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4.0 von 5 Sternen Not her best, but enjoyable nonetheless...
I have always loved Patricia Cornwell's writing and her books. She is a sharp woman with great writing skills, and her knowledge of forensic science is certainly part of the reason people come back to read her again and again. This book was extremely depressing, more than frightening...because we've been through these same things with Scarpetta and her niece before...
Veröffentlicht am 19. Mai 2000 von K. L Sadler

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1.0 von 5 Sternen Kiss of death
What a huge disappointment, I eagerly awaitied the publication of this book & managed to beg a copy off someone which I sat down to devour. What can I say without ruining the plot for those of you who haven't read it (unlike some of the other reviewers listed)? Firstly, how stupid can Benton be? Secondly why does everyone Scarpetta gets involved with meet a very...
Am 17. August 1999 veröffentlicht


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4.0 von 5 Sternen Not her best, but enjoyable nonetheless..., 19. Mai 2000
Von 
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta) (Taschenbuch)
I have always loved Patricia Cornwell's writing and her books. She is a sharp woman with great writing skills, and her knowledge of forensic science is certainly part of the reason people come back to read her again and again. This book was extremely depressing, more than frightening...because we've been through these same things with Scarpetta and her niece before. How many times can one person deal with such tragedy and loss in their lives. At a certain point, this becomes unbelieveable (except for the Kennedy family), and the reader loses interest. Yes, the author is aging her protagonist and life does change, but must it always be so negative? I get the feeling Cornwell wants to be rid of this character, with this book being not up to her usual standards and with the introduction of other characters in books such as "Southern Cross". If this is true then I should think the author would want this character to go out with a good plot behind her. Karen Sadler, Science Education, University of Pittsburgh, klsst23@pitt.edu
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5.0 von 5 Sternen The saga of human maturity continues and entertains as well., 22. August 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta) (Taschenbuch)
Many readers have panned Cornwell's Point of Origin as not keeping within the genre' and being too involved with character development. To my way of thinking, this is precisely what the author intended. Those of us who have read all of the Scarpetta episodes, and have any sort of memory, do not need fresh starts and predictable thrillings. We have unanswered questions from the past and this book nicely ties up loose ends and gives us an update on the principle characters. Kay and Lucy are the pivotal personalities and it is gratifying to watch them behaving in a realistically unfinished manner. Those who focus in on picky little details and find fault with occasionally inaccurate nits are missing the whole reason for this series. Whether or not Cornwell wants to admit it, we are watching the evolution of the author's personality as she reflects upon the adventures of her characters. True growth occurs only through reflection. Even though the incidents portrayed in the novel are fictional, we need to realize that all writing is irrevocably filtered through the experience and world view of the author. A few hours spent with Kay and Lucy, every year or so, gives us an update on Patricia Cornwell who has been so gracious as to share her opinions about things that matter to her. Unlike authors who grind out thrillers with no particular personal involvement, Cornwell has the courage to invite us into her home. The person of Kay Scarpetta may seem to make snap decisions and jump to conclusions on occasion and for those readers who do not know her, she may seem to be incompletely formed and her reasoning, flawed. Cornwell has been criticized for moving too rapidly in these instances. In my opinion, she is giving her long-time readers the benefit of brevity where it is appropriate. I could go on but you get the point (no pun intended). I give this book two thumbs up, using both hands, and say to Patricia Cornwell: keep up the good work, I enjoyed our time together and I am looking forward to our next meeting.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen Kiss of death, 17. August 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta) (Taschenbuch)
What a huge disappointment, I eagerly awaitied the publication of this book & managed to beg a copy off someone which I sat down to devour. What can I say without ruining the plot for those of you who haven't read it (unlike some of the other reviewers listed)? Firstly, how stupid can Benton be? Secondly why does everyone Scarpetta gets involved with meet a very gruesome end? She should come with a public warning - 'do not get involved with me or you will face certain death by scalping or a terrorist bomb'. Thirdly, like other reviewers I did not like the recycling of former baddies, it takes away the suspense, which after all is the whole purpose of reading books of this genre & I have had enough of Carrie Grethen and her 'evilness'.
Lucy is just SO unbelieveably irritating, I find it a struggle to read about her. And enough is enough, Scarpetta's worship of her neice borders on the obsessive & is totally unhealthy. It's a shame that she has escaped the fate of all the other characters who've been associated with Aunt Kay. In previous books we were subjected to endless unecessary detail about computers. Lucy the genious, has managed to transform herself into an expert on helicopters & points of origin -argh. Please why must she continually be the main feature of the storyline, why can't we see her on the periphery for a change? Lucy is a dull, tedious, one dimensional humnourless nerd. Scarpetta isn't much better, the pair of them are real social misfits. The best characterisation by far must be Marino although it's clear that Cornwell sees him as an object of fun & ridicule.
Scarpetta at times behaves like some religious nut, condeming smoking, disapproving of Marino's lifestyle & caffeine intake & forever ranting on about evil. She is SO moralistic it's galling to read. In fact she gets more judgemental, pious & sanctimonious by the book.
I think I'll give Black Notice a miss unless Lucy has done a vanishing act & there are some new more rounded, three dimensional charcaters.
Like some of the other reviewers, I also wonder whether the seeds of some same sex experiences are being sown for Scarpetta.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen Amateurish, 20. April 1999
Von 
Robert Wright (Portland, Me. USA) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
(REAL NAME)   
I'd heard of Patricia Cornwell and her medical examiner protagonist before, but hadn't read one of the series until this one. Perhaps the previous books were better, but frankly, I don't think this book would have been accepted by a publisher if it wasn't "Halloween XVXIII" so to speak. Nothing really made sense. Why was one colt spared the fire? How did the fires start anyway (we learn that they're ignited with magnesium, which is conveniently incorporated into cuts on the victims, but not what continues to feed them). What ever becomes of Kenneth Sparkes? What about the morning phone calls (Scarpetta "just knows" all of a sudden that they're from the parents of a boy who died for lack of medical care, and that clairvoyant knowledge is meant to satisfy us as much as it evidently satisfies Scarpetta). And so on. And so on. To say that the plot is weak is too generous - it scarcely has a plot at all. Nor is it a novel of character. Benton shows up briefly, smelling good, and then vanishes again. We're told he's too samrt to get careless, but although he knows that he's being stalked by a psycho killer who has a male accomplice, when a male calls and says he has info about the psycho killer, Benton goes off to meet him in a dark and lonely place. "Hey, Benton! When you hear something eerie in the basement in a horror movie, don't go down there"! But this is all third hand - the man only has two brief scenes and about three lines of dialogue. Then there's Lucy, who just walks around in a sort of perpetual huff. And Marino, who sweats mostly. And finally there's Scarpetta, who has Dark Emotion. We are told so, more or less, just as we're told that she's a genius. But she never thinks any particularly ingenious thoughts, and her insight into her own or any other emotion is about as deep as Dr. Laura Schlesinger's - mostly, she disapproves of stuff, just in general. And although some readers seem to find "the technical details" compelling, all of them are extremely superficial, and amount to little more than canned quotes pasted onto the page. As "Legends of the Fall" demonstrated, there is an audience that is content just to be given stage directions. "Kay is suffering. Kay feels pain. Kay has a brilliant insight". But if you expect to be convinced or instructed rather than just told, and if you like a plot that makes a bit more sense than a disorganised morbid daydream, skip this book.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Cornwell's latest novel proves to a a well-written mystery, 16. September 1998
Von Ein Kunde
Patricia Cornwell's latest book Point of Origin contains all the aspects of a well-written mystery. Suspense, foreshadowing, and a well developed, twisting plot are all techniques Cornwell has mastered in her latest novel. Dr. Kay Scarpetta, the consulting forensic pathologist for the federal government, teams up with ex-FBI agent Benton Wesley to recapture psycopath Carrie Grethen. Scarpetta and Wesley are lovers and, along with Grethen, are characters adopted from Cornwell's previous novels. At the same time of Grethen's escape from a mental institution in New York, a fire kills twenty thoroughbred horses that belong to multi-millionare Kenneth Sparkes. The fire also destroys Sparkes's million-dollar mansion. Dr. Scarpetta is assisted by her niece Lucy, an FBI agent with a bad past, in the investigation of the fire's origin. The involved plot takes the reader through the distressed life of Kay Scarpetta. The connection readers are able to make with Dr. Scarpetta is perhaps the strongest aspect of the book. Being able to experience the sorrow, apprehension, anger, and insecurity that Dr. Scarpetta faces in her daily life makes the novel much more interesting. I looked forward to reading ahead in the book just to see what situation Dr. Scarpetta might have to deal with next. Furthermore, Ms. Cornwell's extensive technical vocabulary makes the story much more realistic and believable. For example, the explicit jargon used to describe the chemical aspects of the fire, the condition of corpses recovered from the fire, and other such scientific prodedures was truly impressive. This, in addition with the interesting characters and well-developed plot, has enabled Ms. Cornwell's most recent novel to fare well among the critics and readers. However, the weakest aspect of this book is Ms. Cornwell's lack of expanded language. The language, excluding the technical and chemical descriptions, seems to be underdeveloped. Also, I am rather unimpressed with the author's use of the English language. I feel as though she sticks in metaphors, similes, and other literary characteristics just to show the readers that possesses some form of literary aptitude. Futhermore, the literary techniques she does use are awkward and inappropriate. Nevertheless, the plot's complexity enables this book to be one of Patricia Cornwell's best. I personally thought the book was very enigmatic and entertaining.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Poignant, powerful, and personal thriller., 23. August 1998
Von Ein Kunde
Though Patricia Cornwell's latest Scarpetta novel is perhaps not as tightly spun in plot development as some of the earlier books, it offers intense interest to those fans of the series who find the inner lives of the main characters as compelling as the forensic detail. Cornwell's fictional universe has never offered easy escape from the real terrors of life -- be they criminal, political, or interpersonal -- and I think this unflinching moral seriousness has always been among the greatest strengths in her work (as it is, not coincidentally, among Dr. Scarpetta's greatest strengths as a character). Though there's a very wrenching death in this novel (expect to find yourself in major mourning, readers, for the character in question is very dear to our hearts!!) I suspect that the greatest discomfort will be felt by readers who are uneasy with Kay's profound concern for and engagement with her troubled niece Lucy; and frankly, that seems to me to say more about readers' prejudices than any weakness in the representation. I say prejudices, plural, because I think it's not only that homophobia is triggered when a major character in a series is a lesbian, but something maybe even more discouraging to an author like Cornwell, whose career suggests she is as intellectually gifted as her protagonists. Many of us who consider ourselves less gifted have a hard time taking seriously, let alone permitting ourselves to empathize with, the very real agony -- and often dysfunctionality -- that's unfortunately endemic to the lives of people born with genius-level intellect, especially if they're female in a culture that still hasn't quite worked through its heritage of male dominance. (One element of Kay's and Benton Wesley's relationship that has been especially poignant is his brave and tender patience when Kay lashes out at him in for male privilege he did not ask to be born with.) And one of the most powerful ongoing relationships in the Scarpetta series IS the one between Lucy and her accomplished aunt, because at the heart of it is, of course, their tendency both to attack and to cling to the self each sees painfully reflected in the other. Yes, they're very privileged people; but they're also, and I think very understandably, very troubled and lonely people. Point of Origin features dialogues between Kay and Lucy that are strikingly powerful in conception and execution, which ring exactly true in expressing the psychological dynamic between them. Speaking of loneliness, consider Pete Marino, who despite the stereotypical elements of his initial presentation in Postmortem, has developed into a more and more poignant character with each novel, as he soldiers on in a lifelong professional partnership with a woman who returns his love but not his desire. It's lonely being a woman who is brilliant: even lonelier to be less brilliant and hopelessly in love with her. I expect there'll be further developments here as well, and look forward to them. (Put that boy on a Pritikin diet and get him a nicotine patch, if necessary, for he is dearly loved, and I don't know if I can stand it if the ever-threatening stroke takes him from us.) The novel's not perfectly wrought -- exposition's a little sluggish this time out, and there are potentially gripping elements in the scenario (especially the fires themselves, one of which Kay might've found herself caught in for great dramatic effect) that Cornwell doesn't choose to exploit. But this is a haunting book with genuine depth and bite to it, in the tradition of The Body Farm and From Potter's Field, which I'd consider among her very best.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen Cornwell fails to light any fires with this tired tale, 21. Juli 1998
Von Ein Kunde
Point of Origin is disappointing; it lacks suspense, the characters are shallow, and its villains fail to menance us. Add to those flaws the fact that the reader who hasn't read the previous Scarpetta novels will fail to understand many of the tensions and arguments, and you've got a lackluster read.
The plot fails to engage us, because Cornwell is clearly more comfortable telling us about the details of how fires build and destroy than she is in creating a believable story. Her characters, the same cast of misfits that have appeared in previous stories, have long worn out their welcome. Pete Marino seems particularly lost ...he's reduced to the role of strutting and fretting as a sidekick, helping with luggage and carry-out food orders, and asking a few questions of suspects from time to time. As for Lucy ... well, aren't we all a little tired of hearing how sad the life of this tall, beautiful, brainy, helicopter-flying, computer programming, gun toting woman is?!
Cornwell also forgets that TELLING us isn't as effective as SHOWING us. Her chief nemesis these days, Carrie Grethen, frightens us only because Cornwell recites a list of her prior crimes, and has her appear on camera with dark, evil eyes. Ho hum...
Finally, Cornwell's prose here not only doesn't sing, it can't even carry a tune. When Kay reacts to the photograph of a watch worn by Ken Sparkes' ex-lover,his comment is hardly worth quoting: "He smiled and stared. Then he sighed."
The book does have villains besides the ones toting the accelerants and knives: the FBI, lawyers, the media, Washington DC commuters, the "public". One wonders what motivates Scarpetta any more ... but not enough to want to continue reading about her. Time to retire this heroine and her pals. The summer has brought heat waves everywhere but between the pages of this book.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Enjoyable - but not the author's best, 26. November 1999
I have always looked upon Patricia Cornwell's novels as a release. They are never intellectually demanding but, generally, are guaranteed to provide an interesting plot, good characterization etc.
While there was nothing wrong with "Point of Origin", there was nothing in it to rave about either. Once again, the protagonist, medical examiner Kay Scarpetta, is faced with a baffling series of murders but, once again (and I am giving absolutely nothing away by saying this) she faces the same nemesis that we have seen in previous novels. In reading the novel, I could not help that Cornwell has become too comfortable with Carrie Grethen to be willing to branch out and create a new villain who resorts to methods other than those made so familiar by Dr. Hannibal Lecter in "The Silence of the Lambs."
Where Cornwell succeeds, however, is in her mastery of medical detail. The success of the Scarpetta novels hinged greatly on the fact that the reader was actually able to picture themselves at the crime scene and in the morgue as a criminal investigation was conducted. The descriptions that Cornwell makes are admittedly gory but no more so than what medical examiners are, presumably, faced with every day. One is not left with the impression that the gore is gratuitous and that is why I have kept coming back to the Scarpetta novels.
"Point of Origin" is an improvement over some of Cornwell's other more recent Scarpetta novels. If only she were willing to experiment with new characters and plot lines, rather than stick to what is becoming the same formulaic plot, her readership would only continue to grow.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen WARNING SOME OF THESE REVIEWS SPOIL THE BOOK!, 15. Oktober 1999
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta) (Taschenbuch)
I HAD TO SAY THAT AFTER BEING "TREATED" TO SEVERAL OF THE FOLLOWING REVIEWS THAT SPOIL ONE OF THE MAJOR EVENTS OF THE NOVEL. HOW DISPPOINTING! With that said, I really enjoyed POINT OF ORIGIN. I'd nearly given up on Cornwell, after the past three disappointing Scarpetta novels. My criticisms of those hold true for POINT; (a) frankly, I don't care as much about Lucy as Cornwell obviously does. I just don't see the purpose served by all the text devoted to her. She spouts technobabble and explains it to Scarpetta and Marino. The rest of it, well, I find her a poorly-sketched character even after all these novels. (b) second, the Marino character is growing tiresome. I still care about him much more than I do Lucy, but, the device (and that's what he seems like now) is OLD now (but, to Cornwell's credit, it's been imitated ad nauseum). HOWEVER, yes, I enjoyed this book. The focus is on VICTIMS, not on getting-in-the-heads of serial killers. We see the devastating effects the events of past novels have taken on the stalwart Scarpetta. This adds to her believable traits. Then, there's the triumphant return to what gets THIS reader turning pages, the descriptions, from Scarpetta, of all the deliciously grisly little procedures and details and such. (come ON, I'm not reading this for the love scenes!)Cornwell walks a fine line with this stuff, and she walks it as surely as she did way back in THE BODY FARM. My faith has been renewed a bit, less written-for-contract-and-film-op schlock, and more poetic contrasts of death and life...
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3.0 von 5 Sternen What?, 27. Mai 2000
Von 
N. Lee "ski429" (Conway, AR United States) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta) (Taschenbuch)
Normally I really enjoy Patricia Cornwell's books, in fact, I'd consider her one of my favorite authors, but Point of Origin falls so far short of any of her other works. My first complaint, too many references to earlier books, one of which I haven't read. This makes the book terribly confusing at some points, and if you haven's read Cruel and Unusual, you're really going to be lost. Second, since most of the characters do appear in other books, she neglects to introduce us to them in Point of Origin properly. For instance, it took me pages to figure out that Sparkes is African American. Vital information to racheting up the suspense and interest in "who-dun-it". Third, enough with Carrie Grethen and Temple Gault. They were interesting the first time (first couple times for Gault), but give it a rest. They're just too invincible. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if Carrie appeared again. Disappointed, but not surprised. Finally, the story itself could have been so much better. I agree with an earlier reviewer who reacted to the helicopter shoot out...lame. And with the Fire Marshall, because I can't believe it took that long to figure out how they were starting the fires. You would think an ATF investigator and FBI officers would be able to figure out where the magnesium came from, if they've had any training at all. SO, all in all I was very disappointed. I wouldn't recommend this book to old fans, and I DEFINITELY would advise new Cornwell readers to pass on Point of Origin.
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Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta)
Point of Origin (Kay Scarpetta) von Patricia Cornwell (Taschenbuch - 1. August 1999)
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