The Mighty Johns Paperback – Jul 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
The extraordinary novella by thriller king David Baldacci that leads off this exceptional anthology of new fiction centered on crime and football is alone worth the book's cover price. "The Mighty Johns" is one of the more remarkable stories ever written on a sports theme, boasting an array of original plot spins infusing quantum physics (e.g., Heisenberg's uncertainty principle and the possibility of time warp) into this tale of a college football player's investigation into the disappearance of another college pigskin star decades earlier. Every Baldacci fan will want to read "The Mighty Johns," and they'll be joined by legions of others, because veteran editor Penzler has put together a team of authors that's simply all-star. Colin Harrison and Dennis Lehane contribute "Good Seats" and "Gone Down to Corpus," respectively, the former a fluid if hard-bitten tale of vengeance, the latter a powerfully moody tale of alienated youth (varsity players). There's a superb offering from Anne Perry, "The End of Innocence," set in a small English village on the eve of WWI. This story imagines a rugby match (fairly chosen as the English counterpart to American football) as a backdrop to murder, delivering an indelible evocation of a peaceful corner of the world shadowed by war. Legendary PI writer James Crumley tells a mordant tale of a former player, now a loser, who turns to bank robbery, in "Semi-Pro," while another mystery great, Lawrence Block, turns in the nicely black-humored "The Ehrengraf Reverse." Bestselling authors Brad Meltzer (with the clever, MIT-set "The Empire Strikes Back") and Tim Green also take the field, the former pro baller with "Whatever It Takes to Win," with tough-minded PI (former player) action that's perhaps Green's most accomplished writing yet. Mike Lupica, Brendan DuBois, John Westermann, Peter Robinson, Carol O'Connell and Gary Phillips round out the players in the most exciting sports fiction anthology in years.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
PLUS, this is by far the WORST EDITING JOB I HAVE EVER SEEN. I am embarrassed for the authors that their work (as much as I didn't particularly enjoy the stories) appeared in this collection. Page 61 alone had four typographical errors, and it got worse from there. It seemed that every story had a different problem, from periods in the middle of sentences, to transposed 'that's and 'what's, to missing words, misspelled words, forgotten periods and appostrophes--it was atrocious. It literally made the book unreadable.
I wanted desparately to enjoy the stories, but the lack of effort put in by the oft-acclaimed Otto Penzler ruined the experience.
Do not buy this book. All it will do is infuriate you to think that the publisher and editor are profitting from such a shoddy product. Save your money. And if you have already purchased this book, spend another 37 cents on a stamp to send New Millenium Press and Otto Penzler a letter of complaint. But don't forget to proofread before you send it!
Baldacci gets us off to a roaring start with 'The Mighty Johns'..a mystery within a mystery...within a mystery. And although I enjoyed all the other writers his was the best and set the pace for some marvelous reading.
It is impossible to pick one author over another because each one's approach to the subject is entirely different with each story superbly written and executed; with brisk characters and no lagging in the story lines. I don't usually re-read a book right away, but I did with several stories in this one. Fantastically skilled writers whose imaginations soar to the heights..and you follow them till the last word is written and absorbed.
For several hours of sheer enjoyment..pick this one up! You won't regret it!
Two follow on short stories, one a morality play about a murder and a soccer game that took place at the outset of WWI and the second by Brad Meltzer that draws on the classic MIT pranks at Harvard-Yale games, were actually pretty good. WARNING! The unabridged audiobook captures every word of Baldacci's ridiculous novella but omits the stories by the likes of Lehane and Lupica that I gather were part of the book. Don't expect them if you try the audio version.
In short, this is either one of the most egregious examples of prose by a so-called professional I've ever seen, or I'm living in a parallel universe wherin the matters of style, substance, and grammar are reversed.
Most recent customer reviews
I was really expecting something special after reading Publisher's Weekly's review. I thought the story was predictable and rather foolish. Read morePublished on Oct. 10 2002
I couldn't have been more disappointed in this book. I am huge Baldacci, Meltzer, Green fan as well as a football nut, and I thought this would be a great read (similar to Tim... Read morePublished on Aug. 15 2002 by PATRICK
I read 60-100 books per year; I love football; I enjoy David Baldacci's work. Sooooo, this book would be a natural, right? Wrong! Read morePublished on July 31 2002 by Augustine J. Fredrich
This best selling author has combined the world of mystery and intrigue with the pure excitement of football. Read morePublished on July 26 2002 by Jim Franklin
Baladacci's story was very good, although I don't think it is one of the "more remarkable stories ever written". Read morePublished on July 17 2002
After hitting the best-seller list shortly after it's release, "The Mighty John's" has proved itself to be one of the years few rewarding mysteries. Read morePublished on July 16 2002 by Jessica Marie
After hitting the best-seller's list shortly after making it's way to bookshelves everywhere, "The Mighty John's" proves itself to be an one of today's few intriguing... Read morePublished on July 16 2002 by Jessica Marie