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The Concrete Pearl

3.8  ·  Rating details ·  139 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
At thirty-eight, Ava "Spike" Harrison has been a major player in the local construction industry. She's also had to rebuild her family business from the bottom up thanks to bad luck and bad fines. So it's easy to see why OSHA, breathing down her neck on her latest job at Albany's PS 20, has the contractor on edge. She's used to putting out fires, but this is about to be a ...more
Paperback, 282 pages
Published September 4th 2012 by Thomas & Mercer (first published May 9th 2011)
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May 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-read
If you have been following my blog for a while, you know that I became a huge fan of this author when I read his first book Moonlight Falls back in May. Since that time, I have read his subsequent novels, The Remains, The Innocent and Godchild, and all have been exceptional. Before leaving to go on vacation, Mr. Zandri honored me by entrusting me to read and review a galley of his latest novel that will be out today.

CONCRETE PEARL by Vincent Zandri
Published by StoneGate, Ink
BNID: 2940012494825
May 27, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mystery, thriller is a tough genre to write in as a lot of ground has been covered by many authors before with murder, scams, and kidnapping. It seems only novels some with originality in style and elements of supernatural present or twists really get rated high as page-turners and grippers. In this novel the elements of Construction companies, Lethal asbestos and Missing money and missing person did not hold my interest. I liked Zandri's other novel much more The Remains. The story was missing ...more
Benjamin Sobieck
The fourth book on my Vincent Zandri crime spree is also his latest, "Concrete Pearl." Having read and reviewed the unholy trio that put him on the map (read my reviews of "The Remains," "The Innocent" and "Godchild"), I can safely say "Concrete Pearl" tops all of them. It's his best work to date.

The story follows "Spike" Harrison, who inherited her father's construction company. She's the general contractor for a public school job when one of her sub-contractors bails. That guy, Jimmy Farrel, i
Giovanni Gelati
May 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hey there and happy Monday to all. I wanted to start the week off with a bang and make some noise early in the week so I am going to post on not one but two of my collaborators. I have been fortunate to work with Vincent Zandri on “Down Low-Dead” ( available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and B.R. Stateham on “Hotel Beaumont” which will be released in a few weeks. The reason I bring that up is that I have the unique distinction of not only jazzing with these incredible au ...more
A thoroughly captivating thriller mystery, I was grabbed at the prologue and remained mesmerized by the unfolding story all the way to the harrowing climax. Ava Harrison, already operating her inherited, sinking construction company on a shoestring, steps into a nightmare scenario when she arrives at her single construction site, on an otherwise rather normal Monday morning. Ava, also known as Spike in the industry and to her friends, quickly finds herself fighting an uphill battle for her belea ...more
Cyn Bagley
Concrete Pearl is a breathless rush from start to finish.

After Ava "Spike" Harrison finds out that her asbestos removal company has not only borrowed 10Gs for final completion, but also has improperly removed the asbestos from a school and that OSHA is on site to investigate the crime, Spike is on her way looking for owner of the asbestos removal company and the reasons for the disaster.

Spike grew up in the construction business, but since her husband, who fell off the scaffolding, and her fath
D.J. Weaver
Aug 31, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ava ‘Spike’ Harrison is a savvy, sexy-smart woman working in a man’s world. She’s the owner of Harrison Construction; a company inherited from her father, but on the brink of closing because of work-site accidents that seem to be happening one after another.

When OSHA steps in on her newest job and shuts it down, accusing her sub-contractor of negligence and exposing 300 kids to asbestos, Spike takes it upon herself to find the man in-charge of the operation, make him admit to his cheating and ge
This is another great mystery thriller from Zandri. If that is the type of book you like than you will not be disappointed.

Spike is a great character. She is interesting and complex and you can really picture her in the scenes. You understand how she acts and why she does what she does and you want her to solve the mystery and save herself and her fathers company.

With her is a great cast of supporting characters. Tommy, her right hand man. Spain, the PI that finds her and offers his assistance,
Desiree reilly
Jul 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i got e book of the this story well i have not read some thing this unusual and i in joyed the
story a lot. it the business are competing for the jobs in the construction site spike
as she was called inherited it form her dad death and then accident and then her husband death became suspicious. when a company blame her for the asbestosis and she said she did not do it
then the other guys son in law come up missing and the wife is getting suspicious of foul play and then the lake is being destroyed
Alan Williams
Jul 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Vincent Zandri is one hell of a writer. He’s the author of other thrillers such as The Innocent, Godchild and The Remains (my review of The Remains is here), but Vincent scares me, he makes me wonder where he gets his inspiration, if it’s as true to life as it seems; I’m worried!

Concrete Pearl twists and shocks from the first page to the last. The main character, Ava “Spike” Harrison, she got her name from impaling her foot on a six-penny nail on the first construction site she worked on, is abo
Kathleen (Kat) Smith
Ava “Spike” Harrison might be a beautiful, classically schooled woman, but the single, 38 year old construction business owner is also plenty ballsy. Her late father taught her long ago how to handle the rough boys in an industry that’s almost entirely filled with hard-boiled men on the make. But now, with “the business dad built” from the ground up failing due to an unusual series of job-site injuries and just plain bad luck, Spike has no choice but to take on one last project she believes can ...more
Jun 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I was fortunate enough to receive this book in a giveaway drawing on Goodreads. I'm really glad I did because it was really good. After reading the book, I found myself seeking out more of the author's work. Overall, I would really give this a 3.5.

I'm going to skip the part where I recap the plot of the book as it is already recapped by a much more talented writer in the summary at the top if this page. I figure if you are reading the review, you probably already read that part and want to know
As a doctoral student, I don't have nearly as much time for pleasure reading as I used to. This means that my to be read pile is stacked super high for the 2-3 hours a month of time that I get for pleasure reading during the school year. When I had a free night due to a cancelled class, I grabbed The Concrete Pearl instead of one of my textbooks. I curled up on the sofa and read. It took me about 2 hours to finish reading the book. These are my observations:
1. Short book, great pace
2. No charact
Webbweaver Reviews
Ava ‘Spike’ Harrison is a savvy, sexy-smart woman working in a man’s world. She’s the owner of Harrison Construction; a company inherited from her father, but on the brink of closing because of work-site accidents that seem to be happening one after another.

When OSHA steps in on her newest job and shuts it down, accusing her sub-contractor of negligence and exposing 300 kids to asbestos, Spike takes it upon herself to find the man in-charge of the operation, make him admit to his cheating and ge
Ashley Dawn
Sep 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book! Spike is a woman living in a man's world, literally. She is running the construction business her late father left her and trying to keep it going. She has plenty of backbone and has no trouble dealing with the 'man's job'! She had to bid low on her latest job and now the contractor she got to remove the asbestos has disappeared! She is left holding the bag with his shoddy work and now is determined to find him!
I loved Spike. Such a strong female lead! Her search for
Lisa  (Bookworm Lisa)
"Spike" Harrison is running the construction company left to her by her late father. She is struggling to keep the business afloat when the unthinkable happens. She has contracted out the asbestos removal to a man who disappears. Not only does he disappear he leaves her to deal with his sub-par job of removal and exposing children to asbestos. She is left to deal with OSHA.

This begins her search for Farrell, the sub contractor. Her search leads her to PI who she eventually teams up with as she u
Jun 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
A conspiracy thriller with grit.
There were a couple things that bothered me from the get-go with this book.
First, it's written by a male in the first person voice of a female. I had doubts before I read it as to the authenticity of the main characters persona and perspective. I'm happy to say that Mr. Zandri writing as a female had no adverse effect on the story, the theme of the book, or my enjoyment of it.
Second, the reader knows the outcome of the mysterious disappearance of a central chara
Shelly Burch
Aug 03, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is my second and last Vincent Zandri book that I've read. I really wanted to like this book, but it was just too predictable and cliché, like his other book, The Innocent. The writing is average--not great, and the story moves at a rather fast pace. It lacks what a good crime novel should - a good crime. I figured out the the who, what and where just too quickly. Of course, that may be because I felt like I've read this story before. For a novel to be good, crime or otherwise, it needs to b ...more
Denise Ballentine
It fit the bill for what I wanted: an escapist, fast-paced mystery-thriller on my Kindle that I could read while waiting my turn at jury duty. I got this as a freebie from Amazon for something I signed up for. I'm glad it was free. Pretty good effort, but too much bad language. I don't mind a few choice, well-placed words when they fit the story, but too many seems like just plain lazy writing and detracts from the story. That is my main beef with this. I liked the premise of the tough girl cont ...more
Thank you to Vincent Zandri and Thomas & Mercer Publishing for this free copy!

A good thriller/mystery centered around the construction industry. The story held my attention and overall I enjoyed it.
What I thought didn't work was the dialogue at times. the lingo felt forced and jilted.
I would have also liked Spain to have been a bit more fleshed out. Didn't really seen the motivation for some of his actions.
Overall I liked it. I don't usually read thrillers let alone novel about construction.
Marie Cataquet
Jan 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, fiction
I won this book on goodreads giveaway. Concrete Pearl is a fast paced mystery. Ava "Spike" Harrison is not your average woman. She grew up in the construction business and is very tough. A series of unfortunate accidents and asbestos in a school where Spike company has work has OSHA threatening to shut her down. The contractor that was supposed to remove the asbestos has disappeared. It's up to Spike to find out what really happen and try to save herself and her company.
Jun 02, 2014 rated it liked it
This book was a way to pass some time. While it was nice to have the main female character be patterned after an every woman type working in a man's world this book at best was just ok. I see other reviews raving about this author and sadly I cannot agree. The Concrete Pearl just did not have the suspense or inspire me to keep reading until I finished it.
Aug 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Overall a the "Concrete Pearl" has a good plot and story line. I have a problem though with the dialog which I think creates an exaggeration of the main character "Spike" who is a female construction manager and works a little too hard on her "tough girl" image. All things considered it's still a pretty good book, especially as the loose ends come together at the end.
Pam Howard
Nov 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
listened to this book as an audio on my daily commute. Living in Albany marks me a fan of the locals, but the story and characters keep me glued. I really loved Spike Harrison and found myself pulling for her. More twists and turns than the highway 787 interchange in downtown Albany!
Jul 08, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First book By Connelly that I have read and not the last. I really enjoyed this legal thriller with all the ups and downs in the courtroom during the trial of Lisa Trammel. Definitely one that will keep your interest right up to the end.
Randy Ramsey
Aug 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Solid story with strong female heroine

Solid story with strong female heroine

Nice to find a story with a strong female character as the heroine. I'd read another Zandri book. Quick read also.
Jun 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
Great book! Had me guessing til the end how the plot was going to go! Loved the characters, they were believable & easy to get involved with. Would like to read more of this author's work.

I received this book through First Reads on Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.
Jun 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-own
Review coming soon...
Mar 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting mystery featuring a female construction boss and an environmental calamity which heralds something far more sinister.
Mar 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun read. Fast-paced classic who-done-it. V.I. Warshawski with framing hammer.
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Winner of the 2015 PWA Shamus Award and the 2015 ITW Thriller Award for Best Original Paperback Novel, Vincent Zandri is the NEW YORK TIMES, USA TODAY, and No. 1 AMAZON KINDLE bestselling author of more than 20 novels including THE REMAINS, MOONLIGHT WEEPS, EVERYTHING BURNS, and ORCHARD GROVE. He is also the author of numerous Amazon bestselling digital shorts, PATHOLOGICAL, TRUE STORIES and MOONL ...more

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“Faith,” I said. “What’s that?” “It’s believing in something you can’t see, hear, or feel.” 0 likes
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