Thursday, November 30, 2023

Unnatural Death - Patricia Cornwell

Patricia Cornwell's last few books have been excellent. Her newest book, Unnatural Death, is no exception. This is the 27th entry in the long running Scarpetta series. While the book picks up from the last entry, this book can certainly be read as a stand alone.

Kay Scarpetta is the Chief Medical Examiner for Virginia. This time around, Kay is sent to the woods and to a deserted mine in North Virginia. Two bodies have been found, as well as something very curious in a mine shaft. Kay is not sure why the Feds have taken over the case and the autopsy, but she has no choice but to follow orders.

The recurring characters all return in Unnatural Death. Sidekick Pete Marino is always by Kay's side. He hasn't changed much over the years and is one of my favorites. Niece Lucy grows more and more enigmatic with every new book. Kay's husband Benson has his own secrets. Lesser characters are just as well drawn - and are very easy to be separated into 'good and bad'. I applaud Kay's ability to hold her tongue - but her inner dialogue lets it all out.

I was truly blown away by some of the technology being used by the Secret Service and other agencies.  Kay's methods and tools in the autopsy suite are just as technologic. In the 'about the author' notes, Cornwell mentions that her interests include space-age technologies, threats to contemporary life, artificial intelligence and more. Those interests are woven into the plot of Unnatural Death. 

There's no way to predict where the plot is going to go. There's lots of action, suspense and unexpected turns. Cornwell held my attention right down the last pages. 

A great entry that I quite enjoyed. See for yourself - read an excerpt of Unnatural Death.

 I received a free copy of a book from the publisher. This in no way affects my opinion of the book. 


Mystica said...

Not knowing where the plot is going is a hallmark of this author.

Luanne said...

It is indeed Mystica!

Ethan said...

I've really enjoyed the way she soft-rebooted the series too. It seems to have taken things back to the basic elements that made the earliest books so great, and it is really working here!

Luanne said...

I agree Ethan - I had taken a break, but the last few have really caught me.