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Southern Cross    by Patricia Cornwell order for
Southern Cross
by Patricia Cornwell
Order:  USA  Can
Berkley, 2002 (1999)
Hardcover, Paperback, Audio, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Just came across a Patricia Cornwell mystery that I hadn't read. Oh, happy days. Leaving Kay Scarpetta behind, Cornwell takes her readers to Richmond, Virginia, where former Charlotte police chief Judy Hammer and her team of two is brought in to clean up the police force a difficult job no matter how you look at it. Local politics and prejudices throw up a barrier in her quest to solve a brutal murder. The men and women in blue are knee deep in corruption, scandal, and now murder.

Because of the brutality and corruption that run rampant, this book is emotionally draining but well worth the effort. I really like the character of Kay Scarpetta, but these new people introduced in Southern Cross could easily join Kay on the shelf in my library as keepers. I also note that Cornwell has let her sense of humor run amuck at times in a really delightful vein that runs through this tightly written mystery.

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