A Cold Case

A tale of crime and punishment from a prizewinning writer. A few years ago, Andy Rosenzweig, an inspector for the Manhattan District Attorney's office, was abruptly reminded of an old, unsolved double homicide. It bothered him that Frankie Koehler, the notoriously dangerous suspect, had eluded capture and was still at large. Rosenzweig had known the victims of the crime, for they were childhood friends from the South Bronx: Richie Glennon, a Runyonesque ex-prizefighter at home with both cops and criminals, and Pete McGinn, a spirited restaurateur and father of four. Rosenzweig resolved to find the killer and close the case. In a surprising, intensely dramatic narrative, Philip Gourevitch brings together the story of Rosenzweig's pursuit with a mesmerizing account of Koehler's criminal personality and years on the lam. A Cold Case carries us deep into the lives and minds, the passions and perplexities, of an extraordinary cop and an extraordinary criminal whose lives were entwined over three decades. Set in a New York City that has all but disappeared, and written with a keen ear for the vibrant idiom of the colorful men and women who peopled its streets, this is nonetheless a book for our times. Gourevitch masterfully transforms a criminal investigation into a searching literary reckoning with the forces that drive one man to murder and another to hunt murderers."

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By Stop (Chicago, IL) · March 27, 2009
Read the STOP SMILING interview with Philip Gourevitch:


(This interview originally appeared in the STOP SMILING The Downfall of American Publishing Issue)

This spring, Gourevitch became only the third editor in the 52-year history of The Paris Review, following the departu... ...more
By Dennis (Folsom, CA) · ★★★★☆ · May 11, 2010
Gourevitch, Philip. A Cold Case (2001) ****
A quick read with some depth

This is about a small time hood, Frank G. Koehler, who got mad at a couple of guys and shot them both to death in cold blood while wounding a third party. That was in 1970. He escaped and was never brought to justice. Eventual... ...more
By Tiffany (The United States) · ★★★☆☆ · August 07, 2014
This was a really good read. Honestly the first book I've read fully through in 13 years. I liked that I knew who was the murderer from the beginning but just as the investigator goes through I had to find how they will prove it! The last couple chapters seem a little out of sync with the rest of... ...more
By Doris (League City, TX) · ★★★☆☆ · July 04, 2009
At the age of 15, Frankie Koehler killed two men in cold blood. This young mobster later killed one of Andy Rosenzweig's best friends. Thirty years later, with this case unsolved, Andy refuses to retired without solving the crime of his friend.

This book is more of a case study into the mind of Fr... ...more
By Anna (The United States) · ★★☆☆☆ · June 09, 2014
The author traces law enforcement's efforts to track down an all-around bad dude – murderer, robber, womanizer. Not a bad book, but not great either. ...more
By Audrey (Austin, TX) · ★★☆☆☆ · February 27, 2015
he switched tenses through out the book and it really annoyed me ...more
By Alan · ★★★★☆ · December 11, 2014
A riveting true crime tale. ...more
By Karen (Portland, OR) · ★★★★☆ · January 01, 2009
I went to a reading by the author for his newest book, "The Paris Review Interviews, Vol. III", at Powell's Books and picked up this book. It was a good read, quick and more simply written than I expected from Gourevitch. "A Cold Case" is the true story of Andy Rosenzweig's (chief investigator of... ...more
By Sae-chan (Jakarta, Indonesia) · ★★★☆☆ · March 28, 2015
The whole story could be written in 10 pages. The writer should get 2-star for what he wrote. The 3-star was for what Mr. Koehler wrote. ...more
By Steve (Middlesbrough, The United Kingdom) · December 31, 2010
True crime is a genre I rarely, if ever, read so I don't know how common a feature this is, but the retelling of events with quotations from the people involved reminded me of 'dramatised documentary' programmes on TV where actors portray something described by a 'talking head' expert or similar.... ...more