Autopsy

Patricia Cornwell. Morrow, $28.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-06-311219-3
Bestseller Cornwell’s slow-moving 25th Kay Scarpetta novel (after 2016’s Chaos) finds the forensic pathologist, recently appointed the chief medical examiner of Virginia, at her headquarters in Alexandria. She’s preparing for the next meeting of the National Emergency Contingency Coalition (aka the Doomsday Commission), but her mind is on a woman whose body she examined over the weekend, a murder victim with severed hands dumped by railroad tracks on an island in the Potomac. Since the office has a history of corruption, and many employees remain loyal to Scarpetta’s predecessor, she hires longtime confidant and former Richmond police officer Pete Marino to help identify the victim. They soon focus on a missing 33-year-old biotechnical engineer. Meanwhile, as a member of the Doomsday Commission, Scarpetta remotely investigates her first crime scene in space—a top secret laboratory where two scientists have died. Then a serial killer the media has dubbed the Railway Slayer strikes again. Though the complex plot touches on fascinating topics including industrial espionage and biomedical engineering, it builds to a simple and somewhat disappointing conclusion. Hopefully, Cornwell will return to form next time. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM Partners. (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 09/09/2021
Release date: 11/30/2021
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Paperback - 512 pages - 978-0-06-311224-7
Ebook - 400 pages - 978-0-06-311222-3
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