Anyone that hadn't read the last novel - The Book of the Dead - would be lost starting to read this novel. It pretty much picks up where that one left off. There are numerous allusions but no real recap for new readers.
Scarpetta had given up the South and moved to New York City to work as a consultant for the NYPD. She is asked to examine a patient at Bellevue who will only see Scarpetta. The police suspect him of murdering his lover, but he denies it. He claims there is someone electronically tracking him. Another storyline is abruptly inserted - a web administrator of an online gossip page that seems to be out 'to get' Kay Scarpetta.
I found the first half of the book to be disjointed and awkward. As much as I love forensic novels, I think Cornwell just tries too hard too blend personal stories of the characters with sensational crimes. It never seems to find balance and neither is overly well done.
I did finish it, but was disappointed with the ending and loose ends not really incorporated or dealt with.