A Hard Winter Rain


Someone walked up to Joe "Shoe" Schumacher’s best friend, Patrick O’Neill, in a Vancouver restaurant and shot him dead. It looks like a professional hit, but who wanted O’Neill dead? Was it, as police believe, a "settling of accounts"? Was it Victoria, O’Neill’s beautiful but damaged wife? Or was it O’Neill’s boss, industrialist William Hammond, with whom O’Neill had a falling-out and with whom Victoria had once had a short-lived affair? Former cop, chauffeur, and bodyguard Joe Shoe sets out to find Patrick’s killer, and along the way he uncovers dark secrets going back years -secrets some people will kill to keep.


Michael Blair's If Looks Could Kill was an excellent debut. His second mystery, A Hard Winter Rain, builds on that start. It's a well-written, well-constructed story with a couple of good twists.

Globe and Mail, December 4, 2004

Good mysteries, especially good Canadian mysteries, are always welcome, especially on cold, winter days. The latest by Montreal author, Michael Blair, A Hard Winter Rain, is hard-hitting and punchy.

The Record (Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge) January 8, 2005

If you are a mystery fan, give it (A Hard Winter Rain) a try. Michael is fast becoming a name among Canadian mystery writers.

The Glengarry News (March, 2005)

[A Hard Winter Rain] ... possesses great energy and makes good use of the gloomy Vancouver winter to reinforce the sense of darkness and corruption... Blair also creates much-needed comic relief in scenes peripheral to the main action, and has a gift for wry description. A Hard Winter Rain (is) an exciting and atmospheric mystery.

Canadian Book Review Annual

About the Author

Michael Blair

Posted by Kendra on December 6, 2014
Michael Blair photo

Michael Blair

Michael Blair is a freelance technical writer/editor living in Montreal. Overexposed is his third mystery, a sequel to If Looks Could Kill, a finalist for the 1999 Chapters/Robertson Davies Prize and shortlisted for the 2001 Quebec Writers Federation First Book Prize. His second mystery, A Hard Winter Rain, was published by Dundurn in 2004.