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Cold Fire Hardcover – Jan 1991

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CDN$ 35.00 CDN$ 0.01 First Novel Award - 6 Canadian Novels Make the Shortlist
--This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.

Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Putnam Pub Group (T); 1st Edition edition (January 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399135790
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399135798
  • Product Dimensions: 50.8 x 50.8 x 50.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 454 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,356,535 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Library Journal

Teacher Jim Ironheart, aptly named, is sent by forces unknown to save chosen people in life-threatening situations. By chance, a young but jaded reporter stumbles onto his missions, and joins him to investigate who is controlling him and why. Shared nightmares begin to point to an extraterrestrial influence, and the pair are forced to confront Ironheart's forgotten past for answers. Koontz ( The Bad Place , LJ 12/89), a master at maintaining mystery and suspense, weaves themes from earlier novels into this latest thriller. Even if the ending calls to mind DuMaurier and Hitchcock, Cold Fire contains all the ingredients--likable characters, nail-biting suspense, and above all, unlimited imagination--that will please Koontz's fans. For all popular collections. Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club main selection; Mystery Guild featured alternate; previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 9/1/90.
-Eric W. Johnson, Teikyo Post Univ. Lib., Waterbury, Ct.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.


BTW...for those of you who are into unabridged audio books by may want to check out a company called, The Reader's Chair. They have several books by DK on audio, and they are read by *excellent* narrators. I highly recommend it. Yes, this is a shameless plug...but it was unsolicited. Good reading is good reading. -- R. O., 3/18/97

Dean Koontz pulls out all the stops in this highly-charged novel of fantasy, terror, action, romance and suspense. Employing dual narrators, this [unabridged] cassette production is relentlessly gripping. **** - Don't miss it! -- The Los Angeles Daily News, July 12, 1992

First I want to tell you that the awards you have received are well deserved! NOBODY can tell a good story like Carol and Michael. The performances are exactly on par, if not better than, the works of art that are read. Audio book companies should place THE READER'S CHAIR as their goal. -- M. P., 8/1/98

I have purchased all of your Dean Koontz selections and I could not be more pleased with them. Keep up the good work! -- R.T., April 5, 1997

I must say I prefer your productions of the Koontz books to the other that are out there. My favorite is "Cold Fire". I commend your efforts on your excellent products. -- sandman, 11 Jun 1996

Koontz's suspenseful, best-selling novel, receives solid, professional treatment by readers Carol Cowan and Michael Hanson. Without over-dramatizing, they give the story a clear, concise reading which allows the strong plot to carry the listener without interruption. -- AudioFile, March 1993

Receives an excellent treatment from Cowan and Hanson, whose voices capture the best in audio drama. -- The Bookwatch, August 1991

The Reader's Chair did an excellent job on my favorite Dean Koontz. -- Thorfy, May 30, 1995

[Cold Fire] had me on the edge of my seat! (And it's hard to drive that way...) -- DWBABER, 29 Mar 1996 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Even before the events in the supermarket, Jim Ironheart should have known trouble was coming. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By The Tweeder on May 24 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
A truly compelling story from beginning to end, "Cold Fire" might win "Dean Koontz's most bizarre novel about plane-crashes, stigmatas, aliens, psychic visions, and God" award. Set in sunny California, Jim Ironheart plays the protagonist, a regular school teacher who mysteriously sees visions of people who are supposed to die and then miraculously comes to their rescue. When Ironheart flies to Portland, Oregon to save a young child from getting pummelled by a drunk driver in front of a school, reporter Holly Thorne witnesses the feat and automatically becomes intrigued by the hero.
When fate brings the two together on a flight from California to Chicago, Holly realizes that her need for the nation's top story is getting her in over her head--Jim is on board to save a mother and her child on the flight because it is supposed to crash. The events after the plane crash are superior, with Jim and Holly diving into the extraordinary abilities that our hero possesses, but also the dark secrets about his past that he is keeping locked up inside.
Koontz uses his endless imagination to twirl his characters around with superb dialogue, mixing regular human fears (such as plane crashes, murderers, being alone in the dark, and guilt) with miraculously enigmas (such as telekinesis, psychic powers, religion, and psychological terror) to create stories that do not only scratch the surface of his readers, but also explodes into the very fiber of their being. The novel does get simply too outlandish at points and does not tie up enough loose ends (mainly because they are so many intangible thoughts and questions expressed throughout the piece); however, "Cold Fire" is another haunting tale that is so outrageous that it hits extremely close to home with its audience--something that no other author has been able to do so brilliantly in the past quarer century.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Theresa Phillips on Jan. 9 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Considering this was the first Koontz book I read, and by now I've read many, I'm gald I started with this one. It turned out to be wonderful. I like the characters, in fact, in this book, I grew to really feel for the characters, and I felt all the pain for the main character. I have noticed in some Koontz book, his characters seem shallow and underdeveloped, but since there were only two, as in Intensity, you really become gripped by the suspense. I highly recommend it, though it does have an odd ending, but if you're into the paranormal, and like to think mental illnesses can indeed be more than you think, you'll love it!
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I am at a loss to understand the reputation Dean Koontz has garnered in the literary world. I wasn't sure my assessment was valid after only having read The Bad Place but upon finishing Cold Fire I am convinced it is. Cold Fire was interesting and tightly written for the first 200 or so pages and falls rapidly apart in the last 200. The dialogue is contrite, and unrealistic, the premise approaches juvenile, (could we be expected to believe an alien with a mental condition, God give me a break), and Koontz repeatedly lays everything out for his readers, no innuendo, or thinking required. He is not good at describing complex plot development and this is the way he conceals that weakness. Equally unbelievable was that Holly Thorne, a mediocre journalist at best (by the author's own admission), was repeatedly, with unerring accuracy able to psycho-analyze the protagonist with the skill of a seasoned psychiatrist. I'm sorry, we have Stephen King's, we have David Baldacci's, we have Patricia Cornwell's and Mary Higgins Clark's. Dean Koontz is in a category well below the skill and talent of any of these fine writers and should not (or at least for this book), be even remotely considered their peer.
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Dean Koontz's hard work has definitely paid off with his gripping novel Cold Fire. As is common with many of Koontz's novels, the setting is constantly moving. Jim Ironheart is a masterful character whose realism brings him to life! Ironheart, driven by God, has special abilities that enable him to arrive at the scene of an accident before it occurs, therefore miraculously saving the lives of the "would be" victims. Holly Thorne, a free-lance reporter who is looking for a purpose in her life, witnesses one of Ironheart's heroic rescue and her heart and attention are immediately captivated by his selflessness. She encounters him for a brief moment and then they both go their separate ways. Within the lapse of 24 hours, Holly realizes how intrigued she is by Jim's intellect and heroism. She decides to pursue him while he goes on his adventures. As Thorne progresses through the novel, she becomes infatuated with Ironheart and his extraordinary powers, while he is undergoing the most important fight of his life, a psychological battle with his past. It is not until the ending that you figure out what is happening with Jim Ironheart. The only part of the entire novel that I found disappointing and shocking was the finale. It was not what I had expected or hoped for, but overall this book was exceptionally well written. I highly recommend it to any of you adventurers or amateur psychologists out there.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The summer after my eighth-grade year, I picked up a copy of "Cold Fire" and literally could not put it down. Koontz's approach is dualistic; the first half of the novel is a gripping psychic adventure that, thematically, recalls Stephen King's "The Dead Zone." Rich in symbolism, it unfolds in a series of like episodes, and is written in vivid, haunting prose. The second half becomes almost completely occultic, Satanic, and abstract, as Koontz explores the backstory and source-of-power of the central character, Jim. As in Koontz's other novels, some dark events in the book are written with such clarity and attention to detail that I found it difficult to eat for days afterward. (One nauseating passage, in particular, involves a massacre at a "Dixie Duck" family restaurant. It is forever etched into my memory). Though the first half of "Cold Fire" is *much* more engaging and easier-to-grasp than the second, the work as a whole remains successful--a classic page-turner. One wonders why this little gem hasn't yet been adapted for television or the big screen.
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