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Publisher's Summary

One terrible case always haunted detective Matt Ballard. Now many years later, the killer seems to be back. And this time he's after Matt. 

When Matt Ballard was starting out his career, three boys were murdered in the same area, the remote and bleak Gibbet Fen. When the main suspect was killed in a hit-and-run, the killings stopped. But Matt was not satisfied that the real murderer had been caught. 

Over 25 years later, Matt gets a photo in an unmarked envelope. It's of the Gibbet Fen crime scene. And the picture was taken before the murder took place. More photos arrive, relating to the historic murders, as well as intimate pictures of Matt's very secret private life. 

Then another murder happens, with some of the hallmarks of the old case. Has the killer returned, or is this just a sick copycat determined to ruin Matt's life and reputation?

©2017 Joy Ellis (P)2018 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Wayne
  • 2018-06-04

Author Joy Ellis knows how to build suspense!

BEWARE THE PAST is a marvelous standalone modern detective mystery by British author Joy Ellis. Few novels build and maintain suspense as well as this one. There is a major plot twist that I never saw coming. Like the novel, the narration earns 5 stars.

I've listened to and enjoyed all 8 novels in the Nikki Galena series by Joy Ellis. On June 14 a novel from her highly rated Jackman and Evans suspense mystery modern detective series will be released in audio format. The title is THEIR LOST DAUGHTERS.

15 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Douglas
  • 2018-06-06

An okay mystery

Let's deal with the narration first... it's horrible. It's inconsistent and at some points the female characters sound like bass-toned males.

My main complaint with this book is that Matt Ballard the DCI is happily having a romantic affair with one of his subordinates. It's very clear that it's consensual; however, at one point the killer does something and all our hero can worry about is that his illicit sexual romps with his married colleague will be found out. Really? I think if I was in Matt's place I'd be worrying about a few others things first. I know I'm being vague about what the killer did but I thought it was interesting and don't want to spoil it.

At the end of the book there's a scene with Matt, his lover and the lover's husband in the same room. The author could have handled the situation in a classy way, instead the author decided to cheapen the moment by using a dues ex and let Matt completely off the hook.

I guess my biggest issue with this book is that I didn't like our hero. I found Matt's 2nd in command Jason and the killer to be more interesting characters. I'll try another of the author's books but I'll have to really enjoy it to read a third.

13 of 17 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • B. G.
  • 2018-08-22

Kept me gueaaing til the end. I have not been dissapointed with any Joy Ellis' books

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • KarenUpNorth
  • 2018-06-20

Bravo!

Possibly the best of Joy Ellis’ books. I almost didn’t purchase this audiobook due to a couple negative early reviews of the narrator. I’m so glad I gave it a chance. The story and the narration are brilliant.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Kamei
  • 2018-12-18

good plot

good characters and lots of exciting plot twists, very surprising ending and a shocking villain

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Catherine
  • 2018-12-06

Not up to her usual standards

I found the writing frequently awkward during the setup of the storyline — with obvious exposition of facts the reader needs to know but in such an unnatural way that it feels like the writer is struggling to get the story started.
I found the narrator’s female voices to sound rather weak or ditzy, which doesn’t fit cops.

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  • Debbie
  • 2018-11-09

Gritty, Maddening, Sad . . . Victorious

This stand-alone by Joy Ellis had me listening with a range of emotions that many of her others did not . . . first off, let me say, I LOVE this author . . . but I wasn't real happy with the affair between DCI Matt Ballard and his subordinate on the team, Liz, (who is married to a deployed soldier). That it was JUST SEX made me furious. Had I not already listened to all of the Fens series and trusted this author, I'd have stopped listening and returned the book. Very glad that I stuck with it. As in most of her books, things took so many twists and turns that I nearly got whiplash. Delving deep into a case from the past and into Matt Ballard's personal demons, the killer is able to thwart the police at every turn. Stick with the story, you'll be glad you did.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sue
  • 2018-09-23

Wonderful thriller

Joy Ellis doesn’t disappoint. So well written that I stayed up to the wee hours to finish this book. Highly recommend.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • J. Tierney
  • 2018-09-12

Couldn't even finish. Horrible narration

I couldn't get past the first chapter. I found the narration so bad that I couldn't even continue. Horrible, since I like Joy Ellis a lot. Somebody missed the mark on this narrator. Must be related to someone. Too bad. Total waste of one of my credits.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Chooch
  • 2018-06-11

Very disappointing

Weak all the way around. Narrator did not pronounce A. D. or Addie’s name the same.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful