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The Best Bad Dream Hardcover – January 3, 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Mysterious Press; First Edition edition (January 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802126014
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802126016
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,777,830 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

FBI agents Jack Harper and Oscar Hidalgo return in another rambunctious adventure. This time, Harper reluctantly comes to the aid of his bête noire, all-around con-woman Michelle Wu, whose sister has gone missing in Taos. The trail leads to a biker gang and a New Age resort catering to senior citizens looking for a mystical cure for aging. As Harper and Hidalgo investigate, they find that the cure offered at the resort has more to do with body-part harvesting than it does with worshipping crystals. (Name another novel that starts out with New Age satire and winds up with a bizarro oldster version of Texas Chainsaw Massacre.) Throw in a macabre little subplot in which Harper’s teenage son is seduced by his own bête noire, a high-school librarian a little too worried about aging, and you have an outlandish thriller occupying a unique piece of literary real estate somewhere between campy horror and later Charles Willeford. Ward’s no-holds-barred style and fevered imagination will prove far too dark and surreal for the mainstream, but it will hit the spot for a special kind of bent reader. --Bill Ott

Review

Praise for Robert Ward

"This is pure Robert Ward—smart, startling, a little wicked. The writing is perfect pitch and the characters feel like people you’ve met and known. Ward gets better and better with seeming effortlessness. A terrific read."-—T. Jefferson Parker, Edgar-winning author of The Border Lords

"Mr. Ward writes with a directness and sincerity that is increasingly rare in these days of fashionable irony and high-tech literary pyrotechnics."--Michiko Kakutani, New York Times

"Total Immunity is a tale of crime and consequences from the mind of a true master. Ward is simply one of the best, and this book proves it."--Michael Connelly, Edgar-winning author of The Reversal

"Veteran TV writer and producer Ward (Four Kinds of Rain) serves up a story line crackling with action and a cool cast of thugs, traitors, killers, and creeps."-–Booklist

"With memorable characters and rat-a-tat dialogue, Total Immunity is clever, funny and cool as ice. If you haven’t discovered Robert Ward, you should. Highly recommended."-–Alafair Burke, author of 212: A Novel

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
THE BEST BAD DREAM marks the return of FBI agents Jack Harper and Oscar Hidalgo. The book defies an easy categorization, given that it walks a fine line between a mystery and thriller, but it also features comedic and (almost) absurd elements along with a story line that verges on the fantastic. This certainly is not a bad thing in Robert Ward's hands.

The tale begins with Harper about to take some vacation time with Kevin, his teenage son. Their plans are interrupted, however, when Harper receives a call for help from Michelle Wu, his erstwhile and larcenous girlfriend. Michelle's sister, Jennifer, has gone missing while the two were visiting an Indian village near Santa Fe, and Michelle is concerned that she might have met with foul play. Harper is reluctant to leave his son, but does owe Michelle for saving his life. And, when the dust settles and the smoke clears, Michelle is hot. Kevin finds himself thrown under the bus and loosely supervised by Harper's father, Wade.

Harper finds that Santa Fe is a bit different. Michelle is involved in some sort of deal with a local biker and meth user; she insists that their activities are perfectly legal, but Harper is not convinced. There is also a nearby geriatric spa named the Blue Wolf where Jennifer was employed as a nurse. There's some sort of animosity going on between the spa and the local bikers, but Harper has the nagging suspicion that not all is well with the spa, either. His partner, Hidalgo, is there to answer his call for help (and to provide a bit of comic relief as well). Together they follow a series of false trails and dead ends as they look for the missing Jennifer.

Jennifer is being held in a cell block of some sort with another woman for purposes that simply cannot be good.
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Format: Hardcover
The bad news was that I sprained my knee and couldn't get out of bed for a couple of days, the good news was Robert Ward has a new book out, "The Best Bad Dream". If you are in my position, even if you aren't, you need not worry, time will fly by if you pick up "The Best Bad Dream". From the first page Ward had a grip on me with his frantic pace and plot, wondering what is going to happen, but of course I cared because he made me fall for the characters, who are wild and sexy and scary and human and sad and funny. There is a beautiful grandfather, father, son dynamic. There is virgin sex and sex for someone who has been around. Hieronymus Bosch like antics, (pig attacks and crucifixions, to name a few), are made plausible and all too human. And Ward gets delicious revenge on scam artists and cults.
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By tmclh on February 26, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This page turner was a very nice surprise -- a fun, nasty noir in New Age Santa Fe with humor, heart and more than a few pulse pounding moments -- I couldn't put it down. FBI agent Jack Harper reluctantly leaves his teenage son to answer the distress call of an old girlfriend: a sexy car thief to boot (the son's adventures while his father is gone provide a subplot worth a book in itself). The girlfriend may or may not be playing Jack for a sucker as Jack pierces the genteel surface of America's artiest Southwest getaway to find a maelstrom of crime, murder and cultism. It's a great ride and I, for one, am waiting eagerly for the next installment!
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By Prfstr Hal on January 30, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
You should only buy and read this book of you like great stories well told. We get taken into a world that appears just a little goofy and open to gentle satire on the surface. But this is Bob Ward's world we're entering, and once we see a huge feral pig eviscerated and God knows what's happened to its organs, we know we're not in Kansas anymore. The book is populated with a peripheral cast of quirky, oddball characters, placed into situations that grab us right behind the neck and push us headlong into trouble. There are some great sex scenes and a mass crucifixion scene that will have you gasping for air. That is all the book's plot,--its melody. There are rich harmonics of character depth and dire loneliness underneath it that give the whole piece an adult, deeply emotional resonance
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By RueRue on May 26, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book started off well, so if you read a sample, be forewarned, the begining pages DO NOT reflect the rest of the book. This is so poorly written that it's a mystery it was published. The title of this review sums up the book..
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