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Publisher's Summary

"The Lynley books constitute the smartest, most gratifyingly complex and impassioned mystery series now being published." (Entertainment Weekly)

When 13-year-old Matthew Whately goes missing from Bredgar Chambers, a prestigious public school in the heart of West Sussex, aristocratic Inspector Thomas Lynley receives a call for help from the lad’s housemaster, who also happens to be an old school chum. Thus, the inspector, his partner, Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers, and forensic scientist Simon Allcourt-St. James find themselves once again outside their jurisdiction and deeply involved in the search for a child - and then, tragically, for a child killer.

Questioning prefects, teachers, and pupils closest to the dead boy, Lynley and Havers sense that something extraordinarily evil is going on behind Bredgar Chambers’s cloistered walls. But as they begin to unlock the secrets of this closed society, the investigation into Matthew’s death leads them perilously close to their own emotional wounds - and blinds them to the signs of another murder in the making....

©1990 Susan Elizabeth George (P)2018 Random House Audio

What the critics say

"A compelling whodunit...a reader's delight." (Daily News, New York)

"Like P.D. James, George knows the import of the smallest human gesture; Well-Schooled in Murder puts the younger author clearly in the running with the genre master." (People)

What listeners say about Well-Schooled in Murder

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  • C. M. Updike Chilcoat
  • 2020-02-07

Disturbing

Be warned, this novel is graphically disturbingly detailed in its description of mutilation of a child. Do not try reading before sleep. Good story, great description & exploration of UK's public school system.

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  • Stevon
  • 2020-04-23

EG

I'm still not sure what to think about these Elizabeth George novels with Inspector Lynley. They tend to start slow while building the setting and characters. Still they've all ended with a bang. The books have high ratings but the reviews don't follow that same positive note.

In this book the author creates a mythical British private school. It was good the author stated up front that the school is mythical since, if not, you'd be wondering the whole book if a school like this really exists and which one is it. Maybe the moral of the story is that all schools of this ilk have elements brought to the story.

There is a murder of a 13 year old boy and an old school chum brings Lynley into the investigation. The police team must start from scratch learning everything about the school and they find a lot of warts to say the least. Again, maybe the moral of the story is that all schools have these warts. There is an official and unofficial code of honor. There is breaking of the rules of all sorts; drinking, sex, bullying and the faculty and those surrounding the school get into the act. The detectives must work their way around all of these obstacles in solving the case. It's further complicated as Lynley went to a school just like it back in the day.

For me anyway, it's the characters that make the book a good one. The author seems to have good insight into human nature and does a good job of weaving it into the story.

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  • Barry Frieder, MD
  • 2019-07-16

a splendid work of art!

murder mysteries don't usually bring tears but this one was both brutal and profoundly touching.

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  • C. E. Pitchford
  • 2019-01-13

Even Better

I read this books when it was published. It’s a great book! I have trouble with any sort of foreign accent because, with age, I’ve lost some hearing. But this reader adds to the story and her accent is perfect for all the characters!

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  • S K Larsen
  • 2021-08-04

excellent, as always.

I loved the book. it contains very good narration, a complex mystery, and excellent writing!

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  • StL Reader
  • 2021-08-03

Annoying character development

Find this series intriguing in its time & place, but I may give up on it. The women side characters can be annoying - especially Deborah. She’s all hand wringing and self recriminating w/o talking to her husband. Just drags out the woe is me and for bizarre non-logical reasons.

We are told about her having 4 miscarriages in what is an 18 month marriage. That just seems like a really tight time frame for 4 pregnancies. In addition, Deborah thinks, and we’re expected to accept that the reason she keeps miscarrying is that she had an abortion 6 years previously. Thus her guilt & hand wringing. This is such tripe. Abortions do not cause a woman not to be able to carry a pregnancy in future. This is one of those false arguments that was trotted out to make women afraid to get abortions She had a medical procedure, not a back-alley job! She may have issues carrying a pregnancy (she won’t look into it, of course), but it’s NOT due to an outcome of some previous moral failing.

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  • Josie
  • 2019-12-09

Outstanding performance.

They don’t get any better than Ms Peters. Accents, character voices, interpretation, all of it. Her American accent (different book) is less than perfect, but I would hate to hear me trying to do British!

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  • SK Smith
  • 2019-11-28

Another superb mystery by Elizabeth George

This is the 3rd installment of the Inspector Lynley-Sergeant Havers series. There are enough twists and turns in this one to make your head spin! Every time I thought I had it figured out a new wrinkle came up. The author also adds a human touch describing how the murder affects so many people in different ways. We also learn about the emotional turmoil in the personal lives of Lynley, Havers, and Sir James and his wife Deborah. Very-well done!