Depraved Heart

Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell.

Post by Robyn55.

It is no accident that my previous review was also a novel by a woman mystery writer, Robert Galbraith aka J. K. Rowling, as it is interesting to compare these two writers. Both are well established authors at the very top of the game. Both are about the same age. Both are now writing crime, although Cornwell has a lot more experience in this genre. What I really want to highlight is the difference.

In Depraved Heart we have all the usual Patricia Cornwell elements and characters that readers of her Kay Scarpetta series are familiar with – Pete Marino, Benton Wesley, and the twisted little sociopath Lucy, her niece. The story, of course, sees them once again put under threat by a very bad person -in fact Carrie, once Lucy’s mentor at the F.B.I. – now outlawed, and maybe dead or not! So the game is definitely on. However, I don’t think this is Patricia Cornwell’s best effort at all. Unlike J. K. Rowling, who seems to get better and better, it’s my belief that Patricia Cornwell’s Scarpetta novels are becoming bogged in technical detail which is slowing down the narrative. More action and less telling, maybe, is needed. This is a shame because Cornwell has proven to be a fine writer in the past but this book just stalls and is a bit of a plod to work through. What a shame as I have read and loved every book in this series and was prepared to love this one as well – better luck next time.