Depraved Heart: A Scarpetta Novel (Kay Scarpetta Mysteries) by Patricia Cornwell (Review #2)

Reviewed by Suzanne Odom

Depraved HeartHaving previously read most of Cornwell’s books, I was eager to read this one. Dr. Kay Scarpetta is back in another gripping thriller. This book begins with Scarpetta working the scene of a suspicious death when she receives an emergency alert on her phone. The alert is a video link and appears to come from her niece, Lucy, a computer genius and an FBI agent. The video is strange in that it is surveillance of Lucy from about twenty years ago.

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As Scarpetta watches the video, she learns scary secrets about her niece which imply dangerous and illegal implications. It appears as if the videos were sent by Lucy, but she later learns that this isn’t the case. The links have actually been sent by Carrie Grethen, an enemy of Kay and her family. She is left confused, worried and scared for Lucy and has no idea who she can turn to and trust with the information. She races to Lucy’s house to find answers, but only finds more questions. The FBI is at Lucy’s house with a search warrant and answers must be found before Lucy is arrested.

Cornwell’s usual characters are in this novel. Fans of her books will see Pete Marino, and Scarpetta’s husband, Benton Wesley. All are involved in a psychological ride that includes the death of a Hollywood tycoon’s daughter, airplane wreckage found at the bottom of the Bermuda Triangle, and of course the videos of Lucy’s past. Readers will follow Scarpetta’s hunt for Carrie and see her overcome the obsession with Carrie.

Like most of Cornwell’s books, this book has lots of twists and turns that will keep you guessing. The book has a clever plot, charming characters, and innovative forensic science. It’s a very satisfying read, and surely will entice you to read more of her books.