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4.7 out of 5 stars72
4.7 out of 5 stars
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 18 August 2001
This book is very involving, just don't expect David Jason. Frost is scruffy and foul-mouthed, but down to earth and understanding. And he never sleeps! This was the particular book which got me into the Frost series and is probably the best. It is funny but also thrilling, especially at the end. Most recommended.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 13 February 2010
RD Wingfield only managed a limited number of stories featuring his wonderful creation, maverick Detective Inspector "Jack" Frost and the fictional Denton police force before he died. Such a shame -these are really very well constructed books and satisfying mysteries.
Wingfield lived to see the highly successful TV series starring David Jason, but had a problem with Jason's portrayal, in the main because the TV character was totally different and quite toned down compared to the greasy, unkempt, foul-mouthed, chain-smoking policeman that Wingfield describes so well. All the outside DCs or DSs seconded (usually unwillingly) to Denton nick and placed under Inspector Frost's mantle are generally flawed or world-weary but find themselves quickly at their wits' end with their superior's antics and unorthodox policing methods.
The cackling humour within these books arises from Frost's callous disregard of the rules and his slapdash, usually disgraceful conduct, which numerous times steer him towards suspension or worse. The funniest is his relationship with the stuffy, hapless Superintendent Mullett, dubbed "Horn Rim Harry", whom Frost manages to wrong-foot on a regular basis. At times, Jack's sexist attitude and verbal crudity might prove moderately grating to current PC attitudes but given this was a prevalent attitude of the time (the Inspector is portrayed as being in his 50s when these were written in the 1990s so can therefore be reasonably expected to be entrenched in the old-fashioned attitudes and this simply adds validity to his seemingly 'disreputable' character.
All Wingfield's books are a true joy to read and if you can suspend that hovering image of the former Del-Boy (and despite the much cleaner raincoat, decent scarf and less battered hat) from your mind's eye, it remains a simply wonderful series that should not be missed.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 19 November 2000
If you can get over the misogyny and general avoidance of anything remotely pc you will love Frost. I did not try the books for ages (because of the tv series), but they really are worth reading - for the humour particularly. Don't expect realism - this is just pure fun. Night Frost is my favourite so far - the relationship with Mullet is priceless!
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on 1 August 2015
I didn’t approach R.D. Wingfield’s DI Jack Frost series with any great enthusiasm. I’d seen enough of ITV’s Sunday night schedule-filler, with David Jason in the title role, to assume it would be lightweight, middlebrow, plodding fare, with signposted comic interludes.

I was utterly wrong. I gorged all six books in the series — Frost at Christmas, A Touch of Frost, Night Frost, Hard Frost, Winter Frost and A Killing Frost — within a couple of months.

There’s little point writing an individual review of each, as they all follow the same formula… There are usually three cases on the go in each book: a child/prostitute serial murderer, something rapey, and a robbery. Frost, of course, solves all three, each time accompanied by a different sidekick sergeant he’s been mis-matched with (female / posh / ambitious). On the way, he always succeeds in getting one over on his boss, Superintendent Mullett.

Described like that, it sounds typically banale and padded ITV fare. Yet R.D. Wingfield’s writing is anything but. The books are weighty, typically around 500 pages, but they crack along. Frost is multi-dimensional and scatalogically funny, the dialogue believably terse and crude, the narrative pacy, the plot-twists surprising. In short, they are (cue the reviewer’s standby cliche) page-turners, genuinely excellent detective novels.

There are flaws. In particular, the books’ casual sexism will jar with the modern reader. There are recurring motifs of Frost “jokingly” sexually assaulting Mullett’s secretary; there’s lots of sexual leering masquerading as banter; prostitutes are rhyming slanged as “toms”; child pornography is regarded as a minor offence; under-age girls are portrayed as knowing Lolitas; and a frumpy, middle-aged lady notorious for ‘crying rape’ is a stand-by comedy caricature.

Some readers may find it hard to get past these. For what it’s worth, I find them more fascinatingly revealing of the times (the series was published between 1984 and 2008) than I do irredeemably offensive.

My advice: get stuck in, judge for yourself.
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on 3 June 2014
It is such a pity that RD Wingfield wrote so few Frost books because they are like a breath of fresh air. I have not seen the tv series and only came across these books recently but all are enjoyable:for me, the author most like Wingfield writing today is Stuart MacBride who also portays a pólice forcé struggling against the odds. Not only are the pólice attempting to solve various, often unrelated crimes simultaneously with insufficient numbers but are also at the mercy of sensationalist media, rather clueless managers always wary of offending local dignitaries and the endless pólice bureaucrats. Mercifully Denton is not "Grace" Land and Frost is more likely to be nearer a real pólice officer than other fictional pólice officers. My only quibble with this very good, complicated plot is the ending - just too far-fetched. If the Pólice Review or other journals reviewed pólice procedurals in crime fiction, I wonder what their opinión of the Frost books would be.
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on 13 November 2015
I am a bit of a detective buff and have read a good many such novels by various authors. I quite enjoy watching Frost, as portrayed by David Jason, on the TV and so I thought I'd give one of the Frost novels a go.I must admit to have been disappointed by this one. In order to enjoy it you have to totally suspend disbelief, the plot being so convoluted and far-fetched. The TV Frost is quite an appealing character but the one in the novel is pretty obnoxious and has very few saving graces. I must admit that I stuck with it until the (ludicrous) end - there' something compulsively awful about it. I won't be reading any more because it's rather juvenile fare.If you want a good detective series go for the Harry Bosch novels by Michael Connelly - read them in order in order to get to know the characters and fully understand Harry's background. I'm on the 7th and have enjoyed them all - Bosch is a much more believable character and the plots are detailed and engrossing.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on 14 November 2000
The Frost series of books are engrossing and involving, sometimes quite complicated, detective stories. Frost himself is perhaps the most sympathetic character in them, the rest are pretty awful. One gripe I have is Wingfield's treatment of women in the Frost books - they are either crumpet to be raped and/or made foul remarks about, or batty sex-starved old maids. I get the feeling the author does not like women very much. However, I shall perservere with them as I like good 'tec story. Pity about the misogyny.
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on 24 September 2014
Great as are all the books in the Frost series. The characters jumped out of the page at me. The storyline keeps you on the edge of your seat to the end. This was one of those books where you can't wait for the outcome. Once you have read it you want yo read another one.
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on 18 March 2015
I was recommended by my English teacher to read this book. After half a year o slow reading. I finished it and I can't say I've ever red such a good book. Gripping and humorous to the end.
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on 26 November 2013
Loved the TV series and love the books now - great character! Easy to read and you can imagine the actors at the same time from the tv series - and it does not spoil the enjoyment
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