Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Cold Nowhere

Title: The Cold Nowhere
Author: Brian Freeman
Publisher: May 9th 2013 by Quercus
Format: Hardcover; Pgs 400
Genre: Suspense
Series: Jonathan Stride #6

When it comes to Brian Freeman’s books, I have to put down all other reading material and distractions and concentrate fully on the story that is being told. Not that it is a complicated storyline, but the subtext is just as important, and in some cases, more important than the top layer that the reader is deeply focused on.

There is nothing simple in Jonathan Stride’s life, so the day he comes home and realizes that someone is in his home, his life takes a dramatic turn. To understand this turn, you have to go back ten years to when Stride found a terrified six-year-old hiding under the porch of her family’s home.

Catalina Mateo was a witness of sorts to the murder of her mother and the death of her father.

Since that time, Cat’s life has been a struggle - foster homes, an aunt with a drug problem, running away and now a life of prostitution. When a party goes wrong and a killer is chasing her, Cat has nowhere to go, that is until she remembers what her mother told her, “find Stride, he will protect you”. Now Cat is hiding out at Jonathan’s home and a killer is determined to find her.

Brian Freeman brings a bevy of likely suspects to the table. Each has a reason to want this young woman dead, but when the last snowflake falls, I was surprised as to who was behind this twisted story. I cannot say it was the last person that I would have suspected, but definitely not in my top five.

Freeman does an incredible job of moving the story forward even though most of it takes place in the past. You have to know Stride’s history and the past of all the characters to know how they intertwine in the future and to realize that no one can completely walk away from the choices that they have made.

Jonathan Stride is a great series and even though each book has a stand-alone quality, you really should start at the beginning so you can understand the relationships between the recurring characters.

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