Announcing our Top 20 Books of 2022 and Award Winners

The Scarpetta Factor: Book summary and reviews of The Scarpetta Factor by Patricia Cornwell

The Scarpetta Factor

by Patricia Cornwell

The Scarpetta Factor by Patricia Cornwell X
The Scarpetta Factor by Patricia Cornwell
Buy This Book

About this book

Book Summary

It is the week before Christmas. A tanking economy has prompted Dr. Kay Scarpetta—despite her busy schedule and her continuing work as the senior forensic analyst for CNN—to offer her services pro bono to New York City's Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. In no time at all, her increased visibility seems to precipitate a string of unexpected and unsettling events. She is asked live on the air about the sensational case of Hannah Starr, who has vanished and is presumed dead. Moments later during the same telecast she receives a startling call—in from a former psychiatrist patient of Benton Wesley's. When she returns after the show to the apartment where she and Benton live, she finds an ominous package—possibly a bomb—waiting for her at the front desk. Soon the apparent threat on Scarpetta's life finds her embroiled in a surreal plot that includes a famous actor accused of an unthinkable sex crime and the disappearance of a beautiful millionaires with whom Lucy seems to have shared a secret past.

Scarpetta's CNN producer wants her to launch a TV show called The Scarpetta Factor. Given the bizarre events already in play, she fears that her growing fame will generate the illusion that she has a "special factor," a mythical ability to solve all her cases. She wonders if she will end up like other TV personalities: her own stereotype.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Reviews

Media Reviews

"[I]t's the dark past of Scarpetta's psychologist husband, Benton Wesley....that binds the disparate pieces together and make this one of Cornwell's stronger recent efforts." - Publishers Weekly

This information about The Scarpetta Factor was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

Reader Reviews

Write your own review

Terri

Great Title!
This was a well written book and I am not much of a reader. I don't have a lot of free time to read, but this one was well worth taking the time to read. Please keep them coming Ms. Cornwell. Maybe I will get back to reading more. Your books just come to life, and they are so interesting and so intriguing. Love your books!

Cloggie Downunder

Better than the last few years
The Scarpetta Factor is Patricia Cornwell’s 17th Scarpetta novel. The Scarpetta novels have had a chequered history: they started out consistently good and then went downhill for a while. This one is quite an improvement on those of 5 or 6 years ago. While it’s a bit slow-moving in places, on the whole, it has something like the quality of the first novels. A lot of the subject matter is topical, the CSI bits are better than ever, and the characters have finally matured somewhat: they have gone from acting like self-indulgent and irritating juveniles to reasonably responsible adults, although Lucy could probably do with anger management classes. With regard to the plot, it helps if you can remember what happened around the time of Benton Wesley’s disappearance, but it’s not essential. I enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading the next Scarpetta, Port Mortuary.

MichP

So slow
I have read pretty much all the Scarpetta books but by golly this is the most boring. I don't know what has happened to the author, but I have found this and the previous book a real struggle. It’s like someone else has written them! The fast paced thriller we are used to this certainly is not. I will not be purchasing any more that’s for sure.

Lori W.B.

Slow read
I have usually enjoyed Cornwall's series, some more than others, but for the most part they leave me coming back for more. I may be over that now. This book was so slow that I truly fell asleep on it multiple times. It skips around so much to give the account of each character that it makes it hard to follow the storyline.
I struggled to keep reading it, hoping it would get better by the end and I was unrewarded for my persistence.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Author Information

Patricia Cornwell Author Biography

New York Times bestselling novelist Patricia Daniels Cornwell is the only woman in the United States to receive England's coveted Gold Dagger, widely considered to be the most prestigious crime-writing award in the world.

A former award-winning police reporter for the Charlotte Observer, Cornwell worked for more than six years as a computer analyst in the chief medical examiner's office in Virginia, where she witnessed hundreds of autopsies and even assisted as a "scribe," recording the measurements of the wounds of murder victims. During that time, she also was a volunteer with the Richmond Police Department, and has spent time with law enforcement around the world.

Those experiences inspired her to create Dr. Kay Scarpetta, a tenacious chief medical examiner who tracks ...

... Full Biography
Link to Patricia Cornwell's Website

Other books by Patricia Cornwell at BookBrowse
  • The Last Precinct jacket
  • Southern Cross jacket

13 more...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

More Recommendations

Readers Also Browsed . . .

more thrillers...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Join and Save 20%!

Become a member and
discover exceptional books.

Find out more


Award Winners

  • Book Jacket: Horse
    Horse
    by Geraldine Brooks
    Voted 2022 Best Fiction Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers. Geraldine Brooks creates a ...
  • Book Jacket: In Love
    In Love
    by Amy Bloom
    Voted 2022 Best Nonfiction Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers. In 2019, author Amy Bloom and her...
  • Book Jacket: Remarkably Bright Creatures
    Remarkably Bright Creatures
    by Shelby Van Pelt
    Voted 2022 Best Debut Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers. Shelby Van Pelt's debut novel, ...

Members Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Scatterlings
    by Resoketswe Martha Manenzhe

    The debut novel of a gifted storyteller who has become a sensation in her native South Africa.

Wordplay

The Big Holiday Wordplay

Enter Now

Book Club Discussion

Book Jacket
The Bell in the Lake
by Lars Mytting
The engrossing epic novel - a #1 bestseller in Norway - of a young woman whose fate plays out against her village's mystical church bells.
Who Said...

Harvard is the storehouse of knowledge because the freshmen bring so much in and the graduates take so little out.

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.