"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

22 September 2015

2015 Book Review #34: Flesh and Blood

I have been reading the Dr Kay Scarpetta series of mysteries since they first came out way back in 1990.  I was hooked.  The author also wrote an autobiography about Ruth Bell Graham which I own and loved reading!  It was excellent...all about how Ruth met Billy Graham and their life together.

The  fictional series of Scarpetta is more psychological thriller and mystery.  Yet the reader ends up thinking Kay is a real person.  In my opinion, that is a one sign of an excellent author.

This latest novel, though, wasn't one of my faves.  But the ending was a total shock and I'm already looking forward to the next one.


The story opens in Cambridge, MA where Kay and Wesley Benton (her FBI husband) are about to leave for a birthday vacation in Florida at a condo Benton bought.  Kay is the Chief Medical Examiner for Boston and has also worked for the FBI.  Her husband is the world-renowned FBI profiler.  Both of them have worked on some difficult cases in the last 20 years or more.

It's a sunny, hot day in June and they have been informed that Obama is in town so traffic is going to be a nightmare what with all the extra security.  While they are about to have brunch outside, she notices 7 pennies on a wall behind their house.  Why are they all dated 1981 and are shiny like brand-new??  While she is thinking about this, Pete Marino calls her (he is a detective) and tells her that there's been a homicide....a music teacher who was shot while unloading his groceries....about 5 minutes away from her house.  No one saw or heard a thing.

For obvious reasons, the Florida vacation must take a backseat and she and Benton become ensnared at solving this homicide.  The only incriminating evidence they can find are fragments of copper.  Is this homicide linked to the mysterious pennies found on their wall??

Other recent deaths in MA and NJ begin to point towards a serial killer.  But none of the victims have anything in common and there isn't a pattern to determine where and when the killer will strike next.

Scarpetta and Benton end up off the coast in Florida where they discover yet more clues while diving ...and comes face to face with the shocking news that could implicate her genius niece Lucy....her very own flesh and blood.


I was totally driven in the beginning of the story to read this latest Scarpetta novel.  Yet by the middle of the book, I started to get bored.  It was a bit too technical (talking about rifles, technology of the latest bullets, etc.) and seemed to get bogged down.

BUT...in the true fashion of this particular author, she had me, the reader, on the edge of my seat by the beginning of the ending.  She revealed who the killer was and it was truly shocking!  It is a character from 13 years ago whom we all know was dead!! (and it's all I will say so I don't spoil it for you).

From the beginning, I was drawn in to those pennies......and yet, those didn't really come up again in the story and I was disappointed that they didn't end up playing a bigger role.

I loved that, as usual, all the characters appear real and like always, a new reader of Scarpetta books, would get a bit of "back story" linking them all together in that way that the author is so creative with doing.

I loved the fast-pace at the end but overall this wasn't one of my fave books from the series.  The ending is brilliant and will lead me to look for her next book to find out what happens.

In my opinion, this book is appropriate for ages 17 and older.

On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest, I rate this an 8.


Deb said...

Thanks for the review. I think I would have been disappointed in the ending too - I recently read another book that had a totally shocking "huh?" kind of ending and I didn't much like it. Have a great week.

Susanne said...

Another mystery author I have never read. So many books so little time. I want to read them all! LOL. Thanks for the review. I may get to one of hers one of these days.