Couple of years on my to-do list, purchased in February, 2012, this audiobook is read by J. C. Critt and is about eleven and a half hours of listening. The story centers on Kay Scarpetta and her investigation into the brutal slayings of several women in Richmond, VA. First, I’m a fan of Kay Scarpetta. A great character, a bit saucy and supremely competent in her chosen profession as a medical examiner. She also shows a bit of vulnerability in her personal relationships, which is a nice, real-life trait. In Postmortem, there is a great deal of speculation on the part of Scarpetta and the lead police investigator, Marino. They ruminate, think, ponder, chat, argue, and Scarpetta has a load of internal dialogue. etc., to the point that I was a little anxious to get to the meat of the story … the serial killer himself. Some sections could have been a bit shorter, in my opinion, and some eliminated entirely as not having much, if anything, to do with the story. I drifted away from the audio, which forced me to either rewind or just let it go. Sadly, I let it go often.
There has been a bit of criticism of J. C. Critt, the narrator. Frankly, I disagree. I thought she did a great job, particularly with the voice of Marino. Very distinctive voices for both Marino, and Scarpetta.
If you like Patricia Cornwell, and in particular, the character of Kay Scarpetta, you’ll enjoy. You’ll get a kick out of the 1990 technology, i.e., no cell phones :-), and DNA is a questionable tool in the courtroom, but a forensics bonanza.
Personally, I believe other Scarpetta novels are better.
A great mystery that kept me guessing until the very end. The forensic and computer details are early 90's and brought back loads of memories. Listening at 1.25 speed was just right!
I had read some of the Scarpetta series and wanted to start at the beginning. It was nice to hear about the characters from book one.
I am currently listening to the next book in the series, but find her frequent gasps for air at the beginning of sentences to be very disconcerting. I like to listen for a while before I fall asleep and the sound of large gulps of air startles me. So, I may not finish the series on audio.
No. It was good, but not that good.
I still want to hear the entire series, but feel like I'd have to find a different narrator so I could relax while I listen.
as far as detective series, better than Patterson not as good as Crais or Connelly
Weird pauses. I think it was editing of narration
good start to the series I will continue to listen in order
If you like procedurals, this is a very good one. It is a little bit dated, but not in a way that detracted from my enjoyment of the story.
What I like about this plot is that it is always moving forward. Too many detective novels get overly sidetracked in ancillary plots about the protagonist's issues or there the investigation gets bogged down. This doesn't take too much time to linger on insignificant details.
The narrator is terrible at doing the other characters' voices. She does a particularly offensive job with the blue collar detective, the gay scientist, and the nanny. She also reads slowly, so if you don't like a slow reader, she isn't for you. I
I think it would look something like the UK's Prime Suspect with Helen Mirren, only Kay Scarpetta is a much softer character. It has that same well-paced but detailed procedural feeling to it.
I have read most of Patricia Cornwell's books. I loved her gift as a wordsmith . . . not an academic, but a person who has learned her craft well. I was surprised in this book to realize that it was a step way back in time . . . the characters were young and many of the "latest" technical developments are ancient history in the technological sense of the word. Having said that . . . Patricia Cornwell is a masterful story teller and this book is no exception. It is skillfully written and reflects the technology and environment of the day. (does anyone else remember the gritty powdered hand soap in public washrooms????). The story is certain to hold your attention - and the issues addressed (police scandal) are remarkably forward thinking.
I must however, take exception to the narrator. I gave her 2 stars only because she didn't mispronounce any words. Her accents were everywhere from the deep south to downtown Boston (and everything in between - sometimes in the same sentence). The volume of her voice ranges from very quiet to very loud - making it a difficult listen because of the variations in volume. Her narrating was a detraction from a very well written mystery!
For those medical mystery lovers, however, this is a great "read." Just hold disbelief in suspense when the accents for the characters are "off-putting" - and keep your hand on the volume control so you neither miss important passages nor blast your ears to an unhealthy jump in volume. It's well worth the effort.
Yes I will try another Cornwell novel. The character development is decent but a little too background intensive regarding the technical details. I believe this may be due to the fact that this book was written several years ago. I will never listen to another book narrated by CJ Critt. She takes a deep breath at the beginning of most paragraphs and it is very distracting. She doesn't seem to be able to grasp the characters personalities and makes Scarpetta seem like a delicate flower that is afraid to speak.
It's slow to start but weaves a nice intrigue
The narrator was completely off base with the character. Needs to be a totally different reader.
I have been wanting to read the Scarpetta books for a long time because I love the Bones novels and another series that is similar so I figured I would like these as well. Being OCD about the way I read books of course I had to read them from the first book in order. After I got back into the mindframe of pre-computers/laptops being on every surface of my house and a cell phone in my pocket, I was able to appreciate the story because the old style computers really play a part in the story. I am hooked on Scarpetta and just got the second in the series.
This story is well told and I really enjoyed it all the way through. Sometimes with this type of novel it is easy to get bogged down by too many details but this book has a perfect balance of information vs. story. I can see that I will be a Patricia Cornwell fan from now on. The character, Kay Scarpetta, really grows on you and CJ Critt is the perfect voice for her. When I read this book in print that was not the voice I imagined but after hearing this book I realize that is the voice the author meant for her to have and now I can't imagine any other voice for her.
The plot was passable, but the characters were a little superficial and the some of the character development didn't seem to go anywhere. The narrator could have varied accents for the different characters. It was not "an on the edge of your seat" mystery.