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A Cool Breeze on the Underground (The Neal Carey Mysteries) [Kindle Edition]

Don Winslow
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The popular mystery from New York Times bestselling author Don Winslow

Book one of the Neal Carey mystery series: Streetwise and book-smart PI Neal Carey pursues a dangerous teenage runaway through London in Don Winslow’s debut novel

Neal Carey is a humble graduate student who dreams of becoming a literature professor. But he’s also the employee of the Kitteredges, a secretive New England banking family that knows how to make the embarrassing problems of its most powerful clients disappear. When Allie Chase—the troubled daughter of a U.S. senator and presidential hopeful—falls into drug use and runs away to England, the Kitteredge family calls on Carey to track her down. The raucous trail leads through London’s darkest, dingiest corners as the brilliant and cynical Carey matches wits with his spoiled but precocious quarry.
 
This ebook features an illustrated biography of Don Winslow, including rare photos from the author’s personal collection.



Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This ambitious but technically unsophisticated first entry in a series features street-wise New Yorker Neal Carey, a 23-year-old graduate student of 18th-century literature. Neal is directed by Friends of the Family, a discreet, private investigation agency for which he works, to find Allie Chase, the teenage, drug-addicted daughter of a U.S. senator and presidential hopeful. Allie is somewhere in England and must be returned to the States before the Democratic Convention nine weeks away. Neal finds Allie but is forced to use his cunning to bring her home; at the same time he suspects someone from the agency is trying to kill him. Winslow guides us on a tour of punk 1976 London and introduces some colorful characters. But this first novel loses much of its punch because Winslow overloads beginning chapters with his hero's personal history rather than pacing the plot with relevant details. Neal is a distant hero whose escapades seem artificially linked.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

“Winslow shows he’s got what it takes to hook a reader . . .” —Mystery Scene
 
“A flair for language, quick wit, and detail complete a winning first novel.” —Library Journal


Product Details

  • File Size: 2690 KB
  • Print Length: 323 pages
  • Publisher: Open Road Media (December 14, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004EBT9V2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,900 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent debut December 23, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a brisk, immensely enjoyable updating of the private eye and noir genres. When we first meet Neal Carey he's a graduate student at Columbia, working on a degree in 18th Century English Literature. But then he receives a call from his "Dad," Joe Graham, who turns out to be the one-armed dwarf who sort of adopted Neal when he was eleven years old and running the streets. A series of flashbacks shows Graham teaching Neal how to survive and grooming him for an eventual position trouble shooting for a shadowy organization called Friends of the Family, who look after the interests of the wealthy clients of the Kitteridge family bank in Providence, RI. Over the years, Neal learned everything from how to tail people to how to search a room without anyone ever knowing, and in the course of these unusual studies, Joe realized that Neal was a gifted student. Eventually the Friends send him to school, but now they need him for a special assignment.
It's 1976 and with Jimmy Carter likely to win the Democratic presidential nomination, he's expected to look for a northern running mate. Senator John Chase of Rhode Island has a decent shot at the job, but there's one significant skeleton in his closet : his troublesome teenage daughter has run away to London. Now it's up to Neal to go find her and bring her back in time for the Convention.
Neal is a streetwise and sassy hero, which makes for plenty of snappy banter. And the London he arrives in is in the midst of the birth of punk rock, which provides an unusually anarchic backdrop to the action.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Must Must Read! November 26, 1998
By lit.
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a fabulous book, introducing the reader to fascinating characters (Neal Carey, Joe Graham, etc). As the first in a series of Neal Carey mysteries, this is the perfect book to drag you in and hook you, leaving you wanting more. The story is fascinating, and the driving plot makes this a page-turner. And how can you not fall in love with these charatcters?This is one of the best detective mysteries I've read, and I reccommend it to ALL my friends. READ IT!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How can a first book be this good? August 1, 2009
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Don Winslow's debut novel is scary good. The writing is completely self-assured. The comedic moments and sarcasm are well constructed. And he has created an interesting and hugely appealing main character for a series, and surrounded him with several interesting back plots and secondary characters.

This is a book that will teach you a lot. You'll learn things you didn't know about 18th century English literature, how to tail someone and not get caught, the best way to score drugs in London, and the finer points of picking a load for a shotgun. It will also show you that Don Winslow is a master at scattering gems like that through a book with a fast moving plot, richly drawn characters, and a very good sense of place.

I've read several other books by Winslow. I especially liked The Winter of Frankie Machine, California Fire and Life, and The Power of the Dog. I backtracked my way into the Neal Carey series and was amazed to find that his debut novel is as good as any of his best works.

I don't know how someone comes out of the starting gate with such a well-written first effort, but Winslow has done it. Bravo. I recommend this highly.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Story, Well Written July 30, 2001
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I read this after loving California Fire And Life (by the same author). What I found was Neal Carey, a wonderful plot, some great dialogue and Don Winslow taking another step up the ladder of my favorite writers.
This book is intriguing, gripping and fun. It is filled with detail and an insight that leaves the reader enriched for the experience. Novels that flit from city to city seldom manage to capture the feel of the setting with any great detail but Don Winslow finds a way to take you from New York to London and have you believe he's lived in both places all of his life. The scenes in Yorkshire are a little stereotyped, but that's nitpicking in the extreme.
Neal Carey is an excellent character, hard, streetwise and compassionate, backed up ably by Joe Graham and a smart mouth. The story is well told and unfortunately believable.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Cool Breeze On The Underground October 31, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is my first experience reading a mystery by Don Winslow. I was intrigued by the character development of Neal Carey and Joe Graham. The writing is fun, witty and riveting at times. This is a perfect beach read or long winter evening read. It's a hoot!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top-notch example of the mystery novel. March 4, 1997
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Told with a page-turning mix of flashback and "current" time, the plot has some surprises, including the satisfying denouement. Just as interesting is the way the reader gets a look at the education of an investigator. I'm not one myself, but I almost feel like I could be a PI -- with this book, and plenty of practice. First in a series; the second is out in hardback
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent writing; terrible ending (possible spoilers) September 7, 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the first of 5 novels featuring Neal Carey, and it was my first encounter with the author. I just loved the style and and the bizarre characters. The protagonist Neal Carey is described in great detail; the first part is nearly a biography, but was not uninteresting or irrelevant to what was to come. With everything pointing toward an exciting climax and conclusion, the author seems to run out of ideas. I found the final switcheroo completely unrealistic and unacceptable, given the context of what had gone before, given the characters involved, and given their health and state of mind. What a letdown. Doesn't an author have a responsibility to his own characters and plot not to just flick it in? It's as if the author had run up against a deadline and had to hurriedly wrap it up. Even given that this was his first publication, I was left wary about reading other books of his. I'll wait for one for which reviewers are unreservedly reassuring.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Early Winslow.
Clearly this is early in his career. It has interesting characters and the plot flows nicely from beginning to end. Read more
Published 18 days ago by TIM
5.0 out of 5 stars Have not read it yet
I hate to be disingenuous here but I will confess I have not read this book yet but I have loved everything Winslow has ever written and I am sure I will love this one. Read more
Published 22 days ago by rick
4.0 out of 5 stars Clever PI-caresque 1st in a series
This is an excellent starter novel, a creative PI/picaresque story; cool, clever and sexy. I'm pleased to have happened upon this series. Read more
Published 1 month ago by W. Perry Hall
1.0 out of 5 stars Swear word extravaganza
Story line was not bad. Loved the two main good guys. But the F word multiple times on every page starting with the 2nd section just got to be too much. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mark A. Hosterman
3.0 out of 5 stars A good read
Kept me interested so it was worth the read. I would recommend this as a nice summer book with some good action.
Published 1 month ago by Larry Busino
4.0 out of 5 stars good foundational build-up of Neal Carey as a viable character.
I have read Winslow's more recent novels but must say that this eary work of his I found just as engaging. A very good read.
Published 2 months ago by nowing5
5.0 out of 5 stars A Cool Breeze on the Underground
It had twists and turns that kept me guessing. Also, a super surprise ending. I loved all the descriptions of the scenery and educational info.
Published 2 months ago by Unknown
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
The characters rather than the plot are what decided this rating for me. Mr. Winslow spins a good tale certainly, but the cast kept me reading into the next book.
Published 3 months ago by David M. Jennison
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping and rewarding introduction to Neal Carey
It is often attractive to read the "first" in what promises to be a series involving a particular character or characters. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Maverickshaven
3.0 out of 5 stars Don Winslow fan
Winslow my favourite author, this book not one of his best - even then, very entertaining with the usual humour
Published 4 months ago by Bendy Boy
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More About the Author

Don Winslow (b. 1953) is the New York Times bestselling author of thirteen crime and mystery novels as well as short stories and film screenplays. A Cool Breeze on the Underground, Winslow's debut and the first novel in his popular Neal Carey series, was nominated for an Edgar Award. Before becoming a fulltime writer, Winslow worked as a private detective in New York and California.

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