About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Killer Heat by Linda Fairstein

I am behind in writing posts so decided to post a review of Killer Heat from a decade ago before I started writing the blog.

It was the first of two books I have read by Linda Fairstein featuring Manhattan Assistant District Attorney, Alexandra Cooper. The second was Terminal City which I reviewed in 2015. Below the review I have some further comments. 
23. - 433.) Killer Heat by Linda Fairstein – Manhattan Assistant District Attorney, Alexandra Cooper, is wrapping up the prosecution of a serial rapist who is being retried 30 years after a hung jury in his first trial. Suddenly she is called to a building on the waterfront where a part-time hooker specializing in SM has been found. Circumstances get more serious when a second young woman is found dead. Both have been sexually assaulted and tortured. Alex is intimately involved with her favourite police detectives in the investigation. They look at a stereotypical Irish pub owning family, the Dylans (essentially portrayed as a caricature) and their relationships with the women. A third murder and they are searching for a serial killer. Information leads them to the historic military islands around New York City. (There are interesting historical tidbits.) A plausible surprise tip breaks the case. It was hard for me to believe ADA’s get so directly involved in police investigations. Overall it was well plotted but I found the heroic portrayals of police and prosecutors overdone. There is no recognition of any flaws. It is too hard for a defence counsel to accept the righteous tone. Alright. Paperback. (June 7/08)
I think Fairstein is a good writer but I wish Ms. Cooper acted more like a lawyer than a police investigator. In both books she is far more involved in the actual investigations than is credible.

The two books do feature aspects of New York City that are little known to non-residents. In Killer Heat islands that were / are military bases are important. Terminal City refers to the sprawling Grand Central Terminal which has, among its many quirks, parked in a tunnel an armoured train used by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

If I can get by in my mind Cooper being more police officer than lawyer I may read more in the series. 

Fairstein, Linda – (2008) - Killer Heat; (2015) - Terminal City and The Mystery of FDR's Armored Train and Grand Central Terminal; Paperback


  1. I know just what you mean, Bill, about sleuths who aren't police doing things that the police do. It's one of the challenging things about writing a crime novel in which someone other than a cop is the sleuth. The NYC setting does sound interesting, though.

    1. Margot: Thanks for your comment. I know it is hard for most non-police sleuths to ask questions but lawyers spend their lives asking questions and getting answers. The setting was very interesting.