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A Dreaming Detective [Audio Cassette]

H. R. F. Keating , Shelia Mitchell

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Book Description

December 2004
The Imperial Hotel, scene of the brutal murder of the Boy Preacher over thirty years ago, is about to be demolished, and the Chief Constable wants Harriet to take one last look at the scene. Seven people had waited outside the ballroom where the Boy Preacher was to begin his sermon, shortly before he was found brutally strangled. Now, with the use of DNA, the suspects clothes are to be scientifically examined. The Chief Constable is intending to close this case once and for all. As she waits for the DNA results, Harriet decides to interview the suspects and make up her own mind about the Boy's killer. But when the results fail to tally with Harriet's own mounting suspicions, the Hard Detective fears that this time she will not be able to give the Chief the answer he needs...
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Sound Library; Unabridged edition (December 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0792733932
  • ISBN-13: 978-0792733935
  • Product Dimensions: 22.7 x 12.6 x 2.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 386 g

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Det. Supt. Harriet Martens (aka the Hard Detective) has a controlling new boss ("Mr. Newbroom"), a new and very cold case and the deck stacked against her in this solid police procedural from prolific British author Keating (A Detective Under Fire, etc.). There were seven possible suspects when Krishna Kumaramangalam, the Boy Preacher, was strangled to death in a Birchester hotel ballroom 30 years earlier. Despite the efforts of a top detective at the time, no conclusive evidence was uncovered. Harriet is tasked with applying DNA tests to the stored evidence and discreetly reinterviewing surviving suspects, each of whom offers intriguing possibilities. If she succeeds, her boss will claim credit; if she fails, for whatever good reason, Chief Constable Newbroom's bad opinion of her will appear confirmed. Not technology but old-fashioned police work applied with a fresh eye and Harriet's customary vigor turns out to be the key to solving the crime, whose closed-room aspects Keating adroitly handles. The final confrontation between Harriet and Mr. Newbroom will induce more than a few smiles.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

H. R. F. Keating has written numerous novels but he is perhaps most famous for the Inspector Ghote series set in India. He was the crime books reviewer for The Times for fiteen years, has served as Chairman of the CWA and the Society of Authors, and in 1987 was elected President of the Detection Club. He lives in London. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Amazon.com: 2.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars So-so Oct. 31 2004
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Not explaining his motives, the new Chief Constable of Greater Birchester Police Newcomen assigns Detective Superintendent Harriet "The `Hard Detective" Martens with solving a cold case homicide. Taken slightly aback by the hostility in her superior's voice, Harriet has no idea who Mr. Newcomen was referring to when he asked her "Who Killed the Preacher". He expects her to solve the vicious 1967 strangling murder of "The Boy Preacher" Krishna Kumaramangalam before the Imperial Hotel, site of the killing, is demolished. Harriet concludes her new boss wants her to fail so he can claim she is not worthy of her rank and can live up to his nickname Mr. Newbroom by sweeping her away.

Newcomen claims that advances in sleuthing in the past three plus decades will prove fruitful if Harriet is capable of doing her job. While waiting for the results of DNA testing, Harriet reads a true crime book, "Who Killed the Preacher". Next she interviews the seven prime suspects who were the only people with access to the crime scene as the Hard Detective is not going to gently allow Mr. Newbroom to sweep her away.

Once the audience overcomes the regression of talent by placing a highly ranked and paid detective on a cold case for personal vendetta reasons, fans will enjoy this fine British police procedural. The story line moves at a fast pace as Harriet refuses to go down without a fight. Though Newcomen comes across as an officious media hound and his assignment ridiculous, fans will appreciate Harriet's efforts as her inquiries are top rate. Strong investigation, but the rationale for wasting time and money by using the top gun seems unreal.
2.0 out of 5 stars Slowgoing Series Oct. 8 2006
By D. Morse - Published on Amazon.com
This is the second audiobook in this series I've listened to and still find it hard to work up much enthusiasm for Chief Constable Harriet Martens (not sure if that's her correct title). Harriet's constant doubts about her judgment and hunches drive me crazy! However did the woman get promoted? Maybe I'm just too used to the confident inspectors of Martha Grimes (Inspector Jury) and Elizabeth George (Lynley and Havers). The problems those characters have are with their personal lives and not police work. I do like Harriet's husband who ought to be on the force. Even her new DC is a basket case of nerves! I'll try a third book and see if it's a charm or strike out!

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