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Hour Game (King & Maxwell) [Large Print] [Hardcover]

David Baldacci , Michael Baldacci
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (167 customer reviews)

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Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition 3.59  
Hardcover, Unabridged 16.67  
Hardcover, Large Print, 26 Oct 2004 --  
Paperback 5.59  
Audio, CD, Abridged, Audiobook 10.02  
Audio Download, Abridged 9.20 or Free with Audible.co.uk 30-day free trial

Book Description

26 Oct 2004 King & Maxwell

Following their collaboration in SPLIT SECOND, ex-Secret Service agents Sean King and Michelle Maxwell have gone into partnership and are investigating the robbery of some secret documents at the residence of the incredibly wealthy Battle family. It seems like a straightforward case of domestic burglary, but soon they begin to suspect links to larger, more terrifying events now shaking the prosperous town of Writghtsburg . . .

The unidentified corpse of an attractive young woman turns up in the woods; two high school kids, one shot in the back, the other in the face, are found dead in their car; a successful lawyer is discovered stabbed to death in her own home. A serial killer is on the loose. The murderer kills in the manner of famous killers of the past but takes care to leave a stopped watch at the scene of each crime – corresponding to the victim’s position on his hit list.

As the killing spree escalates it seems that the fractured Battle family are somehow involved and Maxwell and King suddenly find themselves racing to solve an intricate puzzle, one that is full of tantalizing clues but barren of solid evidence, and one that is leaving even the FBI confounded. And all the while, the body count is rising . . .

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.


Product details

  • Hardcover: 736 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; Lrg edition (26 Oct 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446577103
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446577106
  • Product Dimensions: 4.7 x 15.8 x 23.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (167 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,325,526 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Baldacci is the author of eighteen previous New York Times bestsellers. With his books published in over 45 languages and with nearly 90 million copies in print, he is one of the world's favourite storytellers. David Baldacci is also the co-founder, along with his wife, of the Wish You Well Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting literacy efforts across America. Still a resident of his native Virginia, he invites you to visit him at www.DavidBaldacci.com, and his foundation at www.WishYouWellFoundation.org, and to look into its programme to spread books across America at www.FeedingBodyandMind.com.

Product Description

Amazon Review

In Hour Game David Baldacci finally gets around to writing a serial killer plot--and his approach to that hoary old cliché is as inventive and ingenious as one would expect. His is not the first serial killer to perform his various atrocities in quotation marks and in the style of killers dead and gone, but Baldacci's does so with considerable ingenuity and for well-plotted reasons that are not mere games-playing. He also does so in a small community which a small epidemic of sudden horrible death tears apart--Baldacci is a small 'c' conservative for whom the nightmare of crime is the way that it affronts community and family, and in this, as in other books, he makes a not unappealing case for his value system. As with the equally ingenious Split Second, his investigators here are ex-Secret Service protection squad Michelle and Sean, now working together as private eyes on a case at first peripheral to the killings--clearing the name of a handyman accus! ed of burglary. When their client and his alleged victim join the death list, it all gets very personal. Baldacci is always crisp and clever and this lives up to his usual standards.--Roz Kaveney --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

Review

'Baldacci's plotting, as ever, is formidably accomplished' -- Sunday Times --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read! 21 April 2006
Format:Paperback
This was my first Baldacci novel and I will now go on to read his others! Great read and great ending and loved the relationship between the two agents - hopefully they will get it on in the future!
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Taut Tale of a Serial Killer on a Rampage 17 Dec 2004
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
My favorite style of crime thriller is one where the criminal matches wits with the detectives and the book alternates perspectives in sharing what each is thinking. Unfortunately, many current authors are unable to carry off this style with enough tension, plot interest and interesting characters to make the story compelling. Having enjoyed Last Man Standing, I wanted to see what David Baldacci could do with this style. I was mostly pleased with the results. I hope he will write more crime thrillers of this sort.
The Hour Game features a slightly over-the-top killing spree that provides many red herrings and twists in the plot. The identity of the serial killer is well hidden until about two-thirds of the way through the book.
The private detectives are appealing. Both Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are former members of the Secret Service whose service ended with less than stellar results. They are bright, determined and counterparts in style. There's also a hint of sexual chemistry between them that makes the story more interesting -- it almost reminded me of The Avengers. They are originally dragged into the case as volunteers when the first dead body appears and are eventually deputized. In that role, they are placed in predictable and unnecessary conflict with the Feds.
The book's main weakness is that the trigger for the crimes lies in a history that is too bizarre to be credible in current times. If the current events of the story had been placed back into the 1960s or 1970s, I think it would have been easier to swallow. There are also just a few too many murders for one book. I think if the solution had been developed about 100 pages sooner I would have liked the book much better.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Grind it out.. 12 July 2005
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I have read all of this authors books, from the sentimental, modern romance of Christmas Train through to the inventive & taught thriller, 'The Winner'. I read 'Split Second' being reasonabably impressed with the story and felt the characters were adequate instruments in giving the reader some pace and insight. I was surprised to see that a second novel has come out based around Sean King & Michelle Maxwell as they are characters that seem to be fairly run of the mill ex-law enforcement dectectives that are almost clichéd. The book is a soild read, with the usual peaks and troughs between believability and realism worked inside a good small town drama-murder. I did expect to read that Angela Lansbury was going to assist on the case on occassions, or that another long lost daughter or son was going to appear for another twist.
As with all the other Baldacci novels the book is highly readable and well thought out. You are kept guessing enough to turn the pages, but no so much that frustration & laughter set in. Perfect for a week in the sun.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So-so 16 April 2007
By OEJ TOP 100 REVIEWER TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
This is the tale of a serial killer who goes about his work with thought and style but when he's not quite as free to murder who, where and when he originally planned to, the sense of intrigue fades away and it takes much of the interest in the story with it. It's a rather stereotypical scenario involving an extremely wealthy family full of jealousies, tragedies and divided loyalties and enough potential suspects in the shapes of kingpins and widows, sons and daughters, in-laws and various hangers-on to satisfy those who enjoy working out who did it before the inevitable revelation. It's even possible that the butler did it, if you want a taste of the corniness, but for me the only thing I wanted to happen was to reach the end of the story, all 100+ chapters of it and probably 50 too many.

The goodies, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, are a pair of former government agents now working together as male/female partners in a small P.I. firm in a small Virginia town. They have appeared together previously in SPLIT SECOND, but one of the biggest flaws in the novel reviewed here is that they make a pretty uninteresting couple, certainly neither of them possesses the charisma or personality to carry a series and probably not even a stand-alone.

It's all a bit ho-hum in the end, a by-the-numbers murder mystery which might have been compelling 20 years ago but with so much crime fiction available today it doesn't really stack up against the best of the competition. It's OK but it's nothing special and doesn't break any new ground or old barriers. Something to pass the time on a long-haul flight perhaps, but not a contemporary crime classic by any stretch of the imagination - particularly if the genre of crime fiction is your favourite and you read a lot of it regularly.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Taut Tale of a Serial Killer on a Rampage 17 Dec 2004
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Perfect Paperback
My favorite style of crime thriller is one where the criminal matches wits with the detectives and the book alternates perspectives in sharing what each is thinking. Unfortunately, many current authors are unable to carry off this style with enough tension, plot interest and interesting characters to make the story compelling. Having enjoyed Last Man Standing, I wanted to see what David Baldacci could do with this style. I was mostly pleased with the results. I hope he will write more crime thrillers of this sort.
The Hour Game features a slightly over-the-top killing spree that provides many red herrings and twists in the plot. The identity of the serial killer is well hidden until about two-thirds of the way through the book.
The private detectives are appealing. Both Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are former members of the Secret Service whose service ended with less than stellar results. They are bright, determined and counterparts in style. There's also a hint of sexual chemistry between them that makes the story more interesting -- it almost reminded me of The Avengers. They are originally dragged into the case as volunteers when the first dead body appears and are eventually deputized. In that role, they are placed in predictable and unnecessary conflict with the Feds.
The book's main weakness is that the trigger for the crimes lies in a history that is too bizarre to be credible in current times. If the current events of the story had been placed back into the 1960s or 1970s, I think it would have been easier to swallow. There are also just a few too many murders for one book. I think if the solution had been developed about 100 pages sooner I would have liked the book much better.
Read more ›
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