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Publisher's Summary

Jessica Clarke had been set alight 20 years ago. Her attacker, quickly tracked down and eager to confess, is still in jail, his career as a hitman for North London gangs now well behind him. So who is harassing Carol Chamberlain, the arresting officer, and claiming that he is one who burned the girl?

Now retired, Carol turns to DI Tom Thorne for help. Thorne is up to his neck investigating a series of killings which appear to be the result of a turf war between rival gangs, and he's fed up to the gills with reporting to DCI Tughan, so helping Carol out looks like a good deed in a naughty world. Only the world is about to turn much nastier, so nasty in fact that he finds himself longing for a straightforward psycopath to hunt down.

This is a powerful work, exploring the effects of violence and greed on the lives of those who exploit their fellow beings.

©2001 Mark Billingham; (P)2005 Time Warner AudioBooks

Critic Reviews

"Assured and shocking thriller." (The Guardian)
"A cunning variation on the serial-murder theme." (Sunday Telegraph)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • mark
  • 12-17-15

what a disappointment

Would you try another book written by Mark Billingham or narrated by Roger Lloyd Pack?

Mark Billingham - Yes. Roger lloyd Pack - No way.

What will your next listen be?

Another Mark Billingham book , narrated by another actor

Would you be willing to try another one of Roger Lloyd Pack’s performances?

No

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

No, I could not get beyond the first ten minutes. I have read the book and enjoyed it. I wanted the audio book to listen to in the car on a very long journey. I was immediately disappointed and annoyed with myself that i didn't check the narrator, I gave it a chance but really did not enjoy the narrators style, tone or voice. So much better by the other narrator used by Billingham.

Any additional comments?

remember to check the sample and narrator before buying!

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  • Sue
  • 06-21-15

Good story.

Not my favourite in the series. Probably because it was abridged and felt disjointed in places.
I didn't much care for the narration. Once it occurred to me that the guy sounded like Trigger from Only Fools and Horses it got in the way for me.
Overall an okay listen.

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  • sarah
  • 03-18-15

another great book but....

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

After purchasing the books from 1 to 5 slightly out of sequence i found burning girl the most difficult to engage with. This had nothing to do with the content but everything to do with the narrator.

How could the performance have been better?

After being spoiled by Robert glenister narrating the other books I've listened to, i found Roger Lloyd Pack's narration dull and monotone. The performance distracted me from fully enjoying the book. I have re-listened to the other 4 books many times but can't bring myself to suffer the narration again. This is no reflection on the narrator really as Robert Glennister is superb as Thorne.

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  • Sue
  • 12-09-08

Gripping stuff

The fourth novel featuring Tom Thorne by Mark Billingham. I enjoyed the story and it tackled a whole new area of dodgy characters lurking in the underworld. The subject matter was bold which must have been quite challenging to write et alone research.
I have given all the other books 5 stars and this one only drops to four because of the change in narrator. No offense to Robert Lloyd Pack, he read it very well, but I simply could not get past his character in the vicar of dibley reading this. Not fair I suppose but I did find that distracting.
Overall audio quality and pace were up to the usual standards

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