Four young women have been found murdered—tortured and strangled in their own beds—all victims of the same brilliant monster. Using a skilled hand and the latest technology in forensic medicine, Kay Scarpetta begins the process of gathering the microscopic clues the latest battered body has to give.
©1990 Patricia D. Cornwell (P)1993 Recorded Books, LLC
The reader puts you to sleep. Reading the series is better.
Having a different reader to bring the story alive.
NO ONE who enjoys a good thriller
A MUCH LATER BOOK IN THE SCARPETTA SERIES OF SOMETHING FROM PATTERSON, Lisa Jackson, or the Felix Castor series!
The narrator should learn to NARRATE. The book is read in first person of the main character, she should keep that in mind. This person has a voice and personality. She also could stand to be a little less animated with teh other characters, its cartoonish bordering on buffoonish for some.
BOREDOM, FRUSTRATION and disappointment
I really like Cornwell, but I started off on her later works. The first was Red Mist, which I read the actual hard copy of, and I have worked my way back from there on audiobooks. This time I tried to start with the 1st in the Scarpetta series. 1st off, many,many times, she spends WAY to much time discussing conversations between the characters that have nothing to do with the mystery but is more about their personalities and interactions with one another...and most is not even ineteresting subject matter. Spending pages on miscellaneous info that shouldn't take more than a few sentences, or paragraphs. Its like the director's notes for a script for a movie, as opposed to actual content. Its exhausting, when you think you are about to read a thriller! Furthermore, the horrid narrator does not make it much better. Many times she is over animated with the characters, but when reading as the narrator charactor in first person, she is drab, boring and monotonous. Many of Cornwell's earlier works, even the much better written ones, are read by this narrator and she's horrible. Thankfully she moved on to someone better for some of her others. Two hours in and I couldn't even finish this book, and I don't think I'm missing out anything. That's not something I ever do. HORRIBLE!
I enjoyed this story. However, the technology is very dated. There was also way too much "explanation" for every acronym, technological reference, etc. This was rather annoying.
I think this series has potential. The mystery was good, and the character development was good. I identified with the conflict and humiliation that the main character experienced in her working environment. I did "sort of" guess the perpetrator, but wasn't quite sure.
The narrator was good, though rather flat. This could be because of all the above mentioned explanations though! Perhaps it will get better in the subsequent novels. I'll give it another book or two to see.
Yes, I'd recommend the book - as long as the reader understands the dated information.
Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Dad to his 12-year-old daughter.
This wasn't a bad book but if you're looking forward to learning how a medical examiner uses forensic evidence to uncover the mystery behind crimes, you will be disappointed. The unraveling of the mystery had very little to do with forensics and more to do with generic detective work. Also, listening to this book 20 or so years after it was written might prove a little distracting because of the advances made in computing and investigative techniques. Get past all that and the book will provide some entertainment. Worth a listen if you can pick it up on a $4.99 sale.
Many have posted a poor review of C.J. Critt however I find her voice to be very reminiscent of early Hollywood actresses like Lauren Bacall.
Once recognizing that style I found her performance to be very nice.
Fake southern accents impeded enjoyment of content. Would enjoy the reader if characters were read "straight" with Standard American accents and interpretation was minimized. Wesley, Moreno, Wingo are beloved characters who need the listener to interpret them.
I discovered the Kay Scarpetta series back in the '90s, and have enjoyed it ever since. I will admit, though, that I am most fond of the early novels, for a wide variety of reasons, most of which involve my own personal preferences. This is vintage Scarpetta, and it's wonderful! I really like strong female characters who show excellence in their professions of choice, but who are also deeply human, and try as hard as they can to manage their work and personal lives with grace, enthusiasm and compassion. They don't dither much, and they accept themselves, understanding that all people have strengths and weaknesses, and it is how we work with those things that is important, in the long run. Kay Scarpetta has always been a kind of role model for me, because she demonstrates so many traits that I admire. I really enjoy the other characters, too, and always find visits to their world engrossing, challenging and exciting. Like all of Ms. Cornwell's novels, this one has hair raising suspense, hold your breath action scenes, and lots and lots of twists. One thing I love about this series is the way this author can drop some subtle hints, knowing her readers will catch them, and, even though experienced mystery fans will *know* that they are being presented with a primrose path, the author is so good the reader will be drawn in, and meander down the path she is pointing at, while, with slight of word, the author works quietly behind the reader's back to slip in clues the reader completely misses ...until the very end. After finishing one of these books, I find myself laughing, and thinking, "You did it AGAIN!", and then laughing at myself, thinking, "yes, and I fell for it AGAIN, quite happily".
I especially like this narrator, and she is a perfect match for this series. Her interpretations of the characters sound just as they do in my mind, which is rare enough to be noticeable.
characters, plot, forensic detail
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