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Publisher's Summary

With floods threatening both the town of Kingsmarkham and his own home and no end to the rain in sight, Chief Inspector Wexford already has his hands full when he learns that two local teenagers have gone missing along with their sitter, Joanna Troy. Their hysterical mother is convinced that all three have drowned, and as the hours stretch into days Wexford suspects a case of kidnapping, perhaps connected with an unusual sect called the Church of the Good Gospel. But when the sitter's smashed-up car is found at the bottom of a local quarry - occupied by a battered corpse - the investigation takes on a very different hue.For her 19th Chief Inspector Wexford mystery, Ruth Rendell tells a story that is as taut and atmospheric as anything she has ever written. Ruth Rendell has won many awards, including the Crime Writers' Association Cartier Diamond Dagger.
©2004 Ruth Rendell; (P)2009 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
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Critic Reviews

"The plot....marches efficiently to its unguessable dénouement while demonstrating Rendell's grasp of the psychological dynamics of seduction and exploitation which lie at the heart of the case." (The New Yorker)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By connie on 03-13-11

as good as anything Rendell has written

If you appreciate mysteries -- of the more traditional "cozy" variety rather than edge of seat potboilers with formula violence and sex-- this is a perfect listen. Rendell's characters, setting detail, plot, and atmosphere in this are right up there with P.D. James.

Rendell's charaters age well, so rather than a vintage listen, Wexford and company reason their way through the Internet age as smartly as they did in early 60s England. But this listen builds soldily on the traditional English cozy.

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7 of 8 people found this review helpful


By Cougar on 03-31-11

Interesting and exciting

The two characteristics I look for in a detective novel are interesting and exciting. Both are present in this book. Not only is the text interesting but the excitment is greatly enhanced by the wonderful rendering given by Mr. Anthony. If you like whodunit books, this is one for you. I particularly liked the last two chapters. Wait until you hear them. It is quentisential Rendell

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4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By H. Thomas on 10-05-17

Intriguing story, very well told

I love Nigel Anthony's readings of Inspector Wexford novels. His vocal skills enable him to recreate Wexford's voice much as George Baker did on the on-screen version, and he's versatile enough to apply good voices for the other characters too.

As with most Wexford cases, there are all sorts of plot twists and turns, yet when eventually the denouement is reached, it has a pleasing psychological realism about it

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By Terminal Clearly on 12-08-16

Great narrator

Got to love a bit of Inspector Wexford. Really engaging mystery and beautifully read. Old school crime.

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