Killer Heat

Killer Heat by Linda Fairstein

While perusing the large print section at the library, I came upon Killer Heat by Linda Fairstein. This novel featuring District Attorney Alex Cooper, actually came out in 2008 but somehow I missed it. Unlike other series, I have not read these books in order. So far that hasn’t been a problem.


Killer Heat takes place during a hot August. Cooper is assigned to cases involving sex crimes and she is successfully wrapping up a cold case. As in real life, the district attorney has more than one case in front of her at any given time, so the work is never-ending. An unidentifiable body is discovered and Alex is contacted in case the dumped woman is tied to a missing person case she is working on. Soon, another and then another, corpse turns up. Cooper and her sidekicks Mike Chapman and Mercer Wallace face a serial killer.

Fairstein’s talents are evident in Killer Heat. First is her skill at bringing secondary characters to life. In some books the reader can only picture the main characters. But in Killer Heat, the descriptions, dialog and actions of minor characters are well-developed. For example, in one scene Alex Cooper talks with the younger sister of a character who is a “person of interest.” The reader sees a teenager on the cusp of adulthood. The nuances of that age are clear. The young girl naturally has conflicting emotions and is torn between loyalty and morality.

Next, the main characters’ interaction rings so true, the reader is sucked right into the plot. Then the plot is well constructed. The killings are tied together. There are no threads left hanging and everything wraps up nicely. Of course Fairstein adds a nice little twist to explain why the murderer kills.

Killer Heat Highlight

One of the best things about Killer Heat is Cooper does not have men swooping in at the end to save her. Earlier in the novel, the protagonist is depicted at a shooting range. Chapman is determined that Alex learns to shoot. She fails miserably. The author correctly shows shooting guns is harder than it looks. Nevertheless, Alex incapacitate’s the killer on her own with plausible action.

If you have not read any of Linda Fairstein’s novels, I highly recommend trying them. As I stated earlier, I do not read them in order although some may. Certainly, Killer Heat can stand alone without reading any others. This is an easy book to get lost in.