Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Buy Used
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: A well-cared-for item that has seen limited use but remains in great condition. The item is complete, unmarked, and undamaged, but may show some limited signs of wear. Item works perfectly.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

A Cold Heart: An Alex Delaware Novel Hardcover – April 29, 2003

3.9 out of 5 stars 130 customer reviews
Book 17 of 30 in the Alex Delaware Series

See all 24 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$0.62 $0.01

Best Books of the Month
See the Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In Cold Heart, the latest thriller from bestselling author Jonathan Kellerman, Dr. Alex Delaware picks up on clues missed even by his closest friend, LAPD detective Milo Sturgis. Leave it to this canny shrink to figure out that the only thing two otherwise unconnected murder victims have in common (they're both artists making comebacks after early career burnouts) may hold the key to their deaths. Even for Alex, this unlikely link is a stretch, especially since Baby Boy Lee was stabbed outside a nightclub and Julie Kipper was bludgeoned in the bathroom of an art gallery. But when a concert pianist dies on the eve of his greatest triumph, Alex is sure that the murders are not only the work of the same killer but also connected to the unsolved slayings of a Boston ballerina and an L.A. rock singer. By an even greater coincidence, two of the victims were tangentially involved with Alex's former lover, Robin Castagna, which provides the good doctor a few well placed paragraphs to ruminate on what went wrong in their romance as well as rescue her from the serial murderer who's targeted her as his next victim.

As usual, Kellerman manages to make even a far-fetched plot like this one ring true, but after 17 Alex Delaware mysteries, his series protagonist holds few surprises for the reader, who longs for something to shake Dr. D. out of his smooth complacency. Losing Robin didn't do it--maybe the new woman in Alex's life will. --Jane Adams

From Publishers Weekly

"This one's a twister, isn't it?" Kellerman is at it again with number 17 in his highly successful series starring smooth L.A. psychologist Alex Delaware. In this latest installment, Delaware is called in (via Homicide pal Milo Sturgis) to consult on a string of bizarre murders of fringe artists on the verge of stardom. The victims-a bluesman out of rehab, a punk diva screaming her way toward a record deal, a rising young concert pianist and an abstract painter-seem utterly unrelated. Their only connection, as Delaware shrewdly notes, is that each is "[a] gifted, damaged soul snuffed out violently, during the first blush of comeback." Rounding out the investigative team is Det. Petra Connor (reprising her role from previous Kellerman books), this time paired with spooky, skinny Eric Stahl, a silent ex-soldier with a sweaty fear of hospitals. The clues appear in an underground zine covering art in absurdly pretentious tones ("This is DANCE as in paleo-instinctuo-bioenergetics") in articles signed by the "Faithful Scrivener," and lead the team to encounters with some of the weirder denizens of the City of Angels. Of course, Kellerman provides a meaty layer of interpersonal relationships beneath the surface of his plot, so that longtime fans can tune into the latest episode of Delaware's tense friendship with his ex, Robin, which is not where he hoped it would be, but which he handles with his usual aplomb ("When in doubt, ask about the dog"). That Robin's occupation places her squarely in the killer's crosshairs wraps things up nicely.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • Series: Alex Delaware Novels
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1 edition (April 29, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345452550
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345452559
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,184,785 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Jonathan Kellerman has written yet another page-turner mystery thriller centered around psychologist Alexander Delaware. As usual, Kellerman vividly draws the cast of supporting characters and, as might be expected from an author who is also a psychologist himself, his depictions of \ interactions between the characters abound with rich detail. In the present novel, �A Cold Heart�, musicians and artists are being murdered, but are the possible connections between the crimes only illusions of coincidence or is a serial killer at work?
Kellerman has taken pains over the past several years to ensure that this series of novels do not merely travel along in a comfortable rut. In �Billy Straight� Kellerman abandoned his usual first person narrative through the eyes of Delaware to use a third person voice to tell his story from the perspectives of his title character, a runaway boy, and of Petra Connor, a police detective. In that novel, Delaware was relegated to a minor role. More recently in �The Murder Book� Kellerman mixed his usual first person Delaware narrative with a third person voice from the viewpoint of Milo Sturgis, Delaware�s police detective friend. The author extends this technique in his latest novel, this time blending Delaware�s narrative with third person chapters primarily centered on Petra Connor, but occasionally switching to a broader viewpoint to depict other activities. Sporadically, the reader may become confused as to exactly who knows what at any given time, since there are multiple, overlapping investigations in progress, but eventually matters clarify on the way to a dramatic climax.
There is another carryover from recent novels, too.
Read more ›
1 Comment 38 of 40 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By A Customer on May 28, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The style of A Cold Heart brought back memories of Billy Straight which was the book that got me hooked on Jonathan Kellerman. I last read The Murder Book and was disappointed with its plodding style but not with this one. The sharp, quick action moves along at good clip and yet still adds descriptions which create vivid pictures in the mind. This story brings together all the characters in the other books and weaves them around a case which is solved by their cooperative work. I finished it in two sittings and was sorry it was over. This is my idea of a good read. I am glad there is a new love interest for Delaware finally. The on again, off again business with Robin was getting very boring. I look forward now to what ever comes next. Thanks, Mr. Kellerman for a good story, well told.
Comment 18 of 18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
One of the most intriguing and attractive elements of Jonathan Kellerman's novels concerning psychologist Alex Delaware is Kellerman's willingness to change --- dramatically --- the elements of his characters' lives. While Kellerman's latest novel, A COLD HEART, begins somewhat violently, the mystery behind a series of murders occurring apparently at random is balanced nicely by the interplay between Delaware, his gradually burgeoning relationship with Allison Gwynn and his resolution of his feelings toward Robin Castagna, his ex-lover. It's hard to overemphasize how important this is, or how masterfully Kellerman accomplishes it. Leave out the potentially explosive chemistry of the relationships and what would be left is an unrelentingly grim novel about a mysterious serial killer; focus too much on the relationships and one risks wandering involuntarily into ripped bodice territory. Kellerman makes the story of one as interesting as the other and very neatly brings them together at the denouement.
A COLD HEART begins with the murder of Baby Boy Lee, a legendary blues guitarist with a cult following who is attempting to make a final grab at larger fame and fortune, when he is mysteriously murdered during a cigarette break while playing a gig. When an up-and-coming painter and a promising concert pianist are also murdered shortly thereafter, it appears as if someone is marking performance artists for death. The victims however appear to otherwise be unrelated and, when the unsolved prior murders of a punk rock singer and a ballet dancer also seem to be related, the motive and the individual behind the murders become even more mysterious.
Read more ›
Comment 13 of 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
When an has-been blues artist is murdered in Los Angeles, the police don't have much to go on--until psychologist Alex Delaware notices a connection to other deaths. Could someone really be killing artists who are on the verge of success? With his long-time partner Milo, police detective Petra Connor, and Petra's new and possibly psychotic partner Eric Stahl, Alex starts looking for clues to a possible serial killer. Psychological profiling serves to narrow the suspect list, but can they act quickly enough to prevent the killer from striking again?
Author Jonathan Kellerman has delivered a series of wonderful police/psychologist novels featuring Milo and Alex in the past, but A COLD HEART is not the best of these. The early novels in this series deal extensively with child abuse--a crime that cannot help to tug hard on any reader's emotions. Although a serial killer has the potential for similarly powerful emotional impact, Kellerman doesn't quite milk the material. Many readers may also find the killer's identity a little easy to guess, and the action-packed conclusion to be telegraphed a little too obviously.
Being far from the best in this series does not mean that A COLD HEART isn't worth reading. Kellerman is a strong writer who involves the reader, delivers smooth and fascinating insights into humanity, and can be counted on for a clever plot twist.
Comment 8 of 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Want to discover more products? Check out this page to see more: suspense thrillers