Postmortem is the first of Patricia Cornwell’s Kay Scarpetta novels, following the life of the Chief Medical Examiner of Virginia. There are twenty-one books in the series, with the most recent, Dust, coming out at the end of this year. I’ve read a few, but not for ages, and thought it was time for a revisit.
There is a serial killer on the loose in Richmond, attacking women in their houses, raping, torturing and killing them. Scarpetta is attempting to find any clues to help Sergeant Pete Marino and the police to capture them whilst having to constantly prove herself professionally as she is the first woman in this position.
These books are so readable. The characters have started a bit clunky in this, the first novel, but I know that I get to love them a lot more as the series goes on. I think what I enjoyed the most about the novel is how dated it is – with references to computers without hard drives and floppy discs, plus the fact that DNA has only been used in a couple of court cases. How times have changed! In this novel, Scarpetta’s niece is just a young girl, and I’m aware of how her career develops as she grows. I can’t wait to experience these books again.