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Publisher's Summary

After working one of the worst mass killings in U.S. history, Scarpetta returns home to Cambridge, Massachusetts. Exhausted and ill, she's recovering at home when she receives an unsettling call. The body of a young woman has been discovered on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's rugby field. The victim, a graduate student named Gail Shipman, is oddly draped in ivory linen and posed in a way that is too deliberate to be the killer's first strike. A preliminary examination in the sea of red mud where the body has been left also reveals a bizarre residue that fluoresces blood red, emerald green, and sapphire blue.

Physical evidence links the case to a series of uniquely weird homicides in Washington, D.C., where Scarpetta's FBI husband has been deployed to help capture a serial killer dubbed the Capital Murderer. The cases all connect and yet seem to conflict. Gail Shipman was murdered for financial gain - or was she? It will require the usual ensemble of characters to find out the truth, including Scarpetta's sidekick Pete Marino, who has undergone a drastic change in his life that places him center stage in a Cambridge investigation that puts everyone at risk.

©2013 Patricia Cornwell (P)2013 Penguin Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    503
  • 4 Stars
    396
  • 3 Stars
    295
  • 2 Stars
    106
  • 1 Stars
    79

Performance

  • 3.9 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    510
  • 4 Stars
    315
  • 3 Stars
    206
  • 2 Stars
    91
  • 1 Stars
    81

Story

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    443
  • 4 Stars
    309
  • 3 Stars
    258
  • 2 Stars
    114
  • 1 Stars
    73
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Raymond
  • Frankfort, KY, United States
  • 11-30-13

Sentimental Plot & characters

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

Those who like to wallow in the depression of the protagonist.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

The plot could work for those for whom character is not important. Continuation of past stereotypes & story lines like past books with this weak cast.

Would you be willing to try another one of Kate Reading’s performances?

Do not think I could take hours more of her whining narration.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

No.

Any additional comments?

My biggest problem with this book revolves around one dimensional Characters.Kay is too vulnerable and sentimental to be an interesting protagonist.Benton is too perfect except for melancholia. Poor old Marinio is Falstaff without redeeming humanity. He has degenerated into a foil for the perfection of Kay and Benton.

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Terrible

Would you try another book from Patricia Cornwell and/or Kate Reading?

This was my first try with an audio book and it was terrible. I had an unexpected eye problem and could not read so I thought this was a good solution but I could not finish the book. The reader was awful.

What could Patricia Cornwell have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

I love Patricia Cornwall.

Would you be willing to try another one of Kate Reading’s performances?

Never.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Frustration.

Any additional comments?

I would love a refund. Waste of my money.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Diana
  • Murrieta, CA, United States
  • 11-24-13

Same Ole, Same Ole - waste of a credit and my time

Every time a new Scarpetta book comes out I get excited to read it hoping it will hold the same thrill as her earlier books, but then when I am done I say I'll never read another one. Same goes here. Some books Marino seems on the ball, like he has actually been learning something over the past 20 years. Then he just does the dumbest things, doesn't pick up on anything as if he's a rookie. It's clear kay has a soft spot for him but she doesn't tolerate that kind of stupidity in anyone around her why does she still with him. How does Cornwell get by with writing it, on yeah- we keep buying the books that's how. Its as if she doesn't respect her readers, doesn't give them any credit. And Benton: if everyone sees him just as described and no one sees him like Kay does then why doesn't Cornwell let us see more of what Kay sees. I used to love Lucy but she's written now so far a field.

Waste of a credit and my time listening to it.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Story good, don't like the reader

The reader has a pleasant voice, but she lifts the end of each sentence, almost like a question, that I don't like.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

She's SOOOOOOOOOOO angry.

Any additional comments?

I admit it's been a while since I listened to a Kay Scarpetta book but she was one of my favorites for years. Then not so much. I was excited to see a new book and gave it a try. This book is SO depressing, not because of the content, which is typical scarpetta, but because Miss Kay is angry from page 1 to about 2 pages before the end. I got so tired of her complaining and griping and voicing her anger I could hardly finish. And by the time the book was through, I just wanted it to be over. I didn't even care how it turned out. As always Kate Reading does a great job...unfortunately there's not much she can do to fix this.

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jennifer
  • Discovery Bay, CA, United States
  • 11-13-13

Scarpetta at her Best !!!

Scarpetta is back! Cornwell is back to the style we all love and missed. The gang is working together again without all the outlandish antics of the last few books. Well worth our credit.

5 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Might be the last Patricia Cornwell book I read.

What disappointed you about Dust?

The story was filled with detail after detail of the weather, surroundings, of memories and almost no story. The bulk of the story unfolds at the very end when the killer is already caught. Kay tells us over and over of her great love of Benton; why don't I believe it and why don't I care?

Would you ever listen to anything by Patricia Cornwell again?

Not likely. I've read a lot of Cornwell's work including books not about Kay Scarpetta. I haven't liked all of them, but this last story wasn't worth the time of the money.

Which character – as performed by Kate Reading – was your favorite?

I used to like the Morino character and I think the reader does a splendid job but there is nothing to work with. The character is dull and flat throughout the whole book.

What character would you cut from Dust?

There are no decent characters in the book.

1 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Please stop the bad accents!

Any additional comments?

I listen to audiobooks for the entertainment factor. Why is it that Everyone is from Brooklyn? If you live in MA, you sound like NY. Marino should sound like NY, but like a magoo like that? I start to lose track when everyone has the same accent. Kay, on the other hand, sounds like she knows all and is just barely willing to share with us. In other words, perfect.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • N
  • 12-21-13

Not fond of Scarpetta anymore.

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The repetitive history! Patricia Cornwell is filling up pages with too much verbiage of needless prattle in her last three Scarpetta books!. Too Much repeating of old 'stuff' just to fill pages (the needless prattle). And the Scarpetta books are getting depressing to read/listen. Overall I found this book boring.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Dull.

What about Kate Reading’s performance did you like?

Reader does a good job with a boring book. She can only bring so much 'life' into this storyline.

Did Dust inspire you to do anything?

No

Any additional comments?

Glad Marino has left Scarpetta.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Sheryl
  • Pocatello, ID, USA
  • 12-16-13

Narrator is very tiresome

This narrator cannot do different characters at all. It took away from the whole experience for me.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful