Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Widowmaker (The Widowmaker, #1)” as Want to Read:
The Widowmaker (The Widowmaker, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Widowmaker

(The Widowmaker #1)

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  560 ratings  ·  26 reviews
One of the major voices in science fiction, Mike Resnick presents the first volume in a bold new trilogy.Jefferson Nighthawk--known and feared by many as the Widowmaker, the consummate bounty hunter--has been frozen for a century in order to defeat a deadly disease. Only now the cost of his care has risen, so the Widowmaker is called out of retirement for one special commi ...more
Paperback, 293 pages
Published August 1996 by Bantam Spectra
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 The Widowmaker, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Widowmaker

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.69  · 
Rating details
 ·  560 ratings  ·  26 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Widowmaker (The Widowmaker, #1)
Dan Schwent
Feb 07, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: sf, resnick
I read this while waiting for the last three Dark Tower books to come out. Jefferson Nighthawk proved to be a good Gunslinger surrogate.

Jefferson Nighthawk is arguably the deadliest gunfighter in the galaxy. One day, he finds out he has an incurable disease and has himself cryogenically frozen until a cure is found, paying for it with all the money he earned bounty hunting. Unfortunately, inflation hits and Nighthawk's money starts running low. The facility he's housed in makes him a deal and cr
John Loyd
Nov 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Fast paced western-type science fiction. Jefferson Nighthawk the legendary bounty hunter is a dying man. The descendants of his lawyers wake him from cryosleep to tell him that the money he left for maintenance isn't going to last and there is a job offer for him, if he's willing to allow himself to be cloned.

The young Nighthawk is sent to find the man responsible for the assassination of a planetary dictator. The head of security points him at the Marquis of Queensbury, a crime lord in that are
Apr 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
After all the good reviews, I was disappointed. It was candy, but not particularly good candy. The writing wasn't all that good & the story line was full of holes. The hero was too good - almost magical. The suspension of belief asked from me was too great. The universe revolved around our hero. The ending, was the best part, but not enough to make up for the rest. I doubt I'll bother reading another by this author, certainly not in this trilogy. ...more
Jan 03, 2019 rated it liked it
I am usually a big fan of Mike Resnick but I was somewhat disappointed in this book. The main character is a clone of the original Widowmaker and even given his inexperience he is not very smart. He becomes fixated on a woman who pretty much despises him and pursues her to the exclusion of all else including using good sense in his pursuit. He is touted as the ultimate killer but he only seems to demonstrate this ability when forced to. All in all this was a disappointing read for me. If you are ...more
May 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Normally Mike Resnick is one of those authors I can count on to write a solid story. I don't feel I got that with The Widowmaker. I realize this is the first part of a multi part series, but I expected a much higher degree of badassery from the galaxy's greatest bounty hunter-or his clone. It was neat to read a book about someone who has the same name as me (Nighthawk has been my "internet name" for around two decades) but that was not enough to offset the disappointed feeling I had when I finis ...more
Jun 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book was the shit. Anyway.... The dialogue was fantastic! I liked it how I read pretty much every word, actually paying attention to pretty much everything in the conversations, the fight scenes, and the characters. Usually at certain parts of a book you kinda lose interest in certain parts, but I was pretty happy with everything. The ending was unexpected, the storytelling smooth and the story, wow the story! The Story was amazing how it went and was different from some other types of scie ...more
Apr 30, 2015 rated it did not like it
This reads like a moody, not particularly bright, teenage boy's idea of space opera. Hero who's the wickedest in the whole universe with guns! But he never asked to be born! God! No one understands him! He shoots stuff a lot! And there's a nudey alien bird... With blue tits! And he gets to see her tits! Then he shoots some more people! People who don't understand him! He never asked to be born!

Seriously, this is shit.
Lucius Etruscus
Jan 14, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
L'autore mi piace e già di suo ha uno stile molto semplice e scorrevole, ma forse questo suo romanzo degli anni Novanta esagera con la "semplicità". Al di là di un scrittura quasi raffazzonata, da "temino scolastico", la voglia di scrivere un western in salsa spaziale ha nuociuto gravemente alla logica e alla coerenza della storia, che pecca di entrambe. Il protagonista è incomprensibile perché passa da una estrema sicurezza (immotivata) ad uno spaesamento preoccupante.
Quel che però è peggio è c
Dec 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Second time for reading this series, enjoyed it as much as the first time. Great plot and character development. Highly recommend the whole series.
Comme d’habitude, on se balade ici sur les mondes de la frontière, une espèce de far-west de pacotille aux franges de l’expansion humaine dans la galaxie, où on envoie le clone du plus grand tueur à gages abattre une espèce de patron mafieux. Il y a de l’action, des meurtres, de la passion et pas mal de carnage. En bref, on est en terrain connu, puisque presque tous les romans de Resnick se situent sur cette frontière qui, comme je l’ai dit, n’est rien d’autre qu’un far-west transposé. On a donc ...more
Aug 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
at first I was surprised because of the writing style. It was very very dialog heavy, and that was different for me. however, the style kept the story extremely fast paced and quickly I found myself hooked and unable to put it down. Where this book shines is in its creative story setting, and its blending of the sci-fi and western genres. A legendary bounty hunter is frozen until his deadly disease can be cured, but his life savings begins to run out as a cure is neared. So the obviously solutio ...more
Ty Myrick
May 21, 2012 rated it it was ok
This book is a fantastic old-fashioned space adventure. For days afterwards, I kept remembering the tone and style of the book and how it harkened back to the golden age of science fiction. It is exactly the type of book I normally enjoy. But I just could not like this book because the protagonist is such an annoying character. I do want to read more books in this series, because the protagonist will not return in later books. It is sad that such an unlikable character can ruin the experience of ...more
Jeff Yoak
My first reaction reading The Widowmaker was that it felt like an Orson Scott Card novel from the Enderverse. Even upon realizing that it was the narrator, Stefan Rudnicki, that was making me feel that way, I still couldn't shake the feeling. It is amazing how much a good narrator can impact a story.

Much like my memory of the Wilson Cole novels, the characters are compelling, the pace is good and in general it is a decent sci-fi read.

2017: Reading this with the kids made me appreciate it much mo
Jul 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Resnick's four volumes that feature Jefferson Nighthawk, the Widowmaker, are entertaining books set in his excellent future history series. They don't have quite the exciting quality of the first Santiago novel, but are fun page-turners. His ability to tell stories of larger-than-life future myth is unparalleled, and the way the plots progress and the characters develop is fascinating. They're very enjoyable science fiction. ...more
Melissa Hollingsworth
May 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
The first Widowmaker book is not the best, IMO. But the Widowmaker books are best viewed as an ongoing saga, again IMO, so enjoy this one for what it is--which is plenty; Resnick always delivers a good story--and wait for the considerable payoff as the series develops.
Sep 24, 2014 rated it it was ok
A fun romp, but alarmingly, distractingly misogynist. There is a single woman in the book, and she's the trope of the Double-Crossing Minx - beautiful and deadly, no interests of her own. Wonder why the author has so little faith in women. Pretty bad book, all told. ...more
Brian Allen
Feb 20, 2016 rated it did not like it
I did not like the ending. That said, I am still planning on reading the sequel and the third The Widowmaker Unleashed. Mike Resnick is a great science fiction author, this book just fizzled out in the end.
Jun 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
A notorious bounty hunter, long stored in cryo-sleep awaiting a cure for his rare disease is called out of sleep to accept one more assignment - all to pay for his increasingly expensive maintenance. Mike Resnick once again spins a gritty, gripping tale of life on the frontier - S.F. style.
Jan 31, 2011 rated it really liked it
A speghetti western in space. A good one but a western nonetheless. Not for those looking for depth but definitely fun. Action packed snd entertaining.
Mar 26, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
it's like a "western" set in space. entertaining and action-packed but not much substance. a light read. ...more
Shawn Deal
May 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
Wonderful book. Mike Resnick's universe is wonderful and I love to read anything in it. ...more
Nov 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
Michael Matthews
rated it liked it
Apr 01, 2013
Jūratė Vysockienė
rated it it was amazing
Apr 17, 2017
rated it really liked it
Nov 13, 2015
Stefan Popgeorgiev
rated it it was ok
Jun 03, 2013
Richard Green
rated it liked it
Jul 13, 2015
Mary JL
rated it it was ok
May 26, 2009
rated it really liked it
Jan 12, 2014
Bill Sullivan
rated it it was amazing
Jun 02, 2011
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The One Thing You Need to Know About Great Managing, Great Leading, and Sustained Individual Success
  • Puddin' (Dumplin' #2)
  • Gates of Fire
  • The House of God
  • A Thousand Naked Strangers: A Paramedic's Wild Ride to the Edge and Back
  • Legend (The Drenai Saga, #1)
  • How Doctors Think
  • The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements
  • Black Holes & Time Warps: Einstein's Outrageous Legacy
  • Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman
  • Do the Work
  • Silent Spring
  • Hen's Teeth and Horse's Toes: Further Reflections in Natural History
  • The Universe in a Nutshell
  • The Principle of Relativity (Books on Physics)
  • "What Do You Care What Other People Think?": Further Adventures of a Curious Character
  • Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science
  • The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
See similar books…
Michael "Mike" Diamond Resnick, better known by his published name Mike Resnick, was a popular and prolific American science fiction author. He is, according to Locus, the all-time leading award winner, living or dead, for short science fiction. He was the winner of five Hugos, a Nebula, and other major awards in the United States, France, Spain, Japan, Croatia and Poland. and has been short-liste ...more

Other books in the series

The Widowmaker (5 books)
  • The Widowmaker Reborn (The Widowmaker, #2)
  • The Widowmaker Unleashed (The Widowmaker, #3)
  • A Gathering of Widowmakers (The Widowmaker, #4)
  • Widowmakers (The Widowmaker, #1-3)

Related Articles

  Author C.L. Clark is no newcomer to the sci-fi and fantasy scene. Though she just published her first novel, The Unbroken, earlier this year,...
126 likes · 12 comments