Julie's Reviews > Book Of The Dead

Book Of The Dead by Patricia Cornwell
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did not like it
Recommended for: no one

Ugh. What is WRONG with Patricia Cornwell? This book stinks. And in the spirit of throwing myself on a grenade (reading it so you don't have to) I will review this one.

First of all, Cornwell continues her de-evolution of her characters that started somewhere about "The Body Farm." She totally jumps the shark when she resurrected Benton several books back and “The Book of the Dead” continues her new tradition of incomprehensible plot, incomprehensible character motivation, dialogue that lies flat as road kill, and a world populated exclusively by misogynists, racists, bigots, psychopaths, sociopaths, homicidal maniacs, thugs, morons, and, in general, all-around misanthropes. I read this (and, sadly, I DID read the whole thing) and I kept saying to myself: What? Who? What??? This makes NO SENSE! Even the title is a throw-away. Book of the Dead? Huh? What?

SPOILERS (if you care) -- Scarpetta is as pedantic and self-righteous as usual, Rose is dying of cancer AND having an affair with Scarpetta's competition (??), Benton is jealous of some idiotic Italian cop for NO APPARENT REASON, Dr. Self is back, and is manic-depressive (I know, big surprise), and is foul as ever. But the worst is Marino. Poor guy. Patricia hates him, apparently. He used to be just slovenly but a good investigator, and loyal, and a "good guy." Now he's a motorcycling nutjob -- whacked out on steroids and has a seriously psychopathic nutjob girlfriend who constantly whispers poison in his ear. He's also turned into a complete moron. He talks about the "Hinelick" maneuver, and the "Dewey Decibel" system. When was Marino ever dumb? Now he has the IQ of lettuce. Oh, and the worst? While drunk one night, he attempts to rape Scarpetta. What? WHAT??? Argh!

So here's my theory and I have two possible scenarios, each of which are equally likely, I think. 1) Patricia has gone insane. Or perhaps is simply off her meds (Wikipedia says she is bi-polar, which explains a bit.) Or 2) Paticia is dead and her books are being written by committee by her publisher who recognizes a cash cow when he sees one. Either way, I am done with her and her incomprehensible books. If you haven’t read any of Cornwell’s novels, start with the first one, and STOP at about the fourth or fifth. Blah.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
July 23, 2008 – Shelved
July 23, 2008 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-3 of 3 (3 new)

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Jaime Just wanted you to know, I borrowed your review for a friend who wanted to know why I hated this book. You had already stated everything I wanted to say! I made sure to credit all your remarks to you, of course. :o)

Maggie Totally agree with your review. Bring back the old Marino.

Jess Yes! Yes! And, YES! This book is terrible but what she’s done to Marino is almost unforgivable (almost because I know there are more books and I hope that she fixes things). In a group full of self proclaimed geniuses, Marino was just a regular guy. He was flawed, yes, but worked hard to still do the right thing.

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