In this fast-paced story, a treacherous path from Kay Scarpetta's past merges with the high-tech highway she now finds herself on. We travel back to the beginning of her professional career, when she enlisted in the Air Force to pay off her medical school debt and found herself ensnared in a gruesome case of what seemed to be vicious, racially motivated hate crimes against two Americans in South Africa.
Now, more than 20 years and many career successes later, her secret military ties have drawn her to Dover Air Force Base, where she has been immersed in a training fellowship to master the art of CT-assisted virtual autopsy - a procedure the White House has mandated that she introduce in the private sector.
As the chief of the new Cambridge Forensic Center in Massachusetts, a joint venture of the state and federal governments and MIT, Scarpetta is confronted with a case that could shut down her new facility and ruin her personally and professionally. A young man drops dead, apparently from a cardiac arrhythmia, eerily close to Scarpetta's new Cambridge home. But when his body is examined the next morning, there are stunning indications that he may have been alive when he was zipped inside a pouch and locked insider the Center's cooler. Various 3-D radiology scans reveal more shocking details about internal injuries unlike any Scarpetta has ever seen. These suggest the possibility of a conspiracy to cause mass casualties. She realizes that she is fighting a cunning and cruel enemy that is invisible as she races against time to discover who and why before more people die.
In Port Mortuary, Patricia Cornwell brings Scarpetta together with Marino, Benton, and Lucy in an intimate way that is reminiscent of the early novels, and we welcome a voice we haven't heard in years. The point of view is Scarpetta's - this is her story.
Flesh and bone: investigate more of Kay Scarpetta's forensic cases.
©2010 Patricia Cornwell (P)2010 Penguin
This Scarpetta book is OK, but not great. It begins with the Dover AFB's Port Mortuary...a flimsy pretense but a great way to emphasize that organization. Although there is a bit of swirling and eddy around technology, the story is all about what happens after the return from Dover and deterioration of her company in Scarpetta's absence. The book then emphasizes Scarpetta, to the detriment of everyone else in the story. Marino, for example, is relegated to the status of a large hulk that can't be trusted. Tell me again why Scarpetta left Richmond? The perpetrator gets caught as always and we move on to another Cornwell novel.
This story was not very captivating. It did not hold my interest like many other Cornwell books. The story line was pretty stale and not at all what I had hoped.
Couldn't determine which character she was reading they all sounded the same. Even noticed that at times she used the same voice for two characters that were talking back and forth and she made it sound as if she hadn't prepared for this job. Using the same tone of voice for the wrong character. It made listening confusing and took away from the story.
Read it on your own,
Make sure I don't listen to a book that Kate Burton is narrating
Love the Scarpetta stories.
Disabled Alaskan reader of mostly mysteries historical. Also vampires, werewolves, things that go bump in the night! Some scifi and fantasy!
Well after disappointing her fans for so long. Cornwell is back better than ever, maybe she's been listening to her fans who like myself that were disappointed in the books Cornwell was putting out. I had heard some people had given up on her but I kept trying and finally my wait was rewarded with the latest Scarpetta books, this one and Scarpetta are back to the kind of quality that we had gotten used to in her earlier books. Port Mortuary is different, the story stats at the real Port Mortuary at Dover AFB where where Scarpetta is assisting in developing techniques for virtual autopsies, then shifts back to her recently adopted home at Boston's Cambridge Forensic Center (CFC). A young man's mysterious death becomes even stranger after full-body scans reveal destruction so extensive it's as if a bomb went off inside his body. Scarpetta and husband Benton Wesley-along with her niece, Lucy Farinelli, and ex-cop turned CFC investigator Pete Marino-discover links not only to a government project with the ability to cause mass casualties but also to another grisly case currently under investigation.. Told from a first person For the first time in a while, Cornwell seems genuinely interested in Scarpetta again, giving the novel that spark of life that has made the series so enjoyable for its many fans. The book is still a long way from the glory days of Postmortem (1991) and From Potter’s Field (1995), but it’s definitely a step in the right direction.
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