ARC Review: White Fire

White Fire (Pendergast novel)

Authors: Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Date of Publication: November 12, 2013

WhitePast and present collide in Preston and Child’s most thrilling novel ever . . .


Special Agent Pendergast arrives at an exclusive Colorado ski resort to rescue his protégée, Corrie Swanson, from serious trouble with the law. His sudden appearance coincides with the first attack of a murderous arsonist who–with brutal precision–begins burning down multimillion-dollar mansions with the families locked inside. After springing Corrie from jail, Pendergast learns she made a discovery while examining the bones of several miners who were killed 150 years earlier by a rogue grizzly bear. Her finding is so astonishing that it, even more than the arsonist, threatens the resort’s very existence.

Drawn deeper into the investigation, Pendergast uncovers a mysterious connection between the dead miners and a fabled, long-lost Sherlock Holmes story–one that might just offer the key to the modern day killings as well.

Now, with the ski resort snowed in and under savage attack–and Corrie’s life suddenly in grave danger–Pendergast must solve the enigma of the past before the town of the present goes up in flames.

My Thoughts:

First and foremost, OMG, it’s the new Pendergast novel!!!!!! Such a major fan of this series. And I’m so so so so grateful to their publicist for getting me approval (I was turned down initially, and then exchanged a couple of emails with the publicist later who got me approved).

Second, and no less important, OMG it’s PHENOMENAL!! ::frantic dancing::

Okay, now, tragically I don’t have some sort of gif showing the Carlton dance or something along those lines, but that’s how much I loved loved LOVED the ending of this book. For a little while in the middle, I have to say I wasn’t sure I was going to end up liking this book as much as I did, because we’re so far removed emotionally from Pendergast. And then…wow. The ending, when Pendergast shows genuine, heart-breaking/heart-broken emotion.

This book, unlike most of them, primarily follows Corrie Swanson (first met in Book 3 or 4, Still Life With Crows) as she works on writing her senior thesis. She’s doing quite well in college and is well on her way to achieving her dream of becoming an FBI agent (early steps, but still on the path). Her research leads her to Roaring Forks Colorado where what she at first believes to be a simple killer-bear from the 19th century quickly evolves into something far more sinister AND has ties to the current day.

Throughout, Pendergast is involved, initially there to get Corrie out of trouble (she got arrested, and I can’t say I’m sorry – she was a bit ditzy to have done what she did) and then his attention gets caught because of the overreaction to Corrie’s criminal act and starts investigating certain prominent members of town.

There are several plots going on throughout the book and it’s not until the very end where you see why all of them are important and how they tie into the main investigation of Corrie’s. It got a little distracting for a while, but then I just let myself be floated away by the fabulosity that is the writing duo of Child & Preston. I really liked learning a little bit about Conan Doyle and have to say I like the chapter that featured a supposedly lost book of Doyle’s (having never reading Doyle, I have no clue if their writing imitated his well, but I’m going to assume they did a great job because that’s what they do).

And then there’s the ending. Oh. My. God. They sucked me in (spoiler alert, and I’m whiting this out so you don’t have to read the spoiler unless you choose to highlight the white part) >when it looked like they had killed Corrie. I totally bought that she was dead. It wouldn’t be the first time these two had killed off an ongoing character (yes, I still miss the journalist Smithback), so I found it entirely plausible. Thank goodness she wasn’t dead.!(end of spoiler)

So, yeah, I’m going to eagerly wait for the next book and hope they won’t make me wait too long. Of course a month is too long, let alone the year it will probably be.

Thank you thank you thank you Grand Central, the Child/Preston publicist, and the great ones themselves! 5 stars all the way. I wish I did higher than 5, but I don’t so I can’t give it more than that.

Book provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.



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