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The Burning Girl (unabridged audiobook) [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Personal Computers]

Mark Billingham , narrated by Paul Thornley
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
RRP: 25.52
Price: 15.32 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

12 Nov 2010
Jessica Clarke was set alight twenty years ago. Her attacker is still in jail, so who is harassing Carol Chamberlain - the arresting officer - and claiming that he is the one who burned Jessica? Carol turns to DI Tom Thorne for help, but when an X is carved on his front door, Thorne knows that the embers of a long dead case are about to erupt into flames. This recording is unabridged. Typically abridged audiobooks are not more than 60% of the author's work and as low as 30% with characters and plotlines removed.

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Product details

  • Personal Computers: 10 pages
  • Publisher: Whole Story Audio Books; Unabridged Audiobook 10 CDs edition (12 Nov 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1407476351
  • ISBN-13: 978-1407476353
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 13.4 x 2.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 898,603 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

Amazon Review

With The Burning Girl, Mark Billingham steps away from the inventively vicious serial killers of his earlier thrillers to have his police detective Thorne investigate something equally unpleasant--the men who kill for money not kicks and the gangsters who ruthlessly employ them. Thorne's retired friend Carol put Rooker away years ago for setting fire to a girl--whom he mistakenly believed to be the daughter of gang-boss Kelly; the girl did not die, then, but wished she had. Now someone is ringing Carol, saying it was them that burned the girl, and Rooker is promising to tell the truth; Ryan, Alison Kelly's ex-husband and her father's chosen successor, is caught up in gang warfare with a new North London Turkish mafia. As always, Billingham delivers psychological insights you half wish you didn't have, along with a profound sense of just how far the damaged Thorne will go in the name of justice. Anyone who knows North London will recognise this as being as atmospheric as it is moody--Billingham continues to develop from book to book. --Roz Kaveney --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Scary, pell-mell, cliff-hanging thriller. --Literary Review

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Burning Girl 30 Jan 2006
“The Burning Girl” is the forth book from Mark Billingham to feature the exploits of DI Tom Thorne as he must yet again wrestle against the foes of the London underworld. This time is a departure from the formula of the first three books DI Thorne must start to pick his way into the goings on of organised crime and the money making schemes that these ruthless gangs undertake.
A turf war seems to be developing between a traditional London based gang run by the merciless Billy Ryan and the new kids on the block, a group of Turkish immigrants run by the sinister Zarif brothers. Each side seems to be knocking off their opponents one by one and as the stakes get higher DI Thorne and the other members of SO7 are dragged into the fray. For Tom Thorne the interest in the case is made all the more relevant as he’s been contacted by former DCI Carol Chamberlain who’s now working on old cold cases. Carol has been threatened by a man claiming to have carried out a crime years ago, that of setting an innocent schoolgirl on fire. The things that connects it all is that for the last 20 years or so a man called Gordon Rooker has been locked away for having been convicted of the crime and he was a former “colleague” of Ryan’s.
I felt with the first three of Mark Billingham’s DI Thorne books that the standard of writing and plot had steadily increased with each instalment, I somewhat disappointed therefore to report that I felt this one hadn’t really upped the stakes any further.
It’s a solidly written and enjoyable book, make no mistakes about that, but I just felt that leaving the actual case besides there wasn’t any good character sub-plots going on.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Addition To A Very Impressive Series 25 July 2004
By G. J. Oxley TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Mark Billingham is the hottest new British crime writer on the block. His maverick cop is DI Thorne, who, like Rankin's Rebus, has a healthy disrespect for his inferior superiors, and a real talent for getting up a nose or two.

Both detectives also have despicable vices: Rebus has an inability to pass any pub without nipping in for a pint, or several, while Thorne is an aficionado of Country music: by far the bigger sin. The similarity ends there however: Thorne is very much his own man.

In a year where I've slogged through the new novels by more established names, Mark's new book comes as a breath of fresh air.

For a start, it's beautifully paced and, despite its brooding atmosphere, has several laugh-out-loud moments - not an easy trick to pull off. One scene in particular, set in a massage parlour, is an absolute scream.

And he's not repeating a formula; this book is very different to his first three and shows already that he isn't taking the easy option of sticking to familiar ground.

I won't discuss the plot here - you can read a synopsis anywhere - but I do wish to state that Billingham is an expert at the twist that really surprises.

We get a brace of them near the end here (although I have to confess I did spot one of them coming - but not the other) and then a further final twist in the last chapter, which gives the book a nice dark and ambiguous ending.

For fans of his earlier novels, the relationship between Thorne and his friend, the gay, shaven-headed pathologist Phil Hendricks, is further explored, and provides a nice sub-plot.

I also won't debate the book's merits as a piece of literature; this isn't the forum for in-depth analysis.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay, but not great 1 Oct 2008
Don't get me wrong, I love Mark Billingham. But this steps too far away from the "Thorne trying to solve a murder" plots of the earlier books. I think there are too many sub-plots and too many characters. The ending is a slight anti-climax as well. I hope Billingham has gone back to simiplicity with the next Thorne novels (I'm reading them in order).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars solid, but not out of the top drawer 12 May 2012
By Rob Kitchin TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition
Like many of the leading police procedural writers such as Ian Rankin and Michael Connelly, Billingham has an easy but engaging writing style and a well developed, flawed, driven but sympathetic main character. The pages flip past without any real sense of the reader having do any work. This I think is a strong positive: clear, engaging, economical prose, with realistic scenes and dialogue. The Burning Girl is a solid piece of storytelling, but for me the book lacked the bite or spark that would have given it some needed suspense. The plot seemed a little aimless at times, as if Billingham wasn't quite sure where it was going, and there were a couple of plot devices I didn't really understand, such as the investigation being wrapped up and the team being disbanded even though the case was clearly not over. And the internal police tension amongst team members seemed staged. In contrast, the lives, politics and tactics of gang rivalry and prison life was more convincing. Overall, a solid, entertaining read, but not quite out of the top draw.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping 14 Mar 2011
Another gripping, well-written, Tom Thorne novel from Mark Billingham. The plot is well constructed around a gangland feud that stirs a new review into the shocking case of a schoolgirl who was the victim of an arson attack and took her own life as a result of the horrible disfigurement that she was left with. Including excerpts from the dead girl's diary was a very powerful incision to the main narrative. The crooks on both sides are horrible and yet in an odd way so are the cops - even Tom Thorne is a bit too anti-hero towards the end, and I actually took quite a dislike to him. Nothing is by numbers with Mark Billingham.
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