Living Proof by John Harvey
A man found bloodied in the street is the newest victim of a brutal crime spree
Although the cop who finds the man in Alfreton Road describes him as “absolutely stark bollock naked,” that is not quite true—he is wearing a sock. The naked man is flabby, middle-aged, and bleeding heavily, in no shape to be sprinting down the street at three in the morning. After the ER doctors patch up his stab wound, the man tells the police he was attacked by a prostitute. Then he clams up, embarrassed, and refuses to even give his name.
This is the fourth such recent attack reported to police inspector Charlie Resnick’s thinly stretched Nottingham police department. Two victims were salesmen; the other was a traveling Italian soccer fan, lured away from his friends by a redheaded beauty. It’s up to Resnick to find a link between the crimes, and to nab the perpetrator before more of the city’s men let their basest urges lead them into peril.
“Harvey’s seventh procedural is smartly paced, slyly humorous, unsentimental about police work, violence and other alienations of affection—altogether one of his best. Just like his first six.” —Kirkus Reviews
“If John Harvey’s novels were songs, Charlie Parker would play them.” —The New York Times Book Review
“Harvey reminds me of Graham Greene, a stylist who tells you everything you need to know while keeping the prose clean and simple. It’s a very realistic style that draws you into the story without the writer getting in the way.” —Elmore Leonard
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