Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “White Fire” as Want to Read:
White Fire
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

White Fire (Pendergast #13)

4.05 of 5 stars 4.05  ·  rating details  ·  10,860 ratings  ·  1,460 reviews
Past and present collide in Preston and Child's most thrilling novel ever . . .


Special Agent Pendergast arrives at an exclusive Colorado ski resort to rescue his protégée, Corrie Swanson, from serious trouble with the law. His sudden appearance coincides with the first attack of a murderous arsonist who--with brutal precision--begins burning down multimillion-dol
Audiobook, Unabridged, 13 pages
Published November 12th 2013 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 2013)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about White Fire, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about White Fire

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Seeing Douglas Preston in person (twice) and Lincoln Child via Skype (once), I can’t help but be enthralled by the eccentricities of these two individuals, and the odd dynamic that must ensue from this powerful writing duo. So it’s hard not to see how Aloysius Pendergast might have developed from these two brilliant minds fully formed and ready for action. He’s odd and eccentric and intriguing and his dark suits never manage to get wrinkle, even when he’s bounding through snow drifts up to his c ...more
Preston and Child never cease to amaze and this book helps cement the fact that their Pendergast series remains to this day one of my top favorite series. do I really have to wait another year for another?

*Be on the lookout for a Q&A with the authors in the upcoming few weeks. I'll put links here, but it will be posted at Shelf Inflicted and a few other blogs! WITH A GIVEAWAY! :)


Corrie Swanson needs to make a huge splash on her thesis, as she’s competing in John Jay College’s Rosew
This book was really good, the story was very interesting and I love the connection to Arthur Conan Doyle. This is one of the best books in the series and I recommend it warmly!

As I never really enjoyed the Helen trilogy was I absolutely thrilled to finally read a Preston and Child book that had a really interesting and entertaining story. I was also glad that Corrie Swanson was back. She's a favorite character and I loved that she had a big part in this book!
Not one of the better books from this team. Agent Pendergast takes a backseat to Corrie Swanson (from Still Life With Crows), his protege, and a student at John Jay College, majoring in criminology. She has to write a thesis and has stumbled on a series of grizzly bear maulings of miners in a Colorado mining camp, now turned into one of the priciest ski resorts in the country. At the same time, someone is targeting the homes and lives of these one-percenters, burning their houses down with the o ...more
I wasn't a huge fan of the Helen Trilogy, and I was unsure of this one in the beginning because Pendergast seemed to be very much on the periphery of the story... but in the end, I didn't have to worry. There's plenty of Pendergast to keep things feeling familiar, and I liked exploring his relationship with Corrie (makes me want to go back and read Still Life with Crows again). I was amused that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes played such a key role in the story, considering that Pend ...more
I've read the first novel of the Pendergast series, Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, when it first came out in the 90s. It didn't impress me much, at least not enough to check out another Pendergast novel. I'm assuming I didn't like it because I remember hardly any of it. I have the enviable skill of being able to mentally block out books I don't like. It is a helpful superpower in which only the political rants of Anne Coulter seem to be immune to. Anne Coulter is my Kryptonite. But ...more
Apr 08, 2014 Mark rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of great thrillers
Pendergast returns after the "Helen trilogy" which for me was somewhat a dip in the road in the series as written by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child. For one I do not like books with open endings and reading one story over three years, one that occasionaly flirted more than any book before with an too overly amount of suspense of disbelieve.

But all is well with this new tale of Pendergast & Corrie Swanson, his protege and one of the persons he protects and stimulates. This tale of Americ
This was not a Pendergast book of note. Too much Corrie and not enought Pendergast. He's why I wait for the next in the series. Corrie pretty much annoyed me from the get go. Whiney, self-absorbed and quite stupid. There also didn't seem to be the thought, depth and layers that there normally are. I figured out who the arsonist was a quarter, maybe, of the way into the book. I realize that they can't bring back the older characters, but if Corrie is going to be a predominant character, I may dec ...more
Corrie Swanson has gotten herself into some trouble with the local law in a small Colorado skiing town, so Special Agent Pendergast, much to her chagrin and (quiet) gratitude, arrives to save the day. It seems Ms. Swanson’s research into some long ago “bear attacks” has the town worried about what she may uncover. Add that to some sudden mysterious cases of arson of multi-million dollar mansions, and Aloysius knows he has a little investigating to do. Coincidentally, there is also a connection w ...more
Ah Pendergast, you have returned and I am so very glad to see you are back in form. Preston & Child have also returned to form with White Fire, providing their mix of suspense and thriller with bits of historical background to support the present day story.

Another good element here is the presence of Corrie Swanson, Pendergast's very bright, but somewhat brash, protegee first met in Still Life With Crows. She has come to Colorado to work on her thesis in forensics by studying the bones of ea

Full review over at Fantasy Book Critic

OVERVIEW/ANALYSIS: After the traumatic events showcased in Two Graves, readers were presented with a broken Pendergast (mentally, and a bit world-weary). So readers were interested to see what would happen to him post the revelations of the climax of the Helen Pendergast trilogy. What I liked was how the authors decided to side-step reader expectations.

This book is a standalone story and focuses on Corrie Swanson as she is looking for a historical project
This was a Pendergast novel that was not really worth the wait. I have been an avid lover of the series, but was very disappointed with this one. The story line was ok but I really missed the usual team of characters. They were all briefly mentioned but not in a way that moved the story along in any way. Pendergast himself was missing in a great deal of the book. I didn't understand why Preston and Child made Corrie the center of the book and then wrote her in such a whiny, spoiled, selfish way. ...more
Sheesh. I have long been a fan of Pendergast. I mean, I think I may have a little crush on him- so I'm willing to suspend disbelief (he's a bit unreal) and put up with a bit of nonsense (it's genre thriller, nothing literary at all). But. This book utterly failed to live up to my expectations. I read it in two sittings and felt as it focused more on the protege than on Pendergast. The horror felt flat and the who-done-it aspect was not there. It pains me to think that this series may be on the d ...more
4.5 stars.

This story seemed--to me--a refreshing change back to the "old-style" Pendergast. His character seemed to regain much of his beloved "superiority" and unerring instincts that were sadly lacking from some previous books. Although I'm not a fan of Corrie Swanson (with the exception of her debut in STILL LIFE WITH CROWS), her character didn't bother me quite as much or "detract" unnecessarily from the overall narrative.

Also pleasant to note was that this was a stand-alone novel, and not
Dec 30, 2013 Mike rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone

White Fire is the newest book about the ever-intriguing Special Agent Prendergast.

I received a copy of White Fire from the publisher via the good graces of blogger Steven White. In return, with many thanks to Steven, I am writing my honest review of this novel.

Although I have not read the entire series, I have enjoyed several of them (and must remember to write up a few missing reviews in my copious free time). I have missed a few of the later books, so this novel picks up in unfamiliar territo
John Connolly
Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child have been writing together since about 1995, I think, although I seem to remember that Relic, their first collaboration, was attributed in the UK to “Preston Child,” and only later were they surgically separated, as it were. Again, there is a slight shift in style between the writers, with Preston, I’d guess, being the denser prose stylist.

White Fire is the thirteenth of their books to feature FBI Agent Aloysius Pendergast, many of which have been good fun. They
I read this book when it came out in November. I fell in love with it right away. A Pendergast novel is always a great gift to unwrap. He is clearly my favorite FBI agent. He's odd, he's brilliant, he doesn't like rules and he gets results. His oddities and his equally odd family are one of the reasons I will never stop reading them. Thank you, Doug and Linc, for giving us this wonderful character and his crazy family. Along with his family, there is another kind of family. His friends, colleagu ...more
Bob Milne
With Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child's thirteenth Agent Pendergast adventure being a stand-alone tale, and one that begins with his protégée, Corrie Swanson, taking center stage, I wasn't sure quite what to expect. Fortunately, White Fire proved to be everything we've come to expect from the man in black . . . and then some.

As it turns out, having Corrie take the lead was a smart move. The events of the Diogenes Trilogy (dealing with his brother) and the Helen Trilogy (dealing with his wife) r
Toby Tate
I am a huge fan of all things Pendergast, have read them all beginning with THE RELIC, and this is one of the best. Corrie Swanson, whom we all met back in STILL LIFE WITH CROWS, is going after a career in law enforcement with the help of her mentor, Pendergast. She is trying to write a research paper that will please her asshat of a college professor, and runs across some very unusual and gruesome killings that happened a century ago and appeared to be caused by a grizzly bear. Well, it wasn't ...more
"White Fire", the latest Pendergast novel from Preston and Child is another terrific entry in the series that won't disappoint the FBI agent's legion of fans. Pendergast actually shares center stage with his young protege', Corrie Swanson, in this adventure set in a fabulously-rich gated community near the Continental Divide.

Swanson, in attempt to finish her thesis for a law class, stumbles on to a 150-year old mystery while doing her research in Roaring Fork, CO. As she searches for answers to
J Stanley
I thought this book was great. The story bringing in a tale from the 1870's told to Oscar Wylde. Then how he told it to Conan Doyle, which leads to a lost Holmes story. That lost story being key to solving the case today. One part I wish was told a bit better was the cover up happening today. It was always there but never made a big point to the story as a whole. Yet the reason why things were taking shape was because of the cover up. I'm being vague not wanting to give away the book. This story ...more
Amy Lignor
“The shudder of fear is as sensual as the shudder of pleasure, if not more so.” This is a line that speaks volumes when it comes to putting together a review of this latest incredible novel by Preston & Child.

Special Agent Pendergast is a character that has become beloved by millions. From his introduction in ‘The Relic’ to his incredible growth and presence in a score of others, Special Agent Pendergast books have literally been A+ across the board.

In this new offering, the line above is s
Diane S.
3.5 A new Pendergast is a cause for celebrations, he is such a strange and unique character with such an intriguing back story. In this one his back story takes a back seat, so to say, and his protege Corrie, takes a much more active role.

An old silver mining town, that has now become a very expensive skiing enclave for the very wealthy. An old cemetery, old bones and a very old story Oscar Wilde told Conan Doyle, in the late 1800's when they found themselves in the same place. Now adding Wilde
Stewart Tame
Happiness is a new Preston & Child book. Sadness is finishing a new Preston & Child book and realizing one now has to wait for the next one. While this is yet another novel featuring their series character, Pendergast, it's a fairly accessible starting point. Some of the back story is alluded to, but in terms too vague to really spoil much. White Fire is a tautly constructed thriller that grabs the reader by the neck and doesn't let go until the final page. As an added bonus, we get a br ...more
For most of the book, White Fire was a solid four stars, maybe even pushing five. Agent Pendergast gets his groove back, and it's fun to see him sassing the folks who annoy him. However, by the last hundred pages or so I was deeply frustrated with the portrayal of Pendergast's protégé Corrie Swanson. Overall, I've liked her presence in the past few stories, however, this volume frustrated me beyond all reason. During the whole story, she moved from one stupid decision to the next, ignoring her c ...more
Likeable but rather slight entry in the Pendergast series. Much more background than actual plot in the story and the character of Corrie continues to annoy. Pendergast is good as always and the story moves along nicely, but there just isn't much going on here and it pales in comparison to the prior Pendergast/Corrie novel, Still Life With Crows. I fear the series is getting tired and the authors are too afraid to shake things up or create a really intense, hard-edged story for fear that many of ...more
Katherine Erlikh
I got this as ARC from BEA, and I am very disappointed in it; I was expecting something more than the common thriller with a dash of Sherlock Holmes myth tossed in. Very contrived ending.
Mike French
Haven't read a lot of the Pendergast series, but enjoyed this one and the others I have read. Enough twists and turns to have kept me turning pages until the finish.
Tanja Berg
Rating 4* out of 5. This book lived up to my high expectations. I haven't read a Pendergast novel since "Brimstone" because the intervening volumes didn't catch my interest. This one did. Corrie, the niece of FBI Agent Pendergast, has to write a thesis. She chooses to do so one some skeletons of miners mauled and eaten by a grizzly bear in the late 19th century. They have recently been moved from one cemetery and are waiting to be reburied in a small but rich former mining town in the Colorado r ...more
Rebecca Young
Nov 22, 2013 Rebecca Young is currently reading it
So excited to read this!!! Absolutely love all the Pendergast books! Please keep them coming!!!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • The Forgotten Room (Jeremy Logan #4)
  • The 6th Extinction (Sigma Force, #10)
  • The King's Deception (Cotton Malone, #8)
  • Dark City (Repairman Jack: The Early Years #2)
  • The Diabolist (Dominic Grey, #3)
  • Rasputin's Shadow (Templar, #4)
  • The Mayan Secrets (Fargo Adventure, #5)
Douglas Preston was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1956, and grew up in the deadly boring suburb of Wellesley. Following a distinguished career at a private nursery school--he was almost immediately expelled--he attended public schools and the Cambridge School of Weston. Notable events in his early life included the loss of a fingertip at the age of three to a bicycle; the loss of his two fr ...more
More about Douglas Preston...

Other Books in the Series

Pendergast (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Relic (Pendergast, #1)
  • Reliquary (Pendergast, #2)
  • The Cabinet of Curiosities (Pendergast, #3)
  • Still Life With Crows (Pendergast, #4)
  • Brimstone (Pendergast, #5; Diogenes, #1)
  • Dance of Death (Pendergast, #6; Diogenes, #2)
  • The Book of the Dead (Pendergast, #7; Diogenes, #3)
  • The Wheel of Darkness (Pendergast, #8)
  • Cemetery Dance (Pendergast, #9)
  • Fever Dream (Pendergast, #10)
Relic (Pendergast, #1) The Cabinet of Curiosities (Pendergast, #3) Reliquary (Pendergast, #2) Brimstone (Pendergast, #5; Diogenes, #1) The Book of the Dead (Pendergast, #7; Diogenes, #3)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“A strange, pale figure emerged—Pendergast?—and she felt herself suddenly in his arms, lifted bodily as if she were a child again, her head cradled against his chest. She felt his shoulders began to convulse, faintly, regularly, almost as if he was weeping. But that was, of course, impossible, as Pendergast would never cry.” 4 likes
“Carroting, you must understand, was a process by which animal fur is bathed in a solution of mercury nitrate, in order to render the hairs more supple, thus producing a superior felt.” At this last word, he threw a significant glance in my direction. “Felt,” I repeated. “You mean, for the making of hats?” “Precisely. The solution is of an orange colour, hence the term carroting. However, this process had rather severe side effects on those who worked with it, which is why its use today is much reduced. When mercury vapours are inhaled over a long enough period of time—particularly, for our purposes, in the close quarters of a hat-making operation—toxic and irreversible effects almost inevitably follow. One develops tremors of the hands; blackened teeth; slurred speech. In severe cases, dementia or outright insanity can occur. Hence the term mad as a hatter.” 0 likes
More quotes…