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With No One As Witness (Thomas Lynley and Barbara Havers Novels) Hardcover – March 15, 2005

Book 13 of 19 in the Inspector Lynley Series

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March is Women's Mystery Month, a celebration of women mystery writers. Mary Roberts Rinehart was one of the most prolific. If you're not familiar with her work, check out The Circular Staircase now available on Kindle.

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Product Details

  • Series: Thomas Lynley and Barbara Havers Novels
  • Hardcover: 640 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; 1st edition (March 15, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060798459
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060545604
  • ASIN: 0060545607
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (315 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #425,938 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Acting Supt. Thomas Lynley and Det. Constable Barbara Havers face their most challenging and perilous case yet—the linked murders of four youths, three of black or mixed parentage—in bestseller George's absorbing 13th British police procedural (after 2003's A Place of Hiding). Crime fans will find plenty of forensic minutiae and details of police bureaucracy and politics, but it's characterization at which George really excels. The up-and-down career of Havers is at low ebb following her demotion from sergeant to constable, and her rocky personal life doesn't make that easier to bear. Lynley's professional life has become more difficult due to the continued absence of Supt. Malcolm Webberly and the need to deal directly with Asst. Commissioner David Hillier. The tension builds as the brutal serial killings continue and the pressure to solve them mounts. George expertly uses every device in the book from red herrings to blind alleys, from subtle twists to swift shocks. This is an outstanding and explosive addition to a popular series.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Issues of racism within the police are brought to the fore when the ritualistic murder of a teenage boy is linked to the deaths of three other youths. It's clear there's a serial killer at work, and New Scotland Yard is called in to solve the case and quell accusations of police prejudice. Detective Inspector Thomas Lynley has his hands full----not only with finding the murderer but also with ensuring that volatile Barbara Havers doesn't further damage her career. Then there's the matter of keeping an eye on a tabloid reporter and a profiler whom intractable Assistant Commissioner Hillier has foisted on the team. Veteran thriller writer George, an American, is as at home with the social dynamics of the seedier parts of London as she is with the multidimensional personalities of Lynley and his colleagues (Winston Nkata, in particular, really comes into his own here). This is a riveting installment in a superb series--far more than just plain good. It's also a turning point for the series as George makes some bold, surprising decisions that permanently change the lives of the characters her fans have come to know. Stephanie Zvirin
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Customer Reviews

I have long been a fan of Elizabeth George and her Lynley and Havers mysteries.
S. Schwartz
I've always thought that one of the main characters was a two-dimensional character and the tragedy in the book didn't affect me as much as Haver's tears at the end.
N. Goodwin
One of the reasons I enjoy Elizabeth George so very much is that she gives me a well-plotted story, and characters that have become very real, over the years.
Beverly Johnson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

168 of 189 people found the following review helpful By tregatt on March 18, 2005
Format: Hardcover
When the naked body of a dead young boy is found mutilated and artfully arranged on top of a tomb, it opens up a whole can of worms for the Metropolitan Police Force of London, for it turns out that this is just the latest in a string of similar murders. The thing is that the previous victims had been either black or of mixed race and had been written off as gang related killings. This latest victim, however, is white and is inviting a whole lot of interest. Hoping to contain the accusations of racism and callousness, AC Hillier appoints acting Detective Superintendent Thomas Lynley to the case, assigning him newly promoted Detective Winston Nkata (window dressing in Hiller's mind for the public as Nkata is off Jamaican background) and allowing Lynley to keep fiery Detective Constable Barbara Havers on the team. Everyone quickly realises that they have a serial killer on their hands; and as they race to discover how many prior victims there were and identify them, and to try to establish a pattern of sorts that would give them a clue as to the killer's modus operandi, Lynley also has to contend with Hiller's need to direct the investigation and his desire that Lynley and his team cooperate with the newspapers. As the killings continue to mount, and as the police officers race to get a result, things take an unexpected and explosive turn, one that perhaps neither Lynley nor Havers will ever recover from..

With "With No One as Witness" Elizabeth George is once again in top form. I was terribly disappointed with "A Place of Hiding," and began to wonder if the Lynely-Havers mysteries would ever go back to becoming the compelling, dark reads that they once were.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Sleepless in CS on September 20, 2005
Format: Hardcover
What a horrible ending!!! But to say I was surprised would be wrong, because there were foreshadowings of it all through the book. Couldn't you just tell that there was something off? I got an inkling about half way through, and as I became more and more convinced of it, I looked on the last couple of pages and my suspicions were confirmed and I just put the book away. I have a toddler and am sleep-deprived, and I don't need any help in being emotional. This disturbed me for days! I read books to escape, not to sink into a pit of despair and clutch my child to me. Thanks Eliz, but why in the *#($ couldn't you have let Tommy be happy for once, REALLY. Hasn't he had enough bad things happen to him? Would it have been that difficult to just let him have something? You've tortured me with their emotional difficulties (the one where she's helping her sister out and they have the discussion about losing yourself in marriage...I needed a translator), but was this really the answer?

I'll have to have someone read the next one first and let me know if it's going to send me to the psych ward before I read it. If I want to be disturbed by a book, I'll read a Ruth Rendell, thank you very much. At least hers don't wear you to the bone with over-analyzed descriptions of emotions and try to explain the British class system to you at the same time. ~sigh~
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44 of 51 people found the following review helpful By M. A. Williamson on March 27, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Reading this novel reminds me of how I felt watching Michael Jordan play baseball. I respected the emotions that were driving him, and he did an OK job at it, but I just wanted him to get it out of his system already and go back to basketball, which he played like no one else on earth. Like an angel.

In With No One as Witness, Elizabeth George inflicts on us her restlessness with the world she so brilliantly created over the past 17 years. Instead of her gorgeously-plotted and intimate tales of normal people driven to murder, she strikes out into the territory of serial killers. It's a mistake.

In the past, she's developed villains who linger in our memory for the richness of their characters and the awful logic that drives them to commit murder. But for the grace of God, any of us might be Robin Payne (In the Presence of the Enemy) or Sarah Gordon (For the Sake of Elena).

In this book, she provides a serial killer, whose character verges on a parody of serial killers; a host of secondary characters who's motives are perplexing; and an inattention to versimilitude that is highly annoying and most unlike George. Oh, and she also stuffs the book with weighty themes including racism, child pornography, and the evils of tabliod journalism.

But my real beef with this novel isn't that she branches off into an area that she handles less well: any author of a long-running series is bound to run out of ideas sometimes. And there's a long and honorable tradition of authors of one genre flexing their creative muscles in another area â€" think of beloved crime writer P.D. James and her foray into science fiction (The Children of Men). But P.D.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By S. K Repasy on March 27, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I was beyond thrilled when Elizabeth George's newest hit the racks. I consumed the others in the series. Her latest is fast-paced and very interesting. But after a surprising and unwelcome plot-twist 3/4 of the way through, I really had a hard time finishing it. Overall, it was depressing. Who wants to see your heroes bleeding thru the last page?
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More About the Author

Elizabeth George is the New York Times bestselling author of fourteen novels of psychological suspense, one book of nonfiction, and two short-story collections. Her work has been honored with the Anthony and Agatha awards, the Grand Prix de LittÉrature PoliciÈre, and the MIMI, Germany's prestigious prize for suspense fiction. She lives in Washington State.

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