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Fire and Ice (Liam Campbell #1) [Kindle Edition]

Dana Stabenow
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (295 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Alaska State Trooper Liam Campbell, demoted and reassigned to the remote bush town of Newenham, literally steps off the plane into a murder scene. Dealing with death is never simple, but when the woman leaning over the body proves to be Liam's old flame, it’s evident that his new job is about to become much more complicated. Of course, small town tensions tend to simmer just beneath the surface, and murder, once done, has a tendency to happen again.

“What were you intending to do with Mr. Engebretsen, Bill?”

They both regarded the bound man for a moment. The bar watched and waited in silence. “Well,” Bill said finally, “I was thinking about supergluing his shooting hand to one cheek of his ass and his other hand around a beer bottle.”

Liam stared. She appeared to be absolutely serious. He opened his mouth, and she said, “He drinks too much, does Teddy. I’m not totally unfeeling—the bottle of beer will be a full one, but after it’s gone, that’s it.”

“I like it,” the Old Fart said, and grinned evilly when Teddy’s eyes bulged over the edge of the gag.

“Or we could just shoot him,” she said, and raised the .30-06 to work the action. She gave a satisfied nod. “Plenty of ammunition. Course at this distance I really only need one.”

This is the first novel in the Liam Campbell series.

Editorial Reviews Review

Dana Stabenow won an Edgar Award for her books about Kate Shugak, a resourceful Indian woman living in Alaska. The series is full of respect for the landscape and the hard work it takes to survive in the far north. Now she starts a new series starring Liam Campbell, an Alaskan State Trooper with a troubled past and an uncertain future; the environmental issues of the 1980s appear to have been back-burnered in favor of the personal needs and feelings of the 1990s.

You might think there are one too many colorful eccentrics or jaunty drunks in the town of Newenham, where former Sergeant Campbell has been demoted after his own bout with booze and self-doubt. But you'll definitely admire the way Stabenow jumpstarts her story: within a few minutes of his arrival from Anchorage, Campbell has to deal with one murder (a pilot almost decapitated by his propeller), one old girlfriend (the exotic and possibly dangerous Wy Chouinard), and a man held hostage in the town's only decent burger joint--held for shooting out a jukebox that was playing Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville.

Stabenow can also grab your attention with the details of everyday life in an Alaskan fishing village, such as this description of the contents of a light plane: "There was a handful of candy wrappers, two maps of Bristol Bay, five small green glass balls which Liam recognized as Japanese fishing floats, a walrus tusk broken off near the root, a survival kit, two firestarter logs, two parkas, two pairs of boots, a litre-sized plastic Pepsi bottle half full of yellow liquid, a clam gun, a bucket, three mismatched gloves and three handheld radios, which to Liam seemed a bit redundant." The Kate Shugak books include A Cold Day for Murder, Breakup, A Cold-Blooded Business, Blood Will Tell, Dead in the Water, A Fatal Thaw, Killing Grounds, and Play with Fire. --Dick Adler

From Publishers Weekly

Stabenow, author of the Edgar-winning Kate Shugak series (Killing Grounds, 1998), masterfully traces the twisting life of Alaska State Trooper Liam Campbell in this series debut. Campbell steps off a plane in the town of Newenham, his new posting, leaving behind him in Anchorage a tattered career, a dead son and a wife in a coma. His first moments in town bring him into close contact with pilot Wy Chouinard, the woman he really loves, and the headless corpse of her flying partner, Bob DeCreft, who was decapitated by the propeller of Wy's plane. Meanwhile at the local watering hole someone has taken offense at Jimmy Buffet's singing and shot out the jukebox. Now the music critic is being held hostage by an enraged barkeep. The proliferation of grizzled macho thugs, sexy loner women and acts of nasty violence might makes readers' heads spin, but Stabenow weaves it all into a compelling tale with an assured hand. The young woman who lived in the dead man's house is attacked by the loutish owner of a fishing boat. It was he who hired Wy to spot fish from the plane that was sabotaged the first time to take Bob's life and is damaged again in an attempt to intimidate Wy. Liam's troubled past is only a precursor to the turmoil he faces in southwest Alaska. Happily, this much mayhem has rarely been in surer literary hands.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2158 KB
  • Print Length: 304 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Gere Donovan Press; 2.3 edition (November 7, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004HIM7BG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,004 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 54 people found the following review helpful
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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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
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
4.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful new series from Alaska. April 22, 1999
By A Customer
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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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars "Bleh" sums it up November 26, 2011
By Electra
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified 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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53 of 63 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Give me a break April 3, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified 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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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new series for Stabenow-it is wonderful August 20, 1998
By A Customer
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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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Liam Campbell
This was a pretty good story, drug out in some parts but liked it! Would like to read some more of them
Published 2 days ago by carla wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars New and interesting information
I learned a lot of things about survival, lifestyle, and ways of thinking in Alaska from this book. Yes, it is fiction and yes, it is a crime novel, but the author presents such a... Read more
Published 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable curl up and read book
Great read. You become involved with the characters immediately. The story was engaging and very fast paced. Read more
Published 5 days ago by Jean M Brown
4.0 out of 5 stars Alaskan Trooper
Love Dana Stabenow other series so I wanted to give this series a try. Not as engaging a main character but still interesting. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Daniel J Buckley
5.0 out of 5 stars exciting
I really enjoyed Laim Campbell. There where a lot ot twists in this particular book that I thought made it interesting. It flowed very well and never became boring. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Judy
4.0 out of 5 stars Dana Stabenow does it again with a strong main character.
I really liked this book and look forward to reading others in the series. The action starts in Chapter 1 and continues on.
Published 11 days ago by grandma6
2.0 out of 5 stars Not great'
This book was not my favorite. I don't know why I kept reading. I was interested in reading about life in Alaska but this book didn't do it for me.
Published 13 days ago by Carol
4.0 out of 5 stars New for me
This is the first book set in Alaska for me. I liked it even though I cannot pronounce the names. Liam Campbell is a guy who has made mistakes and demonstrates courage by... Read more
Published 13 days ago by Beth DaVisio
5.0 out of 5 stars First in the series - read them in order!
New Stabenow character and he is hot and smart. As with her other series the setting is Alaska -- Liam is a State Trooper - forget Smokey the Bear. Read more
Published 17 days ago by Hey, Teach
5.0 out of 5 stars Well done. Quirky, engaging characters.
Characters very well developed and engaging. Wonderful backdrop for a mystery and romance. One of the better stories I have read lately.
Published 17 days ago by Anne Jones
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More About the Author

Dana Stabenow was born in Anchorage and raised on 75-foot fish tender in the Gulf of Alaska. She knew there was a warmer, drier job out there somewhere and found it in writing.

Her first science fiction novel, Second Star, sank without a trace (but has since been resurrected as an e-book), her first crime fiction novel, A Cold Day for Murder, won an Edgar award, her first thriller, Blindfold Game, hit the New York Times bestseller list, and her twenty-eighth novel and nineteenth Kate Shugak novel, Restless in the Grave, was published February 14, 2012.

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