Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Review: Hell's Gate by Stephen Frey

Hell's Gate: A Novel Hell's Gate: A Novel by Stephen Frey

My rating: 3.75/5.0
I love Stephen Frey's Christian Gilette series and ever since I read the first one of those, I have picked up all of his new books to read and I am working on his backlist.

About the Book:

When thirty-five-year-old lawyer Hunter Lee decides to turn his back on the New York City rat race that has made him rich but cost him his marriage, he takes his brother's advice and sets out to build a new life in the beautiful but isolated town of Fort Mason, Montana. However, escape is hardly what he finds there.

Hunter befriends Paul Brule, a Fire Jumper -- one of an elite corps of firefighters who parachute into remote wilderness areas to put out blazes before they become infernos -- and gets a terrifying firsthand look at the reality of vast tracts of forest being reduced to ash in seconds by hundred-foot walls of flame. In this tiny town where everyone seems to have a secret, Hunter comes to suspect that this particular rash of summer fires is anything but accidental and could, in fact, be serving a more sinister purpose.

As Hunter follows his instincts, Montana becomes a crucible where good and evil collide -- and where one man, running from his past, takes on the burden of exposing the guilty while saving himself and those he cares about most from the greatest danger they have ever faced.

My Review:

Hell's Gate is a departure from the business world in a way and in a way it's not. It is because the main characters are not in big business. Hunter is a big-city lawyer out for trial in Big Sky Country and stays to visit his brother. While there he learns from his brother and his brother's friend Paul that numerous forest fires have been popping up the Pacific Northwest and they feel they have been started on purpose. But the problem is there are several people in Fort Mason, Montana that could be behind it. That is where the business world comes in. All the people it could be are involved in some way in a business that could prosper by the setting of the fires. It's up to Paul and Hunter to figure out who the perpetrator is before it's too late.

What follows in this book is a great thrill ride. I never quite knew who it would be since great reasons were brought up for each one and each seemed suspicious in their actions. Frey did a great job setting up the plot and executing it. My only problem is I wish there was a little more at the end. It seems things were tidied up and ended in a hurry and I could have learned a lot more. But all-in-all it was a great book and the characters are ones I would love to learn more about.

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The Westie Loving Therapist said...

This book sounds really good! I've read several other books about fire jumpers and have recently really started to enjoy mystery/suspense books including the law.

Squall Guy said...

I just finished this book, and althought I am a big fan of Frey's other novels, this one had to have been the worst. In fact, it's one of the worst books I've EVER read, which is saying a lot. I got the impression that Frey was fulfilling the requirements of a contract, 'mailing it in', as it were. Too many clich├ęs, rudimentary prose, and, like you said, a hurried ending that answered little and left you feeling extremely cheated.

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