January 10, 1993 |
Screen credits on movies have reached ridiculous proportions--everyone from assistant parking coordinator to the star's personal trainer--but a credit on Madonna's upcoming movie "Body of Evidence" is a new one on us. In tiny type at the bottom of advertisements for "Body of Evidence, " after credits for the actors, director, producers, screenwriter and musical scorer, is a cryptic disclaimer: "Not based on the novel by Patricia Cornwell."
September 6, 1992 |
Men, by tradition, write crime fiction out of their own life's work. Dashiell Hammett had been a private eye; Erle Stanley Gardner of Perry Mason fame had practiced law; Joseph Wambaugh has turned his police years into gold. But until recently, women have had to invent murder and mayhem entirely out of their sometimes alarming imaginations. That is changing.
February 2, 2003 |
Patricia Cornwell has worked as a police reporter for the North Carolina Charlotte Observer, as a computer analyst for the chief medical examiner in Richmond, Va., and as a volunteer police officer. But she is best known for the wonderful and wonderfully scary crime novels that feature a forensic master, Dr. Kay Scarpetta. In "Portrait of a Killer," she shifts her criminal expertise from contemporary Virginia to late 19th century London.
February 6, 2000 |
Though it unfolds in Southern California, Robert Crais' "L.A. Requiem" turns out not very sunny. Crais, who has written scripts for "L.A. Law" and "Hill Street Blues," is now on his 8th book about wisecracking Elvis Cole and his eloquently taciturn partner in the P.I. biz, Joe Pike. Only this time two or more plots are interwoven, and Pike moves front and center stage.
March 2, 2008 |
You can't listen to what people tell you. Years ago I was asked by an agent to read a series of articles from the Philadelphia Inquirer by a young journalist named Mark Bowden. I read them and thought they were absolutely stunning. They became the book "Black Hawk Down." It was the first real explanation I had ever read of modern warfare. But Bowden was not a well-known writer, and this was a subject not a lot of people were interested in. I knew it would be hard to sell it. I took it out to a list of producers.
May 16, 1997 |
A former FBI agent was sentenced to 23 years in prison for trying to kill his estranged wife after she began an affair with crime novelist Patricia Cornwell. Eugene Bennett lured his wife into a darkened church last summer and threatened to blow her up in a scheme that involved a minister bound, blindfolded and used as bait. Marguerite Bennett, also a former FBI agent, foiled the plan when she squirted her husband with pepper spray and fired a gun at him.
February 12, 1997 |
A jury convicted an ex-FBI agent of trying to kill his wife, rejecting his claim that her lesbian affair with crime novelist Patricia Cornwell broke up his marriage and drove him temporarily insane. Eugene Bennett, who pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, was found guilty of attempted murder, abduction and seven other charges. The jury in Manassas, Va., recommended a 61-year sentence.