Past Mortem Hardcover – 1 Nov 2004
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'Ben Miles's reading... is flawless' -- Christina Hardyment, The Times
a clever story idea, with an excellent performance by Miles -- The Sunday Times --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The bestselling new novel from Ben EltonSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
There is a great interweaving of different story lines, the crimes with gruesome details, a love story, interesting characters and the sex. The sex – my father used to say
“You youngsters think you invented sex”
I’m now at the same age my fathers was when he made these remarks, and it’s true, youth must have invented sex, there are things in this book I had never dreamt of; but then again, I have lead a very sheltered life.
A truly enjoyable read.
If you've read "Dead Famous" then its probably helpful if I tell you that "Past Mortem " does for the internet school reunion (a la Friends Reunited) phenomenon what "Dead Famous" did for the "Big Brother" phenomenon. Except that there's more murders in this, and they are far more inventive and gruesome. This is not a criticism.The different methods of the murders are essential to the narrative.
Without giving away too much of the plot, several rather horrible people are murdered. There seems to be nothing linking them, except that they have all been mentioned in messages on the Friends Reunited website.
I've already mentioned "Dead Famous" . One important difference in this story is that you are drawn far more into all the characters than in the earlier book. To be honest, I couldn't really have cared less about the three investigating detectives in the earlier novel. This is not true in "Past Mortem". All of the characters hold your interest. There is nothing slack or wasted here.
One word of warning. Of the several others of Elton's novels which I have read, I would say that , in terms of matters sexual, they are earthy, but not worryingly explicit. There is one scene in "Past Mortem" which is extremely graphic in its depiction of a sado masochistic sexual encounter.Read more ›
The novel reads like a black comedy version of a Shaun Hutson thriller novel, being very easy to read, delivering short fast paced chapters that end on miniature cliff hangers throughout the book. The novel follows the life of detective Edward Newson as he tries to capture a serial killer who is murdering bullies in inventive and disturbing ways. The storyline is somewhat similar to David Fincher's film Seven, yet at the same time so very far removed.
The likeable character of Newson, who was obviously based on Elton himself, keeps the novel alive with his comical view on the world, even in the face of such difficult circumstances. The running subplot of Newson's secret crush on one of his fellow colleagues and his resulting non-existent love life, makes the character so much more loveable.
The novel is slightly let down by the obvious and predictable outcome of who the killer is, which becomes apparent from quite early on. This obviously was not Elton's intention, which ruins the `twist-ending' as you will see it coming from a mile away. Still, the book is a thoroughly enjoyable read due to the well written nature of the book, and for a bit of light hearted reading, you can't go wrong with it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Brilliant, well written, gripping but difficult read. Horrible murders but, for me, the explicit dirty sex descriptions were worse! Read morePublished 5 months ago by margaret
Unfortunately I found this novel very hard to get into but once I reached the midpoint I truly enjoyed it. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Gabritems
I love Ben Elton's sense of humour and the way he manages to include this throughout the book.
I loved this book and is a great who done it.
I'd read several Ben Elton books years before but hadn't enjoyed them. After my book group chose Ben Elton as the author of the month I gave him another shot. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Suzanne Newman
This is a clever, witty and enjoyable tale - I am not sure why precious reviewers felt it started slowly. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Madmeerket