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The Red Dahlia (Anna Travis #2)
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The Red Dahlia (Anna Travis #2)

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  1,868 ratings  ·  164 reviews
Detective Anna Travis is working on a murder case that has created a media frenzy. The victim, Louise Pennel, a 24-year-old girl, was last seen in a London night club. Her body was found dumped by the River Thames. Anna must summon all her strength and guile to hunt down this sadistic killer.
Published July 1st 2007 by Pocket Books (first published 2006)
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Marian Jones it was very good, I read it in two days. I can't wait to read the rest of this series.
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Danny Fowler, a paperboy, was winding up his route and heading home from breakfast when he spotted what appeared to be a blow-up doll on the bank of the river. What Danny found wasn’t a blow-up doll and he no longer had an appetite for breakfast. His discovery began the investigation into a death that became known as The Red Dahlia murder.

Detective Inspector Anna Travis is a part of the investigation team and soon Detective Chief Inspector James Langton is called in to head up the investigation.
A. S.
This book had the potential to be interesting, at least in the first 150 pages or so. I was attracted to the grim descriptions of the autopsy reports and at first, the cops' diligence in tracking the killer as well as the copy-cat description of the crime scene with that of the Black Dahlia murder in the 1940s. After the name of the killer gets revealed, the book goes downhill, and the only thing I looked forward to were the one or two lines dedicated to describing what Anna Travis ate for dinne ...more
Jann Barber
The second book in Lynda La Plante's Anna Travis series is another well-written book. Prior to reading this, I had already watched the BBC episodes. As with "Above Suspicion," the BBC version was faithful to the book. There were extra bits that added to the experience of reading the book, but I was pleased at the way the author's intent was preserved when bringing the story to television.

The books do focus more attention on the relationship, or whatever it might be, that exists between Travis an
A young girl's body is found dismembered close by the Thames at Richmond and the killing mirrored an unsolved 1940s Los Angeles murder that came to be known as The Black Dahlia.

The similarities in the killing and the fact that the young lady by the Thames had a red flower in her hair earned this new case the sobriquet of 'The Red Dahlia'.

Newly promoted Detective Inspector Anna Travis is on the case but she meets with little success and eventually is joined by a former paramour, Detective Chief I
Nancy Oakes
The Red Dahlia is second in a series to feature DI Anna Travis, behind Above Suspicion, which I own but haven't yet read, although I don't think I missed anything. This was an outstanding mystery novel...perfect pace, building suspense throughout, characters that seemed real, and a story that kept me reading until I finished the book.

While out delivering the last of his newspapers, a young boy makes a gruesome discovery. The police arrive and discover the body of a young woman, severed in half,
Alan Annand
For years I was a big fan of the British police procedural TV series PRIME SUSPECT (starring Helen Mirren) created by author Lynda LaPlante. This was the first novel I'd read by LaPlante, and I was not disappointed. The plot involves the murder and grisly dismemberment of two British working girls, in a manner that immediately suggests a copycat killing of the infamous Red Dahlia murders in 1947 California. The focal detective Anna Travis and her boss Peter Langton, overcoming some awkwardness d ...more
Ineke van Mackelenbergh
My first attempt at a book by Lynda La Plante. The story had all the makings of being an excellent thriller and suspenseful, but to my mind because it is so very detailed became a little long in the tooth, and I came away disappointed. Excellent descriptions of all relevant characters although the "love story" in the 'background' added nothing to the overall story, and I found much of it contrived.
May 11, 2009 Donna rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone who likes TV police dramas
Recommended to Donna by: free book with a magazine
Shelves: 2009
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David Roberts
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kate B
The edition I read needed a decent proof-reader - it wasn't a proof-copy freebie from the publisher, it was already in its second edition. I wondered if this is what happens once the publishers have an established author? "Meh, people will buy it anyway."
Anna's name changed to Annie on one page; and the poor flustered woman appeared incapable of simple arithmetic. She made a list of four people to interview: two men and a woman from one place, and two men from another. Hmmm. With that level of c
Mary Kay
Lynda La Plante is the author of the Prime Suspect series, & this is just as gritty as those books. Someone is copycatting the Black Dahlia murder in LA back in the 1940s. Only this is London in the present day. You need a strong stomach to read THE RED DAHLIA.
Val Sanford
The infamous Black Dahlia murders are repeated in this London murder mystery. The victims, the letters, the staggering evidence that this killer is mirroring the Los Angeles killings from the 1940s. The murders are gruesome and unbelievably sadistic; brutal mutilations and torture inflicted before death make this case so hard to bear. Weeks into the case and they have no leads, no evidence and no patience. Anna Travis is paired once more with James Langdon. She's been promoted and he's drinking ...more
Lesley Dawson
I couldn't put this book down - Anna Travis together with James Langton & the Murder Team keep you engaged throughout - a 10......

Jul 12, 2014 Pamela rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mystery, crime fans
Karin Slaughter's blurb on the cover says: 'Without a doubt one of the best writers working today' This book is a slow read. But you will enjoy every page. I suppose if you had any interest in the true story of the Black Dahlia -a young woman murdered in 1947 California, this fictional copy-cat murder in London may have made the book read faster. La Plante has used the two main characters in an earlier book. There are hints about their history but I found them annoying. Again the book would have ...more
Michele Davis
The first Lynda La Plante I've read. I'm lining another up right away! I couldn't put it down!
A couple of things bothered me though, her use of 'wafted' about 5 times, my understanding of wafted is as' her scent wafted pasti me'
or the smell of apple pie cooking wafted through the house'
Not as she uses it meaning , he wafted his hand to signal she could leave , !!
never seen it used like that, and by the 5th time it was grating on me!
Also *Spoiler Alert* it was obvious to me that Charles had
Tyson Adams
Usually when I finish reading a Crime Thriller the last thing I want to do is read another Crime book. It's not like I don't enjoy the genre, in fact if anything it is amongst my favourite genres, it is more about how draining they usually are. Nothing is more draining than hunting down a serial killer.

Surprisingly Lynda La Plante hasn't left me feeling drained. In fact I felt inspired to read another Crime genre novel. I think that says a lot about how skilled La Plante is as an crime writer. R
Apr 01, 2012 Kathy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of police procedurals, thrillers, and mysteries.
When DI Anna Travis is called out to the discovery of a young woman's body, she has no idea the horrors that she will discover. The young woman's body has been severed in half, drained of blood, and gruesomely mutilated. It isn't until after the killer makes contact with a local journalist that the murder team realizes that the murder is a carbon copy of that of the Black Dahlia murder in 1940s Los Angeles. Not only is DI Travis attempting to catch a sadistic killer who likes to play games with ...more
When the body of a young woman is found on the banks of the River Thames, the injuries turn out to have an unsettling similarity to the unsolved, 1930's Los Angeles case of Elizabeth Short - known as The Black Dahlia.

Detective Inspector Anna Travis is on the team investigating this horrible crime when Detective Chief Inspector James Langton is called in to take over from the original team leader. They have a prior working and private history and Travis is very hesitant and discomforted by the cl
Jonathan Peto
I would probably give this book 3.5 stars if I could.

The main character, Anna Travis, was a bit needy, which was interesting and surprising, considering her job as a homicide detective. Anna was also clever, something she proved a few times when the investigation stalled.

She had had a short relationship with Detective Chief Inspector James Langston, who ends up heading the murder investigation the novel focuses on. That doesn't get in the way, but it does add some spice to the story, especially
This is an excellent British police procedural. The main character is Detective Inspector Anna Travis. The story opens as a paperboy discovers the body of a young woman in a field along his route. Even the police are appalled at what had been done to her. It is almost an exact duplicate of the famous Black Dahlia case from 1940s Los Angeles. There the murder of Elizabeth Short was never caught. To make matters worse, there is almost no evidence. No fingerprints, no murder weapon, no DNA, and no ...more
Lynda La Plante can be quite uneven. Her Sleeping Cruelty strained credulity; Bella Mafia was unfinishable. Her forte, I believe is her police procedural series Trial and Retribution and the Anne Travis series, of which Red Dahlia is one, are much better. Her view of the British upper crust is not pleasant. They are cruel, insensitive, brutal, and perverted. It would be interesting to know if this attitude stems from personal experience. Note there is a connection to Ellroy's The Black Dahlia - ...more
This was a very dark story. While part of it started to become tiresome and seemed drawn out, it kind of fit with what was happening in the story- days would go on with no leads, nothing new, spinning wheels. I had figured where she was going with the ending but it was good that we weren't left hanging. I'm not sure how I feel about the relationship between Anna and Langton- he seems like he would be a hard man to tolerate, but I'm curious to see where it goes next.
I really enjoy La Plante's writing, but I agree with a few other reviewers who said this story needed some editing. Parts got a bit long, and there were small details in Anna's life that we just didn't need to know. Overall, I enjoyed the story, though - even with its gruesome details. I would have moved along the ending a bit, because once we knew who the killer was, it seemed to take an awful long time to resolve the story once and for all.
Linda La Plante gets gruesome in her account of a serial killer who copies a well documented case from Los Angeles from decades ago. There are three set pieces (discovery of the body, autopsy, story breaks in the tabloids) which La Plante uses to describe, underline and detail the outrages committed by the killer on his first victim before her death and the mutilations of her corpse afterwards. Subsequent murders are not as sanguine but still incarnadine enough for anyone outside an abattoir.

I only read this because it was recommended because of another book.

Anyhow, slow pace, took forever to get a clue , and it was boring that the police couldn't find a clue to the killer and then were tipped off by anonymous caller.

I hadn't read first one, but these police officers seem a bit 2 dimensional. No incredible insights, just a lot of slogging along.

Kept wanting it to get better.
Always enjoy a good crime yarn and this kept my interest all the way through. Although you know fairly early who the guilty party is the problem will always be to prove it when he is so evil that nobody dares to speak against him for fear of there own lives. The detectives were relentless in there desire to hunt him down. Often frustrated and battling problems of there own they never gave up.
Rebecca Hill
Red Dahlia
Very interesting read from start to finish, very detailed and great character development.Travis the main detective has a sound personality and interesting situations which she comes across during a highly publicized murder investigation. Travis doesn't always make the right decision and gets burned for it, which was a pleasant change from perfect investigators in most other books. Her supporting cast is quite diverse and entertaining and the suspects and witnesses she interacts with r
Sal Noel
I am not a great fan of detective/ police novels, but through the medium of audio books I am trying to widen my repertoire and this saw me from Yorkshire to South Wales and back. It certainly did the job I wanted it to do. Read very well with accents galore (so as not to confuse me as there are plenty of characters and I am more of a visual leaner.)
First thing, the novel introduced me to Black Dahlia murder case:).
Well, the novel was nicely written nd make me so hooked to it that I finished it in 1 day (first for me).
Though, it is certainly a 'goodread', it lacks something maybe the chill or thrill compared to my other reads. Overall, its a good one and I would recommend it to anyone interested in Crime genre.
Gary Van Cott
I thought this book was quite good. My main quibble is that the main character seems quite young (30?) to be a DI. Also I understand that DIs are the most senior detectives that go into the field. There are so many books which have DCIs or even higher leading investigations directly.
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how to read it 1 4 Feb 11, 2015 11:18PM  
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Lynda La Plante (born Lynda Titchmarsh) is a British author, screenwriter, and erstwhile actress (her performances in Rentaghost and other programmes were under her stage name of Lynda Marchal), best known for writing the Prime Suspect television crime series.

Her first TV series as a scriptwriter was the six part robbery series Widows, in 1983, in which the widows of four armed robbers carry out a
More about Lynda La Plante...

Other Books in the Series

Anna Travis (9 books)
  • Above Suspicion (Anna Travis #1)
  • Clean Cut (Anna Travis, #3)
  • Deadly Intent (Anna Travis, #4)
  • Blind Fury (Anna Travis, #6)
  • Silent Scream (Anna Travis, #5)
  • Blood Line (Anna Travis, #7)
  • Backlash (Anna Travis, #8)
  • Wrongful Death (Anna Travis, #9)
Above Suspicion (Anna Travis #1) Clean Cut (Anna Travis, #3) Blind Fury (Anna Travis, #6) Silent Scream (Anna Travis, #5) Deadly Intent (Anna Travis, #4)

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