‘Body of Evidence’ is the 2nd instalment in Patricia Cornwell’s Scarpetta series featuring the tough female Chief Medical Examiner Kay Scarpetta.
Beryl Madison was a reclusive author of historical romance novels. But her current work is an autobiography which promises to reveal details about her even more reclusive mentor, the Pulitzer prize winning author Cary Harper.
Beryl has been receiving threatening phone calls for months before finally fleeing to Key West to complete her book. Finally returning to Richmond, she is brutally murdered in her home on the day of her return and there is no sign of her controversial manuscript.
Kay Scarpetta along with rough around the edges cop Pete Marino start to investigate Beryl’s death and soon run into problems with Beryl’s lawyer Sparacino. Also involved (but it takes a while to work out exactly how) is an old flame of Kay’s, lawyer Mark James.
FBI profiler Benton Wesley is having trouble putting together a profile for the killer. And now Kay has also started receiving threatening phone calls. More deaths occur but Kay and Marino are pretty sure they know who the murderer is. Eventually Kay finds no alternative but to follow in Beryl’s footsteps and flee to Key West.
As soon as Mark re-entered Kay’s life, she immediately fell in love with him again. But it seems that he has crossed over to a life of crime and she can no longer trust him or his motives.
Eventually Kay returns home to a final showdown.
I enjoyed the mystery and its resolution in this novel, but even more than that I enjoyed finding out more about Kay Scarpetta and Peter Marino and the things that have contributed to making them the people they are. I’m looking forward to getting behind the icy façade of Benton Wesley in future novels and also seeing more of Lucy who was sadly absent from this book.
The next in the series is ‘All That Remains’.
Book Published 1991