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Stone Cold Hardcover – March 11, 2014

4.5 out of 5 stars 1,010 customer reviews
Book 14 of 16 in the Joe Pickett Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Box’s last Joe Pickett novel, Breaking Point (2013), left the reader wondering where the story could possibly go next, with Joe having quit his job in disgust at the government. Perhaps Box wondered the same thing: at any rate, the Wyoming game warden has his old job back and is once again on special assignment for Governor Rulon. A mysterious, moneyed landowner is buying up the northeast corner of the state, possibly engaged in murder for hire—and Nate Romanowski, Joe’s enigmatic best friend, just might be involved. After the supercharged fury of the last book, this marks a welcome return to the thing Box does best: putting family man Joe in a dicey situation where, despite his orders to merely observe, his own moral code means he can’t help but light the fuse and see where it leads. Being in unfamiliar territory is familiar territory for Pickett, and corrupt-town scenarios are as old as the hills, but Box uses the ploys for maximum suspense, and readers won’t mind one bit. It’s good to see Pickett writing tickets again.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Box is a brand name, and readers would find his books even if they weren’t heralded by a national tour and promotional blitz—which, of course, this one is. --Keir Graff

Review

Praise for STONE COLD
 
“[A] superlative outing . . . Box gets everything right: believably real characters, a vivid setting, clear prose and ratcheting tension. Maintaining these standards over 14 novels is more than impressive.”—The Plain Dealer

Stone Cold features carefully crafted characters who live in the wilds of Wyoming, a setting that Box uses to great effect . . . Box creates a story with an unique premise and takes readers along for a suspenseful, action-filled ride.”—The Denver Post

“Box weaves vivid descriptions of Wyoming’s landscape and the personal drama of Pickett’s family into a blistering page-turner.”—Arizona Republic
 
“In C.J. Box's thrillers, [Wyoming] is a featured character and you get to know its thickly forested mountains, its windy plains and its frontierlike towns . . . [a] fun read.”—Associated Press
 
“Another exciting read from crime fiction’s king of the great outdoors.”—Madison County Herald
 
“The author has proven that he can write good -- no, great – books.”—Wyoming Eagle Tribune
 
“With each book, Box just gets better. Nonstop action, a twisty plot, and great characters make his latest a must-read for fans of this series.”—Library Journal
 
“This marks a welcome return to the thing Box does best: putting family man Joe in a dicey situation where, despite his orders to merely observe, his own moral code means he can’t help but light the fuse and see where it leads. Being in unfamiliar territory is familiar territory for Pickett, and corrupt-town scenarios are as old as the hills, but Box uses the ploys for maximum suspense.”—Booklist
 
“Exhilarating . . . Canny Joe uses his wits, taking time to assess the literal and figurative lay of the land.”—Publishers Weekly
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Product Details

  • Series: Joe Pickett (Book 14)
  • Hardcover: 370 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons; 1st edition (March 11, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399160760
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399160769
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,010 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #217,035 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Nitty's Mom TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 22, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I've read many of the Joe Pickett novels. The first two words of this novel made me very happy - Nate Romanowski. Nate is my favorite character in the Pickett series besides Joe himself. For those who haven't read any of the books, Joe Pickett is a game warden out of Saddlestring, Wyoming. He is married to Marybeth and has two lovely children, Lucy and Sheridan, and ward, April, all living in a small cabin in the Bighorn Mountains. Nate is the anthesis of Joe, a loner, living in the woods with his falcons. He is a large, rugged, pony-tailed man capable of violence on either side of the law. Joe and Nate are unlikely best friends, but both have literally saved each others lives in past editions of the series.

Joe is summoned to Cheyenne by Wyoming Governor Rulon, who has taken a liking to Joe and considers him his unofficial "range rider". The Governor sends Joe on a mission to investigate an extremely wealthy landowner in the Black Hills named Wolfgang Templeton.. Joe quickly finds out that Templeton literally owns the county., land, people and the law. The adventure continues with Joe's unique, somewhat bumbling manner. Sort of a mixture of Inspector Clouseau and John Wayne. Joe's daughters, Lucy and Sheridan, offer intriguing side stories to the novel.

This is not my usual reading genre, but I find CJ Box such a good storyteller with a fluid writing style, making it just a joy to read. His characters are so vividly realistic and the Wyoming setting gives you that western, cowboy feeling.

Although this is a standalone novel and can be read as such, there is a lot of history with Joe Pickett and his cast of characters, which makes you feel very comfortable with this latest installment. Highly recommended.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Stone Cold is a little different from the rest of C.J. Box's Joe Pickett books. It had a dark side to it in a side storyline involving his eldest daughter. It seemed a little strange at first because I didn't have any idea where the side story was going and it threw me for a loop when I read the conclusion of it. Talk about a twist!!

The main storyline of Joe going to another game warden's district for Governor Rulon gives a couple of surprises. Nice writing by Mr. Box, again, and the conclusion will keep you dangling. As I stated above, now I have to wait for the next book to come out and I hope it is soon. Mr. Box has a way of drawing you into his storylines and Stone Cold is no different.

If you are new to reading C. J. Box and his Joe Pickett series, I highly suggest you read the whole series. A great reading experience is waiting for you.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I am a C.J. Box fan and have been since his first Joe Pickett story Open Season. I have read all of this series and all of his stand-alone books too. This book is definitely a series book, NOT a stand-alone. You could enjoy it if you've not read the other Joe Pickett offerings but why cheat yourself out of the pleasure of reading the others?

"Stone Cold" has all the best qualities that have made me love his other books - non-stop action, a protagonist that is easy to identify with, a gorgeous setting in my beloved Wyoming.

Joe Pickett is still working as a Wyoming game warden but also is troubleshooting for the Governor. He goes into the Black Hill country of Wyoming in this tale, trying to find out the worst about a wealthy landowner/philanthropist. And his troubles start almost immediately.

As always, Joe tries to juggle work with his home life and two of his daughters have side tales of their own in the book.

If you enjoy suspense, mysteries, books about Wyoming, or just an exciting well-written story, you won't go wrong with this or any of author Box's books.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have read most of the Joe Pickett novels and usually like them. True, in some of them six impossible things happen before breakfast, but I can usually swallow them and, as I said, overall enjoy the book. Somehow this one seemed different and I almost didn't finish it. The coincidences, such as Joe going straight to Nate's cabin without ever having been there before, and on the one night Nate wasn't there, with no reason given as to how Joe could do this, was getting too much. And Nate flying a light plane with no formal instruction, and arriving at Sheridan's dorm at the exact time the presumed sniper was on the roof? Please. It seems like Box needed a pilot for the story and didn't have one so Nate was elected.
When things like this happen maybe the author is getting tired or lazy, or pushed by a deadline. I think Box should slow down and write the novels he is capable of. The only reason I even gave this two stars is that I enjoy the descriptions of Wyoming and Joe's family life.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Having read all the Joe Pickett novels, I was really excited to read "Stone Cold" and from the very first it grabs you like all of these novels. There are two things going on that area a threat, but sadly, only one gets developed fully. It was almost like once he put it in the book he kind of ran out of ways to make it play out, so he just finished it in six pages at the end of the book.
Also unfortunately, the main plot develops well but then there are only 30 pages left in the book and even with the main plot it seems like all at once he ran out of ideas on what to do with it and just kind of wrapped it up, and not altogether satisfactorily.
The book read well, flows well, but has a very quick and disappointing ending.
Also some very serious moral lines are crossed in the book which leaves a rather bad taste. The sub plot that ends quickly without really being developed, ends in a totally unbelievable and unrealistic manner. Not believable at all.
Not Box's best work. Kind of a "beach read" this spring, then leave it in the condo or hotel or on the plane for someone else.
It's ok.
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