From Potter's Field (Kay Scarpetta, #6) By Patricia Cornwell
My rating: one out of five stars
This is the first of the Kay Scarpetta novels that I've read myself, I've heard another serialised (and heavily abridged) on the radio. Apparently this was the third about a sadistic killer named Temple Brooks Gault, but it didn't really matter that I hadn't read the others.
I feel disappointed and almost guilty about hating a really gritty novel by a woman author, but from Potter's Field is unremittingly tense and bleak, full of not very rounded and mostly depressed characters. There are no peaks and troughs, the tension is constant so the 'shocks', when they come, are almost anti-climactic. I made myself finish the book and was relieved once it was over.
I shall go back to reading Ian Rankin's Rebus novels, which are just as gruesome in places but as well as plenty of splashes of blood they are relieved by splashes of dark humour, which this novel totally lacks.
Rankin also rounds his characters out better. Here the only character whose speech was even distinguishable from the others was the rather caricatured detective Marino. This novel left me feeling stressed, tense and slightly miserable, I shan't read any more.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6980565-from-potter-s-field">From Potter's Field</a> by <a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1025097.Patricia_Cornwell">Patricia Cornwell</a><br/>