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Liberty or Death: A Thea Kozak Mystery Hardcover – January 4, 2003


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New Adult Fiction by Rainbow Rowell
Acclaimed author Rainbow Rowell's latest book, Landline, offers a poignant, humorous look at relationships and marriage. Learn more

Product Details

  • Series: Thea Kozak Mysteries
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books; 1st edition (January 4, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312877919
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312877910
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,900,493 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Patrick Henry would be proud to have his famous words used in the title of such a well-crafted, sincere book, the sixth in the Thea Kozak series (Chosen for Death, etc.). Private school consultant Thea, newly pregnant, faces perhaps the biggest crisis of her career on her wedding day-when the police inform her that a militia group has kidnapped the groom, longtime beau State Trooper Andre Lemieux, and is demanding that one of its members be released from jail. Thea's first reaction is panic, but soon she calms down enough to ask what she can do to help. The cops don't want her interfering, but they know her stubborn streak won't be placated so they enlist her aid. She assumes the character of Dora McCusick, who's supposed to be on the run from an abusive husband, and goes to Merchantville, Maine, to become a police spy. Thea/Dora gets a job waitressing at Mother Theresa's Restaurant, where she's supposed to be a "fly on the wall" and simply listen for tidbits of militia information while waiting tables. But as those who have read other books in this series know, she'll cross that line and make some members of the local militia suspicious. True-to-life dialogue and realistic characterization drive this novel of heartbreak and reward. It will please old Thea fans and make plenty of new ones.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Thea Kozack (An Educated Death) is about to marry her state policeman love, Andre Lemieux, but members of a Maine terrorist group kidnap him, demanding the release of a political prisoner. Despite her pregnancy, Thea works undercover as a waitress in an ultraconservative, backwater town in the hopes of overhearing anything that might save her man. Emotionally frazzled and physically challenged, Thea regularly struggles against verbal threats, ignorance, and petty belligerence, but one particularly mean redneck seems especially intent on following her. Believable characters, solid prose, and nerve-wracking plot recommend this to most collections. [Author Flora will be the 2003 national president of Sisters in Crime, an organization of women mystery writers.-Ed.]
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

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See all 8 customer reviews
Thea, the main character, is great.
Tracy Boulet
Too over the top unbelievable for a book that was not meant to be.
plum9195
Thea Kozac just keeps getting better.
M. C. Carter

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Anna Klein on March 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Thea Kozak is in her wedding dress and about to walk down the aisle when she gets the news. Her fiance and the father of her unborn baby, Maine State Trooper Andre Lemieux, has been kidnapped by the Katahdin Constitutional Militia. This terrorist, anti-government organization wants to exchange him for one of theirs, a Jed Harding sitting in jail. Thea, knowing she'll never be able to simply watch the investigation from the sidelines, convinces the State Police to let her go undercover as a waitress in Merchantville -- the little northern town now turned hotbed for militia activity -- and see what her ears pick up. But, being Thea, it isn't long before she's not just listening but also doing and has gotten herself in as much trouble as her beloved.
LIBERTY OR DEATH, the sixth book in Kate Flora's series about the educational consultant often turned PI, Thea Kozak, has been a long time coming. And it's a bittersweet experience. Since Flora has always done an excellent job of characterizing a Maine State Trooper, I was disappointed to discover Andre hardly appears in this sequel at all. I understand the plot didn't need him (present, anyway), but I still missed him. Thea herself has toned down some. She's still sassy and in-your-face, but losing her rock seems to have made her more mature (though still willing to throw herself at danger on every other page). The description of the unofficial militia movement is accurate and timely; so is the portrayal of a small Maine town in which everybody's news is everybody else's. Flora tends toward long winded accounts of every thought going through Thea's head, but at least some of the thoughts in this book (contrary to previous enstallments) haven't already been described several times over.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. C. Carter on January 10, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Thea Kozac just keeps getting better. This is a well written, evenly paced story that brings a new dimension to the story of Thea and her Andre. In the hands of a most skillful author, readers will laugh, cry, despair, and rejoice right along with the characters. Some of the other reviewers have revealed the basic plot. All I will add is DO NOT START this book late at night or you will get absolutely no sleep. It is impossible to put this book down until the end.
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Format: Hardcover
Private school consultant and amateur sleuth Thea Kozak prepares to marry Andre Lemieux, the Maine State Police detective who has been her lover for the past several years. They met when Thea's adopted baby sister was murdered in Maine, and Andre was lead investigator for the case. After trying to live together despite two high pressure jobs with crazy hours, jobs located in different states, the two have been able to cohabit peacefully for six months (it's best to have read the previous book in the series to understand the relationship and its history). Thea's unplanned pregnancy has pushed them into marrying at last, a step Andre would have taken sooner and Thea might not have taken at all. For while Andre has a bad marriage and an ex-wife in his past, Thea's wonderful first marriage ended in early widowhood. Which has left her reluctant to let herself love again, and even more reluctant to act on that love - once it's come about anyway - with legal commitment.

The bridegroom doesn't show up for his wedding because he has been kidnapped by a far right-wing group, a militia movement in northern Maine. After Thea and her mother have done their best to give the wedding guests a good time in spite of the horrible turn events have taken, Thea insists on going undercover into the town where that militia movement has its heart. She uses an assumed name, and goes to work as a waitress in a busy restaurant that attracts both locals and tourists. She hasn't told Andre's boss, the State Police lieutenant who is reluctantly responsible for her in her role of civilian informant, that she's pregnant. She masquerades as an abused wife on the run from a murderous husband, hoping to learn as much as possible about the group that holds Andre hostage against the release from prison of a militia member.
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By plum9195 on December 6, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Too over the top unbelievable for a book that was not meant to be. How can we truly believe that Thea would be allowed to go "undercover", find out so much so fast, and then return to "work" after her medical problem - just to name a few of the most ridiculous plot points?
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