What Came Before He Shot Her

What Came Before He Shot Her

Book - 2006
Average Rating:
12
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The brutal, inexplicable death of Inspector Thomas Lynley's wife has left Scotland Yard shocked and searching for answers. Even more horrifying is that the trigger was apparently pulled by a twelve-year-old boy. Who is he? Where did he come from? And what were the circumstances that led to his final act of desperation?

That story begins on the other side of London, in rough North Kensington, where the three mixed-race, virtually orphaned Campbell children are bounced first from their grandmother then to their aunt. The oldest, fifteen-year-old Ness, is headed for trouble as fast as her high-heeled boots will take her. That leaves the middle child, Joel, to care for the youngest, Toby. No one wants to put it into words, but something clearly isn't right with Toby.

Before long, there are signs that Joel himself has problems. A local gang starts harassing him and threatening his brother. To protect his family, Joel makes a pact with the devil--a move that leads straight to the front doorstep of Thomas Lynley.

The anatomy of a murder, the story of a family in crisis, What Came Before He Shot Her is a powerful, emotional novel full of deep psychological insights, a novel that only the incomparable Elizabeth George could write.

Publisher: New York : HarperCollins, c2006.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780060545628
0060545623
Branch Call Number: X
Characteristics: 548 p.; 24 cm.

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9
9Bierton
Mar 29, 2016

HATED IT!

maricbuchan Apr 29, 2014

Together with "with no one as witness" this is a master book; one really must love to read to absorve all the nuances of her story. Perfectly crafted, as most of her books. Elizabeth George, a master writter!

s
shyama
Apr 06, 2014

I want my money back! Bitterly disappointed with this book. E G abused our love for her Linley series with this book.

i
idement
Feb 02, 2013

Totally agree with "anon-reader"s comments. Very frustrating to read -- all the more so as I was expecting Ins. Lynley et al. and was disappointed. (My fault for not reading the book description.) Skipped more pages than I read from mid-way to end: the sociological treatise was too much!

l
Lizzie52
Oct 12, 2012

The story was compelling and touching, although hard to read. I don't like dialogue that tries to imitate an accent or local vernacular. I found it quite distracting. At the core however, is a gut-wrenching expose of life as an unwanted child in a racially divided society. George's insight to the human condition made it worth the heavy slogging to get through this sad sad tale of the futility of trying to better onesself.

mikeyppl Mar 29, 2012

I know a lot of Lynley fans didn't care for this book but I feel it was ine of her best. I also feel that there will be a sequel to this as I can't see Lynley not looking further into Helen's death.

a
anon_reader
Mar 25, 2012

Miz George loves t’imitate de English accent. Even more, Miz George loves t’imitate de accent as she imagine it being spoke by de black residents of London, innit. Problem is, readers may b’come vexed by all de “dat” and “innit” and “slag” she use. I t’ink she overdo it wit’ de accent and slang. ‘N some readers may t’ink it a bit rascist dat ever’ black person in de book is either a drug dealer, delinquent, slag or male hottie. It b’ecome vexing, innit? ‘N I t’ink she even use de contraction “innit” incorrect. “innit” is used only in sentences where ‘n interrogative is appropriate, innit?

‘N if de language don’t vex de reader, de story will. De story meander along. T’ings happen. Miz George tug at de heart strings wit’ family tragedies dat would make even Charles Dickens embarrassed t’include. ‘N if de reader already read de previous book in de sequence, well den, d’reader know how it goin’ to end, innit?

Dis reader become very vexed wit’ de book. If you lookin’ to read a Miz George detective mystery, skip dis book and read de next book in de series instead. Innit?

p
Palomino
Sep 19, 2010

I love this series and the writing, but this book's different and I really didn't like it or get "into" it.

j
JenniB
Sep 02, 2010

I wasn't sure I wanted to read this after being so disappointed with the ending of her last book; however, Ms. George has done an excellent job of telling the other side of the story.

l
leftyspinner
Jan 04, 2008

As psychologically intense as Elizabeth George's novel's usually are, this book goes deeper. It's not a "whodunit," it's a "Why did he do it?" and the long sad story brings you closer to understanding how a twelve-year-old could kill someone. Hard to read and harder to forget.

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