Tag Archives: David Baldacci

Book Review of “First Family” By David Baldacci

First Family

By David Baldacci

An average action-thriller by David Baldacci, First Family is follow-up to Simple Genius.
To begin with, both Sean King and Michelle Maxwell ooze out more character than before (thankfully!).
Just before Pam Dutton is about to instruct them on their next case she is found dead and her daughter (Willa) is missing.

Gripping storyline, plenty subplots, intriguing scandals, interesting twists and turns, absorbing characters of the antagonists as well make this a great read. The author has a definite knack to hook the reader from the very beginning. But at times the pace of the story drops making it a bit of a drag. The climax seems overloaded and kinda unbelievable. But overall readable.

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Book Review of “Deliver Us From Evil” By David Baldacci

Deliver Us From Evil

By David Baldacci

 

 

Looks like David Baldacci got his characters researched and etched right in his mind before penning them for his fans.

This fast paced murder-mystery-crime tale has all the excitement and action you’d wish for.

The main character is a notorious man involved in all the wrong things (of course) who has no idea that two furtive people, with their own agenda, are sneaking up his path. The suspense is too rousing to be let out here.

The spine-tingling plot is sprinkled with ample of brow-raising events and emotions, making it quite an interesting read.

Baldacci’s writing makes it very easy to visualize the events as they happen. This surely is one heck of a thriller released this year!

 

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Book Review of “Hour Game” by David Baldacci

Hour Game

by David Baldacci

Hour Game seems to be a bagful of red herrings. This is a complex, action-packed thriller that wraps you tight.

Wrightsburg overall is a quiet and peaceful town. But off late, the residents are in a state of shock and panic. A serial killer has committed gruesome murders,and the body count keeps increasing.

The victims are random; the motive is unknown; and the clues all mixed up, misguiding the cops and the detectives on the trail, about the identity of the unscrupulous “copy-cat” murderer.

Meanwhile, former Secret Service agents Sean King and Michelle Maxwell (with their new private investigation office in town) are working on a burglary case at the estate of the richest (but dysfunctional) family (Battles) in the area. But before they get to the thief they are sought by Chief of Police Todd Williams who also calls in the FBI for further investigation.

*(I’d suggest reading Split Second before grabbing this one to get a brief background detail on Sean King and Michelle Maxwell. But in case you can’t – The two are disgraced secret service agents who now have joined hands by becoming partners in a private investigation firm.)

The serial killer(s) seem to be aping the techniques and markings of other madmen, from San Francisco’s Zodiac Killer to Chicago’s infamous John Wayne Gacy.

The first murder is that of a woman and her corpse is found with a wrist watch, with the time set to one o’clock. (Copy of the Zodiac Killer.)

The second and third murder is that of a young couple, spotted at a “make-out” site, killed by a shotgun. A dog collar is found on the floorboard of their car (Copy of Son of Sam.)

The handyman accused of theft in the Battles case is also found murdered. And the fifth victim is a local resident and international tycoon Robert E. Lee Battle.

There is no connection between the (killing) techniques, nor do the victims seem related. But each murder is marked by a precise time. Too many suspects, too little time, too many messed up clues.

As the duo approach the truth there is a surprise awaiting them – apart from the fact their lives are in danger too.

It is a good read no doubt – but I did trace some flaws.

There a just about tooooo many characters. Keeping a track of them is so troublesome. After a point I actually gave up – I simply stopped caring as to who is linked to whom.

The interaction/banter of King and Maxwell is entertaining (to a certain extent) and their characterization is well done. King is a cleanliness freak while Maxwell is a slop. These two opposites make great partners though. Their energy, skill and intelligence are super-duper awesome.

There’s ample of action in the beginning but it somehow fades away towards the end. Being a Baldaci fan I couldn’t stop mid-way but I kinda lost a bit of my enthusiasm. (The loyalty still remains though.)

The suspense is good, the setting is good, the detailing is good, and so are the plots and the sub-plots. I closed it with mixed thoughts.

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Book Review of “Divine Justice” By David Baldacci

Divine Justice

By David Baldacci

 

This fourth installment of the Camel Club series is a great, fast-paced, page turning thriller proving Baldacci’s quality skills at penning mysteries like none other.

The story picks up where the previous one (Stone Cold) ends.

John Carr, also known as Oliver Stone, former CIA assassin, has killed Carter Gray, head of the CIA, and Roger Simpson, who had conspired to ruin Stone’s life. He’s on the run with a ticket of the Amtrack Crescent, headed for New Orleans rather than being spotted at the airports.

On the train he rescues a young man (Danny Riker) from three goons and accompanies him to his hometown – Divine, Virginia – an Appalachian coal mining town, to hide from his friends and the CIA.

But there’s more to this town that Stone stumbles upon. Most coal miners are methadone addicts; corruption rules the town; mysterious murders are a regular event in the name of suicide; a supermax prison in a small town; all this good enough to send “a shiver down the spine!”

Simultaneously Stone is being tracked by an agent, who possesses if not greater but definitely equal skills – Joe Knox. Stone’s basic instinct urges him to leave the place but his helpful nature over powers him to help Danny and his mother. Twist of fate brings Joe and Stone face-to-face as survivors of a criminal operation.

Baldacci’s skill of driving his characters from big cities to small mysterious towns convoluted in outrageous situations with multiple plot lines make this action packed thriller an absolute page turner.

A master storyteller Baldacci, keeps his readers on their seat’s edge with his nerve-wrecking suspense. The characterizations and the bold descriptions seem real and believable.

It feels like an apt conclusion to the Camel Club series.

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Book Review of “Simple Genius” By David Baldacci

Simple Genius

By David Baldacci

 

In Simple Genius, Baldacci brings back two former Secret Service agents (now PIs), Sean King and Michelle Maxwell.

The story opens with Michelle Maxwell going through a breakdown.

Mentally stressed beyond her ability to continue a normal life – the result of some long-repressed childhood memory, Michelle ends up at a potentially suicidal bar brawl fighting a stranger. Sean’s concern for his friend makes him push Michelle to check herself into a psychiatric hospital for rest, recuperation and examination. Sean’s friend Dr. Horatio Barnes comes to help her at the rehab.

In order to pay for the facility he accepts a contract to investigate the suicide (murder) of a quantum physicist and computer scientist – Monk Turing.

Monk Turing was working for Babbage Town, Virginia, a high powered corporate think tank located across the York River from Camp Peary, a top secret CIA training facility.

The scientists at Babbage Town are very protective about their codes and quantum processors. And they need to know if Turing was murdered or did he commit suicide. Since the murder took place on CIA property Sean knows that the FBI would be involved, making things difficult for him.

It’s not long that Len Rivest, the head of Babbage Town, is found dead. This leads to further suspicions and confusions in the case. And Sean is seen pitting against the FBI, the CIA and unknown criminals involved in drug deals, secret codes, illegal detainments, illegal torture, buried treasure and Turing’s 11 year old autistic genius.

11 year old  Viggie Turing is emotionally and socially disabled, but she is a mathematical genius who speaks only in codes. She holds vital information that could help Sean crack the case.

Amidst his work, all Sean is really worried about is Michelle and whether she’d be able to pull through for him.

Meanwhile, at the rehab Michelle begins to notice strange activities at the centre, with her own healing process to deal with. She uncovers a drug ring, saves a fellow inmate’s life but soon leaves the centre and lands up at Babbage Town followed by Dr. Horatio Barnes.

Michelle befriends Viggie and tries to help the case by talking with her.

This is a mesmerizing and entertaining story with an interesting plot, many eccentric characters, and a surprising ending.

Baldacci has a knack for creating suspense and engaging his readers from the very first page.

The umpteen twists, unexpected plots, diversions and clear detailing talk a lot about his skill of absorbing information and presenting it to his readers.

Simple Genius is informative, riveting, entertaining and flows without any interruptions, hooking the readers to each word.

A genius thriller/mystery writer who churns out compelling stories that keep you turning the pages without putting the book down, Baldacci sure will keep you on your seat’s edge.

Highly recommended!

 

 

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Book Review- “The Whole Truth” by David Baldacci

The Whole Truth

By David Baldacci

David Baldacci’s “The Whole Truth” makes you ponder over the authenticity of news delivered nowadays and the big players behind it all, who fabricate the truth, manipulate public opinion and deliver cleverly crafted lies for maximum media impact.

Multi-billionaire Nicholas Creel, the head of the world’s largest defense conglomerate, Ares Corporation is hell bent in pitting superpowers against one another in the hope of generating an arms race. 

 

He hires a “perception management” team to stir the peace and create havoc. Dick Pender, a former employee in the White House press office, is an expert in perception management.  His motto is: “Why waste time trying to discover the truth, when you can so easily create it?”

Pender hatches a scheme to create an international incident that will result in a number of superpowers on the verge of war. These countries will then increase their defense spending and order weapons and equipment from Ares. Along with his staff, Pender starts planting false stories about the Russians in the news and over the internet. Not falling for this trap are: journalist Kate James, consultant Anna Fischer and operative A. Shaw.

Shaw is a globe-trotting troubleshooter for a shadowy international law-enforcement organization with in depth knowledge of surveillance, hand-to-hand combat, and weaponry that makes him an extremely valuable asset. His strong and physically imposing persona, acting ability, intuitive vision and undying courage have helped him overcome many a dangerous situations.

Award-winning investigative reporter Katie James has turned alcoholic after a traumatic experience in Afghanistan and now works on the orbit desk of the newspaper.

A chance encounter (and escapade) with Shaw, in Scotland, puts James in the middle of the biggest story of her career, that is if she lives to tell it!

The plot is well thought of and delivered with ease. Though a bit complicated and melodramatic it holds a great deal of suspense and thrill. The Whole Truth is a fast-paced, unusual thriller from the desk of an ace writer – David Baldacci.

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