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Gideon Mass Market Paperback – Jun 6 2000
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Gideon is a high-concept political thriller by Russell Andrews (the pen name of a partnership between book editor Peter Gethers and mystery novelist David Handler).
When a promising New York writer named Carl Granville is paid a quarter of a million dollars to produce a novel called Gideon, he thinks it's his lucky break. The book is to be based on the material of an old diary--which Carl is allowed to look at, although certain dates and names have been blacked out. The diary and novel involve a 10-year-old Southern boy who killed his brain-damaged baby brother. Carl, baffled but glad of the huge payoff, gets on with translating the diary into a bestseller. But when the editor who commissioned the book is murdered, and nobody at the publishing house knows anything about the Gideon project, the writer realizes that sinister forces are at large. Just to add to his troubles, Granville is accused of the editor's murder and is forced to go on the run to escape the FBI and an assassin. His only chance for clearing his name is to reveal who wrote the decades-old journal.
Gideon is an invigorating read with a remarkably fresh plot and a highly likable and believable protagonist.
From Publishers Weekly
The president of the U. S. has a secret so horrifying it even terrifies the priest he confesses to, in this debut thriller pitting ambitious, fallible politicians against a diabolical media mogul. Unsuspecting ghostwriter Carl Granville is enlisted by super-agent Maggie Peterson to take a hand-scrawled, stolen diary and turn it into a million-copy expos?Abut Carl is kept in the dark about whose story he's writing. The book is known only as "Gideon" and when Carl's apartment is trashed, the diary stolen and Maggie murdered, he soon discovers that nobody at the publishing house has any knowledge of the book deal. Branded the main suspect in Maggie's death, Carl goes on the lam, and with his Washington, D.C., ex-girlfriend Amanda Mays, tries to uncover the deadly conspiracy. The mess gets increasingly complicated, as the president commits suicide and the political climate is ripe for the First Lady to bid for the executive position. A homosexual priest, a British billionaire, an elderly midwife who knows all and a killer in disguise figure in the labyrinthine plot. Andrews is a pseudonym for Peter Gethers (The Dandy; The Cat Who Went to Paris) and David Handler (Kiddo): the ghostwriting angle is one of Handler's trademarks (he's the author of the popular Stewart Hoag mysteries). Dead-on publishing in-jokes are a lagniappe (Gethers is the former publisher of Villard); Carl has ghostwritten a series of Kathie Lee Gifford mysteries. Though saturated with winning details, however, the narrative, with its endless twists (blackmail, childhood secrets, love affairs) winds up with several complications too many, and this plethora of side plots dilutes the lucid, cumulative pleasures a good thriller is designed to evoke. $250,000 ad/promo; BOMC and QPB selections; author tour; audio rights: Brilliance Corp.; foreign rights sold to U.K., France and Holland. (June)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
However, within a few days, Carl begins to get uneasy. He's not entirely comfortable with what the diaries are disclosing - in effect, the murder of a small child - and is unsure whether he really wants to continue. But then, two people close to Carl and brutally murdered, including the editor who originally approached him, and Carl, with no evidence at all to support his claims and no alibi, finds himself to be the prime suspect. Carl quickly realises that he's in great danger...there's someone out there who doesn't want this book written, and they're prepared to go to grave lengths to ensure that it isn't...
Excellent thriller. That's really all I can say. Human characters, great writing, and an absolute snake of a plot. It twists and turns and shocks in ways that would make Jeffery Deaver proud. The plot is original enough, and adds a nice twist to the accepted "innocent-man-on-the-run" formula. The protagonist is a wonderful every-man, and very easy to like. I can only applaud this tense, exciting thriller from the pen of David Handler and Peter Gethers. It's very rare that books written by two people actually work, but Gideon is certainly one of the exceptions. This book should please all thriller fans, and I'm very much looking forward to reading "Icarus", which sounds equally thrilling...
The novel opens with a mysterious suicide, and then goes on in so many different directions, your head spins. But it's done so well, you can't help but get involved. The characterizations, I think, rather than being cliche, are wonderfully original. Take the hero, Carl Granville...he's so desperate he gets into something he knows very little about. But once he gets fully involved, he takes the bull by the horns and as any good hero would do, he sticks it out and comes out just fine in the end.
Momma One Eye is beautifully drawn. Although she's not in the novel a lot, her presence is so essential, you can almost hear her chanting her psalms. Then we have Harry Wagner, a very different villain...cold-hearted of course and irreprehensible, but there's a softness in him that makes you like him, just a little. And then, of course, there's President Tom Adamson and his wife, Elizabeth. Now here we have a different take on the president and his wife. Tom Bickford, the vice president, stricken with Bell's palsy; Amanda Ways, Carl's ex-girlfriend who finds herself getting involved; Toni, the would-be actress who lights up Carl's life briefly; The Closer, a cold-hearted villain that you can't find ANY good in; Father Patrick Jennings, a priest who hears a horrifying confession; Nora Adamson, the president's mother, whose one scene is riveting; on and on, throughout, this novel cooks, and has some real shockers in it, too.
Wow, this book blew me away.
It is----but sadly, once the actual diary is read and transformed into Carl's manuscript, the killings are executed and Carl has no where to run, the book just loses steam fast. Suddenly the interesting premise transmogrifies into formula--Carl's ex-girlfriend (conveniently a Wash. Post journalist) becomes involved and the reader follows the actions of a ring of outsiders whose histories eventually tie together to lead to the plot's denouement. Problem is, it is just too formula to be fresh and lead to disappointment even when reading the book's most startling revelations.
I picked this book up after reading this writing teams' latest offering, "Icarus". Although, I found "Icarus" to be a moderate-to--superior suspense type yarn, I expected Gideon to be better based on its reviews. I was disappointed.
Most recent customer reviews
Terrific read! Fast paced, original story line, unpredictable - pure entertainment. This is the first Russell Andrews book I read, I look forward to reading more of his work.Published on Oct. 6 2011 by SRabbit
This is the first book in a while that I have actually looked forward to reading at the end of the day. Clever plot and writing style, just enough irony. Read morePublished on Nov. 20 2010 by hlb
This book kept me not only awake but thinking about the story when I wasn't actually reading it. I'd find myself working on my laptop and my mind drifting toward the story and... Read morePublished on May 26 2004 by jeepin103
I picked up this book at a used book store. Only its not the book that was out after they printed it. This book is an unrevised proof, and not the real thing. Read morePublished on July 14 2003 by Jennifer Zwicker
I just finished this book after having picked it up on a sale table. I have to admit that I had been intrigued by it since it came out and had wanted to read it, but never got... Read morePublished on Jan. 4 2002 by Tim Huffman
"Gideon" gets off to a good start, quickly paced and roller coaster fast. The reader's interest is speedily engaged in the "who is this happening to and why? Read morePublished on July 8 2001 by sweetmolly
I wouldn't call "Gideon" a "shocking" or "explosive" or "great" story... Read morePublished on July 5 2001 by Sue
Carl Granville is a struggling New York City-based writer who has just received a most precarious offer. Read morePublished on April 30 2001 by Cris Cunningham
'Gideon'is a great thriller book with an excellent plot in it. It is a story of a writer who's hired to turn an old diary to fiction (which surely will become a bestseller). Read morePublished on April 3 2001 by Kosovar