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Trace (Scarpetta Novels) [Paperback]

Patricia Cornwell
2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (127 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 6.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

4 Nov 2010 Scarpetta Novels (Book 13)

Since Postmortem garnered critical acclaim and a record-breaking five awards for a first crime novel, the Scarpetta novels have often been imitated, but never bettered. Against her own judgement and the advice of Benton Wesley and her niece, Lucy, Scarpetta agrees to return to Virginia as a consultant pathologist on a case involving the death of a fourteen-year-old girl. Accompanied by Pete Marino she finds the once familiar territory of her morgue and her department much changed, and the new Chief Medical Examiner treats her with disdain despite the obvious fact that he is in desperate need of her expertise. But professional as ever, she re-examines the evidence and proves the girl was murdered. She also finds trace evidence which matches that found on an accident victim and at the scene where one of Lucy's operatives was attacked. It is not only a forensic puzzle, but opens up the probability that someone is after those closest to Scarpetta.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (4 Nov 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0751544981
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751544985
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (127 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 90,844 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

Amazon Review

Break out the champagne: Patricia Cornwell has thankfully moved on from her controversial campaign to lay the Jack the Ripper murders at the door of the painter Walter Sickert, and in Trace is again raising our pulse rate by taking us into the dangerous world of consultant pathologist Dr Kay Scarpetta.

In this latest outing, Kay finds herself back in Virginia examining a curious death, that of the youthful Gilly Paulson. Joel Marcus, her successor as Chief Medical Examiner, has summoned a reluctant Scarpetta to help out, but her professional work is compromised by her unhappiness at the radical changes occurring in her old territory: Scarpetta's old morgue has been bulldozed, and she isn’t happy working with the man who took her job. Other members of the familiar Scarpetta crew make an appearance: her partner Benton Wesley and her niece Lucy Farinelli are tracking down an assailant who has nearly ended the life of one of Lucy’s colleagues. The two cases turn out to be connected (surprise!), and soon several lives are at stake.

After the recent misfires, it’s a relief to note that Patricia Cornwell is back on track, dealing comfortably with her most familiar protagonist and a plot that yokes in bomb-makers and some bizarre sexual practices. A resounding welcome back, to both Ms Cornwell and Ms Scarpetta.--Barry Forshaw --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


This is vintage Cornwell as she turns the screw with every page. (WHAT'S ON LONDON)

This is an accomplished addition to Cornwell's Scarpetta series- and thrilling from start to finish. (THE LADY)

I'd recommend TRACE to any reader who enjoys a good plot, strong characters and plenty of action. (IRISH EXAMINER)

TRACE more than lives up to the high standards set by previous books in the Scarpetta series and it is certainly lucky 13 for fans of the good doctor. (SUNDAY BUSINESS POST) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Dreadful 31 Oct 2004
I'm sorry to have to say this about my favourite author, but I really think that Patricia Cornwell should take a break. If this had been one of the first Scarpetta stories, then I really don't think that the series would have ever taken off. I had actually forgotton how awful 'Blowfly' was particularly her new style of writing these books in the third person, so when I saw Trace on the bookstand I bought it eagerly. What a disappointment. None of the main characters seem to be themselves any more. The plot was weak and just didn't have the gripping edge that Scarpetta novels usually have. It's almost as if another author has taken over writing the Scarpetta books.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing 17 Jan 2006
I usually enjoy reading the adventures of Patricia Cornwell’s Scarpetta but this was a total disappointment. My interest in the book began to wane after the first few chapters. The plot was lacklustre and the only cliffhanger was whether I would have the stamina to reach the end of the plodding and contrived narrative. I found the change to the first person and the use of the present tense of the verb highly irritating. It doesn’t seem written by the same author.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What a disappointment! 5 Dec 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I've been an avid reader of the Scarpetta novels for a number of years, and have always hugely enjoyed them. However, Trace was an utter disappointment, a complete waste of my reading time. A weak story, which, to me, left many questions unanswered.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Patricia has lost the plot 25 Oct 2004
By A Customer
When I first began reading novels by Cornwell, they were in the un-put-downable category. Somewhere along the way she has lost the ability to tell a good yarn and tell it well.
This book is an improvement on her last book, "Blowfly", but that is about the only good thing you can say about it.
She introduces too many carachters, has too many plot threads spread over too many locations. Scarpetta is dithering, Marino isn't much better. Benton might as well have stayed dead!!!
The plot limps along around the story of yet another of Lucy's lovers and the unexplained death of a teenager in Richmond. Scarpetta returns at the request of the new Coroner, who is so memorable that I have already forgotten his name. The old OCME building is being demolished, during the process of which a digger driver manages to crush himself and trace evidence found on the dead girl also turns up during the investigation into his death.
We are introduced to a person called Edgar Allen Pogue, who talks to his dead mother, but unlike in the case of Norman Bates, we never find out if Pogue has Mom locked in the cellar. He does however like to keep the ashes of people he has cremated in the morgue. A pity he didn't cremate himself and we would have been spared this dull and boring book.
I no longer read a new Cornwell book in 2 days, I struggled with this one for over two weeks and was relieved when is crawled to a pathetic halt. Do yourself a favour, borrow it from a friend or the library, it's not worth spending any money on.
Time for Scarpetta and maybe even Cornwell to retire and stay there. On a scale of 1 to 10 this book is about a minus 2.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not a Page Turner 14 Oct 2004
By A Customer
Quite simply the worse Patricia Cornwell I've ever read. Very Dull. I prefer the earlier novels - more about the case and less about Lucy and her strange life. I kept reading this book in case the story improved, but it was only in the last 75 pages or so that the story started and finished very rapidly.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars poor 14 July 2006
For whatever reason Cornwell seems to have completely lost her way. There seems to be no reason for the complete change in the style of writing - going from the first person narrative to the third person in a well established series. The plots have become dull and convoluted and the characters, especially Scarpetta have become distinctly unlikeable and arrogant. I will not, unfortunately, be reading any more that Ms Cornwell has to offer.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars If there was 1/2 a star I'd sellect that.... 28 Jun 2005
I have to add my voice to the multitude with this one... I was a dedicated fan and actually marked the date when Blow Fly would be coming out on my calendar. What a disappointment. I had hoped this book would have been an improvement but it appears that along with the change in style she lost all style.
Why does everything has to evolve around Scarpetta? She's there to solve the mysteries not cause them. Suddenly the whole world is against her and everyone is out to get her?
Should have stopped with the Last Precinct. I think that's where my Cornwell collection is going to end... and Trace and Blow Fly will be ending up at a charity shop.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Losing her way 2 Feb 2005
Having read all her books, I wonder if Miss C is now writing for her own amusement rather than our enjoyment and pleasure? What is it with her irritating and intrusive use of the present tense? Is she doing it to stop her 'dropping off',(or possibly us), or is she simply bored with writing? Scarpetta's previously feisty and sparkling character cannot save this story, which is dull and lacks the tension usually present in Miss C's books. And what has happened to Marino-he is a shadow of his former self. I am afraid she will be removed from my list as an author I once enjoyed reading.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great buy, great price speedy delivery
Published 18 days ago by Cheryl
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great book
Published 1 month ago by M. Coakley
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Book
I love these books and love that the character has been made into a t.v show (bones) all of the storylines are based on past cases from a real forensic anthropologists and the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by S.A.Checkley
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
A great read keeps - that is all I need to say love Patricia Cornwall and you will love this book.
Published 2 months ago by Gem
4.0 out of 5 stars good reading
very good reading keeps you in suspense, a real page turner, well worth buying and good value, what else can I say
Published 5 months ago by paula
5.0 out of 5 stars A worthy read for those following the Scarpetta series.
A worthy read for those following the Scarpetta series. Always a twist right at the very end and this one didn't disappoint.
Published 5 months ago by Daff o Dilly
5.0 out of 5 stars a good read
thoroughly enjoyed this book, well up to the authors usual standard.I always find Patricia Cornwells books eminently readable. Long may she continue to produce them.
Published 5 months ago by Debbie Aston
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good story
This was a very good story jumping round different plots and storylines. It really kept me in suspense. I would recommend it as an excellent read
Published 6 months ago by Eugene F Pannett
3.0 out of 5 stars Mishmash
I chose this rating because the author seems to have gone of track. It was more about Merino, Lucy, cars, helicopters and such rather than the good upbeat forensic science. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Caroline Elaine Read
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book
what can i say the books never let me down each time i pick up a new one i think it can't out do the last, but they can
Published 7 months ago by Blue girl
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