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Simple Genius (King & Maxwell) [Hardcover]

David Baldacci
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)

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Kindle Edition 4.19  
Hardcover 16.09  
Hardcover, 24 April 2007 --  
Paperback 6.29  
Audio, CD, Abridged, Audiobook --  
Audio Download, Abridged 10.40 or Free with Audible.co.uk 30-day free trial

Book Description

24 April 2007 King & Maxwell
The unstoppable new thriller from the author of The Collectors
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Product details

  • Hardcover: 420 pages
  • Publisher: Warner Books; Reprint edition (24 April 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446580341
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446580342
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.7 x 3.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,976,626 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

With a series of ever more accomplished novels, David Baldacci has been building something of a reputation for himself as one of the most reliable practitioners of the modern crime/thriller novel. The emphasis is, of course, usually on Baldacci's métier, the legal arena, and it's clearly the field he is most comfortable in -- as in Simple Genius. His long-term protagonists, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, have found that the aftermath of their last case has stayed with them in an unpleasant way, and Michelle is obliged to undergo therapy. Sean, his financial circumstances straightened, takes on a job. A scientist is dead in a nearby town -- the scene of the (possible) crime is a clandestine research institute peopled by a large cast of neurotic scientists. There are secrets galore to be unearthed here, and just across the river from the institute there is another clandestine institution, the CIA training ground, Camp Peary, where the dead man's body was originally discovered. Sean finds himself at bay, with several government security services on his tail, even as Michelle struggles to regain her mental equilibrium.

As in such page-turning thrillers as Hour Game and Split Second, David Baldacci knows how to keep the reader thoroughly engrossed, and never loses the capacity to surprise us with the revelations that his beleaguered hero and heroine become party to. This is one of the longest Baldacci books, weighing in at nearly 600 pages, and there are lengthy appendices after the novel proper has finished. These may not retrospectively add to the appeal of the book of the reader has just finished, but they show that Baldacci has -- as always -- done his homework. --Barry Forshaw --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

There's nothing simple about SIMPLE GENIUS, a complicated novel involving murder, geniuses, and the CIA. The story marks the return of former Secret Service Agents Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, now in business for themselves. Scott Brick captures the excitement of this thriller with his unique pacing and style, which are perfect here. Brick even manages to sound somewhat feminine when he needs to be, and his voice for the Southern black gentleman is classic. The beginning of the novel is a story within a story, as Maxwell ends up institutionalized after inexplicably attacking a man in a sleazy bar. Everything comes together in a mysterious settlement for geniuses, where people are being murdered. There's a lot of heart in this work. M.S. (c) AudioFile 2007, Portland, Maine [Published: OCT/ NOV 07] --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining thrills 7 April 2008
Format:Paperback
This is the first Baldacci book I've read and I'll now go back and read others, including the previous Sean and Michelle books (plus I hope there'll be another). I found the book a fun, thrilling and fast read with enough background research to provide added interest (hadn't heard of quantum computers). OK, so at times it felt quickly written and could have done with a little more depth, but I still found the book very enjoyable and I'm surprised at the negative reviews.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Code Enthusiast's Thriller 5 May 2007
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
If you love books about secret codes, Simple Genius will be a book you'll long treasure. If you like thrillers that teem with action, sex scenes, obscure martial arts, and high-tech weaponry, this book will seem like a yawn.

As Mr. Baldacci warns you, don't read the Author's Note until after you finish the book. But don't miss that note if you read and like the book. It's a marvelous look into how the story was constructed.

What I found most delightful about Simple Genius was that the plot development kept surprising me. Sure, the general outlines are foreshadowed intentionally (so that you don't get lost in the maze of details), but the specifics shift unexpectedly. In fact, midway through the book, I literally jumped out of my chair with surprise when one change occurred involving the medical examiner.

Simple Genius is intellectually dense. You'll be exposed to more psychology, code breaking, quantum computers, and history than you would normally find in 20 thrillers combined. To Mr. Baldacci's credit, he keeps it as simple as possible without insulting your intelligence.

As the book opens, former Secret Service agents turned PIs, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell have hit bottom. They don't have any work, and Michelle picks a potentially lethal fight with the toughest guy she can find in the roughest bar in town. It takes the last of Sean's money, but he persuades Michelle to seek psychiatric help from an old friend, Dr. Horatio Barnes. Barnes quickly concludes that Michelle is punishing herself, but for what?

Desperate to keep Michelle in treatment, Sean calls his former love and begs for a job. He gets the job, on the condition that Michelle is kept away.
Read more ›
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Code Enthusiast's Thriller 5 May 2007
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
If you love books about secret codes, Simple Genius will be a book you'll long treasure. If you like thrillers that teem with action, sex scenes, obscure martial arts, and high-tech weaponry, this book will seem like a yawn.

As Mr. Baldacci warns you, don't read the Author's Note until after you finish the book. But don't miss that note if you read and like the book. It's a marvelous look into how the story was constructed.

What I found most delightful about Simple Genius was that the plot development kept surprising me. Sure, the general outlines are foreshadowed intentionally (so that you don't get lost in the maze of details), but the specifics shift unexpectedly. In fact, midway through the book, I literally jumped out of my chair with surprise when one change occurred involving the medical examiner.

Simple Genius is intellectually dense. You'll be exposed to more psychology, code breaking, quantum computers, and history than you would normally find in 20 thrillers combined. To Mr. Baldacci's credit, he keeps it as simple as possible without insulting your intelligence.

As the book opens, former Secret Service agents turned PIs, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell have hit bottom. They don't have any work, and Michelle picks a potentially lethal fight with the toughest guy she can find in the roughest bar in town. It takes the last of Sean's money, but he persuades Michelle to seek psychiatric help from an old friend, Dr. Horatio Barnes. Barnes quickly concludes that Michelle is punishing herself, but for what?

Desperate to keep Michelle in treatment, Sean calls his former love and begs for a job. He gets the job, on the condition that Michelle is kept away.
Read more ›
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Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable 3 Jan 2008
By Teemacs TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This is the third outing for David Baldacci's private detective team of Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, in which solving a case is complicated by the surfacing of Michelle's internal demons. One has to give the previous one-and two-star reviewers their due, there are indeed major implausibilities in the story, and there are places where the whole edifice starts to creak and groan noticeably. However, Baldacci is an outstanding story teller and in spite of these, I found myself carried along and really quite enjoyed the ride.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars How the mighty can fall.... 23 May 2008
Format:Paperback
This is the second Baldacci I've read recently and the deterioration in the quality of his writing over time is now very noticeable.

In this effort, which brings back former agents Sean and Michelle, now acting privately, he also introduces an unbelievably wild plot, albeit delivered with quite a lot of pace. But that's about it.

Coincidence upon coincidence and just so many hard to believe components really killed this book for me. I kept going to the finish but I am sure my groans were quite audible in the end.

In short, in my view, Baldacci is no longer producing well-constructed tales written with flair.
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