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Someone - a woman or somebody pretending to be a woman, is writing to convicted rapists in prison, befriending them and then brutally killing them when they are released. DI Tom Thorne must discover the link between these killings and a murder/suicide that took place twenty-five years before; a tragedy to which the only witnesses were two small children, now adults and nowhere to be found...How can you escape a past that will do a lot more than just catch up with you? And how can Thorne catch a killer, when he doesn't really care about the victims? Visit the author's website at www.markbillingham.com
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Promotional Information

Years after they'd committed their crimes and served their sentences, rapists are turning up dead in hotel rooms. Some people might believe the killings have a positive effect on re-offending rates, but Detective Inspector Thorne knows he has to track down the murderer.

Promotional Information

Years after they'd committed their crimes and served their sentences, rapists are turning up dead in hotel rooms. Some people might believe the killings have a positive effect on re-offending rates, but Detective Inspector Thorne knows he has to track down the murderer.

About the Author

Mark Billingham is a stand-up comedian, appearing regularly at the Comedy Store. LAZYBONES won the inaugural Theakston's Old Peculier Award for the best crime novel of the year. He has also been awarded the 2003 Sherlock Award as the creator of the Best Detective created by a British writer. He has also written drama for children's television, including Knight School which won the Royal Television Society Award for best children's drama.

Reviews

In his third novel (after Sleepyhead and Scaredy Cat), Billingham delivers a remarkable combination of police procedural and psychological thriller. Detective Inspector Tom Thorne is faced with a case that no one wants to solve: someone is killing convicted rapists as soon as they are released from prison. The only clues that Tom and his team have are the supposed name and pictures of a woman being used to lure the rapists to their death. As the investigation progresses, the case connects to a 25-year-old murder/suicide. If Tom can figure out why, he'll have his killer. Billingham builds the tension slowly as time runs out. And though serial murders have become fairly ubiquitous in crime fiction, the addition of solid and realistic police investigation by a very human detective serves to balance the horribly unreal. Recommended for all public libraries. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 2/15/04.]-Jane Jorgenson, Alicia Ashman Branch-Madison P.L., WI Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

'Murder and mystery do not come better than this.' What's On in London ** 'Brisk, racy read.' The Times

Fans of public television's various BBC Mystery programs would do well to tune into this third in Billingham's series (Scaredy Cat; Sleepyhead) featuring Detective Inspector Tom Thorne and his fellow officers of the London Metropolitan Police Service. After the body of a strangled and sexually violated male is found in a seedy hotel room, Thorne quickly learns that the victim was a convicted rapist. When a second recently released rapist is discovered in the same condition, Thorne believes he has a serial revenge killer on his hands. While some of his fellow policemen feel that the victims deserved their fate, Thorne's commitment to justice remains unfailing. Another murder follows, this time of a pornographer whom the detectives link to the other dead men. Billingham does not delve as deeply into either Thorne's personal issues or those of the other policemen as he did in his last book; the detective's dark brooding on the nature of death is replaced here by a healthier, less obsessive introspection. It's a wise move, making Thorne a more accessible character. He still has problems with women and commitment, and his father is still struggling with Alzheimer's, but Thorne has lightened up enough to get himself a girlfriend (though that doesn't work out quite the way he thought it would, to put it mildly). The structure is much like that of the other books, with the anonymous killer alternating chapters with Thorne and his partners until all of them come together in a shocking climax. This is a mature, intelligent novel by a writer who's as thoughtful as his main character, and the series grows better with each new addition. Agent, Kim Witherspoon. (June) Forecast: Consistent quality, solid publisher backing, inclusion in several recent anthologies and a six-city author tour should continue to bring Londoner Billingham new readers stateside. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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