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Down Into Darkness by David Lawrence
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Down Into Darkness

by David Lawrence

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The naked body of a young woman is found hanging from a tree on a London roadside. Scrawled across her back are the words "DIRTY GIRL."
Detective Stella Mooney is faced with a murder as baffling as it is chilling. With no means to identify the victim and no apparent motive, the case is blocked, until a man is found on a bench by the river, his throat cut back to the vertebrae. And, as before, the killer has left a trademark comment: "FILTHY COWARD."
Stella and her team can see there's a connection--but what? One victim is a young girl, maybe one of the hookers who work the Strip; the other, a researcher for a prominent and controversial member of Parliament. More evidence is needed. And soon enough it comes: another death; another message.... ( )
  Suzanne_Mitchell | Dec 26, 2013 |
Gruesome but beguiling.

As with his three previous novels set in a (hopefully) fictitious area of London near Holland Park, the proliferation of the most heinous crimes goes all but unchecked despite the heroic endeavours of Detective Sergeant Stella Mooney. She is by no means flawless herself, but she is an immensely sympathetic character, coping with the memories of her grim childhood on the sink estate she now helps to police and the reverberations of assorted personal tragedies. The crimes she encounters are hideous, and the author does nothing to lighten their horror, though their is nothing gratuitous about them.

In this book, West London is being stalked by a vicious serial killer (again), who selects his victims, kills them in very public settings and then writes a demeaning messages on their bodies ('DIRTY GIRL', 'FILTHY COWARD' ). Stella and her colleagues in the Area Major Investigation Pool are lumbered with the onerous task of investigating the murders from scratch.

As in the three previous novels we are given appalling insights into life on the Harefield Estate where brothels, stills, hidden casinos and illegal armouries abound. Such is the sense of evil pervading the estate that at one point Stella notices a large crowd forming in the centre and, based on her experiences growing up there, immediately knows that it can only mean a vicious dog-fight is being arranged. Nothing else could cut through the residents pervading apathy!

I hope Lawrence writes a further instalment. ( )
  Eyejaybee | Nov 8, 2010 |
a little too bleak and too many threads for me to keep up with ( )
  ReadingKnitter01 | Aug 5, 2008 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312347421, Hardcover)

The naked body of a young woman is found hanging from a tree on a London roadside. Scrawled across her back are the words "DIRTY GIRL."
     Detective Stella Mooney is faced with a murder as baffling as it is chilling. With no means to identify the victim and no apparent motive, the case is blocked, until a man is found on a bench by the river, his throat cut back to the vertebrae. And, as before, the killer has left a trademark comment: "FILTHY COWARD."
     Stella and her team can see there's a connection--but what? One victim is a young girl, maybe one of the hookers who work the Strip; the other, a researcher for a prominent and controversial member of Parliament. More evidence is needed. And soon enough it comes: another death; another message....

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:06 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

"The naked body of a young woman is found hanging from a tree on a London roadside. Scrawled across her back are the words "DIRTY GIRL."" "Detective Stella Mooney is faced with a murder as baffling as it is chilling. With no means to identify the victim and no apparent motive, the case is blocked, until a man is found on a bench by the river, his throat cut back to the vertebrae. And, as before, the killer has left a trademark comment: "FILTHY COWARD."" "Stella and her team can see there's a connection - but what? One victim is a young girl, maybe one of the hookers who work the Strip; the other, a researcher for a prominent and controversial member of Parliament. More evidence is needed. And soon enough it comes: another death; another message..."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

» see all 3 descriptions

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