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on 16 October 2003
Calling all Scarpetta fans....This is not the usual Scarpetta outing, as Patricia Cornwell has changed her Style of writing.
I'm a huge fan of Ms Cornwell & Scarpetta and have collected her work since the early 90's.
I feel I was left out in the cold while reading Blowfly and more than a little confused.
The chapters are very short (some only half a page) and jump from one part of the plot to the next without drawing breath.
Instead of feeling like I was part of the team, as I usually do reading Scarpetta novels, I felt more like an outsider.
To me Blowfly feels more like a re-introduction of characters, some old and some new, than a continuation of the series. But stick with it as all becomes clear in the end.
I hope we don't have to wait too long for book 13 (if there is one!) Three years is a long time to wait for a Scarpetta fan.
But please let the next book be in the style of classic Scarpetta.
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on 3 March 2017
Hate to give a low rating but found this novel to be a disappointed and let down to the series.

First you need to get used to the different point of view, you definitely miss being in Scarpetta's head. Chardonne's sections are far too long and very repetitious. Jay's sections seem pointless as ultimately they build up to nothing. And finally, the worst, is that would should have been an epic reunion was left as anticlimactic and unsatisfying.
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on 4 March 2016
Have read all of the Scarpetta novels through, one after another, up as far as this one and the following one. The stories are exciting, "Page-turners" as they say. but - frankly - I've simply found it too wearing on the nerves and emotions, reading accounts of women being abducted and torutured. Even though I know it's only a novel, these things do happen, and the images in my mind have stayed with me for days and put me in a bad mood. Call me a wimp if you like, but I'm getting off here.
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on 14 March 2004
Whilst reading Blow Fly, I was undecided as to whether it is a clever and daring device to take Scarpetta to another level, or a tired, unbeliveable and cliched novel that signals the end for the series. It is with extreme reluctance that I've concluded that its probably the latter....
Blowfly is a complex tale, written in the third person and jumping between characters, plotlines and perspectives to the extent that I found myself having to go back to reread chapters to make sense of it.
It is difficult to sum up the gist of the plot line, becuase there really isn't a clear one.... no mystery as to "who-dun-it", no real motivations for any of the characters (perhaps a casualty of the switch to 3rd person), no real forensic insights and investigation and frankly no real tension. The story meanders along with little clear purpose, only to have a sudden "wrap up" at the end (maybe even the author was getting bored and confused). The most definate thing I can say about the book is that it probably won't do much for the Louisiana tourist industry !
I ultimately found the novel disappointing. I feel Cornwell has sold us short, with some unbeliveable "twists" and dramatic character personality changes. The actions of the characters in the book seem to be plot rather than character driven - I got the feeling that things are being "set up" for a future series of stories, as opposed to any real thought being given to maintain the credibility of the previous (mainly excellent) novels.
If you are a Scarpetta junkie, proceed with care - compelling though it is to find out "what happened next" to all the characters, you may be in for a nasty shock. If you are looking for a good, suspenseful crime thriller with some forensics thrown in - the book is best avoided - I would suggest some of Cornwell's earlier novels.
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on 13 September 2004
Really, really dissapointed. I have read and re read many times all of the previous Cornwell / Scarpetta books until the spines are bent to the point the titles are unreadable, but have literally had to force myself to finish this one. I hate the way Cornwell has switched to 3rd party speach, its much easier to read and understand Kays emotion in the previous books than "scarpetta was angry". The story jumps all over the place, I mean how many books can you stretch out of the wolfman??? And what happened to the strong forensic pathologist of Virginia because she isnt in these books. If you are new to Cornwells work then start at the beginning and stop before this one. Having read the first 3 pages of Trace too I'm not that convinced so far, I honestly think if its as jumpy and illogical as this one I'll be going back to Reichs in fustration. Very, very dissapointed. Very.
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on 20 March 2016
As an avid Patricia Cornwell fan, but having lived abroad for some years, I recently bought several of the Kay Scarpetta books to catch up on the series. I wish I had not bothered. Blow Fly was the first of the new batch and I was very disappointed. Writing style different and the ending was written as though she had got bored with writing and wanted to finish it as quick as possible with little description or culmination of plot. Not looking forward to reading the rest of my new acquisitions if this is an example of her recent offerings.
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on 12 July 2014
What has happened to Patricia Cornwell and the Scarpetta series? The first six were superb - beautifully written, and plot lines that made them real page turners. Since then, they have gone steadily downhill until I am really struggling to finish Blow Fly. The technique of running several themes at once only works if they are brought together comprehensibly , and Cornwell seems to have forgotten how to do this. I am still trying to work out why the awful Lucy finds it impossible to relate to her Aunt Kay, and does not speak to her for months on end. The dreadful Marino seems only to be persevered with to infuriate the reader.
Out of respect for Miss Cornwell's early work I do keep persevering with the series - hoping that we will return to the quality that we had come to expect. But I am fast losing hope.
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on 20 August 2006
Mindful of the negative reviews I still bought Trace, Blow Fly and Predator to take on holiday, as I'd loved all of the previous Scarpetta novels.

My reason for writing this review, is that I was extremely disappointed with the ending of Blow Fly. Without spoiling anything for other readers, I'm sure those people out there who have also finished this book will be dismayed with the way it ended and to me, how a huge confrontation at the end was only casually referred to. I couldn't believe it!

The other thing I was very disappointed with, was that the info on the back cover of Predator completely gives away the fact that a huge character returns in either Blow Fly or Trace. Surely this massive slip up should have been spotted before going to print as it spoilt this storyline completely for me when I eventually came to it.

Predator remains unread coincidentally, gathering dust on the shelf!
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on 22 January 2018
excellent, highly recommended
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on 10 January 2018
Cornwell at her best
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