Suave, sophisticated Stone Barrington is a hero destined for the big screen. (Since Cary Grant is dead, Stone will have to be played by Bruce Willis, if he can keep his smirk under control.) He's certainly got the trappings: the Armani tuxedo too well-tailored to reveal the gun beneath the drape, the sexy sports cars, the beautiful women who never fail to throw themselves at him, the confident familiarity with a complicated wine list or French menu. And he's got friends in high places, which helps when you're looking for a beautiful woman who made a big impression on the slightly nerdy but nice software billionaire who hires Barrington to find her.
Between bedding the billionaire's chef in Palm Beach, hiding from the homicidal Mafia princess he almost married in Italy, and playing games with a Hollywood beauty whose young son may or may not be his very own child, Stone hardly has time to do the job he's been hired for. But when he does, he discovers that the object of his search is still another ex-lover, a woman he thought had been executed on a Caribbean island three years ago. All these women, and all these adventures, plus Stone's old pal Dino, a New York cop, will be familiar to readers of Woods's other Stone Barrington thrillers. This one has Woods's trademark narrative punch, solid pacing, and glossy, brand-name panache. If Judith Krantz wrote thrillers, this is what she'd turn out. But don't let that stop you. Cold Paradise is the perfect book for a hot day in the hammock or a long plane ride to a ritzy resort destination. The only real surprise is why Stone Barrington hasn't made it to the big (or small) screen yet. --Jane Adams
From Publishers Weekly
In the seventh thriller featuring cop-turned-lawyer Stone Barrington and his old sidekick NYPD Lt. Dino Bacchetti, the prolific and urbane Woods is at the top of his consistently bestselling form. In the middle of a New York City blizzard, Thad Shames, a wealthy computer tycoon, offers Stone a small fortune and the opportunity to escape the arctic cold if he will fly to glitzy Palm Beach, Fla., and find a femme fatale Shames knows only as Liz. With the help of Callie Hodges, Shames's sensual young Girl Friday, Stone wastes little time finding Liz, but discovers she is really Allison Manning, a woman he saved from the gallows a few years back (Dead in the Water, 1997). Now known as Elizabeth Harding, she fears her first husband a murderer who Stone believed had been executed is alive and may be stalking her. Not to be deterred from wooing and wedding Liz, Shames asks Stone to protect her. Stone himself is besieged by women: first, the delectable Callie, then his old girlfriend Arrington Calder (L.A. Dead, 2000) and finally, Liz, who suggests a mnage
trois with Callie. In the midst of these amorous adventures, Stone consults Dino back in New York, trying to ID a man who fits the stalker's description, and Dino flies in just in time to be involved in a shootout in a Worth Avenue restaurant. Loaded with perfumed sex, sleek jets and yachts, lavish homes, boutiques, gourmet cuisine, quirky twists and nonstop action, Woods's pulpy pedestrian plot is grand fun. Simultaneous audio. (Apr. 23)Forecast: As frothy as ever, but more carefully plotted than L.A. Dead, Woods's latest should scale the charts, given a hefty boost by the book clubs (Doubleday and Mystery Guild main selections; BOMC and Literary Guild alternate selections), a national ad/promo campaign and a 15-city author tour.
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