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The Dead of Winter

Nominated by Mystery Writers of American for Edgar Allen Poe Award for Best First Mystery Novel


This is a novel of vengeance.  


Three Friday night poker players – Lyons, Basche and Tyler – find that the fourth partner, Reece, fatally beaten, on the floor of his apartment.  Reece was a quiet, unassuming fellow, but he had one outstanding trait:  He had a fabulous memory, the kind of mind that could recall the entire Constitution, down to the last comma, period and signature.  On Friday nights he would remember every card that was played.  A fabulous memory.  Yet his final last words were: "I don't remember."


"I don't remember."


Lyons, Basche and Tyler, shocked by the indifference of the police, form their own tribunal of retribution: to find the people who had used Reece so ruthlessly and who had disposed of him in the same way:  to deal with the assassins with a like kind of justice; and to ferret out the "lost" information that had cost Reece his life.  With a twofold meaning, they want to vindicate Vinnie Reece's memory.


This is the story of three ordinary workaday guys who become chillingly extraordinary.  As their cleverness becomes increasingly more ingenious and their blood lust grows out of proportion, they are confronted with the same menace that killed Reece. 


This is a novel of vengeance - and its consequences.


"The title is perfect . . .  the setting, much of it the half-frozen marshes of Brooklyn's southeastern waterfront, whipped by snow gusts and bitter winds, makes a fitting background . . . The author is expert in the creation of evil atmosphere . . ."  Publishers Weekly


"The Dead of Winter should be a book you will gulp down.  Hallahan has a neat, pared-down style and an ability for sharp characterization."  Newgate Callendar, The New York Times Book Review.


"The original motive is a fascinating one . . . beautiful crash ending . . . Impressive . . ." Lenore Glen Offord, San Francisco Examiner


"[The Dead of Winter] is distinctly breathtaking . . . Quite fascinating and unusual."  Library Journal

The Ross Forgery

Thomas Wise was a famous nineteenth-century English bibliophile.  He collected one of the greatest private libraries of the century.  He was also a successful publisher of first editions of Victorian masterpieces, creating more than fifty of them over a forty-year period. They made him a fortune.  Only shortly before his death was it discovered that most of those first editions were forgeries.  Using this true story as a springboard, William H Hallahan has contrived one of the strangest plots ever devised by a suspense novelist.


Thomas Long Pickett is a Texas tycoon.  He has everything under the sun, including an impressive collection of Wise forgeries.  He is the envy of every twentieth-century book collector.   He is also the special anathema of New York tycoon Emmet O'Kane, who has everything under the sun but a Wise forgery.  He commissions Edgar Ross, a brilliant down-at-the-heels type designer, to make him a Wise folio – to create a forgery of a forgery.  But he wants Ross to go one step further.  He wants a Wise forgery that doesn't exist!  Ross knows that it is not only an illegal undertaking: it is also an impossible one.  But he is into the Family for a large gambling debt, and he knows that the Family collects its debts in brutal, often fatal, ways.  


For $100,000 Ross promises O'Kane the impossible.  The ways and means he employs to create a "nineteenth-century pamphlet" with its long-lost type face and the special ink and papers used only in the 1880s will delight the literary detective in all of us.  How he tries by the skin of his teeth to hold the Family at bay adds an intriguing dimension of suspense.  How he finally makes delivery and collects O'Kane's money is laid out in an ended that is shocking for its unexpected twists. 


"The Ross Forgery is beautifully plotted and builds up to a terrific climax.  Don't miss it."  Newgate Callendar, The New York Times Book Review.

The Search for Joseph Tully

This is the story of one of the strangest quests in recent years.


In Brooklyn, in an historic part of that shambled borough, the failing iron ball of the wrecker's crane is at work.  One of the few buildings still standing amid the rubble is the Brevoort House, older than memory.  Its only remining tenant is Peter Richardson.  Abandoned.  Menaced.  Alone.  The Brevoort Houses, like people, can go bad, and the Brevoort emanates an evilness, and undefined terror, aimed directly at him.  The house – something in the house – is telling Richardson of his impending death. 


In another part of Brooklyn, Matthew Willow, a solicitor just arrived from London, takes up quarters.  He is seeking a man who may not exist.   He has one clue only, the name of the wanted man's ancestor:  Joseph Tully.  This eighteenth-century wine merchant had sent his four sons to colonial American to make their fortunes, and Willow's search takes him into the fascinating world of the genealogical detective.  He follows a circuitous trail through old courthouse files, colonial church records, graveyards, dockets of wills, property deeds and bastardy laws.  One after another, he traces the lines of Tully's sons.   One by one, he reaches dead ends: No issue.  Oddly enough, he is profoundly relieved.  He is about to return to England when he chances upon an ancient diary.  Its contents hold the vital information he has been so afraid he would find.  Now he is forced to carry out his awesome revenge.


The Search for Joseph Tully is a harrowing tale, beautifully written: a powerful novel of tyranny beyond the grave.


"The Search for Joseph Tully is the kind of book you can t put down while you're reading – and will never forget after you finish.  A super-shocker."  Robert Bloch (author of Psycho)


"Reading The Search for Joseph Tully is like putting together a jigsaw puzzle where each piece, as it is locked into position, provides a chill of terrifying premonition."  Stanley Ellin (author of Stronghold)


"William H Hallahan's new novel, The Search for Joseph Tully, kept me on edge from beginning to end.  Mr. Hallahan not only knows how to write exciting fiction; he knows his occult background.  Thoroughly enjoyable."  Hans Holzer (author of The Truth About Witchcraft)


"Move over, Blatty and Tryon.  Move over everybody.  Hallahan's book is a relentless, terrifying thriller."  Dean Koontz (author of After the Last Race)


Catch Me Kill Me

Winner of the Mystery Writer's of America Edgar Allen Poe Award for Best Mystery Novel


A Soviet mole whose assignment is to steal critical US military software, confronts US agent Charlie Brewer who doesn't know who the mole is,where he is, or what he's after, in a classic race and chase.
“Hallahan at his brisk best…the action is lean and satisfying with a formidably tenacious hero, a charismatic post-glasnost villain, some clever spy puzzles and just the right dash of Le Carré-inspired cynicism.” Kirkus Review

The Keeper of the Children

When Eddie Benson’s 14-year old daughter is found among a group of children in orange robes chanting and begging, he realizes she has come under the mental control of a strange Tibetan monk. To get her back, Benson has to learn strange mental techniques that enable him to battle the monk for the soul of his daughter.
“A mixture of horror and occultism told with driving force…a story that takes you will it all the way…to places far from normality…add this book to…other occult hits of the last decade.” New York Times.

The Monk

"No one can help you . . ."

The psychic's waring couldn't frighten Brendan Davitt any more than he already was.  The visions, the terrible premonitions he had fought against all of his life, were becoming more frequent.  More horrifying.

His family said Brendan was gifted, blessed by God.  The scientist who saw Kirlian photographs of his aura could offer no rational explanation.

Because there was no rational explanation for what was happening to Brendan Davitt.  But for this young man, and for the girl he had loved since they were kids, there was a reality closing in to crush the inexorably, a force of this world that rational minds are powerless to combat.

"Mr. Hallahan will keep you up all night."  The New York Times Book Review.


The Trade

After the editor of an arms trade newsletter is killed on the Paris Metro murmuring 'Doomsday Book, Charlie Brewer and Colin Thomas, an international arms trader, find themselves desperately dueling with the brilliant daughter of Germany’s leading intelligence officer as they slowly penetrate a shocking world-wide conspiracy. ‘Crackling good thriller. Compelling reading to the last page.” Publishers Weekly


Charlie Brewer, an intelligence agent, doesn’t know why he was framed for an illegal arms deal, or why he is suddenly released, or why someone is trying to kill him until he finds himself in the middle of a deadly duel between agents of the US and Iran for key pieces of military hardware with him as the bait in the trap. “Best thriller I’ve read in years.” Washington Post.


Among the most traumatic experiences suffered by American soldiers in the Vietnam War was the jamming, in action, of their key weapon, the M16 rifle. It was the cause of hundreds of battle mishaps.

William Hallahan's Misfire is an indepth expose of nearly two centuries of failure by the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps in the arming of our infantry. Hallahan shows that the M16 was the last in a long sequence of faulty smallarms provided to American soldiers since Revolutionary times. Hallahan tells the story of American small-arms weaponry from its colonial origins--with the establishment of our two great arsenals, the National Armories at Springfield, Massachusetts and Harper's Ferry Virginia--up to the present.


Misfire exposes for the first time the bureaucratic ineptitude that has plagued our infantry's military capability from the Revolution to the present. Hallahan's inside history of the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps documents how our soldiers have invariably been armed with inferior weapons--rifles designed for outmoded, slow, deliberate, ammunition-saving fire despite the availability of demonstrably superior arms. The dire consequences include the prolongation of the Civil War by the Union's failure to use the repeating rifle; the United States's abject failure to produce an effective machine gun in World War I; the needless deaths and defeats of American infantrymen in Vietnam; and the current risk involved in adopting as our standard gun a non-automatic rifle while the world's other armies have superior fully automated guns.


Misfire is a story of politics as well as history. As Hallahan shows, the U.S. Army Ordinance Corps has been fixated for generations on accurate, deliberate firepower and the conservative use of ammunition, despite the fact that the prime innovations in arms technology have led to ever more rapid-firing and accurate weapons.


Misfire is riveting reading, with a vivid cast of characters that includes those who ran the Corps, those who fought it, and those who attempted to reform it but failed: General William Crosier, who dominated the Corps for decades prior to World War I; the supremely gifted outsider, Eugene Stoner, who created the most lethal, most reliable automatic assault rifle--the M16--to save the Corps in 1958, only to witness the Corps's final rush toward self-destruction in the Vietnam War; and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, who terminated the Ordnance Corps in 1967. Misfire is passionate and controversial--a history of national frustration and disgrace.


“William Hallahan has captured its drama beautifully …and…prosecutes the U. S. Army Ordinance Corps without mercy, leaving the reader aching to lynch the scoundrels.” John Lehman, former Secretary of the Navy, Wall Street Journal.

The Day The American Revolution Began: 19 April 1775

#2 of History Editor's Top Ten Picks of 2000


Drawing on diaries, letters, official documents and memoirs, William H. Hallahan follows the news of Lexington and Concord as it sweeps across the colonies setting afire cities and small towns, villages and farms the author chronicles the reactions of people from all walks of life as word reaches them and provides striking insights on lives both ordinary and mythic,--from jubilant rebel leaders like Samuel Adams to suddenly apprehensive Loyalists; from farmers and shopkeepers, statesmen and aristocrats, to traitors, spies, opportunists, street thugs and cowards, as well as Europeans about to embark on a new life in the colonies. The Day the American Revolution Began portrays the foibles and courage of a people suddenly facing the prospect of war against the world’s most powerful monarch, and it vividly captures the spirit of the times and the vitality of those who took part in one of the most extraordinary events in history.

The Day The American Revolution Began is also filled with surpris9ing new revelations about Lexington and Concord and its aftermath. For example, scholars have often concluded that “the shot heard ‘round the world” was fired accidentally, but Hallahan’s research suggest otherwise—that the shot was fired deliberately from behind a stone wall to foment the violence that sparked the war. The identity of the man who was responsible for the shot is another of many subjects this free look at the revolution explores.

“William H. Hallahan has crafted a fascinating story worthy of the attention of everyone wanting to learn more about the stirring early days of the American Revolution….Very readable…Highly recommended .” James Kirby Martin, Benedict Arnold: Revolutionary Hero.

“Hallahan has successfully evoked all the passion and drama of the birth of the American Revolution.” Booklist.

The Day The American Revolution Ended

Thrusting you into the revolution's worst year, 1780, and its climactic finale the year after,The Day the Revolution Ended covers the many devastating blows that faced Washington and his impoverished troops during the last years of the war and the thrilling comeback of the allies–made possible by France's resources–as all forces made their way towards Yorktown in the final showdown of the American Revolution.


After six long years of tooth-and-nail skirmishes, the Revolutionary War was drawing to a climactic close. The stage had been set. As General Cornwallis set up camp to make his final stand in the sleepy Viriginian tobacco farm of Yorktown, General Washington received the news that would change the fate of the colonies: France's Admiral de Grasse was leading a fleet of 29 ships and six frigates from the French West Indies up to the Chesapeake. The Allies could finally have the resources to win the revolution.


But with this great hope came far too many seemingly insurmountable obstacles: de Grasse would not stay in Chesapeake after October 15th. This gave Washington and Lafayette less than two months to move their armies 450 miles, lay siege against Cornwallis, and compel him to surrender. If Cornwallis tried to escape by water, could the French Navy fight their way up the American coast past or through the British Navy and block Cronwallis's escape? Could Lafayette find enough cavalry and troops to block the Yorktown peninsula? Win or lose, the Battle at Yorktown would decide the fate of the colonies.


William Hallahan's spellbinding narrative traces the dramatic events of those last crucial years of war and revolution., when all the gathered forces met in climactic resolution. He grippingly recreates the events that took place throughout America, England, and France during the Revolution, culminating with the momentous sea battle between the French and British navies, the face-off at Yorktown, and the world's thrilling reaction to Britain's surrender.

Rivetingly told and vividly detailed, William Hallahan's breathtaking narrative follows a young, tenacious nation's relentless quest for emancipation and offers piercing portraits of the leading actors, on both sides, in the drama that shaped America's destiny.


Following the success of William Hallahan's best-selling The Day the Revolution Began, here is the dramatic conclusion to the American Revolution and the spirited beginning of a new nation. The Day the Revolution Ended vividly tells the story of America's victory through the eyes of those who lived it. Using such rich primary sources as diaries, journals, memoirs, newspapers, letters, official documents, and other eyewitness accounts, The Day the Revolution Ended traces the tense chess game of troop movements, skirmishes, and tooth-and-nail battles that brought the American forces, their French allies, the British troops, and the Hessian mercenary soldiers to their fateful encounter at Yorktown. Hallahan paints a sharp portrait of the events and the colorful players in the war, including Benedict Arnold's seething vengeance, Nathanael Greene's ability to turn even a retreat into a victory, Lafayette's military ardor, General Clinton's incompetent leadership, and Washington's high-stakes battles, as well as the extraordinary bravery of both generals and common soldier alike.


"...tells the story of the Americans' recovery and triumph with admirable clarity, fashioning his facts into an enjoyable narrative…a fine job…engaging style…excellent choice for fans of popular history." Publishers Weekly