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Into the Inferno

Into the Inferno

A novel by
It's a tribute to Earl Emerson's narrative skill that he manages to make this implausible medical mystery not only believable but also compelling. When fire chief Jim Swopes traces the unknown disease that's wiped out half his department in less than a week to a truck crash on a western Washington highway, he knows his days are numbered--like the other victims, all of whom died, he has just seven days to live unless he can find an antidote to a chemical poison no one else believes exists. Helped by a beautiful doctor whose comatose sister drove one of the trucks in the crash, he traces the poison to a biotech firm with nothing to lose and everything to gain by letting the clock run out. But until it does, this tightly plotted race-against-time thriller will keep you riveted. --Jane Adams

From Publishers Weekly
Seattle firefighter Jim Swope-the irresistible protagonist of this latest high-octane thriller from the author of the Thomas Black detective series-is, in his own words, "destined for a jail cell, a straitjacket, or more likely, to end up dancing the funky chicken in a fusillade of bullets." This divorced, womanizing father of two has just realized he has exactly six days to figure out the nature of the mysterious ailment that's been killing off his North Bend Fire and Rescue colleagues-and is about to fell him, too. It all started several months ago, when he and other firefighters reported to the scene of a highway accident. It was here that Swope met emotionally unstable trucker Holly Riggs, a woman who became his girlfriend, then his ex-girlfriend, then his stalker. When Holly's sister, Stephanie, finds her in a coma months after the accident, she figures it was a suicide attempt. Only when Jim's colleagues also fall into comas does Jim realize that they were all poisoned at the scene of the accident. Each victim has only a week to live from the day his symptoms begin, and Jim already has trembling hands and a headache. He and Stephanie team up to uncover a tangled web of corporate corruption extending far beyond the Pacific Northwest, but centering on a nearby "hazmat" facility. Emerson, a veteran Seattle firefighter, infuses the firehouse scenes with expert detail, but it's the full-bodied characterization and wry humor of "mad dog" Swope that really sizzle. Readers who like a little hot sauce with their mystery will snatch this up.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
Six months after cleaning up the spill left by a two-truck collision, Seattle firemen start collapsing from a deadly illness. Shamus Award winner Emerson is a lieutenant in the Seattle Fire Department.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist
Here's something different from the firefighter-turned-mystery-writer (he's the man behind the excellent Thomas Black series). Jim Swope and his colleagues at North Bend Fire and Rescue roll out to an auto accident; two trucks have collided on the freeway. Half a year later, Swope's comrades begin falling victim to strange accidents; one of Jim's closest friends is convinced they're all dying of some bizarre disease, and kills himself before it can run its course. Then Swope discovers he is suffering from the same symptoms--and only has a week left to live. In many ways, this is a traditional plague story, with an assortment of victims, an unknown viral assailant, and a race-against-the-clock story line. But by transplanting the story into a new--and very unusual--context, that of a fire department, Emerson gives the proceedings a giant breath of fresh air. As always, his characters are sharply drawn, and the setting is fully realized (the author lives in North Bend, Washington, where the story takes place). A thoroughly captivating twist on an old theme. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Inside Flap Copy
Earl Emerson, bestselling author of Vertical Burn, turns up the heat with this dynamic, fact-based depiction of the world of firefighting. In a frantic race against time, one man must unlock the secret to his own potential demise and that of his entire department?as they venture . . .


In the freezing heart of the Pacific Northwest winter, a group of firefighters from North Bend Fire and Rescue responds to a freeway accident. Two trucks have collided on the icy pavement. One of the trucks was transporting livestock; the other carried within its cargo an unmarked, innocuous-looking container. Now the highway is chaos with irate drivers, volunteer fire crews, and hundreds of escaped chickens.

The trucks are cleared, the highway reopens, and another day ends. But the repercussions of the crash are enormous. For six months later, the firefighters who were at the scene begin to mysteriously succumb to unexplained accidents and ailments. Jim Swope wakes up with the first, strange symptom?a symptom of an unknown disease that renders its victims brain-dead within a week. Now he has only seven days to determine how he and his fellow firefighters have been poisoned?and to discover an antidote . . . if one exists. If he doesn?t, these will be the last seven days of his life.

In a red-hot pursuit to the end, Earl Emerson puts real-life heroes up against seemingly insurmountable odds. Intense in the third degree, Into the Inferno is a brilliant melding of fact and thriller. Prepare yourself for the sweltering heat of wickedly good suspense.

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Used availability for Earl W Emerson's Into the Inferno

See all available used copies of this book at Abebooks UK or Abebooks US

Hardback Editions

June 2003 : USA Hardback
thumbTitle: Into the Inferno
Author(s): Earl W Emerson
ISBN: 0-7862-5450-5 / 978-0-7862-5450-7 (USA edition)
Publisher: Thorndike Press
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

March 2003 : USA Hardback
thumbTitle: Into the Inferno
Author(s): Earl Emerson
ISBN: 0-345-44591-0 / 978-0-345-44591-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

Paperback Editions

July 2016 : Paperback
thumbTitle: Into the Inferno
Author(s): Earl Emerson
ISBN: 1-5336-1485-7 / 978-1-5336-1485-8
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

June 2004 : USA Mass Market Paperback
thumbTitle: Into the Inferno
Author(s): Earl Emerson
ISBN: 0-345-44592-9 / 978-0-345-44592-6 (USA edition)
Publisher: Fawcett
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

Kindle Editions

June 2016 : USA, Canada, UK Kindle edition
thumbTitle: Into the Inferno
Author(s): Earl Emerson
Publisher: Lost Dog Press
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

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