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A Walk Through the Fire Mass Market Paperback – Jul 1 2000


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (July 1 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446608165
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446608169
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 10.8 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,901,692 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Forged by fire and cradled by water, the Hawaiian Islands are a study in extreme contrast. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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By Roger Long on July 27 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Amateurish, stiff, thin, contrived--these are the adjectives I can think of to describe the novel best. Although I might add one more: disappointing. This is my first Marcia Muller mystery, and I expected more from a seasoned writer--too much, as it turned out. After reading Steve Hamilton, Bill Pronzini, Andrew Greeley, Tony Hillerman, Stuart Kaminsky, Les Roberts, and others of that level, this seems stale as yesterday's gruel.
There's no point in reviewing the plot details. Other reviewers have commented adequately on those. So I'll proceed to the other two major points of any mystery--atmosphere and characters. Set in Hawaii, for the most part, I just never quite got there, despite all the green vegetation, flowers and fiery volcanoes. Beautiful, beautiful, so what? The characters are pretty much standard fare for mysteries--too rich, too spoiled, too much alcohol and drugs. As for love affairs, mystery writers might do well to heed S.S. Van Dine's rule from decades ago and leave sex out of the work. If the mystery is thin, the romance won't thicken it. The murder and the detection are, after all, why we read crime fiction. If I want romance, I'll go with Bertrice Small.
In short, I doubt that I'll try another Marcia Muller book, at least, not for a long, long time. Sorry.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Private Investigator Sharon McCone gets tough duty in this 20th. book of the series when she is asked to go to Kauai. Glenna Stanleigh, a friend from San Francisco, has asked Sharon to investigate the strange happenings on the set of the documentary she is filming in Hawaii. Sharon takes the job and flies over with her significant other, Hy Ripinsky. When she arrives, she begins investigating the family whose patriarch is at the center of the film. Glenna has used his notes and research about some of the folk tales of the native Hawaiins as a starting point for her documentary. As Sharon's investigation proceeds, several skeletons begin to come out of the closet and family secrets are revealed. At the same time, Sharon is being romanced by a local helicoptor pilot and Hy leaves the island in order to give Sharon some time and room to consider her relationships with the two men. The plot has some intriguing twists and turns and at last all of the secrets are revealed. Marcia Muller and her heroine have matured over the 20-plus years that this series has been written, and this book does not disappoint.
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By Ricky N. on March 20 2002
Format: Hardcover
"A Walk through the Fire" is the 20th Sharon McCone novel. ...I think this is one of the best of the Sharon McCone novels. Glenna Stanleigh, a friend of McCone's, is filming a documentary on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. It appears that someone is trying to sabotage the project and Glenna fears that someone is trying to kill her. She asks McCone to come to Hawaii and investigate. She and her lover, Hy Ripinsky, go to Hawaii. Glenna's project focuses on the Wellbright family, a wealthy family with quite a few dark secrets. Sharon almost becomes involved with helicopter pilot Russ Tanner, and her relationship with Hy is put to the test. This is a different kind of McCone novel. I did miss the San Francisco crew, but all in all I thought this was an excellent novel.
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By A Customer on Sept. 9 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Or did he know Muller had no intention of getting rid of him? The mystery part of this book was pretty good, but the torn-between two (almost) lovers part was just lame. Maybe it's time for the Grandmother of All Female PIs to consider retiring to the rocking chair on the porch.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have to admit never having read any of the other Sharon McCone series, nor have I read anything else by Marcia Muller (if indeed there is anything else). But I do enjoy detective fiction as entertaining reading, and I'm certainly not adverse to female detectives, thoroughly enjoying PI's from V.I. Warshawski to Stephanie Plum.
So apart from the expected issues of coming in late in a long-established series (the newcomer can't expect all the characterisation to start from scratch, and relationships and other details are often simply glossed to avoid boring the long-time followers) I had every reason to expect to enjoy this book. A writer doesn't often manage to get to a twenty-second book in a series without being reasonably articulate and entertaining (although Don Pendelton and the Mack Bolan series is definitely proof that this is a very fallible assumption). I'm sorry to report that while McCone and Miller are indeed reasonably articulate, they are certainly not (in this novel) exceptionally entertaining. Plot and characteristation were workmanlike at best, and there simply wasn't a lot here to hold the reader's attention. Miller seemed to be counting on the exotic locale of Hawaii to overcome the mundane story; but the 50th state is hardly exotic anymore to those of us who grew up on Hawaii Five-0 and it's followers. The romantic side-story never quite came together, either. McCone is supposed to be torn between her main squeeze and a handsome helicopter pilot, but we have no understanding about what the big attraction is to the new guy. Miller seems to prefer understatement--and it's just as well that there's no torrid sex in this novel--but A Walk Through the Fire is so understated that it failed almost entirely to interest me.
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