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What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
As Elvis once said 'A little less conversation, a little more action please'
Would you ever listen to anything by Patricia Cornwell again?
Of course, she's still the original and best!
What do you think the narrator could have done better?
Not much with what she had to work with!
If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Dust?
I'd have tried to move away from the conversations predominantly held between two characters at a time and had some of the conclusions that were reached come about in the investigative field.
Any additional comments?
Well I guess everyone writes a ‘not so good’ book from time to time, but I think that this deserves a special mention. I suppose you could say that I’m a fan of Kay Scarpetta, and possibly even a big one. Patricia Cornwell’s last offering featuring Kay Scarpetta, who is undeniably the matriarch of this genre, The Bone Bed, was far more enjoyable and kept me on the edge of my seat throughout. However, like the one before last Red Mist, I found Dust, a bit tedious and Kay’s character both a little arrogant and conceited.
It never really got going for me and felt like it was hard work for the usually excellent Lorelei King to get the conversational parts to flow like a narrative should. That said, the story was also weak, particularly for Cornwell, and I felt it assumed that the reader knew the back story, as far too many references were made to previous happenings, without ever qualifying them. It seemed that the cast didn’t really fit their shoes in this outing, possibly because it relied too heavily on conversational supposition, as opposed to “shoes on the ground’ police work or even Scarpetta’s real domain, the dissection table.
I wonder if maybe the back story is perhaps a hindrance here, and that both Lucy’s and Kay’s lifestyles and access to the finest things in life have made the story a little bloated and over indulged. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to have a Porsche Turbo like Benton or fly a chopper like Lucy, but it’s got a bit too ‘Thunderbirds’ for me.
Despite all of this, will I buy the next Scarpetta novel? Of course I will, I’ve stuck with her this long and I’m a sucker for punishment, but I have a feeling that Scarpetta will be back firing on all cylinders before too long!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
What disappointed you about Dust?
It's written as if to readers meeting Scarpetta for the first time. Repetitive about her own backstory and patronising to the point of boredom.
What could Patricia Cornwell have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?
Bring back the edge that got me hooked on her books in the first place!
How did the narrator detract from the book?
Because of the material, the narrator's voice became a drone and difficult to stay focussed on.
What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?
It's such a shame that after all this time waiting, I was disappointed, I'm usually a loyal fan. Let's hope she can bring it back in the next one.
Any additional comments?
I had such high hopes for this book but maybe Cornwell's just become lazy, because it was a very poor effort.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
I keep hoping to re-capture my initial love of the stories from this author, however it does not happen. This story line is weak; continual complaints about her family; going over and over old decisions and past positions held; .... kindly have someone kill-off Kay and be done with it!
Never again will I purchase another Scarpetta saga.
Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
If you've been with the Scarpetta series for this long, you may want to read this too. I don't think it's the best in the series but it's what we've got. I found it enjoyable enough.
Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?
The plot was interesting enough for me to stay with. The familiar characters are here. Some unfamiliar criminal types are also here and they're mildly interesting without being particularly compelling. In the recent novels Scarpetta seems either less angry or more world-weary, or both. Having said that, this novel conveys genuine anger about Newtown. It also expresses objections to so-called spectacle murders, which seems ironic given the contribution of the earlier Scarpetta novels to the forensic crime genre, which in its screen equivalents does involve spectacle.
What three words best describe Lorelei King’s performance?
Well read, predictable.
Could you see Dust being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?
I think of a younger Glenn Close as Scarpetta. Jennifer Lawrence would be her niece. The late James Gandolfini could have been Marino, but I'm not sure who would be best in the role now. As for Benton .... ? Also, on second thoughts, I'm not sure this cast would be so great together ... would like to know how other readers respond to this question.
Any additional comments?
Recent Scarpetta novels have received bad to mixed reviews. At this stage in the series, anyone who knows the earlier novels can decide for themselves how interested they are in persevering. Those unfamiliar with the novels should start with the early instalments.