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4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  8,351 Ratings  ·  185 Reviews
#1 New York Times bestselling author Iris Johansen turns up the heat in this explosive new psychological thriller. This time a gifted arson investigator teams up with a mysterious operative to stop a killer raging completely out of control...

For Kerry Murphy, the inferno is never far away. The flames of that long-ago night still burn in her nightmares: the heat, the chokin
Paperback, 368 pages
Published August 30th 2005 by Bantam (first published December 16th 2003)
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(showing 1-30)
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Mar 09, 2017 Diana rated it really liked it
a roller coaster ride of intense action,exciting and sometimes unpredictable outcomes...enjoyable read...(paperback!)
2.5 Stars

So here's the problem with rereads: Sometimes they just don't stand up to what seemed like an enjoyable read from the first time around. Not all rereads are disappointing, but this one certainly was.

I've read other Iris Johansen books before and remember finding them good, riveting, intriguing. And if memory serves, I remember liking Firestorm enough to call it enjoyable when I read it for the first time years ago, sometime during the first few years of college. At least I remembered li
Jan 19, 2017 Cheri rated it really liked it
This started out a little slow, but progressed nicely. I know some didn't like it because of the portrayal of the main characters. I understood why they acted the way they did. The who dunnit part was a surprise to me!
Rachael Uponen
Sep 09, 2016 Rachael Uponen rated it did not like it
Well, it wasn't Iris Johansen's worst book I've ever read.

Kerry is an arson investigator who survived a horrible fire in her childhood. Unlike most of Johansen's heroines, Kerry actually has a family and didn't "grow up on the streets." She has a father and a brother (her mother died in the fire). She adores her brother, but she's distant from her father because he had her involuntarily committed after she started having "delusions." (As per the usual Johansen fare, these are real visions of fir
Jan 02, 2010 Vanessa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one didn't suck me in right away, but after about a chapter, I started really enjoying it. It's part government, part psychic, part serial killer and thriller. Kerry is someone who is currently working as an arson investigator. She's very good at her job; she can pick up impressions from the remains of an arson scene. However, this gift also proves difficult for her as she can not control it if she is personally linked to the crime in any way, and refuses to let anyone teach her. Enter our ...more
Jeannine Stewart
Jun 10, 2016 Jeannine Stewart rated it did not like it
I do not have the ability to write and I do not like criticizing someone with the talent to put pen to paper and create a novel. However, I am a reader and I know what captures my attention. Sorry to say that I couldn't make it past page 33 of this book. Everything was flat and confusing to me.............the characters, the plot, even the dog.
Aug 26, 2011 Okwuoma rated it liked it
There is a proverb...proverb 21: 9 to be exact, that says, it is better to live on the corner of a roof than to share a home with a quarrelsome woman...older versions say contentious woman. And let me tell after reading this book, I realize that is completely true!!

At the beginning with Charlie she seemed to be a nice, reasonable, wily gal. Then enters silver...and I get that he didn't have the most suave entrance...and he did prance around in her mind...I get the whole "I feel violated" bit, b
Aug 31, 2009 Arthur rated it it was amazing
I fell fast into involvements between Kerry and Silver who was clearly two nutcases, who are really normal people. In contrast they have their differences but Silver has always a way to manipulate others. Until Kerry. Then both their lives begin quickly to change. Before their meeting, Kerry had been a good fire fighter, now she has turned arsonist investigator with her newly arson trained pup, Sam. Sam is quickly becoming well known in the community as a tough arson dog. Together they try to fi ...more
Feb 15, 2009 Dannielle rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2009, suspense
This book started out good, and I was interested in where the book was going.

However, as soon as Silver came onto the scene Kerry changed. It's not often that I dislike a heroine. I've read numerous different types, and I like them all. I can admire a strong female who likes her independence. But at some point you need to give in to help, and accept that you can't do everything yourself. Kerry bugged me throughout this book. She could get so upset and angry over the littlest thing.

So while I s
Mar 12, 2010 Sheila rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Iris Johansen continues to one of my favorite authors. Firestorm did not disappoint. This was a thriller about a murderer that uses his new invention as a weapon of terror. The protagonist, Kerry, has the ability to sense how a fire was started and the absolute terror that people including her fellow firefighters feel when encountering a blazing inferno. 4 star book.
Jun 18, 2009 Charly rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone
Johansen writes interesting pieces but each that I've read involves a heroine and someone with extraordinary talents or skills. Still in all they are generally a decent read in the "thriller" category.
Jan 16, 2017 Gretchen rated it really liked it
Interesting psycho-novel. Enoyed jumping into their minds as the mystery is being solved solved.
Apr 22, 2010 Stacy rated it really liked it
A wonderfully non-smutty romantic suspense!!! I like mysteries and suspense with a touch of the extra-sensory or psychological thrill! Iris Johansen did a good job with this one.
Conni Harness
Nov 10, 2016 Conni Harness rated it it was amazing
Another good read by this author. I continue to be amazed at the strength & imagination of this author. This book didn't even seem like a book I could like. But in short I was caught & reeled into the story. I personally never see the totally ending.
Mar 02, 2012 Martip rated it liked it
This is my second Iris Johansen book. I was drawn to her initially because of Pandora's Daughter's opening lines. I was creating a Creative Writing class for high school students at the time, and Johansen's opener was one of the BEST examples I'd seen in a long time. It was like a bolt of sizzling lightening flashing from heaven to my feet. When I started taking up reading voraciously again, I picked up some more of her books. I'm nearly done with TWO of her books. I'll probably copy and paste a ...more
Rena Sherwood
It is said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. But Thomas Harris, author of The Silence of the Lambs (1989) should feel highly insulted by Firestorm (2004) by Iris Johansen. This is a carbon copy of Harris' masterpiece - only the woman pursuing the psychotic mastermind happens to be psychic. But "Firestorm" never sparks.

If you like movies such as Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959) for the unintentional comedy, then you should have a lot of laughs with Firestorm. However, since the book
Cj W
What happens when you shut out your deepest darkest memories, while in a coma.
Maybe thats why some people go into coma's in the first place. It's their bodies way of telling them that they can't handle life, or a certain situation, and so it takes them away from it for an extended period of time, and repairs them to either not remember the situation, or gives them some ability to handle the situation before they wake up.

This is what happened to Kerry Murphy. Who fell into a coma for about 2 ye
May 20, 2011 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The prologue didn’t necessarily pull me in, but the first few chapters did. For some reason, I always have a hard time getting into books where there’s a big gap of time between the prologue and the first chapter. After a while I was hooked, especially on the paranormal stuff. The paranormal was actually a nice surprise. I wasn’t expecting it.

Silver was an enjoyable character. I don’t know if it’s because he’s full of mystery or because he played the role of a “bad boy” but I do know that there
Jan 06, 2011 Ladiibbug rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: No One
Mystery with Psychic Aspects, but not Paranormal

This didn't impress me at all. I quit reading around page 75. Kerry Murphy is an arson investigator who is teamed with Sam, an dog trained in arson investigation. My first "what?" moment came when we find out Sam (the dog) *really* hasn't been able to learn what he needs to know to be an arson dog, but Kerry covers for him. My disenchantment increased after learning that as a child, Kerry was the victim of an intentionally set arson fire that kille
Elizabeth Stearns
Feb 10, 2017 Elizabeth Stearns rated it liked it
Light mystery with a little different twist.
Jul 29, 2012 Kristen rated it liked it
I listened to this on audio book, and it was an abridged version, but I enjoyed the story.

The main characters Kerry and Silver are interesting and their chemistry, which alternates between "I hate you" and "I'm intrigued by you" is just realistic enough to draw you in.

The story is about fire. There's an insane genius running around killing people with fire that he can actually control, and Kerry and Silver (both of whom are psychic) are working together (when they aren't hating each other) to tr
Sheri S.
This wasn't necessarily a bad book, but it just wasn't a great read for me! I've read several of Iris Johansen's books and I've been sort of disappointed with the last couple of newer ones I've read! I think I like her older writings better, like the beginning Eve Duncan mysteries and the Wind Dancer stories! But, I do like how she continues to connect her stories together with the appearance of intertwining characters, in this instance, President Andreas! And this story was a little different a ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 10, 2013 Jacqueline rated it liked it
This was not my favorite IJ book. I went in thinking it was going to be something totally different than it was. From the back of the book it did not really give you a hint about any psychic type abilities, so I had to change gears while reading this.

I liked Silvers character, but found Charlie ANNOYING. She was a whiny, bitchy female lead. She kept demanding help from Silver, but when he helped, she would complain, nag and bitch. If her character had been stronger I think that would have led m
Jan 01, 2016 Theresa rated it liked it
It was a really interesting premise, with a cool paranormal touch, but Johansen didn't seem to develop the characters or the relationships between them that much, especially the romance between Brad and Kerry. It was also annoying how stupid and stubborn Kerry was about the whole thing. An interesting premise, but fell short on character development. However, will probably give Johansen another try in case this was just a weak moment. In the meantime, for a MUCH better take on the arson investig ...more
Jun 16, 2014 Melissa rated it it was ok
Book #37 read in 2014

6-17-14: 25% complete
I have no clue what's going on. All the characters are talking in riddles. Hopefully the plot becomes more clear and less of a secret soon.

6-18-14: 40% complete
The story has picked up. I finally got a clue as to the "secret powers" of the characters, and I'm mildly interested in what may happen.

6-19-14: 100% complete
The story did become more interesting, but I was never fully sold on the "abilities" of the characters. I didn't really like them all that m
Peggy Huey
Not as engaging as some of the other books by Iris Johansen, Firestorm presents two tormented characters who find their way to each other to catch a psychotic killer who has created a powerful incendiary device. Accidents have turned Kerry Murphy and Brad Silver into people with psychic abilities, able to enter the minds of others and, in Kerry's case, see arsonists at work, while Brad is able to "nudge" people into doing what he wants them to do. They are ably assisted by former secret service ...more
Karl Marberger
Aug 13, 2016 Karl Marberger rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

I was hoping that this would be a forensics thriller. That's what I get for judging a book by its cover. The plot was forced, the prose was trite, the characters (especially the so called heroine) unlikable. In fact, character development was practically nil. The "suspense" that the cover promised was nonexistent. The whole book was like some lame TV movie. And don't even get me started with the poor attempt of incorporating a paranormal element to the story. I love you, Iris, but this one
Apr 08, 2013 Julie rated it liked it
I thought I was going to love this story. It seemed to have it all: mystery, danger, paranormal skills, and the possibility of some romance. But, I just could not get past the heroine, Kerry Murphy. I get she had a rough time growing up. Is she crazy? Is she not crazy? I don't care because I couldn't stand her! She was awful to Silver. Every time they had a conversation, I felt like turning page because even if he could be kind of a jerk and controlling, he had nothing on her. She was rude and w ...more
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Iris Johansen is a New York Times bestselling author. She began her writing after her children left home for college. She first achieved success in the early 1980s writing category romances. In 1991, Johansen began writing suspense historical romance novels, starting with the publication of The Wind Dancer. In 1996 Johansen switched genres, turning to crime fiction, with which she has had great su ...more
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