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The ninth book in the Kay Scarpetta series, from No. 1 bestselling author Patricia Cornwell.

‘America’s most chilling writer of crime fiction’ The Times


A farmhouse destroyed by fire. A body amongst the ruins.

Dr Kay Scarpetta, Chief Medical Examiner and consulting pathologist for the federal law enforcement agency ATF, is called out to a farmhouse in Virginia which has been destroyed by fire. In the ruins of the house she finds a body which tells a story of a violent and grisly murder. The fire has come at the same time as another, even more incendiary horror: Carrie Grethen, a killer who nearly destroyed the lives of Scarpetta and those closest to her, has escaped from a forensic psychiatric hospital. Her whereabouts is unknown, but her ultimate destination is not, for Carrie has begun to communicate with Scarpetta, conveying her deadly – if cryptic – plans for revenge.

Chillingly mesmeric in tone, labyrinthine in structure, Point of Origin is Patricia Cornwell at her most dazzling.

Praise for the groundbreaking series:

‘One of the
best crime writers writing todayGuardian

Devilishly cleverSunday Times

The top gun in this fieldDaily Telegraph

Forget the pretenders. Cornwell reignsMirror

The Agatha Christie of the DNA ageExpress