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Summary

Number one New York Times best-selling author Patricia Cornwell delivers the 24th engrossing thriller in her high-stakes series starring medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta.

©2016 Cornwell Entertainment, Inc. (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic reviews

Praise for Patricia Cornwell and the Kay Scarpetta novels:
"Cutting-edge." ( Sun)
"A pioneer of the genre of forensic psychological thriller." (BBC)
"America's most stimulating and chilling writer of crime fiction." ( The Times)
"Devilishly clever." ( Sunday Times)
"She is a brilliant writer and I was absolutely gripped." ( Mail on Sunday)
"The top gun in this field." ( Daily Telegraph)
"Forget the pretenders. Cornwell reigns" ( Mirror)
"The Agatha Christie of the DNA age." ( Express)
"One of the best crime writers writing today." ( Guardian)
"Few writers match Patricia Cornwell when it comes to writing crime and her latest Scarpetta novel is one of her best." ( Daily Express)
"When it comes to the forensic sciences, nobody can touch Cornwell." ( New York Times)
"Dazzling.... After reading Cornwell's thriller, most others will pale in comparison." ( Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
"Magnificent plotting, masterful writing, and marvelous suspense." ( Booklist)
"Cornwell's instincts are dead-on." ( Chicago Sun-Times)
"Cornwell remains a master of the genre, instilling in readers an appetite that only she can satisfy." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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Story

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

This should be listed under fantasy.


When a character becomes a superhero it no longer deserves to be reviewed as crime literature or anything of the kind, even the villains are supervillains all that is left is a lifestyle reference for shoppers and she is not modest piling it on. It is all about the fabulous life without any fable just a vehicle to sell more of the same.

When Scarpetta first came out it was gritty and intelligent but little by little it degenerated into this incredible Bond type of fantasy, Lucy her super intelligent all-around superwoman was the first clue where all would end and now it is all lost to fatuous lifestyles of the reach and famous while working on cadavers, and fighting supervillains.

Last try of a series that is in a downward spiral

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointed Chaos

Have always been a Cornwell fan but found myself bored by this recent story. Thoroughly enjoyed her early books but feel there's less to the recent ones with a lot of time on incidental details.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Hard to listen to the uninspiring narrator

Average story, not sure I’ll bother with this author any more. Sad because I’ve always loved her books

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

That’s 13 hours of my life I’m not getting back

I have listened to many Kay Scarpetta books and really enjoyed them .. this is by far the worst book I’ve ever had the displeasure of listening to. Zero happened, I mean nothing ... I felt compelled to listen to the end to make sure I wasn’t missing some marvellously clever twist etc .. alas there was nothing. Patricia Cornwell you have written a complete turkey and you’ve taken my money and more importantly 13 hours of my life under false pretences .. I suspect this book will spell the end of Kay Scarpetta which is a pity .. I never write reviews of anything but feel so strongly this time that I felt obliged to warn others how completely rubbish this book is.. sit in a room and watch paint dry .. talk to your spouse .. count grains of sand .. all soooo much more fun than this ...

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Very disappointing – even for the most avid and tolerant Scarpetta fan

Whilst recent Scarpetta books have tested the bounds of reality, this one has finally fallen off a cliff edge in terms of credibility. She has finally morphed from a insightful and interesting forensic investigator into a smug, unlikable "know all".
In terms of story and narrative, this is as derivative a book as I have ever read simply rehashing old stories and old ideas in order to fill pages. I recently read a review where Patricia Cornwell said that she was even busier know that she has reached 60: I Soum the time has been spent reading her old books so that she can regurgitate the same characters and stories into this final "completion" narrative. Even more disappointing, given that I have been Reading the Scarpetta books from the very start, is the fact that the story and the forensics have more holes in them than a Swiss cheese.
The narration is painfully laboured and slow, to the point that I check that I wasn't listening to it at .7 5X! The voices of the characters were cliched and exaggerated. Very disappointing!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Hard to listen

I am an ardent fan of Patrica Cornwell but this book was nothing but unnecessary words and descriptions that made it hard to listen to would sooner of had shorter book

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book but a bit to descriptive n not enough action sometimes

Good book but a bit to descriptive n not enough action sometimes so can drag

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

First audiobook

This was my first audiobook. I listened to this book as I've read the rest of the series so far, though they're getting a bit farfetched! However, it's always good to be able to straight into a book with all the familiar characters. I didn't particularly like the reader but then I don't have any comparison yet. I was surprised that I found the book more amusing than I would have reading it myself.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Boring

I have read all her books but this one is soooo boring! There is no action and I am getting really bored with the same menace time after time. I am very disappointed. The narrator does not help with her harsh voice and nobody seems to be able to talk to each other in a normal manner. Far too many descriptions. The last book was also a bit like this and it will put me off reading any next one.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

I love Scarpetta but sorry this was awful

Would you try another book written by Patricia Cornwell or narrated by Susan Ericksen?

I have read all of Patricia Conrwells books and usually they are very high quality but this was really poor. Loved Susan Ericksen

What could Patricia Cornwell have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

There was way to much repetition and very little action. I usually love Scarpetta but was truly bored.

What aspect of Susan Ericksen’s performance might you have changed?

Very difficult to change a voice with so many characters, tough job done well

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Chaos?

I'm afraid I found this audio book very boring compared to the other Scarpetta books, but thats just my view.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Charmaine
  • 25-11-17

Similar

Not to be unkind to one of my favourite authors but for me this book lacked the usual nail biting sparkle of a Scarpetta novel. Susan Ericson's addition of a Y in front of a vowel, for instance instead of 'I am' you get 'I yam', and the bleed into each other of words and sentences made me want to shout. The timber of her voice is lovely as always but her pronunciation was never crisp it was just sloppy. It definitely distracted me. I finished the book but I'm not sure if I'll buy the next.