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one hell of a (something or someone)

1. An exceptionally good, exciting, or interesting thing or person. Marty sure is one hell of a guy, always willing to lend his friends a hand! Two cars for the price of one? That's one hell of a deal!
2. An exceptionally bad or difficult thing, activity, or person. This is one hell of a math assignment—I can't understand the first thing about it! Boy, that is one hell of a haircut. You're going to go out in public like that?
See also: hell, of, one

a hell of a someone or something

 and a helluva someone or something 
1. Inf. a very bad person or thing. (Use caution with hell.) That's a hell of a way to treat someone. He's a hell of a driver! Watch out! 2. Inf. a very good person or thing. (Use caution with hell.) He is one hell of a guy. We really like him. We had a helluva good time.
See also: hell, of

a (or one) hell of a —

used to emphasize something very bad or great. informal
1990 Stephen King The Stand If someone on the committee has been leaking, we're in a hell of a jam.
See also: hell, of

hell of a someone/something

and helluva someone/something
1. n. a very bad person or thing. (Use caution with hell.) That’s a hell of a way to treat someone.
2. n. a very good person or thing. (Use caution with hell.) He is one helluva guy. We really like him.
See also: hell, of, something

helluva someone/something

See also: helluva, something
References in periodicals archive ?
All Gramps can say about that is it's a helluva way to run a railroad.
It's a helluva lot easier to talk about something than do it, plus I instantly forgot every idea I ever had.
Maybe someday we will see eye to eye and I will be able to say--January, you're a helluva man, and I'm enriched to know you.
He was a helluva guy, a great editor and a wonderful boss.
Among the things the reader will get from this book is an understanding that caddying is a helluva lot harder than it looks.
La Prairie Sea Energy Cellular Treatment Body Fragrance, it's a helluva a term to describe a perfume.
WHEN I spoke to Tom Conti last week, he promised that One Helluva Life would provide audiences with a 'very funny evening'.
He portrays legendary womaniser and drinker John Barrymore in the Broadway comedy One Helluva Life and is merrily drinking his way around the country playing the once great classical actor.
The elaborate Broadway Cares Collection Snow Globe for 2002 encloses a magical cityscape of marquees from current Broadway shows and plays the song "New York, New York (A Helluva Town).
But his account of the first Nuremberg trial is as much a page turner as a pop thriller--but a helluva lot more important.
Other attractions include the "Devil's Passage" haunted house, Hell Days in May, and Helluva Halloweekends in October.
It's been a helluva conference," said RSA president Jim Bidzos of his company's eighth annual cryptographers' gabfest.
The occupancy tax is not going to add up to a helluva lot," he said.
We've always told our customers that fireproof files are a helluva cheap investment, when you consider what's at stake," Oreck said.
It's kind of like your emotions and your intellect having one helluva wrestling match.