The Zero Night
A Jonathan Stride Novel
by Brian Freeman
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Pub Date 01 Nov 2022 | Archive Date 14 Nov 2022
A woman has been kidnapped.
Now Jonathan Stride must decide if her husband wants her back … dead or alive.
After nearly dying of a gunshot wound, Jonathan Stride has been on leave from the Duluth Police for more than a year. When his partner, Maggie Bei, gets called about a suspicious abduction involving a local lawyer, she tells Stride it’s time for him to come back.
Attorney Gavin Webster says he paid $100,000 in ransom money to the men who kidnapped his wife. Now they’ve disappeared with the cash, and she’s still missing. Gavin claims to be desperate to find her—but Stride discovers that the lawyer had plenty of motive to be the mastermind behind the crime.
Even as Stride digs for the truth about Gavin Webster and his wife, he must also deal with a crisis in his own marriage.
His wife, Serena, is struggling after the death of her mother, the abusive woman she hadn’t seen in twenty-five years. When she loses control at a crime scene and draws her gun on a fellow cop, Serena finds herself kicked off the Webster case. Alone at her desk, she begins hunting through old police files and starts to ask questions about a mother’s death that was written off as suicide. That death haunts Serena like an echo of her own childhood—but her obsession with it takes a terrible toll.
As Serena shuts him out of her despair, and his own investigation grows increasingly tangled, Stride wonders whether going back to his detective work was the right decision. But all he can do is keep moving forward. Because Stride fears the Webster kidnapping may be only one part of a horrific murder conspiracy.
And it’s not over yet.
A Note From the Publisher
"Freeman makes the inner lives of the Strides accessible even for newcomers, and perfectly balances plot twists and character development. Those who like their crime thrillers infused with humanity will be rewarded."
“Brian Freeman writes the best kind of psychological procedurals. His characters struggle with the moral consequences of the crimes they investigate, and his plots are as twisty and fast-moving as Lake Superior’s undertow.”
-Minneapolis Star Tribune
“This guy can tell a story.”
-Michael Connelly, #1 New York Times bestselling author, on Funeral for a Friend
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Author website: BFreemanBooks.com
Also available: Funeral For a Friend and The Deep, Deep Snow
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 28 members
Wow! Great book! This book had a bit of everything!! It had suspense, intrigue, action, murder and so many twists and turns! The storyline was very very interesting and kept me glued to my kindle! The crazy twists definitely got me good! Oh and I was so happy about the dog at the end!! That was awesome! I highly recommend reading this book! Its definitely one of my top favorites! Thank you Netgalley and the publisher for sharing this book with me!
Brian Freeman just continues to stun me with this series. This latest STRIDE book is as good as any of the previous books, and I think the best of the previous couple of books. GREAT story, all subplots just as intriguing as the main story, and of course simply phenomenal characters with depth. This one deserves more than just 5 stars in my opinion!
The eleventh full length novel in the Jonathan Stride series adds another exciting story to my favorite series. With timeless page turning and a family of characters, I feel this is a thriller treat.
This story has emotional aspects that keep it tense throughout. I’ve been pretty good with perp hunting on his books lately but seeing everything unfold remains very suspenseful. I hope the next Stride book is sooner than later!
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity in exchange for an honest review.
Serena and Stride are at a crossroad in their lives but when two separate cases and death knocks on their door, the vulnerabilities and their fierceness take center stage as they tackle the perspective cases. The author knows how to tell a complex story where the visually descriptive narrative puts you in the middle of all the actions and a variety of emotions are awaken as the solid plot plays out on the page and all you can do is sit back and follow along with what the author has intended. As this story reached a fevered pitch, the abundance of plot twists, some that gave me pause, enhanced my reading pleasure. When all was said and done, this book blew me away and I did not want it to end. I wanted more Stride and Serena. This is by far, the best book in this terrific series.
This is another winner in a series I like very much.
Jonathan Stride is recovering from a gunshot wound that nearly ended his life and his wife, Serena, is dealing with the death of a mother whom had no chance of mother of the year. Throw in a kidnapping and a cold case involving a suicide…..no way they could be connected, right?
The plot is intriguing, the character development is spot on, and the ending….well you will have to read it for yourself.
Interesting plot premise. Zero Night is an original plot. Love his books. Zero Night keeps you turning the pages well into the night. Great characters.
In 2018, when I started reading Brian Freeman’s Alter Ego, (#9 In the Jonathan Stride series), I kept thinking “wait, I KNOW this Jonathan Stride, a cop from Duluth, I recognize his house…” But then I thought maybe I was getting him mixed up with a character in John Sandford’s Lucas Davenport/Virgil Flowers series – or maybe it was in one of Owen Laukkanen’s Kirk Stevens/Carla Windermere series – holy crap, how many mystery/thrillers are set in Minnesota, right? Apparently, quite a few! It turned out to be a 5-star read for me. Thanks to Blackstone Publishing and NetGalley, I received a copy of The Zero Night, #11 In the Stride series, in exchange for this honest review. Since 2020’s Funeral For A Friend (#10 in the series) was only 4-stars, I jumped in, hoping for another ***** read.
Freeman is an absolute master at creating setting (I admit I keep feeling cold reading about Duluth in the winter). As this story opens, Stride is recovering from a gunshot wound After nearly dying of a gunshot wound, Jonathan Stride gets a call from his partner, Maggie Bei, calling with information about a suspicious abduction involving a local lawyer. Maggie tells Stride it’s time for him to come back to work.
Attorney Gavin Webster says he paid $100,000 in ransom to the men who kidnapped his wife. Now they’re gone and so is the cash, and his wife is still missing. Despite Gavin’s claims to be desperate to find her, Stride finds that there is plenty of motive for Gavin to have arranged the kidnapping himself.
Meanwhile, Stride’s wife, Serena, is having personal struggles and she loses control at a crime scene, drawing her gun on a fellow cop. As a result, she is booted off the kidnapping case and assigned to desk duty. She starts looking at a cold case that becomes an obsession.The strain on both Jonathan and Serena makes for a big challenge to their relationship, and it’s all combined to make a great read. Four stars…and while this one wasn’t a solid 5-stars for me, that is possibly more due to my summer malaise rather than a lack on Freeman’s part. I’m still a fan, and recommend him frequently.
Brian Freeman continues the Jonathan Stride series in stellar fashion. His portrayal of Stride and now lieutenant Maggie Bei is riveting, and Serena, with all of her problems, is also a well-developed character. They involve themselves in a kidnapping case that doesn't seem true. Freeman deftly develops the case with intrigue.
Thanks NetGalley for the ARC.
When it seems like a character has solved all the crimes, and an author can have no new ideas, you get a pleasant surprise like this one. Johnathan Stride is back in a mult-dimensional plot involving a kidnapping/ransom. Woven into the story is his own marriage relationship to give a genuine human touch to the story.