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Good As Dead (Tom Thorne Novels) Hardcover – 18 Aug 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown (18 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847444199
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847444196
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 3.3 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (143 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 115,855 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mark Billingham is one of the UK's most acclaimed and popular crime writers. A former actor, television writer and stand-up comedian, his series of novels featuring D.I. Tom Thorne has twice won him the Crime Novel Of The Year Award as well as the Sherlock Award for Best British Detective and been nominated for seven CWA Daggers. His standalone thriller IN THE DARK was chosen as one of the twelve best books of the year by the Times and his debut novel, SLEEPYHEAD was chosen by the Sunday Times as one of the 100 books that had shaped the decade. Each of his novels has been a Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller.

A television series based on the Thorne novels was screened in Autumn 2010, starring David Morrissey as Tom Thorne and series based on the standalone thrillers IN THE DARK and RUSH OF BLOOD are currently in development with the BBC.

Product Description

Review

A rollercoaster of a read... confirms Billingham's status as one of the finest crime writers around Daily Express Taut and tense, with an unusually sympathetic hostage-taker The Times

Book Description

Thorne is back, and bigger than ever

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

128 of 135 people found the following review helpful By Keris Nine TOP 500 REVIEWER on 9 July 2011
Format: Paperback
The last Mark Billingham book I read was In The Dark, which I found a refreshing and successful change for the author, both in writing style and in taking the focus away from his regular character DI Thorne. It wasn't a change that was to everyone's taste however, so while I was slightly disappointed to find that Good As Dead is back more or less to the standard procedural of crime investigation with Tom Thorne back in the driving seat, that's still not a bad place to be, demonstrating as it does the author's strong authentic characterisation and awareness of the contemporary issues relating to police investigation. Often that's in relation to the difficult areas of race, social, political and internal police affairs, but Billingham also introduces a few interesting touches of its own here in what turns out to be an intriguing case.

At the start however, Good As Dead seems like it's setting up a fairly standard situation, when the Indian owner of a cornershop, seemingly fed-up with the daily hassle and abuse he has to put up with from young kids, cracks and barricades himself into the shop, holding a couple of hostages at gunpoint. One of the people being held is police officer Helen Weeks (introduced in In The Dark), and it's no coincidence either. The man, Mr Akhtar, is actually upset about the death of his son Amin, who recently died in a prison cell. Akhtar doesn't believe the official verdict of suicide and he's going to hold the siege for as long as it takes for DI Thorne, who was involved in the original case, to find out the truth behind his boy's death. Time is of the essence and, looking into the matter, Thorne - with help from his regular team of officers - indeed finds that something isn't quite right about the case.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By S. J. Mackenzie on 21 Jan 2012
Format: Hardcover
DS Helen Weeks goes into her local newsagents for a bar of chocolate and some chewing gum. Within minutes she and a fellow customer are being held hostage at gunpoint by the owner Javed Akter who believes his son was murdered whilst in prison despite the official verdict being suicide.

Akter insists that DI Tom Thorne reinvestigates what happened and retore justice otherwise he will kill his prisoners.

This was a completely gripping book with action alternating between what was happening inside the shop, the responses of the hostage negotiators and Thorne's investigations. It was impossible not to feel sympathy with many of the characters as they were all well rounded and believeable. I had no idea how the book was going to end and it was only towards the end that Thorne's investigations dominated the storyline.

Brilliant installment in the series- can't wait for the next one now!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JK on 21 Feb 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thought this was quite good - a worthy addition to the series, if not, perhaps, the best of the bunch.

The setup seems a rather ho-hum affair: a shopkeeper suddenly snaps and shuts down his shop with two hostages held at gunpoint within. His price for their freedom: proof of his son's murder, not suicide, at a local Young Offenders' Institution. Tom Thorne to deliver.

At first, there appears to be little at stake, but the bodies do indeed begin to mount up, and the pacing is perfect.

What makes this especially stimulating reading, though, is its exposure of the casual corruption we imagine pervades the top of the British establishment, and what somebody else in a different context once called the banality of evil: it certainly is banal, but it is also, just as certainly, evil.

A novel seemed to start unpromisingly in fact gathers steam and powers towards a terrific climax.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John Hugh Glen on 28 May 2012
Format: Hardcover
Once more Mark Billingham is to be commended for the absolute readability of this finely woven story for me he has steered clear of falsely pushing Thorne into an atypical behaviour, and has faith in the readers that we will understand the dialect and speech used which is as usual delivered powerfully
This is a masterful story a real page turner and yes I found myself unable to put it down until I had finished, I just can't wait for the next outing from the masterful story-weaver.
At the start though, "Good As Dead" look as if like it's planning a somewhat standard state of affairs, when the Indian owner of a corner shop, apparently sick and tired with the day after day aggravation and aggression from a gang of youths.
I found the story captivating the description of all the characters is simply outstanding and Mark makes sure that Tom Thorne is not a hero, but a man attempting to do a demanding job.
" Good as Dead" has a couple of things that facilitates its ascent to being one of the best woven crime thrillers I have read.
This is the 10th Tom Thorne book and the progression shows no slowing down or tiredness the growth of the Tom Thorne character over the last few books is great and to keep to this intensity of superbly woven stories is a demonstration of the gift that this master story weaver mark Billingham has.
To finish I cannot recommend Mark Billingham's books enough and I await the next instalment with great excitement.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
First seen in IN THE DARK, DS Helen Weeks now has an energetic one-year-old son, Alfie, and she’s back at work in the Child Protection Unit. When she visits her local newsagent on her way to work, the last thing she expects is to be taken hostage by him. But Javed Akhtar is a man on a mission. His son, Amin, recently died in a young offender’s institution – having been jailed for manslaughter and while the death was ruled a suicide, Javed’s convinced he was murdered. DI Tom Thorne was responsible for Amin’s conviction, so Javed wants him to find Amin’s killer. Thorne finds himself in a race against time to discover the truth when the body count starts to rise …

The tenth in Mark Billingham’s TOM THORNE SERIES is another page-turning thriller that shows Thorne once again prepared to break the rules to get the result he knows is right. The problem is that the conspiracy element to the story never convinced me because it’s so dependent on a contrived set of events that didn’t ring true. This is a shame because I really enjoyed the return of Helen Weeks who’s struggling to keep her head in a stressful situation and whose conversations with Javed really bring out the pain and loss that comes when the justice system acts unfairly. I also enjoyed the way Thorne continues to develop here now that his relationship with Louise is over and the way in which he is looking to reorder his life to make a new start and yet cannot escape his old habits. Ultimately, this was entertaining enough to keep me reading but it wasn’t the best in the series – although I will definitely check out the next book.

The best scenes in the book for me were those between Javed and Helen.
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