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Texas is experiencing its worst season of wildfires in a decade, forcing police chief Josie Gray to evacuate the citizens of Artemis. Not everyone makes it out alive, however. In the fire’s wake, she discovers the body of someone who never left town, lying dead in the house of a local country music singer. Beside the body lies a syringe carrying traces of heroin. It seems as if the deceased nodded off and then missed the evacuation. But as Josie learns more about the unfortunate victim, she begins to wonder if something more sinister took place.

Firebreak continues Tricia Fields’ award-winning West Texas mystery series, which has drawn acclaim from critics and fellow crime writers for its detailed, realistic portrayal of this remote corner of America and the tough, resilient people who live there.

274 pages, Hardcover

First published March 3, 2015

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Tricia Fields

10 books67 followers

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5 stars
43 (21%)
4 stars
89 (45%)
3 stars
48 (24%)
2 stars
11 (5%)
1 star
5 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 46 reviews
Profile Image for Thomas.
770 reviews176 followers
September 26, 2015
I enjoyed reading this book. I received it free from Minotaur Books, the publisher, through the Goodreads giveaway program. This book takes place in the West Texas desert town of Artemis. There is a dangerous wildfire threatening the the. It is eventually contained with only a few home burnt up. One house that was almost completely destroyed has a body in it. Police Chief Josie Gray investigates and realizes that this house fire was not part of the wildfire burn area.

How she pieces together the murder with only a 3 person department makes for an engrossing mystery. Not until almost the end did I realize who the killer was. She is also dealing with personal problems--the love of her life left her after he was kidnapped by a Mexican drug cartel(subject of a previous book in this series).
This is book 4 in the series and I would have enjoyed it more if I had read the previous books, but it can be read as a stand alone.
I give it 4 of 5 stars.
There is a line in the book concerning the oppressive heat:"..ten straight days of temperatures above one hundred." This past winter was one of the coldest ever for me, with Feb. 2015, being the coldest month for the last hundred years in Buffalo,NY(the whole month it never got above freezing-0C/32f). This was a good book to read during a cold winter.
Profile Image for Chris.
1,508 reviews31 followers
March 25, 2023
Josie’s boyfriend has left Artemis,Texas and returned home to St. Louis after his kidnapping by the cartel. It’s hot and fires are breaking out on both sides of the border. Someone decides to take advantage of the wildfires and commit a murder and then arson to cover up the crime. It fooled no one. Josie and her team of two officers go from one suspect to another. There’s another death. It’s musical suspects time. And the cop turned negotiator from the last book visits town to hookup with Josie. A pretty good yarn but lots of false wrap ups. You think it’s done but not so.
2,813 reviews32 followers
January 14, 2022
During a horrible wildfire Josie finds a dead body that wasn’t caused by the fire. This book was good, the series seems hit and miss, some are really good and others miss.
Profile Image for Amy.
302 reviews2 followers
June 22, 2017
Bought this book for $1. Worth it, I guess. Lol.
1,818 reviews5 followers
September 22, 2022
"Firebreak", fourth in the Sheriff Josie Gray series is not quite up to the standard of the earlier books. That said, it still stands tall in a crowded market.
Her long-term boyfriend Dillon has left her and the town of Artemis, he can't live in a place with so many bad memories (covered in the previous book, 'Wrecked').
Wildfires are breaking out all around the town of Artemis and Josie has her work cut out for her just keeping up.
One fire, however, attracts her attention because it doesn't seem quite natural. Inside a burnt house she finds a body. The renters, a C&" singer and his wife/manager, Billy and Brenda Nix, had evacuated the house and have solid alibis for the time involved.
The first problem is identifying the victim, the second is determining what happened.
It's a solid police procedural.
3.5 Stars.
2,001 reviews
September 14, 2020
I didn’t enjoy this one as much as others in the series; I wonder if that is because they come across better in an audio version?

While a fire rages around their town, Josie and Otto have to look after evacuating people, as well as their jobs in the police department.

When a dead body is found in a burned out home, they are called out. They become suspicious as the home is not in the direct path of the fire. Their suspicions prove justified and the two, along with the others in the department, track down the suspects and root out the reasons for the death.
Profile Image for Amber Raj.
5 reviews
January 6, 2022
Each book in this series I think “oooh this is the best one yet” and then I start the next one and am blown away.

I truly think THIS one is the best. There are so many twists and turns in Firebreak, just when you think you’ve got it figured out, you learn you’re wrong.
1,438 reviews5 followers
July 22, 2017
An enjoyable read of a West Texas near Big Bend area lady sheriff. I would recommend this one as well as previous three.
Profile Image for Annie Womack.
6 reviews
March 4, 2019
Lots of twists and turns!! Just when you think you know how it will end...Think again..
Profile Image for Jessica.
353 reviews6 followers
June 16, 2021
I didn't mind this book at all. When I picked up to read, I had a hard time putting it down.
1,568 reviews
November 3, 2016
An easy read that veered away from being about a natural fire and turned into a murder mystery.
Profile Image for Anne Martin.
707 reviews14 followers
February 18, 2015
what a weird book... I was quite interested in the murder-mystery part, as well as in the wild fire problems. Why did the author have to pull such strings to solve the crime? The way the investigation is led does not make sense. The cops seem to believe everything they are told, including what possible suspects tell them. They accept very special positions from the people they interrogate, without blinking. The final solution, after a couple of unbelievable turns and twists was very unsatisfactory. But I must say, after reading parts of the book again, I cannot imagine an end which would make sense.
It is just hard to believe that a man who has been straight for his whole life would suddenly turn bisexual, if not gay. It is equally questionable to expect a music band to finally achieve success when its members are in their forties. It is impossible for me to understand what motives would have the victim to persecute Billy and his wife. I would get it better if Billy was famous, if he had made it, but no, not yet. I am having problems too to understand if Billy was talented or not. The same people, asked at different times, will say that he had an authentic quality that is rare, or that he was lacking real musical gift. As too often now, had the feeling I was reading part of a story which had begun years ago. You read about Dillon, who was Josie's love for a while before this book, you learn they have broken up because he could not take it anymore, and she feels guilty for destroying his life, but how? what happened? it would be enough to have a couple of pages to explain, without killing the suspense of the previous book(s). It seems they were involved in something bad related to Dillon's wife, but what? I have had this feeling in a number of books lately, and it is not a way for the authors to prove their talent. If you read Lisa Gardner, she has series, too, but you understand easily the book you are reading, as she does not speak too much of her previous writings.
And the author here writes well... I had the feeling she got caught in her story and had to find a way to finish it.
Add that I had the feelings we were talking about facts which could have happened in the 1990's or early 2000's. Would it really be a problem for a country singer to be gay today? Do people still use Internet Explorer? Why was the computer cleaned of previous searches a couple of weeks before? the question is asked in the middle of the book, and I thought it would get an answer. But no, obviously the author forgot about it! and today, you have so many ways of cleaning the history that it does not surprise me at all. I do clean mine every once in a while, to get rid of all the clutters which slows your computer down.
I think the book needs to be thought over again, because it could be a really good one, but sadly does not live up to the promises it seems to have at the beginning.

I have now read the reviews about the three other books before this one,, with Josie as chief of police of Artemis. I learned that Dillon was kidnapped and his secretary was killed and heard about the part Mexican cartels played in the first books. Here, it is only in the last pages Nick comments about them and the possibility they have to cross the border five minutes away from Josie's house. The few pages about it have to be rewritten, as it seems the place does not give the drug smugglers any advantage but they still want to use it... I believe the author is talented and can write good suspense books, but she may have been in a hurry to finish this one. Quite a few typos close to the end make some sentences meaningless. But it is an ARC, maybe the final cut will be better.
Profile Image for Kevintipple.
811 reviews16 followers
August 23, 2015
Weather in Texas often is one of two extremes--- flood or fire. It has been a couple years since the floods came to Southwest Texas. Now it has been 9 months since rain fell in the desert area and now wildfire is the threat to Artemis and the surrounding area. The threat comes from the north and south with Artemis trapped in the middle. Evacuations are ordered for parts of Arroyo County, but not everyone will agree to leave. This area of southwest Texas where folks are used to hard times, desert conditions, and relying on themselves and their ingenuity to survive, makes for a people to don’t turn away from a fight.

In the aftermath of the fires that spare the home of Artemis Police Chief Josie Gray, a body is found in the remains of the badly damaged home of Billy and Brenda Nix. If his wife and manager, Brenda, is to be believed Billy is about to make it big with a Nashville music contract. Billy is old school country and sings while playing guitar. Both he and his wife evacuated, according to some of the locals, but neither one is answering their cell phone. They may be up in Austin lining up future events or somewhere else. In the chaos of the evacuation they were seen at least once, but nobody really knows where they are or why they would not be answering their cell phones.

The location of the Nixes, the identity of the body, and figuring out what happened should be Police Chief Josie Gray’s priority and focus. A focus that isn’t easy to maintain, as thanks to the events in Wrecked, her longtime boyfriend has packed up and left. Getting kidnapped by a drug cartel can kind of put a damper on the whole romance thing. Four months later and normalcy is a foreign concept for both her and Dillion.

Firebreak is the fourth in a series that began with the award winning The Territory. This latest mystery features once again the deep characters and desert beauty present in the earlier books as well as the complicated cases Police Chief Josie Gray and her team must solve. This is a series best read in order as there are references to earlier events in each novel. The books are very good and so is Firebreak. If this series is new to you, it will be another year before Tricia Fields has another so get to work as you have some very good books to read.

Tricia Fields
Minotaur Books (A Thomas Dunne Book)
March 2015
ISBN# 978-1-250-05505-7
Hardback (available in e-book)
288 Pages

Material supplied by the good folks of the Plano Public Library System.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2015
Profile Image for Amy Broome.
146 reviews7 followers
November 26, 2015
I received this book as a giveaway. It felt ... like it was good - not amazing blow your socks off great - but good.

To be honest, this is the fourth in the series, and I haven't read any others. For the most part, it didn't seem to matter. References to the past were there, but not really story building elements.

Now what made this not cross the threshold from good to great for me was the formulaic presentation. Our heroine, Josie, lives on the grounds of a much older gentleman. He cooks for her, otherwise she eats ramen. Feels very Kinsey/Henry-ish. She has hot men falling for her, despite being an emotional wreck. Stephanie Plum. She has multiple (wrong) theories introduced, so you follow the herrings with her. Hannah Swenson. We also have the requisite pet that exists in cozies.

I wonder if I had started from the series beginning if I would feel the love for the character and overlook the predictable elements of the story. I will happily pick up a Grafton or Evanovich novel, and I don't expect to be wowed. I expect a comfortable predictable read - a car's going to get blown up or someone's eating Hungarian food. This is similar to those, but with a lesser known main character.
Profile Image for Charissa Wilkinson.
540 reviews12 followers
February 28, 2015
I received this book as part of the Goodreads First Reads Program for a fair review.

Overview: When fire threatens the town of Artemis, Texas, the last thing that anyone suspects to find is a suspicious death. But that is exactly what the police chief and her deputy find at the home of the up and coming country star, Billie Nix. By the way, where is Billie? And who was in his house?

Likes: The relationship elements didn’t overpower the mystery elements in this book. Ms. Fields did a great job here. Dell and Otto were cool. I especially enjoyed the way that they seemed to be in cahoots when it came to looking out for Josie.

Dislikes: I don’t care much for users or whiners. Ferris was a user. And all Mick’s rage did was mask his whining.

Conclusion: This was a great story. I hope you enjoy it.
Profile Image for Gay.
Author 133 books4 followers
December 30, 2015
Artemis, Texas Police Chief Josie Gray is working with others to evacuate the area because of an out-of-control fire. She goes to the house of a local country music singer to tell the family to leave. She finds the body of an unknown person that is partially burned. But the fire there was arson,
Luckily the owners of the house were far away. As Josie investigates, she can now identify the body, then looks into the victim’s past. She finds several people who are happy the victim is dead. But which one of them would commit murder?
An excellent description of a small town in West Texas, the danger of the fire and how it burns. Well-done. The author won the Tony Hillerman Prize for The Territory. Minotaur
419 reviews31 followers
March 5, 2015
The action is fast and furious as Chief Josie Gray's small west Texas town is threatened by wildfires. Great descriptions of the challenges facing volunteer fire fighters as they juggle jobs, families and firefighting. Close cooperation of the community's first responders and how the back stories of previous mysteries and events interconnect with today's events and foreshadow future problems. If you like strong female leads dealing with topical current events then the Josie Gray Mystery series by Tricia Fields are definitely up your alley. I thoroughly enjoyed this book as a winner via goodreads and intend to read the books in this series.
3 reviews
March 12, 2015
Couldn't wait till the new book came out. Love this series! The story revolves around a hard core country singer and his manager wife who are struggling to figure out their identity - and destroying their marriage in the process. Then a massive Texas wildfire rips through the area and throws the whole town into turmoil. Fast paced action, but lots of psychological drama to keep you interested. Josie Gray is one of the best female cops around. They need a Longmire series for Josie!
Profile Image for Amy Thorleifson.
231 reviews1 follower
June 29, 2015
Set in West Texas, sheriff Josie Gray works is faced with a body found in a burned out home after wildfires devastate the area. But is the cause of death the wildfire or is it murder? While Josie investigates the suspicious death, she is also facing the departure of her lover. Good use of locale and also some insights into the country music business.
Part of a series, I will look for the next book with interest.
Profile Image for Yasmina Walker.
723 reviews2 followers
July 16, 2015
"Firebreak", takes place in Artemis, Texas a small town in west Texas. A body is discovered in a country and western singer's house after a wildfire strikes the town. It is up to Josie, the sheriff, to solve the murder. Josie is a tough gal and the plot is full of twists and turns. I had no idea who the murderer was until the end. Tricia Fields does a great job detailing the beauty of west Texas. After reading this I have a hankering to go and visit Marfa and Presidio.
Profile Image for Xondra Day.
Author 46 books160 followers
March 6, 2015
*ARC via Goodreads First Reads*

Not bad. Some of the fire fighting stuff was lost on me. I didn't find it that interesting, and I admit to skimming a little. But it was a good mystery that for readers of the genre might be a worthwhile read to pick up.

Thanks to Goodreads and the publisher for providing the ARC.
Profile Image for Fredrick Danysh.
6,844 reviews162 followers
February 21, 2015
Josie Gray is the police chief of a small West Texas town on the Mexican border. Following a wildfire, while doing safety checks of outlying areas follow the fire, she discovers a murder victim in a house owned by a rising country music performer. The plot and suspects keep the reader guessing in this excellent read that was hard to put down. This was a free advance read copy.
Profile Image for Brenda.
1,496 reviews17 followers
April 29, 2015
This was a new author for me. I enjoyed this story because the story kept moving forward and the characters seemed to be "real" people. Only right before the author revealed it, did I figure out who had killed Ferris. The hints as to what had happened to Josie in the past stories is causing me to read the other "Josie Gray" stories this author as written.
Profile Image for Suzanne.
403 reviews11 followers
November 17, 2015
I won this books in a Goodreads Giveaway. A very good murder mystery which takes place during a massive wildfire in Texas.
Tricia Fields is the author of an award-winning West Texas mystery series. I will be looking for more from this author.
Profile Image for Patricia Kirby.
18 reviews
April 27, 2015
Okay, second time to review....I won this book. Even though it was #4 in the series, I didn't have any trouble following it. The characters were very interesting and the mystery was exciting. I plan on purchasing the first book in the series.
Profile Image for Michael Polizzi.
96 reviews
April 27, 2015
Looking for something to read at my local library, I picked this one up ... latest in a mystery series that I had never read. Enjoyed the story and characters enough to read some of the earlier books.
790 reviews
August 20, 2015
I enjoyed this story. The writing is a bit more special and remarkable compared to some of the other fluff mysteries I have read this year. I liked the characters and was satisfied with the ending. An entertaining read that I recommend.
25 reviews
August 12, 2016
I absolutely LOVE author Tricia Fields' novels, and Firebreak was no exception. Start the series at the beginning-the characters and their story arcs are worth following from book one.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 46 reviews

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