have made a bit more effort, but then, I am certainly not the author, nor do I know what pressures might be in place. This book ends more satisfactorily with me wanting more but I can think of at least five of the Scarpetta series with unsatisfying, less than fleshed out endings. Also, Benton and Scarpetta should work more as a team and it's getting very bothersome when they pick at each other. They knew they were having trouble way back in the early Carie Gerthen days!
    These are all small gripes and I would absolutely reccommend the series but you really do need to start at book one to understand the characters, most especially in this book which relies heavily on the past interractions of all the characters.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 7, 2009

    Not as good as she used to be.

    The characters are empty, without life. Her style is not like it used to be. Way too long and uses a roundabout way to get to a point. Disappointing.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2009

    downhill for sure

    I have read each of Cornwell's books and the first group set in VA is by far the best. This story is dragged out so long, and then the ending is wrapped up in a few pages and we're supposed to catch long shots tied together very quickly? I dislike that she has the characters spell things out like "ISP - internet service provider - " thank you very much.

    I also dislike that Cornwell is narcisistic about Scarpetta. Why is everyone always after her and her reputation? Why has Marino been in love with her for so long, and why could Benton want no one else? Why does a killer make Times Square sized posters and plaster the apt with them? It's too much.

    The only thing I like any more is the character development and continuity from book to book.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2009

    Not the best Scarpetta novel I've read.

    I've read most of Patricia Cornwell's Kay Scarpetta novels but I just could not get into this one for some reason.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 9, 2009

    Bizarre story that quickly becomes boring

    I like Patricia Cornwall and the Scarpetta series but for what ever reason this story just didn't work for me. Way way to much personal info about her past, present, future, under, over, and sideways, relationships -- very tedious. The core plot was frankly ludicrous. Sorry Patty it's just not up to your very very high standard!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 1, 2009

    Jury Still Out

    Quite the tome, too many characters in one room at the same time, the dialogue confusing. Liked the forensic stuff, but again a bit verbose in the descriptive imagery. Better than the last few novels, but not there yet. Relief for pulling Lucy off the ledge, Marino seems more real to me, the relationship btwn Kay and Benton is still not convincing. Cornwells work from the distant past was crisp, clear and beautifully crafted. Would like to see that again.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 5, 2009

    Disappointing

    Found this book to be very difficult to follow. I've been an avid reader of P.Cornwell and love the characters in this book, but boy, she sure missed it on this on. Perhaps she was trying to fill in all the pages, I am seeing a big trend for authors to write these books 400-500 pages long and alot of it is filled with nothing.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2014

    Meh

    Not bad, but not great.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2012

    Not my fave

    I like Cornwell's stories of Scarpetta; however, this particular one is too technical at times and left me in limbo at some of the descriptions, especially computer-related subjects.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2012

    CAN BE CONFUSING

    HARD TO FOLLOW IF YOU HAVENT READ ALL HER PREVIOUS NOVELS, I DINT READ NOVE ABOUT MARINO ATTACKING SCARPETTA SO I DIDNT KNOW WHAT THE SITUATION WAS, SHOULD HAVE MORE BACKGROUND.

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  • Posted February 28, 2011

    Not up to par as her other books

    This was a hard book to stay with..I loved all of her other Scarpetta books. But I wasn't too happy with this one. Not sure if I will read Scarpetta Factor, have heard it is really hard to follow.

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  • Posted January 26, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    It definately wasn't the best book I've read

    I found a few parts of this book to be a little unsettling. I would recommend this book to someone who likes CSI and shows like it, but it seemed a little strange and far-fetched to me. Great for someone who likes a good murder mystery but beware the characters are a little odd.

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  • Posted December 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Where is Pete?

    I do not think Patricia's last few Scarpetta novels have been as good as in the beginning. Why would she screw up the Pete and Kay relationship as she did in the last book when she had Pete attack Kay? I thought that was the worst decision yet. I am truely disappointed!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2009

    A mighty tome that wanders

    I find this book difficult to read. It seems that there are several subplots occurring at once, and none of them are in any kind of sequence. The writing style is somewhat verbose. The book does not seem to move along at a good pace. I keep waiting for something to happen, but events just seem to drag along without any definite progression. I purchased this book because of Cornwell's reputation as a writer but I am rather disappointed.

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