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113 of 115 found the following review helpful:
The first of many excellent reads!Mar 08, 2001
By Lisa D. Brewer
I picked up Until Proven Guilty on a lunch hour in 1985, and was finished with it in less than 2 days. It was to begin what I call my "love affair" with Detective J.P. Beaumont. This novel, was a good read from page one to the end. Jance is by far my favorite author, I own every one of her Beaumont books in hardback, I do not wait for them to come out in paperback. I highly reccommend that you read Until Proven Guilty first, or you will be a bit lost in future books when he refers to his Porsche, Ann Coorley etc. I worked for the Seattle Police in thier Homicide Division, and while Jance does use what I will call creative license with some things, the one thing she nailed is the "cop persona" in spades! I wait eagerly for her next installment. I hope that you like her work as much as I do.
37 of 39 found the following review helpful:
A good beginning to a great seriesJul 20, 2000
By Karen Potts
If you have ever read and enjoyed any of the books from the J.P. Beaumont series you really need to read this one. A 5-year-old is murdered and Beau investigates the strange cult in which she and her mother live, immediately becoming suspicious of the self-absorbed cult leader. Another part of the plot deals with his relationship with Anne Corley, a beautiful woman who enters his life and changes it forever. Anne Corley is mentioned in almost every succeeding book, so to understand how Beau got his Porsche and lives a lifestyle which differs from most everyday detectives, it is necessary to read this one.
22 of 23 found the following review helpful:
Pivotal novelAug 07, 2000
As a previous reviewer said, this book helps you understand J.P. Beaumont's circumstances in later episodes. I had started with some of the later mysteries in the series and wondered how he met Anne Corley and what had happened between them. In a book store I browsed through several paperbacks to find the one that introduced Anne Corley. (It's hard to browse through books on amazon.com although sometimes the reviews help out!) The situation, child abuse and murder, is grim, but the writing is stylish. (Although I felt the sex scenes were uninspiring). I like the way the author develops relationships between Beau and his detective partners or others on the force. These seem more natural than the romantic attractions.
17 of 19 found the following review helpful:
Looking forward to the next oneOct 18, 2002
This is a promising first outing from J.A. Jance, published in 1985. Very promising. I liked the introduction to the characters and the set up that will allow readers to hopefully bond with J.P. Beaumont and Detective Ron Peters as they learn to work together as newly partnered Homicide detectives. There was some fun dialog and situations and the slow elevator provides for several amusing incidents. Occasionally I would start to suspect whodunit (just like Beaumont) and then my suspicions would be allayed (just like Beaumont). That was pretty nicely done. Surprisingly, to me the ending was quite a satisfying wrap even though many a book with a similar ending has left me very disgruntled.
Midway through, I was concerned. A lot of focus was placed on Beau's whirlwind romantic relationship. If characters in a book can be said to have chemistry it would NOT be these two, although they did become more believable in the end. There was a fairly lengthy section where I was rather disengaged, wedding showers, shopping, setting up house, suspicion, and "Isn't there a guy named Beau in on of those mid-day soaps called 'Days of our Lives'?". I began to loose faith. Then a so-so grand finale and, surprise surprise, a thorough and believable enough wrap up to make me almost forget the tedium.
I remember being reluctant when I started Sanford's 'Prey' series and I have been COMPLETELY won over there. If we can build up from this one, Jance may develop another fan.
8 of 8 found the following review helpful:
Extraordinary book, a masterpiece!Jul 23, 1998
I was introduced to J.A. Jance and Detective J.P. Beaumont by the owner of a used book store that I visit rather frequently. I was right in the middle of a craving for all John Sandford books, I wanted them all. I'd read all of them at the library, and wanted to buy them. She only had one, and I looked for different books to buy. She saw that I was interested in mystery, so she recommended J.A. Jance. I had never heard of her, but I got one anyway. It was Taking the Fifth. That book was good, very good. I went back to buy another soon after. I purchased Until Proven Guilty, and I damn near cried at the end. It was quite possibly one of the best books I've ever read in my life. The mysterious Anne Corley, and the way that Beaumont falls for her was masterful. I'm sorry, but I can't tell you the ending, it is too good to give away. So far, this is undoubtedly the best J.P. Beaumont book that I've read. That does not mean that the others are not good, they are excellent, a! nd very enjoyable. But J.A. Jance truely surpassed herself with this novel. I have not read all of J.P. Beaumont, but intend to. I will go back to the book store to get more, and while I'm there I might look for more John Sandford books... Anyway, you must read this book. It is a great book to start out the J.P. Beaumont series with, and you will enjoy it no matter how many times you read it! Tyler Robbins, 14, from Tacoma, Washington.
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