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Born Guilty (Joe Sixsmith Series) by Reginald Hill 

Book Description (see Amazon or Librarything for customer reviews etc):

'Few writers in the genre today have Hill's gifts: formidable intelligence, quick humour, compassion and a prose style that blends elegance and grace' Donna Leon, Sunday Times Hurrying out of St Monkey's church on the last Amen of the Creation, Joe Sixsmith stumbles across a boy's corpse in a cardboard box and into more trouble than he's ever known. Soon his casebook is full to bursting: retired colonial Mrs C. demands to know how the boy got there; Gallie, the Mutant from Outer Space, urges him to find the stranger nosing into her granddad's past; while Butcher, that briefest of briefs, is hellbent on digging the dirt on a deputy head's out-of-school activities. Ever valiant for truth, Joe threads his mild-mannered way through the mean streets of Luton, fighting off angry cops, demented druggies and the matchmaking machinations of his Auntie Mirabelle. But the truth he discovers does not set him free, for there's little joy in confirming that today's kids grow up so much faster than ... read more

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