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Publisher's Summary

An illegal immigrant is killed in a hit-and-run on a frozen mountain road in the town of Fairview, Colorado. No one is prosecuted for his death and his case is quietly forgotten. Six months later another illegal makes a treacherous run across the border, barely escaping with her life. She finds work as a maid and, secretly, begins to investigate the death of her father. But she isn't a maid, and she's not Mexican. She's Detective Mercado, a police officer from Havana, and she's looking for answers to her father's death. McKinty's live-wire prose is riveting, right up to a final, shocking conclusion.
©2009 Barron's Educational Series, Inc. (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"This amazing novel....has riveting mystery, politics of just about every shade, and thrills on almost every page. . . .This is going to be the BIG BOOK of 2009." - (Ken Bruen, author of The Guards and Once Were Cops)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • David
  • Norton, OH, USA
  • 05-04-09

Anxiously Awaited

(Review is by David's wife) I am a fan of the "Dead" trilogy and was happy to see this new book released w/o any delay on Audible.
I recommend this book, it's a great listen, the narrator is perfect for this book. This is not like the "Dead" trilogy, it's a different story told from a female POV and I thought it was spot on. The beginning starts with a great hook, I had to know how Mercado got to that point and enjoyed the flashbacks and background and waited for the story to unfold... as it always does in a McKinty novel. While I know little of Cuba and the conditions there, I feel the author did his research and the details certainly feel authentic, I was educated and entertained.
I certainly didn't feel this story was smut but is not a children's story, it's about tough situations and people, not good fairies.
I recommend this book (and McKinty's other books, as well) for well developed stories and characters that will remain with you long after you finish the book.

27 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • P. Lanzing
  • Silicon Valley, CA United States
  • 04-30-09

Another Achievement in Suspense from McKinty

Here's what you need to know:

This is the new thriller from the author of the excellent Michael Forsythe trilogy ("Dead I May Well Be," "The Dead Yard" and "The Bloomsday Dead," all available from Audible. These three books introduced Michael Forsythe and told his epic story of blood and love. If you read (or listened to) the "Dead" books, you need no introduction or further encouragement. Just add to your cart and proceed with your latest injection of high-test McKinty.

If the aforementioned titles are new to you, you are in for a real treat. Mr. McKinty spins dark tales of revenge which glow with the reality of humanity. His characters and stories move with purpose, and take you along on adventures which defy interruption.

It's an old cliche that a story is impossible to put down, but in the case of Fifty Grand, it's the literal truth. Enjoy the ride!

23 of 25 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Brendan
  • lilburn, GA, United States
  • 04-30-09

Top Rate Mckinty

It was clear from Adrian McKinty's first three books that he is a writer of great power.

This book marks the flowering of that talent to its full bloom.

His creation of Detective Mercado, from Cuba, who enters America as an illegal immigrant from Mexico to avenge her father is a brilliant evocation of the character.

The opening scene is an absolute bramah, and should be taught in colleges as an example of "how to".

Another scene later on where Det Mercado muses on entering a terrifying knife fight, which is so close to 'real' martial arts training that one is sure McKinty does his research well.

The book pulsates action, has "glory be" a strong female character and drama all the way through,

I got no sleep last night, but 'read' it straight through till 6 am this morning.

A wonderful reading by Paula Christensen, unobtrusive, but right on the money.

An excellent, wonderful, 'fizzing' book.


31 of 34 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars


There's something magical that happens at the end of a McKinty book. You can't get there unless you listen to the whole book, but when you do, the end will bring you to a new understanding of life. McKinty always offers the reader an astounding meditation on the main character's theme.

McKinty's books are tough, however beautiful. They discuss difficult political and social issues. This is a hard book to get into, but once in the flow, you won't be able to stop. I strongly recommend it. I listened to the last chapter multiple times. This narrator is perfect for the content and did a spectacular job.

I'm a fan of the "dead" trilogy and fell in love with Hidden River. The only bad news is now I have to wait a year or so for the next Adrian McKinty book.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • 9S
  • 06-25-09

What a letdown

I was completely entranced with the Michael Forsythe series that began with "Dead I May Well Be." Forsythe was a character that was likable and believable. I have tried listening to "Fifty Grand" four times. So far I have only made it to the one hour mark. Each time I am confused and disapointed in this sad attempt by Mckinty. Those of us who love his previous works can only hope he gets back on track. Oh yeah, the narrator is horrible.

15 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Frank
  • DURHAM, NC, United States
  • 06-01-09

Audible recommended this?

This was really disappointing. Frequently, books that Audible recommends (e.g., The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) are good. This was not.

The plot was hard to believe. I won't give spoilers, but the time frames are all wrong. At times, the novel is pointlessly violent. I don't mind violence, but in this novel, it felt like it was added on as a dramatic device.

The narration was overdone. The reader tried too hard to do too many distinct voices. Most of the the male voices are grating. The Latin accent of the narrator was very forced. The reader has a nice speaking voice (when she reads the title at the start of each part), but I don't like this much drama in a reading.

I've downloaded two clinkers in a row from Audible. I might just listen to music for a while.

14 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars


Adrian McKinty is possibly the best writer working in this genre today. This book seems to be the result of the hard realities of life that McKinty absorbs and weaves into stories that enthrall and sometimes shock. His dialogue is as raw as peeled shrimp and just as pungent. Best of all though are his characters who posses the complex and conflicting natures that make them so likable and deplorable at the same time. Fifty Grand isn't a book as much as it is an experience, one that will leave a more in tune with human nature than you were before you read it. It is utterly refreshing to read a suspense novel that does not have formula at its very soul. Adrian McKinty I thank you for giving us a work of originality that entertains and informs. Anyone who thinks other wise is an eedjit.

14 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Andrew
  • Old Greenwich, CT, United States
  • 10-23-09

Way too many digressions

Having enjoyed The Dead Yard by McKinty I thought I'd enjoy this, his latest book. This one was so much slower and had waaay too many digressions that were plain boring. Disappointed - good when the action is happening, but all the description was way too much for my 90 minute commute. Narrator was okay but, overall too much fluff to hold me engrossed. Certanly didn't stay in the car to listen to this one as I did with Dead Yard.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Carl
  • Greenville, NC, USA
  • 07-01-09

Pleasant Surprise

I was surprised to find this book on my iPod. I don't remember downloading it. I have never heard of the author or of the book by its title. So naturally I listened to it. I thought it was an excellent 'read' and thought the narrator did a good job. It is hard to imagine this book read by a male narrator, or any female reader doing a better job. The book has a sort of 'rapid fire' style which might put some people off. Also it might be offensive to Scientologists.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ted
  • Lancaster, PA, United States
  • 12-30-14


This is a very good experience. Adrian McKinty leaps the gap between reality and narrative... Hmmmm... No... Perhaps he heals it. And Paula Christensen brings Mercado's voice to haunting life... Particularly her internal voice.

McKinty exploits suspense/mystery to examine an individual's options when culture, politics, and violence exert crushing pressure upon anyone, or anything that's impelled to act - individually. Sometimes McKinty's own drive to examine the trees though, distracts us from the forest. In this case Mercado's internal monologues occasionally pulled me out of the story arc and, well.... It's not good for the magician to remind the audience that his left hand's doing things when we want to be amazed by the right hand that's abruptly full of rabbit. Y'know?

Maybe this book needed just a hair more editing and compression: hence my overall 4 rather than 5 stars. But hey... I am judging McKinley by his own standards and consequently I found this story, overall, to be unnecessarily slower than each of the others I heard before it.

Regardless... "Fifty Grand" is marvelous. McKinty and Christensen are a powerful team of artists. Buy it, listen, and feeeel.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful