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Body of Evidence (Kay Scarpetta) [Mass Market Paperback]

Patricia Daniels Cornwell
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)

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Mass Market Paperback, May 1994 --  
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Book Description

May 1994 Kay Scarpetta
A reclusive writer is dead. And her final manuscript has disappeared ...Someone is stalking Beryl Madison. Someone who spies on her and makes threatening, obscene phone-calls. Terrified, Beryl flees to Key West - but eventually she must return to her Richmond home. The very night she arrives, Beryl inexplicably invites her killer in ...Thus begins for Dr Kay Scarpetta the investigation of a crime that is as convoluted as it is bizarre. Why would Beryl open the door to someone who brutally slashed and then nearly decapitated her? Did she know her killer? Adding to the intrigue is Beryl's enigmatic relationship with a prize-winning author and the disappearance of her own manuscript. As Scarpetta retraces Beryl's footsteps, an investigation that begins in the laboratory with microscopes and lasers leads her deep into a nightmare that soon becomes her own.
--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Avon Books (Mm); Reprint edition (May 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743493915
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380717019
  • ASIN: 0380717018
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.7 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,268,649 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Patricia Cornwell is the 2008 winner of the Galaxy British Book Awards' Books Direct Crime Thriller of the Year - the first American ever to win this prestigious award. Postmortem was the only novel to win five major crime awards in a single year and Cruel and Unusual won the coveted Gold Dagger Award in 1993.

Product Description


Cornwell is the one to beat when it comes to slick, speedy chillers (SUNDAY TELEGRAPH )

A great writer ... read these books only in broad daylight (DAILY MAIL )

Head-under-bedclothes tension (THE TIMES )

Cornwell's strength remains her resolute refusal to glamorise crime, hitting sickeningly home with the gruesome details while relentlessly building up the tension to a finger-chewing climax. (SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY ) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Book Description

The second novel in the bestselling Dr Kay Scarpetta series --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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First Sentence
RETURNING THE KEY WEST LETTERS TO THEIR MANILA folder, I got out a packet of surgical gloves, tucked it inside my black medical bag, and took the elevator down one floor to the morgue. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Body of evidence - Excellent 17 Sep 2011
I read this book immediately after reading Postmortem and felt this was a step up in the way it held my attention and I really enjoyed it. The storyline was very strong and the main plot and little sub plots kept me wanting to read on. The interaction between Scarpetta and the other main characters - Marino, Mark and Benton was enjoyable and occasionally funny. The story builds very nicely and the ending whilst slightly predictable, was still very tense. Excellent stuff. Can't wait to get onto the next one.
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35 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Atmospheric, Chilling and Evocative 21 July 2003
By A Customer
Having purchased all of the Scarpetta books written to date, Body of Evidence has got to be my favourite for several reasons. As usual, Patricia Cornwell skilfully confronts the reader with a horrific murder and leaves no forensic stone unturned as one by one the tiny pieces of evidence and inspired detective work by Scarpetta and Marino reveal clues to the identity of the perpertrator. There is passion and romance for Kay and as an extra bonus a vivid although realistic description of the Florida Keys that made me want to go and see the sunsets and the clear blue water for myself. The characters are interesting and the plot just bowls along so you just want to keep on reading. Best of all Lucy does not feature in this novel. Highly Recommended to new Scarpetta readers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not Great 8 Sep 2014
By David H J Ashdown TOP 500 REVIEWER
Quite a good story about an author who is murdered in her own home after having been pestered by a phone stalker and it falls to Dr Kay Scarpetta to solve the mystery. There are plenty of red herrings thrown in to confuse but the final miscreant is somehow a disappointment as you couldn't have deduced who it was from the early clues however it's worth reading as the eventual outcome makes sense. It's not one to read if you enjoy being clever and trying to solve the mystery from the start as the eureka moment happens in the latter stages of the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping and full of twists 28 Aug 2012
Having read "Postmortem" as and not been completely won over by the talents of Ms Cornwell, I was unsure as to whether "Body of Evidence" would thrill me in the same way that it has for her devoted readers.

However, I was pleasantly surprised and, admittedly, gripped to the search for the murderer of a reclusive author, penning her scandalous biography. It doesn't take long for the motives (and the bodies) to start piling up and Dr Scarpetta has conspiracies, deception and swathes of psychopathy to wade through before she uncovers the real reason why the victim comes to a grisly end.

The plot moves deftly, with the twists and turns keeping you on your toes. Scarpetta is crafted as a realistic and, at times, flawed heroine and this certainly is more effective in "Body of Evidence" than "Postmortem". I warmed to Kay far more and felt more involved and invested in her as a character. Marino, her policeman colleague, is a brilliant creation, managing to fill the role of the "sarcastic, cynical co-worker" but also "the grumpy detective with a heart". It shows the breadth of Cornwell's skills that she can create two vastly different characters and not only make them realistic but also have their interactions serve as poignant and believable.

The eventual reveal of the perpetrator was somewhat of a let down for me- it didn't evoke the same kind of tension or realism that Cornwell achieves in the rest of the novel which is disappointing.

However, the rest of the book is entirely enjoyable and a great must-read from one of the big female talents of the crime writing world.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit of a slow starter 14 Jun 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
this year I decided to start Cornwell's Dr. Kay Scarpetta series. I had high hopes for her first 'postmortem' and was frankly, a bit let down. I think this second attempt is much better than post mortem but is a tad slow to get goin and I also thought it was all a bit confusing at times. That said there are some moments of really high tension and suspense and an introduces some interesting new characters that really make me want to go out and get the 3rd in the series.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic 27 Sep 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Excellent read, excellent read, fantastic read, really enjoyed it. The Kindle version is fantastic. I love my Kindle. Would certainly tell friends.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Can't help feeling disappointed... 10 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
So I'm an avid reader but generally go for the light hearted, gripping plot but totally unrealistic kind of books but....Meh!!! I don't understand, I thought postmortem was great, was looking forward to getting into an old but 'new to me' author, and a series, but I just didn't get excited by this. I didn't feel like I engaged with any of the characters, I found Marino to be really annoying, Kay to be rather insignificant and hopeless, especially in relation to her about face regarding Mark. It had little forensic pathology stuff in it and Kay could have been easily mistaken as the lead investigator. Very mixed feelings about this one and I am going to have to fight the urge to go back to Tess Gerittsen so soon. I hate it when a book doesn't get you going.. have already begun a lesley pearse which looks promising so far. Please anyone, do they get better than this????
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5.0 out of 5 stars The writer who created the whole CSI genre 6 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This writer is a medical examiner and it shows. If you like crime fiction and be suprisdd if u don't find her books gripping. I certainly do!
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