Killer Heat: Book summary and reviews of Killer Heat by Linda Fairstein

Killer Heat

By Linda Fairstein

Killer Heat
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  • Published in USA  Mar 2008,
    384 pages.

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Book Summary

Linda Fairstein, America's foremost prosecutor of crimes of sexual assault and domestic violence, returns with her 10th Alex Cooper thriller; an excellent choice for both those who've enjoyed the Alex Cooper novels in the past and for readers discovering the intrepid prosecutor for the first time.

It's August in New York, and the only thing that's hotter than the pavement is Manhattan D.A. Alex Cooper's professional and personal life. Just as she’s claiming an especially gratifying victory in a rape case, she gets the call: the body of a young woman has been found in an abandoned building. The brutality of the murder is disturbing enough, but when a second body, beaten and disposed of in exactly same manner, is found off the Belt Parkway, the city’s top brass want the killer found fast, before the tabloids can start churning out ghoulish serial killer headlines.

Between dodging the bullets of the gang members who are infuriated by Alex's most recent courtroom victory and keeping a rendezvous with a charming restaurateur, a serial killer on the loose is the last thing she needs on her plate right now. Then a third victim is found, and it becomes clear to Alex and her team that time is not on their side.

Through Alex's peerless interrogation skills—and one big break—the search becomes focused on someone who has a twisted obsession with the military, and things grow increasingly dangerous when the chase leads to a chain of small, abandoned islands around New York harbor.

Once again Linda Fairstein brilliantly orchestrates a page-turning mix of cutting-edge legal issues and forensics, New York City history, and spine-tingling suspense. And at the center of it all is Alex Cooper—stunning, single-minded, accomplished, and not to be trifled with whether she’s in or out of a courtroom.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Fairstein...manages to both entertain and educate, as Cooper struggles with the evidentiary challenges of the Warren rape case and with tracking a vicious serial killer." - Publishers Weekly.

"Both [cases] are atmospheric and absorbing enough to keep you turning pages until the nail-biting climax on Governors Island." - Kirkus Reviews.

"Readers will not want to put down this red-hot thriller until they've turned the final page. It's essential for all public libraries." - Library Journal.

"Fascinating reading in a mystery which stretches far beyond New York." - Sunday Times (UK).

"Handled with the assurance we expect - distinctive and biting." - Daily Express (UK).

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Rated 2 of 5 of 5 by Cathy
Unsatisfactory
I LOVE mysteries, especially those with female sleuths. I've heard about Fairstein's work and was anxious to read some of it. That done, I'll go back to reading authors whose work I can really enjoy.

Killer Heat was overwrought, totally predictable, and insulting on a couple of levels. If Alex Cooper is as smart and cool as she's portrayed, why does she tolerate the guff that the cops constantly dish out? I would expect her to tell them where to get off, thereby gaining their respect instead of more insults. Secondly, I appreciate authors who can inform while entertaining. I do not, however, appreciate the information being presented in a condescending tone. Throughout the book, I was disgusted by the way we were "informed" as though we were 5th graders. Overall, a very unsatisfactory and disappointing read for me, and one I would not recommend to friends.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Mary
Kept me completely immersed
Once again, Linda Fairstein has kept me completely immersed in her newest book, Killer Heat, featuring Alex Cooper and her “partners” Mike and Mercer. This time they are on the trail of a sadistic rapist/torturer/murderer who uses the islands of New York as his dumping ground.

For me, a “good” book has to be engaging, has to make me think, and will teach me something. This book is no exception. In addition to the wonderful ensemble cast, this book gives a history of the islands of New York: Bannerman Island with its Scottish-style castle and Bannerman’s catalogue of military equipment and supplies, Ruffle Bar Island which was once a resort with fifty homes and a luxury hotel, and Governor’s Island with its rich history of being used as a military port from the Revolutionary War, complete with homes, a church and a hospital built for the officers and their families, to its final use as a military induction center in World War II.

There is also a good deal of psychiatry/psychology involved in determining who the “bad guy” is and why he does what he does. There are some very tense moments when Alex confronts Troy and the hurricane-force winds are whipping about. This book is a great read, moving very quickly and very hard to put down. I highly recommend it!

Rated 3 of 5 of 5 by Marganna
Killer Heat
I finished Killer Heat with more enthusiasm than my slogging through the middle. Overall I was disappointed with the book and thought the characters were very flat & 2-dimensional. About 1/2 way into the story I realized I didn't have feelings for the people in the story. By the final drama I did care enough to hope the killer would not harm any of these folks. This late-to-arrive caring is not enough for me to rate the book over a 3. Maybe reading earlier Alex stories would have provided me with a better understanding & background and therefore more involvement in the story. The historical setting and information about the NY islands were interesting details and well done. The various plots and courtroom issues were realistic and did not distract from the story with the exception of the character Clarita. Overall this book just didn't get me involved and I probably won't read more books by Linda Fairstein.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Lynn
Another Kill!
Fairstein's sophisticated writing and plot line land this one in the super good category. She is not only tremendously knowledgeable about trials and DA stuff, but in this book brings in some fascinating history (mid-1800's) and geography on Rosevelt and other islands around NYC. If you have read her other books, this is a must, as Alex plays her role out in the streets. If you have not read Fairstein, this would be a good start.

Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Jayne
Killer Heat
I was very excited to get this book to preview. I have read other books by this author and loved them all. This one did not change my opinion of this author. The story drew me in right from the start. The balance of courtroom drama, forensic information and the interesting facts about NYC made for a great story. District Attorney Alex Cooper is a character I would like to see again in any more books that this author writes. A very enjoyable read and one that took me out of the craziness of my every day life and put me right there with a great character. .

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Selene
Who Loves a Mystery?
I do - And you will too. Although I am an avid reader of the mystery genre, this was my first Alex Cooper novel. This was a fast-paced thriller and the ending is great. If you are looking for a new series to read, this is it.

...25 more reader reviews

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Author Information

Linda Fairstein Author Biography

Author photograph by Sigrid Estrada

Linda Fairstein, America's foremost legal expert on crimes of sexual assault and domestic violence, led the Sex Crimes Unit of the District Attorney's Office in Manhattan for twenty-five years. A Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, she is a graduate of Vassar College and the University of Virginia School of Law. Her first novel, Final Jeopardy, introduced the critically acclaimed character of Alexandra Cooper and was made into an ABC Movie of the Week starring Dana Delaney. The celebrated series has gone on to include the New York Times bestsellers Likely to Die, Cold Hit, The Deadhouse (winner of the Nero Wolfe Award for Best Crime Novel of 2001, and chosen as a "Best Book of 2001" by both The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times), The Bone ...

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