All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell

‘All That Remains’ is the 3rd Scarpetta novel by Patricia Cornwell. Once again it contains an excellent mystery as well as the ongoing development of the regular characters.

Young Couples have been going missing from their cars with the semi-skeletonised bodies found in bushland months later. Chief Medical Examiner Kay Scarpetta has not been able to determine a cause of death and the police have no leads. The couples have gone missing from multiple jurisdictions, so the FBI are now involved.

Then Deborah Harvey and Fred Cheney go missing. Deborah’s mother Pat is a political superstar and the president’s drug Czar. Is this another missing couple or is Deborah’s disappearance political?

Deborah’s mother is desperate for information and her desperation starts to affect all areas of her life. The FBI starts to manipulate Pat Harvey as well as the flow of information. Scarpetta and local cop Pete Marino start to feel isolated from their FBI colleague Benton Wesley.

Eventually through following some very remote leads, Scarpetta and Marino think they have identified the murderer. But the story takes yet another twist.


Apart from the mystery, I really enjoyed the continued development of Kay Scarpetta’s character in this novel as well as the cooling of hostility between Scarpetta and Marino as they gradually get to know each other.

The FBI guys weren’t much fun in this novel. Kay’s love interest – Mark was mostly absent and a bit hard to believe when he was there. Benton Wesley seemed totally distracted throughout the story.

Reporter Abby Turnbull is right in the middle of the investigation as she is writing a book about the couples. But, much of her behaviour is unfathomable (more so than usual).

I’m looking forward to reading the next novel in the series – ‘Cruel and Unusual’ and seeing the ongoing development of the characters, and hopefully the return of Kay’s niece Lucy.


Book Published 1992


See a full list of books by Patricia Cornwell


Filed under Book Reviews, Cornwell, Patricia, Crime, Detective, Forensic, Series Fiction, Thriller

2 Responses to All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell

  1. Pingback: Body of Evidence by Patricia Cornwell | Written Gems

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