When Dr. Kay Scarpetta, freelancing from South Florida, returns to Richmond, Virginia, at the request of the recently appointed Chief Medical Examiner, who claims that he needs her help to solve a crime, she finds that nothing is as she left it: Her former lab is being demolished; the chief isn't really the one who requested her; her former assistant chief has personal problems that he refuses to reveal; and a glamorous FBI agent meddles with the case. Without the assistance of her colleagues Benton and Lucy, who are busy in what first appears to be an unrelated attempted rape by a stalker, Scarpetta must solve the death of a 14-year-old girl. All she has to go by are the smallest pieces of evidence and twisting leads and details that will reveal the sad truth that might be more that she can bear.
Patricia Cornwell is a Miami born, contemporary crime novelist. Her books usually feature the heroine Dr. Kay Scarpetta, who is a medical examiner. After a way sad childhood, Cornwall graduated from Davidson College with a degree in English. She wrote a biography of a family friend entitled, “A Time for Remembering”, then renamed “Ruth, A Portrait: The Story of Ruth Bell Graham” in 1983. After working in a Virginia medical examiners for six years, she wrote the first installment of her “Scarpetta” series entitled “Postmortem”. Her six year job was valuable in including a lot of forensic science details in her “Scarpetta” series. Her novels are considered to have influenced the creation of the TV series on forensics such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Cold Case. In the same vein Cornwell made a brief appearance on the Criminal Minds episode “True Genius”, as herself.
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