Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Qty:1
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Past Mortem has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: This item is used and has some wear. Qualifies for free shipping and prime programs.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

Past Mortem Paperback – May 1, 2005

4 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

See all 10 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$16.95
$6.96 $0.01
Audible, Unabridged
"Please retry"

Blood Defense
First in a new series from bestselling author and famed O. J. Simpson trial prosecutor Marcia Clark, a “terrific writer and storyteller” (James Patterson). Learn More
$16.95 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Past Mortem
  • +
  • The First Casualty
Total price: $32.83
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

Winner of The Crime Writers’ Association Gold Dagger Award (for Popcorn) and author of the international mega-seller Dead Famous—Ben Elton is also well-known as a comedian, the scriptwriter for the British cult television series “Blackadder,” the playwright of three West End hits, and the author of a number of international best-sellers, including the prize-winning High Society.

From the Inside Flap

Bestselling author Ben Elton delivers a heart-stopping thriller and a killer comic romance.
With old friends like these, who needs enemies?
It's a question, short, mild mannered detective Edward Newson is forced to ask himself having, in romantic desperation, logged on to the Friends Reunited website searching for the girlfriends of his youth. Newson is not the only member of the Class of '86 who has been raking over the ashes of the past. As his old class begins to reassemble in cyberspace, the years slip away and old feuds and passions burn hot once more.
Meanwhile, back in the present, Newson's life is no less complicated. He is secretly in love with Natasha, his lovely but very attached sergeant, while comprehensively failing to solve a series of baffling and peculiarly gruesome murders. A school reunion is planned and as history begins to repeat itself, the past crashes headlong into the present. Neither will ever be the same again. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE


Product Details

  • Paperback: 459 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Publishers; First Edition edition (May 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552771236
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552771238
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 1 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,592,802 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've read and enjoyed a number of Ben Elton's works, and I don't feel this to be one of his better ones.

Elton tends to take a particular social or environmental issue, and then uses a story to barrage the reader with his trendy and enlightened perspective. Usually he gets away with this - his stories can make a rollicking good read, and the underlying social commentary can be stimulating and thought-provoking.

But in this book I was bored. The social issue he's taken on is bullying, and I really don't need to be told the bleeding obvious - bullying is bad, it's effects are long-lasting, and we should all feel guilty because at one point we watched it happen to someone else and didn't do anything. OK, I get the point Ben, you can stop repeating it. I enjoy it more when he tackles the genuinely contentious issues - "High Society" being my definite favourite.

It isn't a great whodunnit either. I'm not particularly cluey with these things, but here I could pick the murderer as soon as [he or she] was introduced. The trail of bodies gets tedious when you're just waiting for the main character to figure it out.

On the plus side, I enjoyed the school reunion and all of the apsects of revisiting the past. He conjured up the memories of being a teenager in the 80's very well. If he only explored that whole area more I would have had a better reading experience.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Just recently I'd received Past-mortem for Christmas and only hours ago finished reading it. I didn't start reading straight away, but about a week ago, now a week has passed and I have to say it is one of the best crime fiction novels I've read. The blend of crime, sex and romance is flawless, the characters are real and the investigation draws you in and keeps you guessing right to the end. Well I managed to guess the obvious...but the obvious could be different for anybody.

Edward Newson is both on the case of brutal murder as well has his lonely, uneventful life. He lives day by day trying to track down the killer whilst mulling over his junior partner he secretly love, and by night attempts to track down an old girlfriend of his youth over the internet on Friends Reunited. As the story progresses, the killer strikes again, and Edwards old class comes together, "old feuds and passions burn fiercely again."

This is not a novel for the faint heart due to the gory content and extreme sex-capades Ben Elton has added to the book. But it is an easy read, the writing driving head first into the story and not wasting time with bland description, keeping the book to 300 odd pages but 300 pages of worth while story and character development.

Ben Elton is one of the finest writers of this age.
Comment 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I did really enjoy this book in the end but I took a while to get into it. About half way through the book I was beginning to get absorbed in the story and worked out who the villain was very early in the story. Not Ben Elton's best book but it was still well worth reading.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition
A good "holiday read" beats a movie in so many ways. A movie usually lasts a mere 2 hours, while a novel routinely quadruples the duration of pleasure. A movie requires a fixed position in a fixed place, whereas a novel can be enjoyed in any and almost all locations with little or no technology support. Even the best movie CGI can't match vibrancy and emotional power of the imagination at work. The novel is a exercise for developing the imagination. The modern high impact movie generally succeeds in being literally stunning. It is often only after the movie, that we get to digest, speculate, review and use our imagination to pick holes in the universe that we passively experienced. But most importantly, the movie usually only infers consciousness through the skills of the actors. The dreaded voiceover is almost universally acknowledged as a last resort of a failing screenwriter. On the other hand, the novel is usually built on the streams of consciousness of its participants. Our perspective is bent and twisted by being inside their heads, often disagreeing with their narrative, and yet being powerless to influence their fate. This, above all, is what makes the novel superior to film - emotionally, morally and intellectually.

Ben Elton is no Graeme Greene, but even his completely predictable movie style serial killer plot is so much more powerful than the movie of the book (that is yet to be made) could ever be. We enjoy Newson's witty self-depreciating commentary, even more than his bizarre and unbelievable indiscretions.
Unfortunately, Elton bullies the novel completely out of shape to force his theme to the centre focus again and again. Elton shows no sympathy for his characters as they get slaughtered to keep the action moving. The disgusting denouement is dramatic but also uncomfortably comic.
A great "holiday read", but one that leaves a sense of dissatisfaction not dissimilar to that felt after a B grade movie.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
A brilliant read - I read it in 2 sittings (and I'm not refering to the toilet).

Having read all of his books (with the exception of STARK would you believe!) I continue to be engrossed in them. They all flow with the same fluid 'not reading but watching tele' ease.

Past Mortem is no exception and it is truely a book you cant put down. The sex scene with Ed and Helen had me in stitches. Rather than a turn on, Elton turned it into a hilarious chapter. Ed fumbling 'oh...ok' to a rather bizzare request had me rolling!

Yes, there are gruesome details but in the hands of Ben Elton those details do not so much as shock but add to the colour of the story. In any other crime writers hands, the way the murders were committed would be shocking to the point of sick.

The only gripe I have about the book is the ending. It did get very predictable and you cant help but know who the killer is. There are so many clues it becomes too obvious. Infact, it becomes so obvious you begin to wonder if its actually not that character at all. The ending is also weak. The plot to catch the killer is weak and rushed. The end is over way too soon.

But dont let that put you off in the slightest. Its one of his best. I do kind of miss 'wrrrick' though!
1 Comment 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Past Mortem
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
This item: Past Mortem

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Pages with Related Products. See and discover other items: suspense thrillers