Patricia Cornwell

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Port Mortuary

book
Fiction
US Putnam
UK Little, Brown & Company
2010

Port Mortuary, Patricia Cornwell's 18th Kay Scarpetta novel hit the New York Times bestseller list at number one on publication.

In this fast-paced story, a treacherous path from Scarpetta's past merges with the high tech highway she now finds herself on. We travel back to the beginning of her professional career, when she enlisted in the Air Force to pay off her medical school debt and found herself ensnared in a gruesome case of what seemed to be vicious, racially motivated hate crimes against two Americans in South Africa. Now, more than twenty years and many career successes later, her secret military ties have drawn her to Dover Air Force Base, where she has been immersed in a training fellowship to master the art of CT-assisted virtual autopsy - a procedure the White House has mandated that she introduce in the private sector.

As the chief of the new Cambridge Forensic Center in Massachusetts, a joint venture of the state and federal governments and MIT, Scarpetta is confronted with a case that could shut down her new facility and ruin her personally and professionally. A young man drops dead, apparently from a cardiac arrhythmia, eerily close to Scarpetta's new Cambridge home. But when his body is examined the next morning, there are stunning indications that he may have been alive when he was zipped inside a pouch and locked insider the Center's cooler. Various 3-D radiology scans reveal more shocking details about internal injuries unlike any Scarpetta has ever seen. These suggest the possibility of a conspiracy to cause mass casualties. She realizes that she is fighting a cunning and cruel enemy that is invisible as she races against time to discover who and why before more people die.

In Port Mortuary, Patricia Cornwell brings Scarpetta together with Marino, Benton, and Lucy in an intimate way that is reminiscent of the early novels, and we welcome a voice we haven't heard in years. The point of view is Scarpetta's, and this is her story.
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The audio rights are handled by Alice Lutyens.

Betsy Robbins manages the translation rights for Port Mortuary

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Port Mortuary
Port Mortuary
Reviews


The reason we read novels about the forensic investigation of crime is not artistic decorum but a fascination with how things work. This is what Cornwell has always provided, and it is an area in which she does not disappoint.
Times Literary Supplement

 
Patricia Cornwell is America's most stimulating and chilling writer of crime fiction.
The Times
Full Review

 
When in comes to the forensic sciences, nobody can touch Cornwell.
New York Times
Full Review

Crime fiction's forensic pioneer
Cornwell takes her seasoned chief medical examiner out of her comfort zone in a plot that could be torn from tomorrow’s headlines.
Book Page
Full Review


As Scarpetta's military past rears its head, the emotional damage the investigation of the cases is bound to wreak on Cornwell's steadfast heroine will leave readers eager for the next installment.
Publishers Weekly
Full Review


Twenty years on, the secrets of Cornwell's aloof pathologist heroine are laid bare in this worthy addition to the Scarpetta canon.
The Observer
Full Review