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What Came before He Shot Her (Inspector Lynley Series #14)

Average Rating 3.5
( 79 )
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(32)

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(9)

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(6)

2 Star

(12)

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(20)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Best Book I've Read in a Long Time

This is a very well-constructed novel. The suspense is generated
with the title: you don't know who "he" is nor do you know "her". All characters are well-developed. The plot is interwoven beautifully. The dialogue takes only a few moments to catch the rhythm: dys...
This is a very well-constructed novel. The suspense is generated
with the title: you don't know who "he" is nor do you know "her". All characters are well-developed. The plot is interwoven beautifully. The dialogue takes only a few moments to catch the rhythm: dysfunctional Black family in London with Jamaican ties. Great story. Great read. I don't usually like the so-called detective series. This is in a class by itself. I have been passing it along to all my friends and family.

posted by LeslieDK on July 25, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Different, well written but overall disappointing

I read this book after reading her entire series, and found it lacking in many ways. The author is excellent and it is well written, but if you are expecting a 'nice read' and your favorite characters you will not find them here. There is a very gritty look at...
I read this book after reading her entire series, and found it lacking in many ways. The author is excellent and it is well written, but if you are expecting a 'nice read' and your favorite characters you will not find them here. There is a very gritty look at the side of London most people chose to ignore, racially segregated and gang oriented, but there is some hope with good characters developed. Overall, it is not a book I would read again nor really recommend to prior fans of George's work.

posted by Anonymous on July 17, 2008

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  • Posted November 23, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Not perfect, but oh - what a trip!

    Wow. That was my first reaction on finishing this incredible book. <BR/><BR/>Like many other fans of George's Lynley/Havers series, I was shocked when she killed off Thomas Lynley's wife Helen for no apparent reason. This story doesn't provide a reason - indeed, there are several questions left unanswered - but what it does provide is a detailed and searing look into the background of the supposed shooter. And yes, I said "supposed". I'm not going to insert a full spoiler here; I'll just leave you with that tantalizing hint. <BR/><BR/>What this story also provides is proof - as if any were needed - that George can venture into fields other than mysteries and (British) police procedurals and still spin a ripping good yarn. In some respects the story of Joel Campbell is rather typical. He's the product of a broken home, with a mother in the psych ward, a little brother who's not altogether there, and an older sister who is nowhere near as violent as Aileen Wuornos but whose sexual proclivities make Wuornos look like a pansy. <BR/><BR/>The tale starts with the children's grandmother dropping them off at their aunt's flat - she's running away from them and from her responsibilities as their unofficial guardian, and thus begins the tale of their downfall. <BR/><BR/>There are, as I said, some unanswered questions. We see the killing of Helen Lynley from Joel's point of view, but we still don't understand the why. It's implied that there is some kind of connection between Thomas Lynley and the criminal known as the Blade, but George doesn't explain or give any hint as to the nature of that connection and as far as I remember the Blade isn't mentioned in the "prequel" ("With No One as Witness"). <BR/><BR/>Perhaps she'll provide an explanation someday, but this is still a well-written and extremely interesting look into life on the other side.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2006

    Please, please, tell me...

    that Elizabeth George's next novel will find some justice for Joel, Ness and Tobe. Yikes, what a downer, but brillantly written and thought provoking.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2007

    Life doesn't always have happy endings

    Having read all the previous Lynley/Havers book and being a devoted fan, I was saddened by the death in 'With No One to Witness' but still eager to read 'What Came Before He Shot Her'. I was startled by EG's departure from the mystery genre, but then was unexpectedly caught up in Joel's life and dilemna. The book left me saddened but also rewarded me in it's look into a life I have no experience with where every door appears to be closed. I only hope the author will somehow find a way to let them go free in the future.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2010

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    Posted December 8, 2010

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    Posted December 8, 2008

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    Posted November 19, 2012

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    Posted July 9, 2010

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    Posted June 26, 2011

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