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The Body Farm (Kay Scarpetta, #5)
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The Body Farm

(Kay Scarpetta #5)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  57,484 Ratings  ·  1,116 Reviews
The Body Farm - a research institute that tests the decomposition of corpses. Black Mountain, North Carolina: a sleepy little town where the local police deal with one homicide a year, if they're unlucky, and where people are still getting used to the idea of locking their doors at night. But violent death is no respecter of venue, and the discovery of the corpse of the co ...more
Paperback, 351 pages
Published December 28th 2004 by Berkley (first published 1994)
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Popular Answered Questions
Pamela Yes but they made more sense to me when I read them in the order PC wrote them.
Ross Rawnsley As a general rule, I would probably attempt to keep my 13 y/o away from this series. It's far from the goriest or most descriptive series I have read,…moreAs a general rule, I would probably attempt to keep my 13 y/o away from this series. It's far from the goriest or most descriptive series I have read, but I think it may be a little over the top for someone of that age. (less)

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Jan 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Final Thoughts
4 of 5 stars to Patricia Cornwell's fifth book in the Kay Scarpetta series, The Body Farm, published in 1994. The title alone tells you what kind of book this will be, and it is full of thrills and suspense. Scarpetta has an opportunity to try to capture a serial killer she's dealt with sometime in the past. And with the history she needs to revisit in this one, you will learn a lot more about who she is and what's happened to bring her to today.

Another good part of this book i
Sep 09, 2011 rated it did not like it
Arrgh! From the misnomered title (A 'body farm' is only in a small portion of the book) to the implausible plot--how did this get past editors??? SPOILER!!! For starters...Only 3 people work at this TOP SECRET section of the FBI and 2 are dismissed because of malfeasance??? One has a dubious past and 'lied' on her application??? Come on!!! Our protagonist easily found that out, but NOBODY from the bureau vetted this crooked employee? Geez! Give me a break! I'm willing to suspend a bit of logic b ...more
Mar 12, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Body Farm” is Dr. Kay Scarpetta's fifth novel, published in 1994. Her dear niece's age has been hastily augmented to twenty-one. I was certain Lucy was under twelve in their 1990 introduction. I dislike violence, crime thrillers, forensics, even sad or tragic novels. I abhor reading about horror or grief. The personal perspective of Kay's teammates, family, friends, and my familiarity with them make all her series exceptions. When one wants content that is more serious than light mysteries, ...more
Aug 31, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: serial-thrillers
Number 5 in the Dr. Scarpetta series.

Kay Scarpetta is more of an investigator that a medical examiner in the story.

A young girl is murdered and the murder is attributed to a known serial killer. But the murder scene is not quite right for this particular killer. Whilst the FBI and the local police are searching for the serial killer Kay goes of in a different direction.
There is a lot going on here and I found the storyline a bit confusing at times
Kate’s normal sidekick Pete Merino seems to have
aPriL does feral sometimes
As other reviewers have noted, the title 'The Body Farm' is a bit misleading since it doesn't come into the plot until near the end, and then it is as a sidebar, but its graphic descriptive inclusion and the good Dr. Kay Scarpetta's enthusiastic promotion for donating bodies for science totally rocks if icky science rings your chimes.

I had to laugh - the author Patricia Cornwell gave readers a high-minded dutiful social message while at the same time satisfying us mystery readers in our queasy q
Jan 23, 2010 rated it it was ok
Do I like PC or do I not like PC? I'm tending toward the latter with this book. It's the 2nd PC book I've read. Kay is unappealing as a main character, and grows even moreso the more I read her. Is it believable that she has all of these incredible insights into fingerprints, car wrecks, etc. that ever other law enforcement agency & specialty misses? Please! Are we to be ambivilent and accepting of the fact that she is an active accomplice in marriage-wrecking? Above and beyond this, there's ...more
Mar 10, 2014 rated it did not like it
I am still not sure if I dislike the author's writing, or if the books are just so old that I dislike the books because they are just that dated.

The stupid Lucy storyline:
1)There has never been any indication prior to this book that there was any reason to even hint that Lucy had an addictive personality, and or had a problem with drinking. So, it's amazing how in only the course of one book, Lucy became this supposed alcoholic.
2)The lesbian storyline. I think Patricia was starting to question h
Chrissa Vasileiou
3,5/5 αστεράκια.

Επιτέλους, έγινε η πρώτη μου επαφή με την Κέυ Σκαρπέττα. Πολύ καιρό περίμενα γι' αυτό. Και μπορώ να πω πως ήταν...ομαλή. Ούτε τίποτα "ουάου", ούτε και αδιάφορη όμως.
Το βιβλίο καταπιάνεται με τη δολοφονία ενός εντεκάχρονου κοριτσιού. Όλη η ομάδα καλείται να αναλάβει δράση για να λύσει την υπόθεση, όμως είναι το κοφτερό μυαλό της Σκαρπέττα εκείνο που θα επικεντρωθεί στις μικρές λεπτομέρειες που θα οδηγήσουν τελικά στην εξιχνίασή της. Ταυτόχρονα, η γιατρός καλείται να λύσει και τα π
Aug 22, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
29/3 - I agree with the other reviewers who said that the title of this book is misleading, this book is more about the FBI than it is the body farm. It would have made more sense to name it Quantico or something else that refers to where a lot of the book is located, instead of a very interesting place that really only gets a mention near the beginning and a quick visit at the end. If a book is titled The Body Farm you would expect the body farm to make a big impact on the story, possibly for t ...more
Nov 01, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entretenido, aunque previsible.
Dec 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
In the fifth mystery/thriller, Cornwell has introduced so much about which praise is deserved. Picking up the threads left in the previous novel, Scarpetta has agreed to advise the FBI on some of its cases, to create a better mechanism by which to catch the seediest. Scarpetta's niece joins her at Quantico, on an internship and seeks to forge her own paths. With the murder of a young girl, all fingers point at the elusive serial killer who got away in 'Cruel and Unusual', leaving Scarpetta to de ...more
Chinablue_25 West Bostedor
Mar 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book was fast paced and complicated with a twist. I really liked it! Scarpetta's relationship with Wesley changes from professional/friendship to an affair. This upsets me because he is married and Scarpetta has met his wife on a few occasions and likes her very much. What bothers me most is Scarpetta feels no remorse whatsoever. Nor does Wesley. Because of the change that goes on with Wesley and Scarpetta's relationship it makes Morino very upset and you start to realize that he has feelin ...more
Jul 24, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ten pages to go but I gotta expurge some of the annoyed boredom now. The only reason I read two Cornwells in two days was that I was waiting for mail, but it enhances the flaws of her writing (or logic? I can't even say). Where no. 4 had been just boring and unpleasant and boringly unpleasant, in no. 5 now all the same people involved have completely forgotten that in the case they are actually following up here, fingerprints had already been unreliable. Yet now nobody even seems to doubt them. ...more
Danielle Beaulieu
Mar 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
I am new to reading Patricia Cornwell and I have so far read two of her books, which unfortunately I did out of order. Despite my little snafu though, I have found that I really enjoy her books and her writing style. This (like probably most of her books) was a thriller/suspense and it definitely kept my attention throughout the whole book, as I constantly read quickly to see what was going to happen next. Cornwell is really good about developing characters that you care about and despite their ...more
Lisa H.
May 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book was my introduction to Patricia Cornwell and her character, Kay Scarpetta; also my introduction to the concept of a "body farm", a forensic testing facility that puts cadavers in various environments over long periods to determine their effects on the corpse (the point being to be able to determine cause and time of death despite extensive decomposition.)

Let's just say I was sufficiently compelled by the writing and interested enough in the characters to go back and read the previous
Feb 01, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: may
kay shows some bad-ass moves as she performs (view spoiler)
Snjezana Scarpetta Isles
Dec 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller, crime
The book is fantastic !!! I enyoyed !!!:)
I hated this book! I liked the first four in the series and thought I'd enjoy this one too but alas I was so turned off I am seriously considering if I want to read anymore in this series or just give up here and now. There were just so many bad things about this book, it started from the title and shit went downhill from there. I may not have a medical, criminal/law enforcement, or lawyers degree but that doesn't mean I'm an idiot.

First the book is titled The Body Farm. This would imply that it
Two-haiku review:

Little girl murdered
Kay thinks serial killer
Then she's in danger

Interesting book
Main plot plus sub-plot with niece
All's not as it seems
Nov 02, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Scarpetta fans
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Baz M
Jun 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm usually a bit of a stinge when it comes to star ratings and very rarely give out 5s.
This is definitely worth a 5. I've never read this author before and very rarely read this genre. But the setting (Autumn in the US east coast mountains), the characters and the investigation absolutely spoke to me.
This was very easy to read, not so easy to put down and I would recommend to anybody, particularly those that don't usually read this genre.
Will be following this author going forward.
Linda Collings
Aug 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this. Didn't love it though. They only go to the body farm at the end think the title was misleading.
3.5 stars
Brent Soderstrum
Jul 26, 2017 rated it liked it
This is the 5th book from Cornwell's Kay Scarpetta series.

This is the worst of the series that I have read so far. Cornwell spends the first 100 pages covering medical technology at Quantico and she takes forever getting into the story. Once she does she proceeds to take all the characters in the series and make you dislike them. Kay and Wesley have an affair that goes on throughout the book-whenever they can get it on they do despite Wesley being married. Marino is a needy slug who is upset abo
Nov 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Patricia Cornwell has this way of writing that I just start reading and before I know it, I've read half of the book. Her books just suck you in and don't let you leave until you've finished the book. This book had so many twists and turns and so many sub-plots that I didn't know what interested me most. I really enjoyed this book and it was another great addition to the Kay Scarpetta series.
Mark Harrison
Oct 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Excelleny Scarpetta addition. Now a consultant for the FBI Kay works to track diwn a serial killer slaying children. Her niece is an intern at the Bureau which a number of other challenges and the web spun by the killer slowly envelopes her friends and loved ones. Great stuff.
Jul 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved it. I love how the progress of these books are going.
Jun 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When all the books you have in the series are #1 and #5, you just read what you can lol. I need the full series asap.
4 solid stars.
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
The Body Farm 5 62 Jun 01, 2018 05:20AM  
Kay Scarpetta does it again 4 52 Mar 02, 2014 05:44PM  
New to crime 8 32 Feb 22, 2014 06:38PM  
The Women's Myste...: #5 The Body Farm 1 7 Aug 09, 2013 10:33PM  
The Body Farm 2 30 Jun 08, 2012 06:35PM  
  • Monday Mourning (Temperance Brennan, #7)
  • I is for Innocent (Kinsey Millhone, #9)
  • Private Eyes (Alex Delaware, #6)
  • Silent Prey (Lucas Davenport, #4)
  • Bones of Betrayal (Body Farm #4)
  • The Keepsake (Rizzoli & Isles, #7)
Patricia Cornwell sold her first novel, Postmortem, in 1990 while working as a computer analyst at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Richmond, Virginia. Postmortem, was the first bona fide forensic thriller. It paved the way for an explosion of entertainment featuring in all things forensic across film, television and literature.

Postmortem would go on to win the Edgar, Creasey, Anthony,

Other books in the series

Kay Scarpetta (1 - 10 of 25 books)
  • Postmortem (Kay Scarpetta, #1)
  • Body of Evidence (Kay Scarpetta, #2)
  • All That Remains (Kay Scarpetta, #3)
  • Cruel & Unusual (Kay Scarpetta, #4)
  • From Potter's Field (Kay Scarpetta, #6)
  • Cause of Death (Kay Scarpetta, #7)
  • Unnatural Exposure (Kay Scarpetta, #8)
  • Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta, #9)
  • Black Notice (Kay Scarpetta, #10)
  • The Last Precinct (Kay Scarpetta, #11)
“I wouldn't want to assume that all men are like you. If I did, I know I would give them up entirely” 104 likes
“Grief was like a seizure that shook me like a storm.” 24 likes
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