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60 of 63 people found the following review helpful
on June 6, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Like many other reviewers and fans of Kate Shugak, I was a bit reluctant to read the Liam Campbell series. It couldn't be as good. Well, I was wrong. It may even be better.
I suspect that Stabenow was simply getting bored with Kate and wanted to write something a little different. Well, in Liam she's created a great format to tell us about that unusual species, the Alaskan Male. (Hey, they even have - or had - magazine about the phenomenon.) A healthy chunk of this book is about the war between the sexes, Alaskan style. Sure, the mystery takes a back seat but the humorous observations more than made up for it.
As for the mystery, Liam is literally landing at the airport when the first suspicious death occurs. By the time the mystery is resolved, the reader has met a cast of eccentric characters that somehow ring entirely true, learned A LOT about herring roe fishing, and gotten under the skin of a macho man dealing with his world seemingly falling apart. There's plenty of crime in Newenham, much of it falling into the boozed up small town variety (shooting the jukebox and the post office) but something deeper and uglier is going on. There's an amazing amount of money at stake in the herring season. Could that be the cause? Or is it just small town romance gone wrong?
Bottom-line: A genuinely enjoyable read even if Stabenow digresses from the mystery plot at times. Liam Campbell is a nice mix of too good to be true and 1990's angst inside. I'll be reading the next book in the series soon.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition
I've read most of Stabenow's Kate Shugak novels, but never had any desire to read any of her other series, at least not until I got to know Jim Chopin. I like him, so I thought maybe I would like Liam Campbell as well. The big problem - Liam is basically Kate, in drag. He thinks like her, he speaks like her, and he solves his mystery the same way she would have. He even has the same way with people that she has, and the same relationship problems in his personal life. I would have liked this novel if I had never read any of Stabenow's books before, but Liam doesn't stack up next to Kate. I had the uneasy feeling as I was reading that all of this was faintly familiar, only a little skewed. Since Stabenow hasn't written a Liam novel after ' Better To Rest' in 2002, I'm assuming she came to the same conclusion. I'll stick to Kate from now on.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on April 22, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I hesitated to read "Fire and Ice," because I am such a fan of Kate Shugak's that I knew it would have to be a disappointment. Boy, was I mistaken! Kate's rough edge has been replaced by humorous eccentricity from the people Liam meets, but the same fast-paced plot and love of Alaska make this book a wonderful read in its own right. I laughed out loud in spots, and I hated to finish it--it was that good. There's no need to debate "better then" or "less than" Stanbanow's other series. This is a very good read, and I can hardly wait for the next one in this new series.
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58 of 70 people found the following review helpful
on April 3, 2000
Format: Mass Market PaperbackVerified Purchase
When I buy a mystery book, that's what I want. I don't mind a hint of romance but the best mystery writers only give you a hint. You can't get very far in this book before you realize that everyone is more concerned about their libido than anything else, and the author is very graphic. Either write a mystery novel or a romance novel; those of us who truly enjoy mystery novels would greatly appreciate it.
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2011
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I read the other negative reviews before starting this book and found that many bemoaned the "romance-novel" bent of this particular book by Stabenow. Well, I love mysteries and enjoy a good romance, so I thought this book would be perfect. WRONG! A good romance novelist knows that what is left to the reader's imagination creates the truly juicy moments. Not Stabenow. She jumps right in with a woman "grabbing his c--k." She succeeds in wringing out any romance and leaving only the paltry, crass coupling of an affair. In addition to this scene (which is truly difficult to get over), Liam is hardly a likable character. A married man cheating on his wife who is in a coma is hardly a sympathetic character. To be fair, as the novel progresses, details come to light that make him more likable. However, I never bought in and spent the book trying just to finish it instead of enjoying it. Stick to Stabenow's other series.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on August 21, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Liam Cooper had it all. He loved his job as a sergeant with the Alaska State Troopers, was happily married and had a child, who he adored. However, his personal collapsed when a DUI killed his wife and son, and his career fell apart not long after that. He becomes an alcoholic in a failed attempt to stop the pain.
However, Liam gets an opportunity to start anew when he is assigned to serve as the state trooper at the fishing city of Newenham. When his plane lands, Liam is greeted with his first case: the beheaded corpse of Bob DeCreft lying on the tarmac as a nearby propeller whirls. With Bob's years of experience and his impeccable safety record, Liam wonders if foul play has occurred. Making matters more difficult for Liam is seeing for the first time in years the first woman he ever loved (and lost), Wy Chouinard, a pilot and peer of the deceased.
FIRE AND ICE is a remarkable regional police procedural that makes the reader believe that they are traveling over the rural areas of Alaska. The story line is crisp and action-packed as Liam literally take his first step from the plane into a murder mystery that impacts the woman he still deeply loves. The characters are well drawn and likable, but fans of the Kate Shugak series already expect that from talented Dana Stabenow. Readers will want more works starring Trooper Campbell and his superb support cast in their remote, often time feral locale.

Harriet Klausner
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on June 15, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I was disappointed on more than one level with this book. For a romance book, which it was not billed as but is a major component, it moved too slowly, and for a mystery book it moved even more slowly still. But the most disappointing aspect was as I neared the 95% stage of this 281 page book, and things were just beginning to come together, or so I thought, the ad comes up and says if you want to see the rest of the story and how it ends then you need to buy another book, and "here's how it begins:" There is no guarantee that if I buy that book it will not end in the same way..."please buy another book from me to see how the story ends."

I was suckered in once into investing all this time to not find out how it ends...I will not be suckered in a second time.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 13, 2001
Format: Mass Market PaperbackVerified Purchase
The book hit the ground running with action. It gave an excellent insight to the Alaskan geography, inhabitants and infrastructure. I found the main character, Trooper Liam Campbell to remind me of Dudley Dooright on more than one occasion. I look forward to reading the sequel, So Sure Of Death. I would like to get to know the main characters better.
Also, I found the writer's style a little difficult to get used to and found myself rereading sentences to glean the meaning. All in all a good book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 15, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Stabenow just keeps getting better and better. Like some of the other reviewers, I thought I was going to miss Kate Sugak but it didn't happen. Liam Campbell is my new favorite character. With her trademark humor, Stabenow weaves another good mystery. I'm looking forward to more stories with trooper Campbell and other colorful characters Ms. Stabenow invents.
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39 of 52 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Did not care for this book, page 48 and already a pornographic sex descripition. I will not read the reminder of this book, the main Character is a idiot. Not well written if you like Romance novels this is the Book for you. Loved the Kate Shugak series.
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