All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell – Book Review



All That Remains is the third in the Scarpetta series, following Chief Medical Examiner Doctor Kay Scarpetta and Detective Lieutenant Marino as they investigate a serial killer. This killer is a man who targets teenage couples, taking them from cars at rest stops along the highway, with their bodies discovered many months later. This case is different, though, as the female of the couple is the daughter of a federal politician. It is high-profile, and the FBI is holding any evidence tight, to the frustration of Scarpetta and Marino.

Having recently decided to re-read the whole series, I was surprised to already come across one I hadn’t read. It really makes a difference with these type of crime novels – I noticed with both Postmortem and Body of Evidence that I was remembering (or trying to remember) as much as I was reading them. However, this was all new to me, and it was compelling. My only criticism is that it is hard to tell how much time has passed from one novel to the next, in particular in relation to Scarpetta’s relationship with Mark James. It’s quickly revealed that they are no longer together (they got back together at the end of Body of Evidence) but it was annoying to have the details of this dragged out over most of the book. Incidentally, once you’ve read the book, the cover art (above) will really annoy you.

I’ve already picked up the next book from the library (actually the next three. It’s an omnibus) and cannot wait to see what is next.

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