Cruel & Unusual

Cruel & Unusual

A Novel

Book - 1993
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Baker & Taylor
When the fingerprints of an executed killer are found at a new crime scene, Dr. Kay Scarpetta takes on her most terrifying case yet

Blackwell North Amer
11:05 P.M. Convicted murderer Ronnie Joe Waddell is pronounced dead in the Commonwealth of Virginia's electric chair.
In the morgue, Dr. Kay Scarpetta has been waiting for Waddell's body. It's a strange feeling, preparing for an autopsy before the subject is dead. But Scarpetta's been here before. As Virginia's chief medical examiner, she knows the tension of watching the clock as the execution hour draws near.
Waddell's death isn't the only newsworthy event on this cold December night. Three hours after thirteen-year-old Eddie Heath goes out to a convenience store to buy a can of soup, his nude, grotesquely wounded body is found propped against a dumpster.
Waddell's execution, the attack on Eddie - the two events seem unrelated until Scarpetta and Richmond police lieutenant Pete Marino remember that Waddell arranged his victim in a strikingly similar position to Eddie's. And then there's a new murder, the most puzzling of all.
The crime scenes yield few clues: old bloodstains, fragments of feather, and - most baffling - a bloody fingerprint that points Scarpetta to the one suspect who could not possibly have committed this murder.
And somewhere in Virginia's corridors of power, perhaps even in her own office, lurks an enemy who will destroy Scarpetta unless she can produce the proof that will clear her name. With some help from her seventeen-year-old niece, computer whiz Lucy, as well as from her loyal friend Lieutenant Marino and FBI agent Benton Wesley, Scarpetta musters all her forensic expertise and investigative skills to uncover shocking secrets that will have vast repercussions.
Cruel and Unusual moves bestselling author Patricia D. Cornwell in dramatic new directions, confirming the extraordinary range and power of this gifted, prizewinning writer.

Baker
& Taylor

When the fingerprints of an executed killer are found at a new crime scene, Dr. Kay Scarpetta takes on her most terrifying case yet. By the author of All That Remains. 250,000 first printing. Lit Guild Main.

Simon and Schuster
"Killing me won't kill the beast" are the last words of rapist-murderer Ronnie Joe Waddell, written four days before his execution. But they can't explain how Dr. Kay Scarpetta finds Waddell's fingerprints onanother crime scene -- after she'd performed his autopsy. If this is some sort of game, Scarpetta seems to be the target. And if the next victim is someone she knows, the punishment will be cruel and unusual...

Publisher: New York : Scribner's ; Toronto : Maxwell Macmillan Canada ; New York : Maxwell Macmillan International, c1993.
ISBN: 9780684195308
0684195305
Branch Call Number: M COR
Characteristics: 356 p. ; 24 cm.
Alternative Title: Cruel and unusual.

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v
vsoge
Jul 01, 2012

Not just one mystery but there are a couple going on intertangled. Not all get solved in this book, some continue to others. I suggest reading Patricia Cornwell books in order, otherwise you feel you missed something and have to play catch up at the beginning.

Krajzel Oct 31, 2011

I thought I had read everything written by Patricia Cornwell, what a pleasant surprise to find one I had not read. Excellent, up to Cornwells expectations.

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blossom21
Mar 24, 2010

An excellent early novel by Cornwell. She won the Gold Dagger Award. It does tend to get a bit gory but nevertheless a good mystery.

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FavouriteFiction Oct 31, 2009

Medicalexaminer Dr. Kay Scarpetta investigates the kidnap-murder of young Eddie Heath.

FavouriteFiction Oct 31, 2009

Medicalexaminer Dr. Kay Scarpetta investigates the kidnap-murder of young Eddie Heath.

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