Absolute Power Mass Market Paperback – Jan 1 2010
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Can the President get away with murder? The fictional answer to this question results in a fast-paced page turner that combines political intrigue with gritty, hard-boiled suspense --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From Publishers Weekly
Casting the president of the United States as a crazed villain isn't a new idea?Fletcher Knebel worked it 30 years ago, in Night of Camp David?but in this sizzler of a first novel, Baldacci, a D.C. attorney, proves that the premise still has long legs. The action begins when a grizzled professional cat burglar gets trapped inside the bedroom closet of one of the world's richest men, only to witness, through a one-way mirror, two Secret Service agents kill the billionaire's trampy young wife as she tries to fight off the drunken sexual advances of the nation's chief executive. Running for his life, but not before he picks up a bloodstained letter opener that puts the president at the scene of the crime, the burglar becomes the target of a clandestine manhunt orchestrated by leading members of the executive branch. Meanwhile, Jack Graham, once a public defender and now a high-powered corporate attorney, gets drawn into the case because the on-the-lam burglar just happens to be the father of his former financee, a crusading Virginia prosecutor. Embroidering the narrative through assorted plot whorls are the hero's broken romance; his conflict over selling out for financial success; the prosecutor's confused love-hate for her burglar father; the relentless investigation by a northern Virginia career cop; the dilemma of government agents trapped in a moral catch-22; the amoral ambitions of a sexy White House Chief of Staff; and the old burglar's determination to bring down the ruthless president. Meanwhile, lurking at the novel's center like a venomous spider is the sociopathic president. Baldacci doesn't peer too deeply into his characters' souls, and his prose is merely functional?in both respects, he's much closer to Grisham than to, say, Forsyth; but he's also a first-rate storyteller who grabs readers by their lapels right away and won't let go until they've finished his enthralling yarn. Major ad/promo; BOMC alternate; film rights sold to Castle Rock; simultaneous Time Warner AudioBook.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Luther Whitney is a master burglar. For the last twenty years, he's tried to keep his nose clean. But he pulls one last job for an old friend. He breaks in without incident, but is suddenly forced to hide when the owner and some others come home. He is stunned when the unthinkable happens - even more unbelievable is the perpetrator - the President of the United States.
Luther turns to lawyer Jack Graham - the ex boyfriend of his estranged daughter.
What a great premise for a story! And Baldacci does it masterfully. The plotting is tight and the action non stop. I enjoyed discovering Baldacci's 'beginning.' He has made the secret service/White House thriller genre his own.
But the reader in this case was fantastic. Scott Brick is an award winning audio book narrator. His voice is rich and resonant, conveying the suspense of this novel, keeping me on the edge of my chair. His voice conveys so much, from the malevolence of the bad guys to the uncertainty of a bewildered daughter.
There was a bonus short story included on the last disc (17!) of this set. I didn't realize that this book had been made into a movie starring Clint Eastwood and Gene Hackman in 1997.
Fleeing from unexpected visitors, Luther hides in a room-sized vault with a one-way mirror view of the master bedroom. There he watches Christie Sullivan begin an adulterous affair with the philandering President of the United States, Alan Richmond. Their night goes badly, too. Rough sex turns to anger, then violence. He hits her; she slaps him, he beats and tries to strangle her. When Christie defends herself with a letter opener, Richmond screams. His Secret Service detail rushes in and shoot her dead. Now everyone's evening is ruined.
The rest of the story plays out as the President, his Chief of Staff Gloria Russell, and his two trusted Secret Service agents, Bill Burton and Tim Collin, try to cover up their involvement. Luther escapes immediate detection, but his burglary provides a convenient trail for the investigation. Along the way we meet a well-developed cast of characters. Luther's daughter Kate has been estranged from him for years, but returns to his life in the middle of its current crisis. Jack Graham, who Kate once intended to marry, turns from his lucrative law practices and ludicrous, high maintenance fiancé to help his lost love and her father.Read more ›
The book starts with an aging burglar, Luther, breaking into a billionaire's well protected mansion. He is suprised, but not caught by none other than the President of the good ol'USA. Who happens to be with the billionaire's young wife. Luther who is hidden in a safe with a two-way mirror, watches as the President starts to beat on the young woman. The woman in an act of self preservation, grabs a letter opener and stabs the President. The ensuing struggle and yell from the President, brings the very effective Secret Service Agents into the room. Where they shoot and kill her.
The scheming Chief of Staff hatches a quick course of action to start a cover up. But no one is aware of Luther who has watched the whole horrid affair. The story begins to pick up speed when Luther decides he has do what is right and set things straight.
You can tell this is Mr. Baldacci's first book. But worth the read. I read Total Control first, and find that book of a much higher quality. I think he will only improve with each book he writes. There were parts in this book where I just had to read one more section before I put it down.
Most recent customer reviews
An action packed thriller that was very entertaining - good story plot that kept you on the edge and awake at nightPublished 5 months ago by Glen A Phillips
David Baldacci really knows how to write a book. I could not put it down.Published 8 months ago by lynnie
Good read. Characters well developed. Author did a good job creating a meaty story.Published 10 months ago by Anita Smart
Baldacci at his best. The endless twists and turns kept one glued to the book, and made for late nights. Excellent character descriptions. Could not hope for a better plot.Published 11 months ago by emannep
I have never read such an excellent debut book by any author.Published 16 months ago by Guy Gingras
Overall, a good book. Frustrating at times with the amount of setbacks for the good guys. He also left the ending a little vague...Published 19 months ago by Terry B McKertcher