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It's not often a crime novel offers such a smorgasbord of oddball elements, including autopsy advice, methods of combating tree blight, the use of spiders in sadomasochist torture and couples covering the sexual and psychological waterfronts. There's even a little nasty fun at the expense of television psychoanalysts. With geographic locations switching slightly faster than the speed of sound, it's to Reading's credit that she smoothes out the ultra rumpled excesses of Cornwell's mind-boggling plot and takes full advantage of the yarn's narrator-friendly present tense. Having given voice to several earlier books in the series, she's got the main characters down cold. Her Dr. Kay Scarpetta is all snarky professional reserve and personal insecurity. Self-loathing lesbian niece Lucy, sounds properly troublesome and troubled, with an added catch in the throat due to a secret she's keeping. Pete Marino, the bullet-headed, gym rat security chief of the Lucy-originated National Forensic Academy, sounds so gruff and aggressive, he should be kept on a chain leash. And Scarpetta's inamorato, Benton Wesley, whose study of mass murderers' brain patterns gives the novel its title, is, as his name suggests, the very model of a dry, annoyingly passive-aggressive personality. The joke here-intended or not-is that the novel's protagonists are almost as mentally or emotionally disturbed as its homicidal villains. Cornwell seems to have grown weary of the lot of them. But there's still a flicker of life left and Reading has the skill to make the most of it.
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'Cornwell still does it better than anyone else' Daily Mail 'Cornwell's books run on high octane fuel, a cocktail of adrenalin and fear. Black Notice is no exception' The Times --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.See all Product Description
Loved the early Cornwell books but it may be time to stop reading her works for a few years (decades).Published 23 months ago by Geordie A.
Horrible, what a disappointment! Seems like there were more than one author's hand in this book. Bad, Bad, Bad. Read morePublished on July 23 2007 by K. Crowe
I found this novel hard to follow, something was definitely missing. The plot, people and motives are confusing and I find they did not connect; you are left hanging at times. Read morePublished on July 5 2007 by Toni Osborne
I can say this is the first book by Patricia Cornwell that I didn't want to finish. It jumped around too much, and the reader really didn't learn much about anyone, and... Read morePublished on Jan. 17 2006