Ventura County Star (California)

"With No One as Witness," by Elizabeth George.
Read by Charles Keating, abridged on CD, 10 hours. Harper Audio, $39.95.

New Scotland Yard detectives don't grill scumbags to hunt down a killer; they interview sods during an inquiry. And unlike their U.S. cop cousins, Brit cops never have a gun when they need to blast a bad guy. Their cars can break down. Even finding a parking spot can be a problem.

Those are a few reasons why police procedurals by British authors can be so much better than those of their U.S. counterparts.

Elizabeth George is one of England's best at the genre. Along with a solid plot and believable characters, she doesn't waste anything. When New Scotland Yard Detective Constable Barbara Havers keeps putting off taking her sputtering car to a mechanic, rest assured it will factor into the plot.

Havers, along with longtime partner, Thomas Lynley, are central to a relentless search for a serial killer taking down adolescent boys. But cops don't connect the deadly dots until a fourth victim in three months turns up, his mutilated body found atop a tomb at St. George's Garden cemetery.

With fresh writing and knowing just how much of her detectives' personal lives to reveal, Elizabeth George has produced a stellar psychological thriller/ whodunit/police procedural.

Reader Charles Keating is an Emmy-nominated actor, who -- not surprisingly, based on his stellar performance here, has performed with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

"With No One As Witness," George's 12th novel, is top-notch audiobook from a seasoned pro.

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