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Zero-Degree Murder (Search and Rescue Mystery #1)
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Zero-Degree Murder (Search and Rescue Mystery #1)

3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  148 Ratings  ·  49 Reviews

Search and rescue expert Gracie Kinkaid risks her life on a daily basis to save strangers. But going up against a coldhearted murderer is one kind of danger she’s not prepared for…

As a volunteer for Timber Creek Search and Rescue, missing out on holiday festivities is nothing new to Gracie. After all, disasters don’t stop happening because of a cooked
Paperback, 304 pages
Published January 7th 2014 by Berkley
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Jan 01, 2014 Yvonne rated it really liked it
It may be Thanksgiving, but that doesn’t stop Gracie Kinkaid from being called in to work for Timber Creek Search and Rescue. As a volunteer for the search and rescue unit, Gracie knows that disasters can occur at any time, even during the holiday season. This time four hikers go missing in the wilderness of Southern California.

Gracie and her partner, Steve Cashman, head out to find them when a blizzard hits. Now they have to find hikers as well as fight the weather. They only manage to find one
Connie N.
#1 in the Search and Rescue Mystery series. What a great start to a new series. It reminded me a lot of Nevada Barr because of its outdoorsy setting, but I liked it better, perhaps because I liked the heroine or perhaps because it was a little smoother and simpler in style. In any case, this is about Gracie Kinkaid, a volunteer in California's SAR group. She likes to be on her own, likes nature, and generally keeps much to herself, but she isolates herself and can only seem to hold down a low-pa ...more
May 29, 2016 Linda rated it really liked it
Shelves: challenge
Great first book. The whole thing was building to a big showdown at the end and I wasn't disappointed. There were lots of technical terms for what survival gear they were using which I will assume was correct since I didn't know what a lot was and that made it harder to get a clear picture in my head.
Debbie Lester
Jan 10, 2014 Debbie Lester rated it it was amazing
M.L. Rowland brings readers the first book in her new Search and Rescue Mystery series, Zero-Degree Murder. Readers may learn a little bit more than whodunit with this book. The survival and rescue techniques set this book apart. As a former search and rescue provider Rowland knows what she's talking about and it's apparent on every page. With a killer on the loose, a blizzard coming in and wayward rock star to protect, Gracie Kinkaid isn't having the perfect Thanksgiving. Readers will love the ...more
Jan 16, 2014 LORI CASWELL rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2014
Gracie Kinkaid is the only female member of her Search and Rescue squad. When they are called out on Thanksgiving to find some missing hikers she is not surprised when she is not named the leader of the 2 person team, but she thinks it will be a routine mission so she doesn’t push the fact that she has more experience.

Things go quickly awry when an early season blizzard hits the search area. They find one hiker who is hurt and he thinks someone tried to kill him and Gracie believes him. Her part
Mark Baker
Jan 13, 2015 Mark Baker rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, 2015
When four hikers go missing on a mountain on Thanksgiving Day, Gracie Kinkaid is one of the only people to respond. She and her search partner quickly find one of the hikers, famous actor Rob Christian, but he’s injured. While they wait for help, a snow storm is coming in. What they don’t know is that someone is hunting for them on the mountain – to kill them.

Despite being published by Berkley Prime Crime, this is more a thriller than a cozy, with language and violence to go along with that. The
Jan 19, 2014 Gea rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-read
Zero-Degree Murder was a fun, fast ride. The writing is a bit uneven in spots, but Gracie Kincaid is a kick-ass character and I look forward to getting to know her better as the series continues. Author M.L. Rowland spent 12 years as a Search & Rescue tech in Southern California and I found the details into mountain rescue one the most fascinating aspects of this book. To my knowledge, Rowland is the first woman to write about such experiences in fiction and I loved it.

I hope that as the se
Apr 03, 2014 Theresa rated it liked it
Shelves: suspense
Good first in a new series featuring a woman search and rescue volunteer, with second in series being released late 2014. I really liked Grace who is strong and capable but still vulnerable, lacking confidence, struggling to find life direction. Cool detail about search and rescue on the mountains. Exciting story. Lots of hints about character backstories of Grace and her teammates that presumably will develop over time. Will definitely read next in series.
Mar 15, 2017 Sheryl rated it liked it
Shelves: thriller
Probably more like 3-1/2. The book was good but not great. I would not classify it as a mystery; it was definitely more of a thriller (without a lot of thrill). I was never bored while reading it but it wasn't really compelling either, at least not until the last 60 or so pages. I really liked Gracie as a character; I liked her strength and her attitude. Given the blurb of the book, I was surprised at how slow paced the book felt, though it didn't feel like it dragged. I can't explain it except ...more
Story Circle Book Reviews
Mar 11, 2014 Story Circle Book Reviews rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
This is a classic thriller, a story of the hunted and the hunter. The reader knows almost from the beginning who the hunter is but the intended victims only slowly figure it out. The setting is a search and rescue mission in the mountains of southern California—ultimately during a blizzard. Gracie Kinkaid is sent out with fellow SAR member to search for a lost hiking party, one of whom is a famous British movie star. Gracie tracks, while Steve Cashman forges on ahead. The weather is worsening—co ...more
Mar 20, 2016 Jacqui rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller-mystery
M. L. Rowland's debut thriller in her new Search and Rescue (SAR) Mystery series, Zero-Degree Murder. is addicting. In this story's first installment, Gracie Kinkaid, fiercely independent as well as highly-competent SAR team member, must brave the freezing temperatures of the California mountains to rescue a team of hikers who never returned from an afternoon trek. What should have been a simple matter of locating them and guiding them home turns into a race against a murderer intent on hiding h ...more
DelAnne Frazee
Jun 19, 2014 DelAnne Frazee rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Title: Zero-Degree Murder - A Search And Rescue Mystery Book 1
Author: M L Rowland
Publisher: Berkley Crime Drama
Published: 11-11-2014
ISBN: 9780425263662
Pages: 304
Genre: Mystery
Tags: Thriller, Suspense, Women Sleuths
Sensual Level: Mild
Overall Rating: Great
Reviewed For: NetGalley
Reviewer: DelAnne

There is no such thing as a holiday for those who are members of a search and rescue team; as Gracie Kinkaid is well aware. This Thanksgiving she and Steve Cashman are sent out
Nov 28, 2014 Carol rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
Zero Degree Murder by M.L. Rowland is a breath of fresh air in the cozy genre. This is not your usual bake off with the one of the judges dying cozy. This is new territory and I love it.

Gracie Kincaid is an experienced and very knowledgeable search and rescue worker for Timber Creek in Southern California and Rescue. She was getting ready for stay at home Thanksgiving but got a call for what seemed to be a routine rescue. She is perturbed when she is not named the person in charge on the two pe
Jan 25, 2014 Mason rated it it was amazing
Making the reader feel like they are in the middle of the action is a sure-fired way to draw them in and make them want to read more.

Author M.L. Rowland does an excellent job of this in the first installment in her new Search and Rescue Mystery series. ZERO-DEGREE MURDER grabs the reader and holds their attention until the very end.

Search and rescue expert Gracie Kinkaid is familiar with working on holidays as a volunteer for Timber Creek Search and Rescue. When four hikers are reported missing
Cathy Cole
Feb 08, 2014 Cathy Cole rated it really liked it
I am a long-time Nevada Barr and Anna Pigeon fan. I love the outdoors, strong female characters, and survival tales. Zero-Degree Murder satisfied all these cravings of mine. Gracie is a complex character. She's smart, she's brave, and I definitely want her on my team the next time I head out for the middle of nowhere. That woman knows how to pack and how to track. She's also a bit of a puzzle. Why would someone so smart and capable insist on working a series of dead-end jobs that are well beneat ...more
Tracey Cramer-Kelly
Mar 26, 2014 Tracey Cramer-Kelly rated it really liked it
Gracie is an interesting hero. She’s rough around the edges, not sophisticated, sort of socially inept, has trouble keeping a job... in other words, kind of a mess as a person. Search-and-rescue is the one area she really shines. The one place she feels comfortable and in control.

There are some demons in her past that contribute to her drive to be good at search-and-rescue. This is similar to the SAR heroine in Last Chance Rescue (her demons are related to her time as an Army medic), so I couldn
Apr 05, 2014 Lynn rated it it was amazing
Zero-Degree Murder is the first book in the Search and Rescue Mystery series. On Thanksgiving day, the Timber Creek Search and Rescue team is called out to search for four hikers who didn't return from their hike up Aspen Spring Trail on Mount San Raphael. It has turned into a high profile rescue due to one of the hikers being Rob Christian who is a very famous actor. Grace Kinkaid and Steve Cashman are the rescue team with Ralph Hunter staying at the Control Center.

This book read very fast for
Feb 03, 2014 Star rated it liked it
Gracie Kincaid can’t settle down with a job or in life, but she knows she’s a decent member of the volunteer Timber Creek Search and Rescue crew. Even though it’s Thanksgiving, she’s happier being alone. So when a rescue call comes in, she’s relieved. Due to her boss’ boss being a misogynist (and plain nasty), Steve Cashman is given the lead on their team of two, even though Gracie is more qualified to lead. They’re called out to rescue a hiking party which includes Rob Christian, a famous actor ...more
Zero Degree Murder is a bit different from your standard murder mystery. The author, M. L. Rowland, is a former search and rescue expert, and she brings all of her expertise to the fore in this series debut about a spunky female SAR volunteer who gets called out on a search on Thanksgiving Day and ends up defending herself and her famous movie star client from a murderer.

This is actually more of an adventure read than a murder mystery since the killer’s motive was never revealed. But the writin
Mar 06, 2014 Kari rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Zero Degree Murder is a fast paced, exciting thriller. I was definitely sucked right into the book. This is a book that I think would be a good movie. It has everything you look for in a good thriller...a creepy bad guy, a handsome movie star, and a no-nonsense tough as nails woman who you know is going to survive.

The characters were engaging. I really liked Gracie and Ralph. Their deep friendship really came across. Gracie was a great match for mother nature. I liked her will to survive. The p
Mary Brown
Feb 01, 2014 Mary Brown rated it it was amazing
Zero-Degree Murder by M. L. Rowland was a great book. I love reading Search And Rescue fiction and this was one of the best I've read. The setting was very descriptive and made me feel like I was stranded in the blizzard. The characters were well developed and very realistic. The Search And Rescue aspect was very detailed, but not written as to be confusing. The suspense was the best part of the book. There was suspense due to the rescue, suspense due to the blizzard and suspense due to the murd ...more
Feb 22, 2014 Amanda rated it it was ok

Hmm...normally, I enjoy books like this, but for some reason, this one just did not do it for me. All the ingredients were there: people lost in the wilderness, brave rescuers, an obnoxious co-worker, a blizzard. Oh, and a murderer who needs to kill everyone around him in order to escape. However, it just didn't come together for me. I didn't really care about the characters, and I felt like the ending was rushed. I can tell that this is obviously going to be a series ((view spoiler)

Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews
I went into this book thinking it was a cozy...but it is not! But don't let that stop you from picking this book up. It was really good just a little "heavier" than a traditional cozy. Plus you find out who the bad guy is right up front (or pretty close to the beginning) but you don't know why until the end. the characters are interesting and it is fascinating to learn about search and rescue and what is involved/how they operate/etc.

Grace is a strong character and she learns a bit more about he
Joe Crowe
Mar 15, 2014 Joe Crowe rated it really liked it
This book reads like an hour-long TV detective series such as Bones. The hero has a crazy job (in this case, search and rescue) which lends itself to crime-solving, and the personalities of the characters carry the reader through the intricacies of the action.

Zero Degree Murder is a handy reminder to bundle up when you go into the cold. I probably should have waited to read this thing until it was warmer out, because I got quite the chill. The evocative descriptions of the cold are top-notch. Re

There was too much gruesomeness for me and bad language, so it really is not a cozy mystery as I think of the genre. The story made me think of Catherine Coulter or J.D. Robb or Iris Johansen (their non-romance books). I did enjoy reading about the search and rescue work and I was quite surprised to learn that many of the S & R people are volunteers. They all should be paid--it is not a job for the man or woman off the street. Since this is a first book, I will give Book 2 a read.
Jul 06, 2015 Sue rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
The premise of the story, search and rescue in the wilderness of Southern California, is excellent and I looked forward to reading the book. Unfortunately, if this is how the S. CA Search and Rescue is run, I feel very sorry for those who need rescue in this area. The story just kept dragging out when in actuality it could have been told in about 25 pages. Since this is a first in a new series, I will try the 2nd book in hopes that the author has fined tuned the writing.
Dec 29, 2016 Tomi rated it it was ok
I gave this one only two stars because there were too many unanswered questions - the author never explained what started the murders or why an assassin was hanging around a movie set...The main character was not very likable either; she came across as whiny. There was plenty of suspense and the writing was well-done.
Oct 05, 2015 K.A.Bylsma rated it really liked it
Highly recommend this book for those who like an action packed mystery with well developed principal characters. I read it in one day. did not want to quit until I read the resolution. Fully intend to read others in this series based on this book. I want to see how the principals grow and how the series flourishes.
Beth Harper
Feb 02, 2016 Beth Harper rated it really liked it
More of a thriller than a mystery. Usually I don't like mysteries (thrillers) told from multiple viewpoints, including that of the killer, but in this one, it worked. At first there was a bit too much detail without much context, but it got better as the book went along. It wasn't exactly a "cozy" mystery, but it wasn't a "hardboiled" one either.
Apr 21, 2015 Lori rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this new to me series! The story is about a search and rescue team in California that head out to find a group that includes a famous actor. What the team doesn't know is that the lost group also includes a murderer. I couldn't put this book down and read it in almost one night!
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How far would you go to save the life of a stranger? Jump out of a helicopter into four feet of snow? Sleep outside in the winter? Dangle on a rope over the edge of a cliff?

M.L. Rowland has done all of these things and more, all in the line of service as a mountain Search and Rescue volunteer. During her twelve years on Search and Rescue, Rowland participated in hundreds of search and rescue missi
More about M.L. Rowland...

Other Books in the Series

Search and Rescue Mystery (3 books)
  • Murder Off the Beaten Path (Search and Rescue Mystery #2)
  • Murder on the Horizon (Search and Rescue Mystery #3)

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