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


3.53  ·  Rating Details ·  396 Ratings  ·  58 Reviews
The worlds of business, Irish politics, and crime collide when two men with the same name, from the same family, die on the same night—one death is a gangland murder, the other, apparently, a road accident. Was it a coincidence? That's the official version of events. But when a family member, Gina Rafferty, starts asking questions, this notion quickly unravels. Told repeat ...more
Paperback, 480 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Picador (first published 2008)
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 Winterland, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Winterland

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

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Shullamuth Ballinger
The most delicious part of Winterland is the way the characters are managed and developed. Both Gina, the order loving protagonist, and Paddy, the pill-popping antagonist, are mercilessly unraveled, strung out by their obsessions. Glynn evokes a relationship between Gina and Mark, the somewhat deranged survivor of childhood tragedy, so intimate it transcends sex or even proximity since they only meet once, briefly over coffee, and still manage to save each other's lives.

My only complaint is tha
Jan 30, 2010 Cheryl rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Two men with the same first name, Noel die on the same night. Is this just a bizarre coincidence or is there some connection to these two men’s deaths? Both men died in different ways.

The first was Noel Rafferty, who was part of a Dublin gang. He was known as “Grassy Noel” because he enjoyed partaking in smoking marijuana over hash. Grassy Noel was one of the top lieutenants in the gang.

The other Noel was also from the Rafferty family. He was the older Mr. Rafferty. His death was being ruled a
David Lowther
Winter Land started off at a cracking pace and the opening scene in the smoking area of a Dublin pub is very impressive. The plot is contemporary covering, as it does, issues such as planning irregularities, political corruption, short cuts in building construction and murder.
The characters are diverse and interesting from the smarmy developer, the ambitious politician, the gangster to the hero and heroine, both of whom are attractive and exciting.

The basic plot is strong and, for the first half
Aug 25, 2010 Anita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book. I really cared about the characters enough to be kind of sad when it ended....I am still debating in my mind if I like how the "bad guy" died in the end. the story was current and I liked how the author connected all the pieces. and I liked the background info the author provided, very detailed but it tied it all together.
Oct 21, 2015 Ann rated it liked it
Liked it. Not as much as I liked Dark Fields/Limitless, but that's mainly because I enjoyed the humor of the latter so much. For some reason I had a hard time getting into this one before about 50-100pp, but then I was solidly in its grip. It became very juicy and strong. I enjoy this author's observational skills - he takes in amd conveys the way a room changes when its population changes, and there is a lovely subtlety to the way his characters think amd express themselves. If you're buying it ...more
Christine Blachford
Jan 08, 2014 Christine Blachford rated it really liked it
Having really enjoyed the book behind the film Limitless, I was interested in what else Alan Glynn had written. This one takes the form of a sort of action/thriller, a crime novel that doesn't really focus on investigating the crime itself, but unravelling an entire conspiracy surrounding a new building complex, politics, and all that jazz.

I really liked it, the cast of characters were believable and relatable, and even the horrible ones had their foibles that made them more human. What I enjoye
Anouilh M Buckley

"Winterland", by Alan Glynn

Mr Glynn very kindly sent me a synopsis of his book, which is categorised as a literary thriller
with noir over and under tones,
rather than as a gritty crime novel.

"It has elements of the crime thriller in it, but I wrote it simply as a novel.
The main character in the book is a young woman, Gina Rafferty, who refuses to be lied to.

Two deaths occur in her family on the same night and she refuses to accept that it was a coincidence.

Her pursuit of an honest answer leads he
Rob Kitchin
May 07, 2012 Rob Kitchin rated it it was amazing
In Winterland Alan Glynn manages to intertwine two criminal cultures of Ireland – the gangland underworld and the boardrooms of corrupt developers and political cronies. It’s a searing social commentary on Irish life, full of keen observational insight and emotional depth. Glynn writes with deceptively engaging prose, appearing quite ordinary but actually well layered and lyrical. The principal characters are all nicely developed, with full contextual back stories. The plot was well structured a ...more
Jun 27, 2013 Roger rated it it was ok
If this book had been 200 pages shorter it would have been very much better. However, a pretty ordinary story with an ending that was completely predictable was stretched out over almost 500 pages and that was far too long; the plot just could not support a book of that length.

The main character was, at first, quite interesting and I found myself caring what happened to her. However once she turned into some sort of action woman; shooting, kicking, taking hostages, she lost most of her credibil
Soham Chakraborty
Jan 19, 2013 Soham Chakraborty rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller, crime
I picked up this title because I was thoroughly impressed with the writing of Alan Glynn in Limitless. And this book also orchestrates the same fluent, reader-captivating persona that Glynn's talent is.

Winterland is a crime thriller which takes place in the idyllic town of Dublin in Ireland. Irish city and it's landmarks are vivid in description. The story is short spanned, happens within a period of three weeks. And in these three weeks, the life of Gina Rafferty spirals in, recoils out and she
May 30, 2011 Josh rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, crime, read_2011
There is a distinct correlation between Alan Glynn's 'Winterland' and Dennis Lehane's 'Mystic River' insomuch as they are touted as noir masterpieces, the forefront of the new wave so to speak, with each respective novel thrusting the author into stardom and instant industry respect. Having now read both, I can draw the comparisons and conclude they are alike in terms of plot pace and deep seeded character development. Personally I like my noir boiling over the pan, whereas Glynn (like Lehane's ...more
Mar 18, 2010 Taracuda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book managed to be simultaneously unexpected and logical, which made for a very enjoyable read.

I tend to get cranky with average-person-solves-a-mystery plots, because the protagonists do such stupid things. Stupid things like running toward gunshots. Stupid things like refusing to listen to the police and other authorities. Stupid things like going to a confrontation without letting anyone know where they will be.

Winterland's protagonist does try to solve a mystery that no one else notic
Jul 11, 2011 Brandi rated it it was amazing
I could not read this book fast enough. I mean, the reading experience was like watching a thriller in slow motion – which, while mildly frustrating, is not at all a bad quality in a book. The super-short paragraphs really move you through the prose.

My only gripe is that I didn’t feel like I knew anything about protagonist Gina Rafferty. The other characters were vivid and real – even minor ones like Christy, whom Glynn gives all of 10 pages to come to life. I think we don’t get to know enough a
Sam Reaves
Oct 20, 2013 Sam Reaves rated it really liked it
Ireland has had a roller-coaster ride over the past decade or two, and it doesn't look much like the sentimentalized Emerald Isle a lot of Yanks hold dear. Alan Glynn writes about a very contemporary Ireland with financial wizards and gangsters all making a killing in various senses of the phrase. Gina Rafferty's nephew and brother, both named Noel, die violently within hours of each other; she seems to be the only one who finds this coincidence suspicious. Asking questions leads her to a Dublin ...more
Miles Hodsdon
May 09, 2014 Miles Hodsdon rated it liked it
Mixed feelings. On the one hand I liked Glynn's character development, but this was outweighed by convenient and mediocre written interactions and events. Definitely enjoyed and sped through it, but found little to reflect and ponder on.
Nikki Mohamed
Jul 29, 2014 Nikki Mohamed rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned-books
HOLY GUACAMOLE! This was an amazing book. It didn't stop moving from the first page. I love the Irish politics meets murder and greed meets conspiracy theory. HIGHLY recommend.
Vera VB
Noel Rafferty wordt in een pub in Dublin koelbloedig doodgeschoten. Zijn moeder en tantes zijn kapot van het nieuws. Noel Rafferty was geen brave huisvader maar danig op weg om zelf een crimineel te worden. Daarom wordt de dader al snel in maffia kringen gezocht.

Noel, oom van de jonge Noel Rafferty, komt dezelfde dag te overlijden bij een auto-ongeluk. Gina, zus van en oom van, gelooft niet in toeval en gaat op onderzoek uit.
Er is duidelijk meer aan de hand, politiek en ondernemerschap, fraude,
Margaret Moran
Dec 23, 2014 Margaret Moran rated it really liked it
Fast paced but far too long. Gina Rafferty starts off as interesting charater then turns into Action Woman.
Michael Maloney
Aug 16, 2014 Michael Maloney rated it really liked it
A fantastic fast-paced read. The opening scene in the smoking area outside the pub is amazing.
Mar 01, 2011 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What amazed me most about this book is how fast-paced it feels. It's long, but there's so much tension that builds so well, I flew threw it. Especially impressive considering that the events only span a few days.

Winterland has a wide array of fascinating characters. Especially recommended for folks who like a bit of political intrigue in their crime fiction. The depictions of modern Ireland and its government were fascinating. The subject matter and political bent reminded me a lot of In This Ra
May 01, 2015 Olga rated it liked it
I thought that the book was so-so. Unfortunately there was not enough suspense for my taste. The plot was either too predictable, or unbelievable. I also thought that the book would have been better if the author tried creating atmosphere of Dublin. I have never been to Ireland and was hoping to get some sense of how it feels being in Dublin, walking its streets, and so on... Judging from the book it seems to be a very generic place. The entire book seemed to me too simplistic and generic, as if ...more
Jim Coughenour
Better-than-average crime novel set in present Dublin (with only a minor nod toward Joyce – things come together, or fall apart, by the Martello tower where Ulysses begins). The writing is good, the characters shape up quickly. The plot, though solid, winds up being less interesting than the sum of its elements. Glynn's technique of developing the story through the eyes of several characters at once sets his book a few notches above the typical crime novel, but ultimately dilutes its power. By t ...more
Jan 27, 2015 Will rated it really liked it
It's a good, fast read. Compelling, a bit dim scripting, but ok.
Ronan Lyons
Jun 29, 2013 Ronan Lyons rated it really liked it
A great little 'howcatchem' (in the style of Columbo, rather than a whodunnit), set in Ireland just as the boom is turning to bust. With corrupt politicians, developers etc, reading it by coincidence the week of the Anglo Irish tapes story made the uncertain days of 2008-2009 all the more vivid! I loved the hook of the two Noels, which really sets up the entire story. While the book is probably a bit long and the ending a smidgin disappointing, that doesn't really take away from what the book of ...more
Cindy Conlan
Jan 25, 2016 Cindy Conlan rated it really liked it
Language a bit rough but story kept me interested.
Robin Jonathan Deutsch
So much promise. Didn't deliver. There's a reason for this: The book is about 150 pages too long. After a while, the story just dragged on, like Glynn was on a word count. There was some fine passages for sure, but parts were rather dull and tedious. Took away from a rather strong concept and plot. Winterland needed an infusion of energy, I struggled to reach a conclusion that was generally made known from the outset. Not sure I'd give this high marks for suspense. I would give it high marks for ...more
Apr 16, 2014 Larry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
what Val McDermid said...
Jan 21, 2016 Allan rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
Arthur Okun
Nov 03, 2014 Arthur Okun rated it it was amazing
A blockbuster of a crime novel that I could not put down.Two members of family with the same name
met their death; one by a gangland murder. And the other ---by a questionable accident.
The youngest sister of the family Gena Rafferty asked to many questions and she was faced with
possible harm. This novel is about corruption---hidden past and who was responsible for multiple deaths.
It takes place in Dublin,and the building that was built took many lives
A fantastic book.And Gena is terrific!
Aug 09, 2011 Linda rated it really liked it
This book was excellent and was hard to put down until the final pages. The writing carried you along from character to character without losing any of the plot. Gina was determined to find out the truth of her brother's and nephew's deaths and thought both were connected since both had the same name. She was right in this but was wrong in her original assumption regarding the responsible person.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
"Winterland" Published 2 10 Jan 18, 2011 02:44PM  
  • Bleed a River Deep (Inspector Devlin, #3)
  • The Color of Blood (Ed Loy, #2)
  • Falling Glass
  • The Magdalen Martyrs (Jack Taylor, #3)
  • The Death of an Irish Sinner (Peter McGarr, #15)
  • Pilgrim Soul (Douglas Brodie, #3 / Danny McRae, #3)
  • Empire State
  • Down These Green Streets: Irish Crime Writing in the 21st Century
  • Peeler
  • The Midnight Choir
  • Amongst My Enemies
  • The Dead  (The Saxon & Fitzgerald Mysteries, #1)
  • Darkhouse
Alan Glynn is a graduate of Trinity College. His first novel, The Dark Fields, was released in March 2011 as the movie Limitless by Relativity Media. He is also the author of Graveland, Winterland and Bloodland, for which he won the 2011 Irish Book Award.
More about Alan Glynn...

Share This Book