cover image The Cold Nowhere: A Jonathan Stride Novel

The Cold Nowhere: A Jonathan Stride Novel

Brian Freeman. Quercus, $24.95 (432p) ISBN 978-1-62365-131-2

At the start of Thriller Award–winner Freeman’s masterfully plotted sixth novel featuring Duluth, Minn., police detective Jonathan Stride (after 2010’s The Burying Place), a half-frozen 16-year-old hooker turns up in Stride’s cottage on Lake Superior late one winter night. Catalina “Cat” Mateo needs Stride to protect her from a stalker, but the detective carries some psychological baggage: 10 years earlier, he failed to save Cat’s mother from being butchered by her brutal husband, who then shot himself as little Cat cowered under their porch. Maggie Bei, Stride’s longtime police partner and onetime lover, warns him that Cat could now be unstable, even homicidal, but Stride, a strong man whose weakness is rescuing women, can’t abandon the teenager. Freeman shows how those endless North Shore winters have toughened and aged Stride, closing him off from the world, but the author also convincingly makes Stride break out of his icy, self-imposed shell. Author tour. Agent: Deborah Schneider, Gelfman Schneider Literary Agents. (Apr.)