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A Hard Place

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By Any Means. When fifteen-year-old Marisol Hernandez is gunned down on the Track, Oakland’s infamous prostitution corridor, it isn’t exactly front page news. Her death is chalked up as just another teenage hooker consumed by the streets. But to the grieving grandmother who raised her, Marisol’s homicide isn’t merely a statistic. To make matters worse, at the same time s By Any Means. When fifteen-year-old Marisol Hernandez is gunned down on the Track, Oakland’s infamous prostitution corridor, it isn’t exactly front page news. Her death is chalked up as just another teenage hooker consumed by the streets. But to the grieving grandmother who raised her, Marisol’s homicide isn’t merely a statistic. To make matters worse, at the same time she’s burying one granddaughter she’s desperately trying to keep Marisol’s fourteen-year-old sister, Belicia, from succumbing to a similar fate. As a favor to a friend, former-soldier, ex-cop, and part-time private investigator Chauncey ‘Chance’ Means agrees to look into the killing. It’s a murder the local police admit they have little likelihood of solving. Complicating things, is the fact that Chance left law enforcement with more than a few enemies and a well-earned reputation as a man who doesn’t let rules get in the way. Following a trail of apathetic cops, street-hardened prostitutes, pimps, and gangsters, Chance scours the San Francisco Bay in search of a merciless child-killer. He soon discovers there are people who don’t want him looking into Marisol’s murder. Men who will do whatever it takes to stop him. Praise for A HARD PLACE: “With his unflinching determination to achieve justice whatever the cost, Sean Lynch’s ex-military, ex-cop turned San Francisco private eye, Chauncey ‘Chance’ Means, is a worthy successor to Dashiell Hammett’s Sam Spade; an old-fashioned, wise-cracking, tough guy who isn’t afraid to clean up those mean and dirty streets by shooting first and kicking the crap out of the bad guys later.” --Zoë Sharp, bestselling author of the Charlie Fox series About the Author: #1 Amazon bestselling author Sean Lynch was born and raised in Iowa. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology, served in the U.S. Army as an enlisted infantryman, and spent nearly three decades as a municipal police officer in the San Francisco Bay Area. During his law enforcement career, Sean's been a Motorcycle Officer, S.W.A.T. Team Member, Sex Crimes Investigator, Firearms Instructor, and Homicide Detective. Learn more at seanlynchbooks.com


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By Any Means. When fifteen-year-old Marisol Hernandez is gunned down on the Track, Oakland’s infamous prostitution corridor, it isn’t exactly front page news. Her death is chalked up as just another teenage hooker consumed by the streets. But to the grieving grandmother who raised her, Marisol’s homicide isn’t merely a statistic. To make matters worse, at the same time s By Any Means. When fifteen-year-old Marisol Hernandez is gunned down on the Track, Oakland’s infamous prostitution corridor, it isn’t exactly front page news. Her death is chalked up as just another teenage hooker consumed by the streets. But to the grieving grandmother who raised her, Marisol’s homicide isn’t merely a statistic. To make matters worse, at the same time she’s burying one granddaughter she’s desperately trying to keep Marisol’s fourteen-year-old sister, Belicia, from succumbing to a similar fate. As a favor to a friend, former-soldier, ex-cop, and part-time private investigator Chauncey ‘Chance’ Means agrees to look into the killing. It’s a murder the local police admit they have little likelihood of solving. Complicating things, is the fact that Chance left law enforcement with more than a few enemies and a well-earned reputation as a man who doesn’t let rules get in the way. Following a trail of apathetic cops, street-hardened prostitutes, pimps, and gangsters, Chance scours the San Francisco Bay in search of a merciless child-killer. He soon discovers there are people who don’t want him looking into Marisol’s murder. Men who will do whatever it takes to stop him. Praise for A HARD PLACE: “With his unflinching determination to achieve justice whatever the cost, Sean Lynch’s ex-military, ex-cop turned San Francisco private eye, Chauncey ‘Chance’ Means, is a worthy successor to Dashiell Hammett’s Sam Spade; an old-fashioned, wise-cracking, tough guy who isn’t afraid to clean up those mean and dirty streets by shooting first and kicking the crap out of the bad guys later.” --Zoë Sharp, bestselling author of the Charlie Fox series About the Author: #1 Amazon bestselling author Sean Lynch was born and raised in Iowa. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology, served in the U.S. Army as an enlisted infantryman, and spent nearly three decades as a municipal police officer in the San Francisco Bay Area. During his law enforcement career, Sean's been a Motorcycle Officer, S.W.A.T. Team Member, Sex Crimes Investigator, Firearms Instructor, and Homicide Detective. Learn more at seanlynchbooks.com

30 review for A Hard Place

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jim A

    Not very often I give 5 stars to a PI thriller. This one is a rare exception. Thanks to my Goodreads friend for the heads up. Chauncey Means (his parents wanted him to learn to fight) is a PI in the Bay Area. He's an ex cop, ex arm infantry, and totally ruthless when it comes to kicking badasses. Reluctantly he accepts a job to find out who murdered a street walker in Oakland. Along the way he comes across more than the normal share of people who want him dead. The author tried to throw a few sur Not very often I give 5 stars to a PI thriller. This one is a rare exception. Thanks to my Goodreads friend for the heads up. Chauncey Means (his parents wanted him to learn to fight) is a PI in the Bay Area. He's an ex cop, ex arm infantry, and totally ruthless when it comes to kicking badasses. Reluctantly he accepts a job to find out who murdered a street walker in Oakland. Along the way he comes across more than the normal share of people who want him dead. The author tried to throw a few surprises into the story, but readers who are used to this type novel caught on to the twists very early on. The clues where all there. A Kindle Unlimited offering. Give it a try if this genre is in your wheel house.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Wiseask

    In 1965, at the beginning of The Beatles’ popularity in the US, a band from Bergenfield, New Jersey, The Knickerbockers, recorded a song called Lies which sounded just like The Beatles. Hearing the song, John Lennon was said to have said: “They sound more like we do than we do.” In 1997, author Lee Child introduced his fictional character Jack Reacher, a kind of cross between Dirty Harry and Sir Lancelot, inspiring dozens of imitators. One such imitator, Sean Lynch, came along 20 years later with In 1965, at the beginning of The Beatles’ popularity in the US, a band from Bergenfield, New Jersey, The Knickerbockers, recorded a song called Lies which sounded just like The Beatles. Hearing the song, John Lennon was said to have said: “They sound more like we do than we do.” In 1997, author Lee Child introduced his fictional character Jack Reacher, a kind of cross between Dirty Harry and Sir Lancelot, inspiring dozens of imitators. One such imitator, Sean Lynch, came along 20 years later with his character Chauncey (“Chance”) Means, who is more like Reacher than Reacher. Even the title of his first Chauncey Means Thriller, A Hard Place, resembles the name of my favorite Jack Reacher novel, The Hard Way. Both Reacher and Means are former cops and military men, both have a clear sense of right from wrong, and both share a passion to dispense justice unrestrained by the Bill of Rights. Although at nearly six feet and 200 lbs. Chance is somewhat smaller than Reacher’s 6’5” 250 lbs., Reacher’s physical stature has been seriously eroded ever since the fatally short 5’7” Tom Cruise began portraying him in the movies. Lynch includes some inside jokes. Early in the book Chance threatens someone who calls him (of all names) Jack: “That’s the second time you’ve called me Jack. If you call me anything but my given name again, the next words you speak are going to be through porcelain teeth.” Neither Reacher nor Chance carry cellphones, even though nearly everyone else does, and Chance conspicuously does not drink coffee where Reacher consumes cup after cup. But the bottom line is that Chance makes a better Reacher than Reacher. He is Jack Reacher on steroids. Like Reacher, Chance is fearless, is a hard ass (Street Punk to Chance: “Who the (bleep) do you think you are?” Chance to Punk: “Trouble you don’t want.”), has cool retorts (see what I mean), has a confidence bordering on arrogance (see what I mean), is an expert with weapons and is unbeatable with his fists. In short he embodies every male’s heroic fantasy, and probably more than a few females’ fantasies too. If I were about to face trouble, well ... if I couldn’t be Chance Means (my first choice), then he’s the one I would want batting for me. Jack Reacher is welcome to watch and take notes.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jane

    Good read Chauncey Means, an ex-cop and a private investigator has been hired by Greg Cole, and attorney and an old friend of Chauncey's, to look into the death of a teenage girl named Marisol. Marisol's grandmother has been working for the Vole family as their housekeeper for almost twenty years. Good read Chauncey Means, an ex-cop and a private investigator has been hired by Greg Cole, and attorney and an old friend of Chauncey's, to look into the death of a teenage girl named Marisol. Marisol's grandmother has been working for the Vole family as their housekeeper for almost twenty years.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dave

    Thank you to author Sean Lynch for this Kindle copy of A Hard Place (Chauncey Means Thriller). And a thanks goes out to Goodreads for hosting the opportunity through the First Reads program. We need to clone a couple dozen of the main character for the Chance to clean up the pimps and thieves in our public and private institutions like he does in this thriller of a book. Alas... I don't hand out very many 5-stars, and with that being said, will let it stand as my review. A really good read for any Thank you to author Sean Lynch for this Kindle copy of A Hard Place (Chauncey Means Thriller). And a thanks goes out to Goodreads for hosting the opportunity through the First Reads program. We need to clone a couple dozen of the main character for the Chance to clean up the pimps and thieves in our public and private institutions like he does in this thriller of a book. Alas... I don't hand out very many 5-stars, and with that being said, will let it stand as my review. A really good read for anyone into this genre. Just a few editing issues overlooked which is unfortunate, but all too common today. A highly recommended read from author Sean Lynch.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Marcella Aldama

    Turned out to be a great story The premise of the story was good but I thought just a little slow and, although I never skipped ahead, I was becoming impatient for it to get really good. It did. Loved the authors sense of humor therefore I loved Chance. Liked all the side characters too and how they added so much to the story. Although I'm a "California Liberal", I loved Chance's way of getting justice. After working 25 yrs with victims of crime and the last 9 yrs with family members of murder vi Turned out to be a great story The premise of the story was good but I thought just a little slow and, although I never skipped ahead, I was becoming impatient for it to get really good. It did. Loved the authors sense of humor therefore I loved Chance. Liked all the side characters too and how they added so much to the story. Although I'm a "California Liberal", I loved Chance's way of getting justice. After working 25 yrs with victims of crime and the last 9 yrs with family members of murder victims, I am all for how Chance carried out his investigation and I absolutely loved the fact that I didn't see the end coming and, how Chance ended it. Great! Love revenge stories and movies. SPOILER ALERT: Although Chance did mention to the Bad Guy he new Det. Nguyen had warned him Chance would be at the Track, I was waiting for Chance to bring up the fact that Al said he spoke to Nguyen that night, clearing Chance, but later that same night Nguyen asked how Al and Chance new each other. Nothing was ever said about that. Oh well, great story and it definitely makes me want to read more about Chance.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tertia R Armstrong

    Cop thriller at its best. If you enjoy a street smart former cop, now a detective for hire this is the book for you. He knows the ins and outs of the legal system and realizes that sometimes you have to work arround it to get justice. Chance has a ready pun and a gun. His moral compass is pointed in the right direction. His friends value him for who he is and what he does. Action follows him when he is on the trail of justice. The plot and criminal characters are believable if disheartening. A pa Cop thriller at its best. If you enjoy a street smart former cop, now a detective for hire this is the book for you. He knows the ins and outs of the legal system and realizes that sometimes you have to work arround it to get justice. Chance has a ready pun and a gun. His moral compass is pointed in the right direction. His friends value him for who he is and what he does. Action follows him when he is on the trail of justice. The plot and criminal characters are believable if disheartening. A page turner that leaves you satisfied.

  7. 5 out of 5

    D. Jane Akins

    Don't read if you don't want to read about violence. I'm not sure I agree with Chance's methods but I agree with his results of getting slime off the streets where they do irreparable damage to young, naive people. Especially when the slime are cops. This is a well-written, well-edited book with good character development. Chance may be a little bigger than life but he's a likeable guy, if you can overlook the fact that he can kill slime at the drop of a hat. I do plan on reading the next book in Don't read if you don't want to read about violence. I'm not sure I agree with Chance's methods but I agree with his results of getting slime off the streets where they do irreparable damage to young, naive people. Especially when the slime are cops. This is a well-written, well-edited book with good character development. Chance may be a little bigger than life but he's a likeable guy, if you can overlook the fact that he can kill slime at the drop of a hat. I do plan on reading the next book in the series so you can know I liked this book.

  8. 4 out of 5

    JOHN O'CONNELL NOLAND

    Clever dialog, but improbable. The kinda retorts one thinks up long after the conversation, then says to himself, 'Why didn't I say that?' Many wanton killings by protagonist which he justifies by asserting, 'They needed to die and our police wouldn't be permitted to do it.' I suppose one could justify most murders with that fascist illogic!! Clever dialog, but improbable. The kinda retorts one thinks up long after the conversation, then says to himself, 'Why didn't I say that?' Many wanton killings by protagonist which he justifies by asserting, 'They needed to die and our police wouldn't be permitted to do it.' I suppose one could justify most murders with that fascist illogic!!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Karen M. Kanaley

    Excellent Read Whatever it takes to help the underdogs of this world, Chauncey Means will do. He is the ultimate "good guy.". Wish I had a Chauncey Means in my life. Loved this story and look forward to reading all the others. Excellent Read Whatever it takes to help the underdogs of this world, Chauncey Means will do. He is the ultimate "good guy.". Wish I had a Chauncey Means in my life. Loved this story and look forward to reading all the others.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Marc Dulude

    Totally absorbing read I could hardly put down Chance is the main character and he’s developed masterfully throughout. Unapologetic and honest to a fault, he takes his place alongside the other great characters in the genre. Great stuff.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jean McCulloch

    Outstanding I liked the I intrigue. It was easy to follow as individual characters were woven into the story. Constant action. Interesting throughout. I have become a fan of Chauncey Means

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ramona

    I would like to thank Goodreads, Kindle and Mr. Lynch for a book I could not put down. It was a great read, a little brutal but action packed, with a tight story and can easily be read in a couple of hours. It is a great winter reads when it is too cold to go out. Kudos

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kenneth L Gurule

    This was a good read. I've enjoyed the Farrell and Kearnes series too. This is like a Jack Reacher, John Corey, Lucas Davenport combo...lots of dark humor I appreciate. "Can I have the pizza?" was a great finish to that encounter. You write; I'll read Mr. Lynch...thank you. This was a good read. I've enjoyed the Farrell and Kearnes series too. This is like a Jack Reacher, John Corey, Lucas Davenport combo...lots of dark humor I appreciate. "Can I have the pizza?" was a great finish to that encounter. You write; I'll read Mr. Lynch...thank you.

  14. 5 out of 5

    linda kellogg

    Well written and full of violence and action. There are many twists to the suspense. Some of them, especially the last one, I didn't see coming. The story is very raw but probably very real. If it was a movie, it would be rated an X. Well written and full of violence and action. There are many twists to the suspense. Some of them, especially the last one, I didn't see coming. The story is very raw but probably very real. If it was a movie, it would be rated an X.

  15. 4 out of 5

    James N Fulton, Jr.

    I like a bad ass good guy Here is another where the good guy has a set of right and wrong morals that seem to be logical, but not legal. I will definitely read more from this author.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Vera Seidler

    Excellent! I really loved other books by this author, so I thought I couldn’t go wrong by starting the Chauncey Means series...and was I ever right! Chance is tough, gritty, and effective as hell! Better than Reacher in my humble opinion. On to book 2!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Alice Lovell

    Loved it I will probably read this book again! It was that good. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. A lot going on.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Dewey Carroll Brackett

    Great book! Chance always gets his man. He's not a cop anymore so he doesn't have to follow the rules. Violence and lots of profanity. Great book! Chance always gets his man. He's not a cop anymore so he doesn't have to follow the rules. Violence and lots of profanity.

  19. 4 out of 5

    KATHY THOMAS

    Suspenseful Very good read kept you intrigued... Characters were all very relatable would highly recommend I truly enjoyed.. Will read more from this authot

  20. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Yarbrough

    Good story and kept my attention. The number of typos is distracting and the Karen character became annoying.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tena

    I won this KINDLE version in a GOODREADS giveaway.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Marilyn A. Land

    I loved it and him. I did not judge his actions because this is a story and it was nice to see the bad guys get pay back. I will definitely read the next one

  23. 4 out of 5

    Roger

    A very good book with lots of action. Highly recommend and hope to find another like it.

  24. 4 out of 5

    audrey sidle

  25. 4 out of 5

    Michele B

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

  27. 5 out of 5

    donald r putnam

  28. 4 out of 5

    Donna

  29. 4 out of 5

    Georganna Biggins

  30. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Wyatt

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