REVIEW: Cruel and Unusual by Patricia Cornwell

Cruel and Unusual
by Patricia Cornwell

Copyright: 1993
Pages: 409
Rating: 4/5
Read: Mar. 15-17, 2010
Challenge: 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; RYOB 2010
Yearly Count: 11

First Line: The Monday I carried Ronnie Joe Waddell’s meditation in my pocketbook, I never saw the sun.

“Killing me won’t kill the beast” were some of the last words that rapist-murderer Ronnie Joe Waddell wrote before his execution. The words didn’t mean much until Dr. Kay Scarpetta found Waddell’s fingerprint at a crime scene after his execution. Something strange is going on and it’s going to be up to Kay to figure out what is going on before her career and life as she knows it is completely wrecked.

This is the fourth of the Kay Scarpetta series. It was another great book. But I did have some reservations about it. The main thing that I have noticed (and this applies to the 2nd and 3rd books as well) is that when the next book in the series begins it seems as if the reader has missed something. Not to give anything big away but when this book started there was a pretty big revelation that came pretty much out of nowhere. I was confused and it took a while before the whole thing came together. Something similar to this happened in the beginning of the third book as well. I guess I expect the books to pick up where they left off a little bit more than these have seemed to do. Another gripe that I have (which again applies to the 3rd book as well) is that the lead-up to the overall climax is really wonderful and then the killer is revealed and the end result kind of falls flat. Maybe I expect too much, I don’t know. But overall I really enjoyed this book and am definitely looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

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