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Black Notice: Scarpetta (Book 10) (The Scarpetta Series) [Kindle Edition]

Patricia Cornwell
2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (606 customer reviews)

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Sold by: Penguin Group USA
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Product Description

From Amazon

The postmortem is in--Black Notice, the 10th in Patricia Cornwell's Scarpetta series, is a gore-splattered, intensely exciting read. As winter grips Richmond, Virginia, an air of somberness pervades chief medical examiner Kay Scarpetta's world. Her beloved niece Lucy is involved in a dangerous undercover police operation in Miami, and auntie fears for her life. A tyrannical new deputy chief, Diane Bray, wants to get Kay's department under her jurisdiction. Meanwhile, back at the office, someone has tinkered with the e-mail system, stealing Kay's identity, and sending off slanderous and hurtful messages. Emotionally battered, Scarpetta fears she is going insane. Or, could it be that someone is deliberately sowing this harvest of sorrow?

Despite her personal problems, Scarpetta is still the reigning diva at the department of death. She is sent to investigate the putrefied remains of a man found inside a container ship, "eyes bulged froglike, and the scalp and beard were sloughing off with the outer layer of darkening skin." Kay finds strange, animal-like hairs on the man's clothing--the same hairs that she discovers on a murdered store clerk a few days later. In actuality, the bizarre killings extend well beyond Virginia; whoever killed the Richmond victims also butchered people in France. Kay and police captain Pete Marino are whisked off to Paris where they must collect top-secret information from a Paris morgue, and avoid becoming victims themselves.

This macabre tome is the stuff that classic Scarpetta tales are made of: creepy but compulsive autopsy scenes, plentiful plot twists, and the compelling, if slightly more vulnerable chief medical examiner herself. --Naomi Gesinger

From Publishers Weekly

It's like a splash of cold water on a hot day to be plunged, after the irritating third-person satire of Cornwell's last novel, Southern Cross (1998), back into the bracing narration of medical examiner Kay Scarpetta. As in the nine Scarpettas past (Point of Origin, etc.), here it's not the novel's events, startling as they are, that propel the story so much as the deep-hearted responses of Kay, as real a hero as any in thriller fiction, to the "evil"Aher wordAthat threatens. Evil wears several faces here, from petty to monstrous. Most insidious is the office sabotageAinsubordination, thefts, fraudulent e-mailsAthat's making the grieving Kay look as if she's lost her grip since her lover's murder in Point of Origin. More destructive are the overt attempts by calculating Richmond, Va., deputy police chief Diane Bray to ruin Kay's career as well as that of Kay's old friend, Capt. Pete Marino. Then there's the wild rage at life that's consuming Kay's niece, a DEA agent. FinallyAthe plot wire that binds the sometimes scattered plotAthere are the mutilation killings by the French serial killer self-styled "Loup-Garou"Awerewolf. The forensic sequences boom with authority; the brief action sequences explode on the pageAin the finale, overbearingly so; the interplay between Kay and Marino is boisterous as always, and there's an atmospheric sidetrip to Paris and an affecting romantic misadventure for lonely Kay. A thunderhead of disquietude hangs over this compulsively readable novel, sometimes loosing storms of suspense; but to Cornwell's considerable credit, the unease arises ultimately not from the steady potential for violence, but from a more profound horror: the vulnerability of a good woman like Kay to a world beset by the corrupt, the cruel, the demonic. One million first printing; $750,000 ad/promo; Literary Guild, Doubleday Book Club and Mystery Guild main selections; unabridged and abridged audio versions; foreign rights sold in eight countries.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1116 KB
  • Print Length: 468 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reprint edition (Aug. 1 2000)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group USA
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (606 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #42,693 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Good Book July 6 2004
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book was an overall good book. There were a few "harsh" moments. I don't think this outweighed the good of the book. The investigation of the murder was exciting and suspenseful. I do think that reading these books in order will better help with understanding the characters and their actions. I would definitely recommend reading the series of books, Point of Origin being the one written before this.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cussing ruined a good story April 28 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
It's easy to see why Patricia Cornwell is such a popular author. She's a master of characterization and detail and suspense. I
really enjoy her work--and the characters of Scarpetta and Marino. They seem like real people with real feelings and flaws. But what's with all the cussing in this book? A few well-placed words are enough to get across dialogue and personality. The cussing progressed as the book did; her two previous books weren't like this. It detracted from a good story, and took away my interest in reading any more of her books.
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Format:Mass Market Paperback
There are a number of very glaring coincidences in this book and I think that this is the biggest problem with the book. For example, how could a case that Kay's Lucy is working for AFTA in Miami have anything to do with a homicidal maniac in Kay's town of Richmond? But in spite of this glaring inconsistency, I still enjoyed the book. We see Kay at her most vulnerable here and to those of us who have followed her story from the beginning, it is understandable. This book takes place a year after Kay's lover, Benton was killed in the line of duty, and in typical Kay fashion, she has really not dealt with her feelings about that. She has been burying herself in her work as usual. The killer that is stalking Kay's city forces her to deal with some "unlaid-to-rest" issues surrounding Benton's death. This is quite a dark book, but an edge-of-your-seat thriller that keeps the reader guessing until the end. We also see some real character development in some of the main characters; particularly Marino and Kay herself. It is so important that this series be read in order, and unless it is I don't think readers get the true scope of the series, and they certainly can't see the character development that occurs in each subsequent book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars It's Never Over in Black Notice April 7 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Patricia Cornwell's novel, Black Notice, is a very intriguing read. Kay Scarpetta, Virginia's Chief Medical Examiner, is given the autopsy of a man found in a freight container on a cargo ship from Europe. This "cargo man" was found with unexplainable animal-like hair all over his body. Kay's next autopsy is a sales clerk who was mutilated by her murderer, and coincidently contained the same strange hair on her body. Through INTERPOL (international police) Kay learns that the murders are linked to similar ones in Italy. Kay has to put her job on the line so she can find out confidential information that is only known to one other. To make matters worse someone in Kay's office is trying to sabotage her identity and ruin her career. It doesn't stop there. The new deputy chief, Diane Bray, is trying to take over the Homicide department and has demoted Kay's best friend, Pete Marino. Not to mention Kay's niece, Lucy, is involved in a undercover drug shooting. Cornwells explicit imagery and thorough explanations help to set a vivid scene throughout the entire novel, "Every inch of skin was dried wipes and smears and swirls reminding me of finger-painting again, her face a mush of splintered bone and battered tissue." Cornwell succeeds in keeping the readers attention throughout the novel, once you think no more problems can arise, something new happens. The ending of Black Notice was very dramatic and unexpected although Cornwell could have tied up a few more loose ends, but I believe that will be explained in her next novel. Overall Black Notice is an interesting, descriptive and suspenseful novel.
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4.0 out of 5 stars NOT JUST ANOTHER WEREWOLF STORY... Oct. 1 2002
By lawyeraau TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is an intriguing and well crafted Kay Scarpetta mystery, which begins promisingly enough with the discovery of an overly ripe, dead body. Found stashed in a locked and sealed freight container aboard a cargo ship from Belgium that has landed in Dr. Kay Scarpetta's jurisdiction of Richmond, Virginia, the male, mystery corpse is covered with loose hairs. This intriguing beginning sends Dr. Kay Scarpetta, Richmond, Virginia's Chief Medical Examiner, on a hunt for information that turns international in scope. She discovers that this is just one of a number of murders to contain those tell tale hairs.
The murders, themselves, are graphic and the forensic details, as always, are fascinating, and Dr. Scarpetta's critical analysis of the pathology issues are well thought out and highly informative, as she sifts through the forensic evidence in order to profile the killer. Her assessment of the peculiar affliction of this serial killer is intriguing, providing scientific insight into creatures who were called werewolves, but who may have only been persons with a rare and unusual genetic condition, causing them to be especially hirsute, among other anomalies.
Moreover, there are a number of subplots afoot. Dr. Scarpetta, who is recovering from the death of her lover, Wesley Benton, faces a number of problems closer to home. It seems that she has been the victim of identity theft, with her internet screen name being used to set up a phony chat room, and personally destructive emails being sent falsely under her screen name.
To add fuel to the fire, a new Deputy Chief in the Richmond police Department, Diane Bray, and has managed to demote Dr. Scarpetta's long time friend, Homicide Detective Pete Marino. Having her own secret agenda, Bray has turned her sights onto Dr.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars It's Not a stand alone book.
You have to read, "Point of Origin" in order to enjoy this book. The events of Point of the story line, especially the first half of the book. Read more
Published on May 9 2004
3.0 out of 5 stars My least favorite Scarpetta
Of all the books in this series, this is my least favorite. The story was a bit too unbelievable, but it is more Kay Scarpetta for lovers of this series. Read more
Published on March 29 2004 by Patty Philbrook
5.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling!
In BLACK NOTICE by Patricia Cornwell, Kay Scarpetta tries to outwit a serial killer unlike any other! Read more
Published on Feb. 3 2004 by Victoria Taylor Murray
5.0 out of 5 stars My First Patricia Cornwell Read and I am HOOKED!!!
I am currently in Pre-Med and I am hoping to go into forensic pathology. A classmate of mine told me I must read some of Ms. Cornwell's books. Read more
Published on Oct. 19 2003
2.0 out of 5 stars Unless you're into frustration, don't waste your time
You never realize how truly disappointing a book can be until you realize that there are approximatley fifty pages left and countless plot lines flapping in the breeze. Read more
Published on Oct. 12 2003 by ohatty1213
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor effort
This is a really poor effort by Patricial Cornwell. If this had been the first book of Cornwell's that I had read, I would have been likely to not read any more books of hers. Read more
Published on Sept. 23 2003 by
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Cornwell's best effort
I am a huge Kay Scarpetta fan, but this book was in desperate need of an editor. There were several places where I had to flip back and reread, only to find that I was right the... Read more
Published on Aug. 5 2003 by antiomi
2.0 out of 5 stars Excruciating Amount of Detail
I am normally a fan of Cornwell but this one is over the top. There is a LARGE amount of unnecessary detail in this book that makes you want to scream or at least keep turning the... Read more
Published on June 26 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre
It was readable and interesting, but ultimately unsatisfying: a pat ending that tried to tie together too many loose ends, somewhat cliched characters, and Kay Sparpetta I found to... Read more
Published on Feb. 2 2003 by Becca
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