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Simmons, Dan.

969 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0312278543 / ISBN 13: 9780312278540
Published by St. Martin's Minotaur., NY:, 2002
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HC in dust jacket. 1st Printing. The second Joe Kurtz mystery. A fine copy in a fine dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # 15964

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Bibliographic Details


Publisher: St. Martin's Minotaur., NY:

Publication Date: 2002

Edition: 1st edition

About this title


There's a bitter wind brewing in Buffalo, New York and it's blowing in more than just snow. "Little Skag" Farino, the last don of the local crime family, wants Kurtz dead and is sending in platoons of hit men, starting with the Attica Three Stooges and working up through more competent killers. Little Skag's beautiful sister, Angelina Farino Ferrara, is back from seven years in Sicily and has her own deadly agenda for Kurtz.

If that isn't enough, Kurtz is approached by a dying concert violinist who wants his daughter's killer found. Rejecting the case at first, he is soon on the trail of a man who's not just the murderer of one child, but a cold-blooded serial killer who is a master of alternate identities and has the power to send a hundred men after Kurtz. As the bodies pile up like cords of wood, Hard Freeze hits town with the power of a whiteout blizzard and builds to a truly chilling climax. This is a crime novel where trigger fingers freeze to blue steel.


Having proven he can write hard-nosed noir with 2001's Hardcase, prolific genre-crossing author Dan Simmons reintroduces his gritty protagonist Joe Kurtz and promptly pitches him into the icy waters of Hard Freeze. Two pages into the book, the ex-private investigator is just minding his business on the frozen streets of Buffalo and already he's got a contract on his head. As Kurtz says, "It was shaping up to be an especially tough winter." When he finds out who the money behind the hit is, Joe's already outgunned and outmanned but never outsmarted. This wily warrior is always one step ahead of whoever is chasing him, be they crooked cops, calculating serial killers, corpulent mob bosses, or not-so-distressed damsels.

Simmons has crafted a perfectly ruthless crime novel with a relentless pace that doesn't let up until the final page. The single-minded Joe Kurtz is a wonderfully flawed and deliciously soiled noir icon. He's smart, salty, literate, smushy in all the right places, and not somebody to cross. In all, Hard Freeze is a fast-paced thriller that successfully interweaves amazingly disparate plot threads in an explosive--really explosive--climax. --Jeremy Pugh

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