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Dead Before Morning (Rafferty and Llewellyn Police Procedural Series #1)

3.48  ·  Rating Details ·  400 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews
In this brilliant crime-fiction debut, Geraldine Evans introduces an offbeat police duo in Inspector Rafferty and Sergeant Llewellyn.

Inspector Joseph Rafferty is under pressure. The naked body of a teenage girl has been found on the grounds of Elmhurst, a private psychiatric hospital, and with the help of upright Sergeant Dafyd Llewellyn, Rafferty must track down the kille
Hardcover, 222 pages
Published March 1st 1993 by St. Martin's Press (first published January 1st 1993)
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Carol ♔Type, Oh Queen!♕
Very average but that is often the case with first books in a planned series. Author tried to fit waaay too much about Rafferty's past/personal life in & the exchanges between Rafferty & his underling Llewellyn often felt forced - & again too much background information was given. While I am being critical, throughout the book there was too much telling & not enough showing.

By the end of the book (around the 77% mark) I was starting to get bored & skimmed a bit - so I had to
Carol Bridgestock
Mar 20, 2011 Carol Bridgestock rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Mystery/Crime readers
This book had a hold on me from the start. It had everything a crime novel should have including so many twists and turns that I thought I had solved the mystery several times. Loved the twist at the end. Can't wait to get my head into Geraldine's latest that is sitting on my bedside table for tonight! Excellent!
Aug 18, 2012 Barbara rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
My interest was piqued in this series, since it seems to crop up in recommendations and searches I've done for other mysteries. Thought I give it a go.

Not really disappointing, but not really as satisfying as expected. This is the first in the series, so this will not stop me from continuing. However, Joseph Rafferty is a bit of an enigma in this book. I don't quite know what to make of him and the series. He doesn't seem in question as much as his family does - there are hints of questionable
Ted Tayler
Mar 21, 2017 Ted Tayler rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"A police procedural with hidden depths"

Rafferty & Llewellyn could become another pair of male Inspector/ Sergeant combinations much admired by British TV audiences. They are the antithesis of Morse & Lewis, they share some traits with Dalziel & Pascoe, but over the whole series from Geraldine Evans no doubt their own style becomes established. This is the first of their cases I have read.
US audiences don't really get many similar pairings, and with many police series tightly framed
Pat Barbosa
Apr 24, 2017 Pat Barbosa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. As I was reading/listening, I felt I was with the Inspector and his partner interviewing police suspects for a brutal murder case. Quite a few twists and turns until the end. A real whodunit!!
May 21, 2017 Sharon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Satisfying police procedural.
Lydia Ruth
Liked parts of it

Ok so I liked parts of this book. I enjoyed the murder investigation and watching the case unfold, and I enjoyed a couple of the secondary characters.

However, there were several things I didn't like. I was annoyed by Rafferty and his obsession with Llewellyn's "university education." It was exhausting. I get it he was annoyed and jealous. But every single chapter made mention of how Llewellyn thought he was better than Rafferty... If anything Rafferty thought he was better becau
John Lee
Mar 14, 2013 John Lee rated it it was ok
This one looked interesting sat in my wife's Kindle archive just when I was in need of my next read.
It started off all right and seemed like one of my type of English village murder mysteries. I absorbed the main characters and the early action easily enough but by half way through it was getting a bit hard going.
I finished it although by that time I wasn't really bothered who the murderer was and there was little fanfare and drums or even excitement when the identity was uncovered. If I am hone
Dead Before Morning is the first in the Rafferty and Llewellyn British Mysteries by Geraldine Evans, a police procedural featuring a pair of very different detectives. Rafferty is a little rough around the edges, a widower with no children but a large extended family, who apparently dabble on the wrong side of the law. Llewellyn is an intellectual man, with an aversion to “messiness” in every form. They work together to solve a case centering around a local psychiatric facility and its founder, ...more
Ron Chicaferro
Dec 19, 2011 Ron Chicaferro rated it really liked it
If you like a good British mystery then you'll like Dead Before Morning. Detective Inspector Rafferty and his partner, Detective Sergeant Llewellyn are as different as two people can be. They both approach the murder of a young woman with two different styles although Sergeant Llewellyn always defers to his senior officer. This is the story of a brutal murder and how love and hate play pivotal roles. The banter between the protagonists can be funny at times but the game is deadly serious. Gerald ...more
Recently promoted DI Rafferty and his overly-educated sergeant Llewellyn (shades of Lewis) are sent out to a local mental hospital where a young woman, her face smashed into an unrecognizable pulp, has been found on the grounds.

Billed as a detective cozy mystery, I would probably classify it more as a police procedural. The ending was perhaps too “deus ex machina”, as I’m always a bit suspicious of the sudden illumination to the detective of who did it and why.
Val Sanford
Mar 09, 2012 Val Sanford rated it liked it
I enjoyed this mystery, with an uptight Welsh sergeant and an Irish chip-on-his-shoulder DIS paired up to solve the vicious murder of a young woman left dead on the grounds of a mental sanatorium. The characters grew on me as I began to see the human side of our two police officers, and the human side of the suspects. I did not guess the culprit, which is always fun.
Paige Bentch-pruitt

I personally could not finish this book. The characters are stiff, unlikeable and poorly written. Extremely slow moving. The main character Rafferty is self-centered and seems to jump to conclusions without proof. This is definitely not a cozy mystery
Aug 30, 2015 sarg rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
British police procedural so.far its pritty good read
Jun 20, 2007 Megan rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
A good, solid British police procedural with realistic characters and some humor as well!
Jun 29, 2013 Karen rated it it was ok
The story is good enough, but the writing isn't. I won't be reading any more books by Ms. Evans.
Jan 19, 2017 BonusMom rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very very good mystery

This is a well written, easy to read (even with all the Brit colloquiums) murder mystery that will have you as baffled as the Detective Inspector. The story flowed smoothly and the characters were well developed. My only issue is that the conclusion seemed to be a bit rushed but, all in all, still a great mystery.
May 16, 2017 Colleendearborn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed listening to this book (from Audible, I think.) Always like Britain as a setting, and the slight class conflict between Rafferty and Llewellyn is interesting. Some dry humor. Looking forward to trying the next one in this series.
May 26, 2017 Sue rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A story that is enjoyable and light reading.
Russell Atkinson
Dec 09, 2015 Russell Atkinson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Inspector Rafferty is a student of hard knocks, a touch rough around the edges perhaps, while his aide, Sergeant Llewellyn, is the quintessential highbrow intellectual with a university education and a decidedly priggish side. The interplay between the two is endlessly entertaining, often hilarious. They are faced with a corpse without one - a face, that is. A young woman with a mutilated face and no clothes is found dead on the grounds of a psychiatric hospital. Suspects abound: the insufferabl ...more
Dec 28, 2015 Annette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Joseph Rafferty is a new inspector of police. He comes from a large family and his Ma is a big influence on his life. She wants him married, he is not in a rush. He has insecurities and believes the class system influences his ability to rise in the police ranks. He is smart, and funny and impetuous and generally a very good cop.

His partner is Lewellyn, a Welshman who seems to be a rather closed off character. Slowly we learn of his childhood. Mostly we learn he is well educated and has a quota
Dec 21, 2014 henrys-axe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The two central characters are the driving force of this first novel in the series. Recently promoted detective Joseph Rafferty and his newly appointed partner, Sgt Dafyd Llewellyn were most intriguing.
Rafferty, from a large Irish family, often finds himself befuddled, unsure and often overly opinionated when dealing with potential suspects. He certainly enjoys his chosen profession but at times questions whether he should have followed in the footsteps of his siblings in the building profession
Chu-Salyer Sharon
Everyone is a suspect in the story. The police has to work slowly to solve the case. Love the story the book made me think about who the murderer is.
Heidi Olivia
Mar 09, 2015 Heidi Olivia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015-read
I was pretty tickled with this opening page: "This novel is written in British English and uses this language version's spelling and slang. You will find a list of these at the end of this book for any with which you are unfamiliar." And at the very end of the book, after the alphabetized list of 'strange slang' is this "There are lots more, I'll add them to my list as I think of them."

It's a pretty good whodunnit. Takes some time (some pages and chapters) before you could like our main characte
Roddy Williams
Jul 15, 2013 Roddy Williams rated it liked it
Shelves: murder-mystery
Inspector Rafferty and his new sidekick, Dafyd Llewellyn, a dour intellectual Welsh poetry expert (I'm pretty sure that should be Dafydd, though, with two d's and it's vexing me) are charged to investigate the murder of a young girl in an Essex Mental Hospital. Meanwhile, Rafferty's matchmaking mother has asked him to help his cousin Jack, who has been arrested for theft days before his wedding.
It's a decent enough start to a series, although one would have preferred a little more light shone on
Jan C
Feb 28, 2012 Jan C rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, 2014
I think there was kind of a gruesome murder on the grounds of a mental institution. New partners Rafferty and Llewellyn are at loggerheads figuring out the killer. These two are totally opposites. Llewellyn is Welsh, educated, son of a Methodist minister. Rafferty is from a big family and I'm assuming Catholic.

So the clashes between these two are humorous. Rafferty seems to think Llewellyn thinks he's above his partner because of the education question.

At one point Rafferty puts his coat in th
Cheryl Earle
Jan 09, 2017 Cheryl Earle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I give this novel a solid 3.5 stars.

I SO enjoyed this book - in fact most English crime mysteries and procedurals are close to my heart.
This is the first book in what looks to be a lengthy series, so I'm sure any teething problems with our D.I. & D.S. characters getting along will eventually smooth out. Written well, it held my attention till the end trying to work out the "whodunit" amongst the varied cast of flawed characters.
I'm adding more of this series from the author onto this years
Lade Tawak
2.5 stars

I don't really know about this book. rating it was really difficult because sometimes I liked it, sometimes, I didn't.

it's not a terrible book. I like the major characters - Rafferty and
Llewellyn. The book has humour, murder and a good mystery and tthe plot is very good but something put me off.

I didn't really like the writing. nothing spectacular about it. It could have been a lot better.
Another thing that put me off was that there were too many suspects. It made the story tedious.

To r
Jeannine Stewart
The first in a series that partners Rafferty, an instinctive English police inspector from a large family; with a stoic, Welsh, intellectual, by-the-books partner, Llewellyn. There is a lot of background information in this book and it gets a bit bogged down at times but it is a decent police procedural. Both characters are very different.........not sure if they are oil and water or yin and yang?? Will need to read more in the series to see if I get a better feel for the characters and their pa ...more
Aug 31, 2014 Robyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really a 3.5, but if you enjoy English mysteries, this is the book for you. The relationship between the detective and his sergeant was a mix of Ruth Rendell and Elizabeth George. Plenty of twists and turns and good character back stories to make for an entertaining series. I'm curious to follow the lives of the two main characters and to learn more about each of their past lives, which were hinted at with a very few details.
A copy was received in exchange for an honest review.
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aka Geraldine Hartnett.

I'm a British author and live in Norfolk, England. I write crime novels and have two series on the go: Rafferty & Llewellyn and Casey & Catt.


The 4-book bundle of my 17-strong Rafferty & Llewellyn mystery series is currently available at the bargain price of 99c. This is a limited time offer. It will end on Sunday 5/2/2017.
* Rafferty and Llewellyn Mystery
More about Geraldine Evans...

Other Books in the Series

Rafferty and Llewellyn Police Procedural Series (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Down Among the Dead Men (Rafferty & Llewellyn British Police Procedural Series, #2)
  • Death Line (Rafferty and Llewellyn British Police Procedural Series, #3)
  • The Hanging Tree
  • Absolute Poison (Rafferty and Llewellyn British Police Procedural Series, #5)
  • Dying for you (Rafferty & Llewellyn Cozy Mystery Series, #6)
  • Bad Blood (Rafferty and Llewellyn Cozy Mystery Seriesocedural series, #7)
  • Love Lies Bleeding (Rafferty & Llewellyn British Police Procedural Series, #8)
  • Blood on the Bones (Rafferty and Llewellyn British Police Procedural Series, #9)
  • A Thrust to the Vitals (#10 A Rafferty & Llewellyn Cozy Mystery)
  • Death Dues (Rafferty & Llewellyn Cozy Procedural Series, #11)

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