New York Times Bestseller
In this relaunch of the electrifying, landmark #1 bestselling thriller series, chief medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta hunts those responsible for two wildly divergent and chilling murders.
Forensic pathologist Dr. Kay Scarpetta has come almost full circle, returning to Virginia, the state where she launched her storied career, as the chief medical examiner. Finding herself the new girl in town once again after being away for many years, she’s inherited both an overbearing secretary and a legacy of neglect and potential corruption.
She and her husband, Benton Wesley, now a forensic psychologist with the U.S. Secret Service, have relocated to Old Town Alexandria, where she’s headquartered five miles from the Pentagon in a post-pandemic world that’s been torn apart by civil and political unrest. After just weeks on the job, she’s called to a scene by railroad tracks—a woman’s body has been shockingly displayed, her throat cut down to the spine—and as Scarpetta begins to follow the trail, it leads unnervingly close to her own historic neighborhood.
At the same time, a catastrophe occurs in a top secret laboratory in outer space, endangering at least two scientists aboard. Appointed to the highly classified Doomsday Commission that specializes in sensitive national security cases, Scarpetta is summoned to the White House and tasked with finding out exactly what happened. But even as she remotely works the first potential crime scene in space, an apparent serial killer strikes again very close to home.
This latest novel in the groundbreaking Kay Scarpetta series captivates readers with the shocking twists, high-wire tension, and forensic detail that Patricia Cornwell is famous for, proving once again why she’s the world’s #1 bestselling crime writer.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
As this heart-pounding thriller reminds us, the most terrifying threats are often the ones that hit closest to home. Dr. Kay Scarpetta, the heroine of Patricia Cornwell’s long-running series, returns to Virginia to serve as the state’s chief medical examiner just as a serial killer begins to terrorize Richmond’s most quaint and unsuspecting neighborhoods. Soon, the talented and witty doctor is elbow-deep in one of the most complex, spine-chilling cases of her life. An expert in analyzing dead bodies, Kay’s never been quite as good dealing with the living—and her investigation gets her in trouble with her slimy boss and the top brass at the Pentagon. This installment is an intense read that can be enjoyed by seasoned Scarpetta fans and newcomers. Autopsy is a chilling thriller full of deadly and unexpected twists.
Bestseller Cornwell's slow-moving 25th Kay Scarpetta novel (after 2016's Chaos) finds the forensic pathologist, recently appointed the chief medical examiner of Virginia, at her headquarters in Alexandria. She's preparing for the next meeting of the National Emergency Contingency Coalition (aka the Doomsday Commission), but her mind is on a woman whose body she examined over the weekend, a murder victim with severed hands dumped by railroad tracks on an island in the Potomac. Since the office has a history of corruption, and many employees remain loyal to Scarpetta's predecessor, she hires longtime confidant and former Richmond police officer Pete Marino to help identify the victim. They soon focus on a missing 33-year-old biotechnical engineer. Meanwhile, as a member of the Doomsday Commission, Scarpetta remotely investigates her first crime scene in space a top secret laboratory where two scientists have died. Then a serial killer the media has dubbed the Railway Slayer strikes again. Though the complex plot touches on fascinating topics including industrial espionage and biomedical engineering, it builds to a simple and somewhat disappointing conclusion. Hopefully, Cornwell will return to form next time. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM Partners.
I enjoyed this book and it’s story. I found that some of the characters Were similar to the characters of the in-depth series books by Nora Roberts. Susan Erickson is an excellent narrator. Susan manages to create a different voice for the characters. eventually as you listen to the story that goes away and you see the difference in the characters. i’m looking forward to the next book that I choose. HBC
Do Better Ms. Cornwell
I grew up on the Scarpetta series, and this book was an absolute waste of time. We get it, all the characters are rich and famous and have fancy titles... This book was so busy talking about how important everyone is that they forgot about the plot. Absolutely terrible. And she wrapped the entire book up in the last 5 terrible pages where she just pulled random people out of a hat and made them guilty. Seriously disappointed. Don’t read.
Please tell this is not the last I’ll hear of Kay Scarpetta! I’ve them all and Autopsy was my favorite! Thank you, Ms Cornwell!