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Pantheon [Kindle Edition]

Sam Bourne
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)

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Product Description


***** ‘Shifting his focus from hi-tech present day conspiracies to a very dark chapter of the second world war, Bourne has proved he can more than rub shoulders with the likes of John Le Carre and Robert Harris.’ Mirror

‘Pantheon is a propulsive, satisfying novel which burns with moral indignation, earning Bourne his place at the thriller-writers' high table.’ Guardian

‘Ingeniously constructed … a page-turner which maintains the tension’ Observer

‘An intelligent thriller with a vividly drawn wartime atmosphere’ Independent

‘A compelling story that combines the personal traumas of war, its headline dramas and the tragic tension that can arise between them. A disturbing delight.’ A D Miller, author of SNOWDROPS

Product Description

The darkest secrets of World War II… finally revealed. The Number One bestseller returns with his most explosive book to date.

Europe is ablaze. America is undecided about joining the fight against Nazism. And James Zennor, a brilliant, troubled, young Oxford don is horrified. He returns one morning from rowing to discover that his wife has disappeared with their young son, leaving only a note declaring her continuing love.

A frantic search through wartime England leads James across the Atlantic and to one of America’s greatest universities, its elite clubs and secret societies – right to the heart of the American establishment. And in his hunt for his family, James unearths one of the darkest and deadliest secrets of a world at war…

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 516 KB
  • Print Length: 416 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (16 Feb 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007413637
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007413638
  • ASIN: B0061RRLTE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #45,960 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Sam Bourne is the pseudonym of Jonathan Freedland, an award-winning journalist and broadcaster. He has written a weekly column for the Guardian since 1997, having previously served as the paper's Washington correspondent.

In the annual What the Papers Say Awards of 2002 Jonathan Freedland was named Columnist of the Year. His first novel, 'The Righteous Men,' was a Richard and Judy Summer Read and a Number 1 bestseller. His next two novels, 'The Last Testament' and 'The Final Reckoning' were both top ten bestsellers. He lives in London with his wife and their two children.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I thought it must be my fault 2 Feb 2013
Don't get me wrong I hate the Nazis and everything that they stood for, but James Zennor, the main character of Pantheon, is such an unpleasant individual and without any redeeming aspects to his personality that the author, Sam Bourne, almost had me rooting for the Third Reich and the advocates of Eugenics.
Briefly this unlikely story is about Zennor, an Oxford Don whose wife leaves him and takes their baby the United States and I can't say I blame her! Our hero then blackmails his father in law to provide the wherewithal for him to cross the Atlantic to pursue his wife who has evacuated herself and their child to Yale University. She is quite reasonably fearing for her own and her child's safety. Eventually, after some hardly credible adventures which include murder, Zennor tracks down his errant wife, foils an international conspiracy then returns to England.
Sam Bourne is a well respected novelist as well as being a broadsheet columnist. This is the first and last of his books which I shall read. It is poorly plotted, badly drawn but worst of all, it is boring. I only finished reading it because I suspected that somehow this dog's dinner of a book was in some way my own fault. Don't buy, instead select some unknown novelist from Amazon's catalogue and give them a try.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't waste your time reading this ! 10 Sep 2012
Having started reading this I felt compelled to finish it. I wish I hadn't done either.

The plot is superficial, the characters transparent and unpleasant, and the whole thing is stretched out over about 300 pages more than it can sustain. On top of that we're supposed to forget that Nazi Germany didn't actually invade the UK and that the US only joined the war following the bombing of Pearl Harbour, neither of which was brought about by the supposed heroics of the main protagonist who we're asked to believe saved the UK.

Please don't buy this book; it'll only encourage him to keep churning out more of this kind of rubbish.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Like a second class Ludlum. 9 April 2012
For my money Robert Ludlum did not write too many second class novels but Sam Bourne's 'Pantheon' reminded me of those early Ludlum thrillers such as 'The Matlock Paper' and 'Trevayne'.

Freedland (Sam Bourne) has other similarities to Ludlum, all his previous novels have been 3 word titles starting with 'The'. There is also an obsession with dark conspiracies and in this story, a Nazi plot. VERY Ludlum! But where Ludlum was a master at cranking up the pace and leaving the reader breathless at the end of each cliff hanging chapter, Bourne (another Ludlum link-surely) is unable to manage that.

I did enjoy the setting and attention to detail but the central character(Zennor) was rather one dimensional as were the villains.

My first by this author.I will give him another go in the hope that he has written a better book than this.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Are they all as bad as this? 6 April 2012
My first Sam Bourne, taken out of the library because I heard the author being interviewed on the radio and liked the plot idea.

It's terrible. Boring, rambling, pages and pages of exposition, suddenly interspersed with about three lines of action, all of it incredible.

Phone call to Master of Oxford College (a man who 'knows everybody') 'I need a passage across the Atlantic in 1941 and if you don't get one for me, I'll tell everybody about your pregnant mistress.' My, my, that's original. And is the Master a ticket agent?

It goes on like this with an increasingly dislikeable and ludicrous protagonist lurching about all over the place doing nothing of interest other than find potential nuggets of truth which he reduces to trivia.

Terrible. And what makes it worse is that it's badly written for which there is no excuse at all as the writer is an excellent journalist. Don't bother if you haven't already bought it. Or, if you're an aspiring writer, have a look and be appalled.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing 12 Feb 2012
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I was expecting this to be a very good book. Sam Bourne is the pseudonym of Jonathan Freedland, an excellent journalist and broadcaster whose work I enjoy very much. Sadly, the same cannot be said for his fiction.

Set in 1940 the main protagonist is James Zennor, an Oxford don wounded in the Spanish Civil War, physically and mentally scarred and unable to join up and fight the Nazis. His wife and son vanish and he eventually traces and follows them to Yale in the USA where he realises that Something Suspicious Is Going On and that He Does Not Know Whom He Can Trust. This, basically, is the plot of the first 300 (yes 300) pages of the book. There is a great deal of scene-setting in flashback, details of the Spanish Civil War, stuff about the contrast between life in Britain in 1940 and that in the USA and, frankly, a huge amount of superfluous verbiage. There are endless paragraphs where Zennor repeats to himself what we already know and speculates about perhaps this or maybe that and it all adds up to very little. It is phenomenally slow and even the bits where something actually happens didn't really grip me. I found that there were several "oh, please" moments and the "revelations" were largely visible from a long way off. When the Dastardly Plot is finally revealed it is self-evidently repugnant, but we still have to have its repugnance explained to us through yet more of Zennor's internal monologue, and I began to feel seriously patronized at this point.

The prose is competent and there is a lot of laboriously demonstrated research on show but details, particularly in the dialogue, fail to convince.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great, Thanks!
Published 21 days ago by JB
2.0 out of 5 stars Not angry, just disappointed
Unfortunately I have to agree with most of the negative reviews of Sam Bourne's latest work. I had read Mr Bourne's (Freedland's) other books and found them perfectly passable but... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Zaphood
2.0 out of 5 stars Very poor
I have really enjoyed all Sams books up to now. However I found this really tedious compared to his other books, I speed read large parts of the book as in my opinion those... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Neil Grey
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm a real fan
Having read another Sam Bourne book I was hooked. Prompt customer service with progress of order emails and I received this, along with some other titles in excellent time. Read more
Published 3 months ago by ROSEMARY ROGERS
3.0 out of 5 stars Sam Bourne yes BUT....
I obtained the Final Reckoning purely by chance. I read it. I was hooked. So I bought The Last Testament, Pantheon and The Righteous Men, without a moments hesitation. Read more
Published 4 months ago by John R. Curd
5.0 out of 5 stars Pantheon
Great audio book and really enjoyed the story from this author, looking forward to more from this author.

I rate it 5/5
Published 5 months ago by VICTOR
4.0 out of 5 stars A novel with a surprise ending
A very well written book. Good English. Moves the plot along. A well hidden mystery with a surprising and disturbing ending. Read more
Published 6 months ago by deroet
3.0 out of 5 stars Not a big fan, but finishes strongly.
Not a fan of Mr. Brown's writing, and the beginning of the book is very staid and lumpy; and not in a quaint 1930's England sort of way. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Dangerous Dave
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fictional Story but Some Important Historical Themes
James Zennor, an idealistic young man, joins the Republican cause in the Spanish Civil War, until he is badly injured and after recuperating back in England he becomes an Oxford... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Peter
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Story
I bought this one for the cover and the fact I was on holiday and wanted somethign to read. Pleasantly surprsed and definetely happy to consider the same author again in the... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Madbrewer
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