Reviews for Bone Bed : A Scarpetta Novel


Booklist Reviews 2012 October #2
On the same day she receives a mystifying video e-mail about an American anthropologist missing in Canada, Kay Scarpetta retrieves a woman's body from Massachusetts Bay (after disentangling it from a massive sea turtle) and testifies at the trial of a billionaire industrialist accused of murdering his missing wife. Disparate cases tend to connect in crime fiction, and soon Scarpetta--with her chief investigator, Pete Marino, temporarily sidelined--is searching for what her husband, FBI profiler Benton Wesley, believes to be a serial killer. Unfortunately, one of the cases doesn't quite fit the pattern. And then there's Scarpetta herself, now feeling both her age and some friction in her marriage. She's gazing appreciatively at younger men, including her newly hired deputy at the Cambridge Forensic Center, Dr. Luke Zenner, while Wesley admits that his younger female partner is in love with him and has tried to lure him to bed. Which distracts Scarpetta when the killer, inevitably, targets her. Cornwell's forensics are fine, but she still seems to be struggling to recover the freshness and verve that formerly distinguished the Scarpetta series. Longtime fans may not be bothered, but others may find reading this more a duty than a pleasure. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: As the twentieth entry in the Kay Scarpetta series, this is bound to be promoted heavily. Shortcomings aside, it extends the personal stories of a handful of characters whom fans have followed for years. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

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Kirkus Reviews 2012 October #2
Having survived brushes with ruthless killers, human monsters and treacherous colleagues of every stripe (Red Mist, 2011, etc.), forensic pathologist Dr. Kay Scarpetta limps into her 20th case to encounter more of the same. Scarpetta's latest casts her as Zeno trying to overtake the tortoise. Before she can track the provenance of the video that's been emailed to her--a video apparently featuring footage of missing University of Alberta paleontologist Emma Shubert's severed ear--she has to testify, however unwillingly, for the defense in Channing Lott's trial for the murder of his vanished wife. Before she can leave for court, she has to examine the mummified remains of an unidentified woman who's been spotted in Boston Harbor--an examination that has to begin instantly, before the deterioration delayed by the corpse's long period of climate-controlled storage resumes at top speed. But before Scarpetta can get the corpse on a slab, it'll have to be gently cut loose from the leatherback turtle who's gotten tangled up with it, an animal whose endangered species status gives it priority over a mere human cadaver. The first half of this sprawling, ambitious tale may make the reader feel like Zeno as well, constantly struggling to catch up to what Scarpetta already knows about the latest round of traumas posed by her husband, Benton Wesley, her niece, Lucy Farinelli, and her investigator, Pete Marino. It's not till the second half, when Cornwell hunkers down to tie all these cases together, that excitement rises even as disbelief creeps in. An ingenious murder method, more hours in the mortuary and forensics lab than usual, an uncharacteristically muffled killer, and all the trademark battles among the regulars and every potential ally who gets in their way. Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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Library Journal Reviews 2012 May #1

First, a leading paleontologist goes missing from a dinosaur dig in Canada. Then a body is heaved out of Boston Harbor. Soon, other curious, unsolved cases pile up, and forensic expert Kay Scarpetta has her hands full. Cornwell has been struggling lately; see what happens, and buy for her fans.

[Page 51]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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