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10 Reviews
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Believing the unbelievable
Never a big fan of blockbuser type books, I apporached this one with little enthusiasm. Then promptly lost more than a few hours sleep to finish reading it. A slightly rushed ending loses a crown but a plausible story, attention to detail and well rounded characters set this head and shoulders above the normal holiday reading fodder on the bookstands. The only...
Published on 9 Nov. 1999

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Difficult Read
This is one of his first books that has been republished. I can tell as it is a fairly difficult read. I plowed my way through it and the story line was good, just with a lot of nonsense details that was not needed and would probably get edited out if he was to re-write it.
Published 8 months ago by A. Du Plessis


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Believing the unbelievable, 9 Nov. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
Never a big fan of blockbuser type books, I apporached this one with little enthusiasm. Then promptly lost more than a few hours sleep to finish reading it. A slightly rushed ending loses a crown but a plausible story, attention to detail and well rounded characters set this head and shoulders above the normal holiday reading fodder on the bookstands. The only "believable" telepathy book I have ever read. The complexity of plot and profusion of characters requires effort but then Finder writes thrillers for the thinking reader.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A story you'll never forget, 4 May 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
A brilliant novel must have the following characteristics:
An original idea
Believable myth (story)
Comprehensible living 3dimensional lovable-hateful(and not ''paper'')heroes
fast paced, believable plot
overturnings
Joseph Finder's Extraordinary powers have them ALL!
A brilliant genious idea (imagine your partner could read your mind - or you everyone's else)
An excellent story which could be unbelievable in someone others hands, but Finder explains everything with a simple efficient way.
A lovable-hateful casting: Ben and Moly became my friends during the reading. Moly's fother is the only lovely CIA old wolf I ever met in a book. I hated with all my soul the bad guys. The brain of the experiment that gave Ben the ability to read minds and his agents.
The plot is so fast paced you cannot leave the book from your hands. Imaginable with so many upside-downs that you know from the first pages you are going to read this book again and again.
Ben is a retiring agent, now a lawyer. His father in law is the ex chief of CIA. His wife, Moly, is a doctor. They live a good normal life until... his father in law dies in a car accident and next thing he obtains the ability to read peoples mind after a magnetic tomography. The mystery is that doctor and assistants seemed to expect this unexplicable event to occur. From that moment his life becomes a hell. CIA wants him back as its secret weapon. Although he hides his new abilities nobody believes him and they follow the moto ''if you are not with us you are an enemy''Someone tries to kill him, CIA and FBI are hunting him. Some of them to protect him, some of them to kill him may be. His father's in law car accident may had been a cold blood murder. A man hunting begins. From USA to Europe Ben and Moly are running for their lives in a death race. Ben no more know which of his ex-partners is now a friend or an enemy. His new abilities are used with an admirable way both from him and the author. Every single line of this book is brilliant. From an author that foresaw the collapse of the USSR at his 25 and his doctoral thesis remained sealed from CIA for years here is the best book to donate to yourself and only to yourself. A MASTERPIECE
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 2nd take at a good author, 8 Oct. 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
I am not usually a big fan of espionage type books but Joseph Finder seems to find a mix and balance that suits me to a "t". His prose is clean,crisp and delivered with a nice balance. It is some of the best character portrayal I have came across and yet allows the story to unravel in such a way as to keep you turning those pages. I spend a lot of time travelling and a page turner is great when you have time to burn. This was just what does the business.
The only complaint is more of a whine, it doesn't go on to tell you all about what happens to the leads.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Difficult Read, 30 May 2014
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This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Mass Market Paperback)
This is one of his first books that has been republished. I can tell as it is a fairly difficult read. I plowed my way through it and the story line was good, just with a lot of nonsense details that was not needed and would probably get edited out if he was to re-write it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars very good thriller, 24 July 2006
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This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
This is a very good thriller from J. Finder's "first career" where he was in the "kgb/cia" genre (his first book "Moscow Club" is still better than this). These days Finder has created a niche for himself ("corporate thriller" ) where his story-telling skills are as outstanding as ever and the plots still crisper.

This book here is quite ok, a pleasant read, a breathless cat and mouse all over Europe among others. Not boring at all even after almost 500 pages. And even the slightly supernatural aspect of the story is well introduced and used, where other authors would have pushed it too far and made it ridiculous.

Four stars because it is not AS good as his other books, but he is still miles ahead of most other writers in the genre. Read it, you will have a very good time.
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3.0 out of 5 stars slightly dated but okay, 10 April 2012
By 
Nick Brett (Wiltshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
Interesting one this, a spy thriller with a difference but also slightly dated.

Ex- CIA spook is trying his hand at being a lawyer when his father in law (head of the CIA) is murdered and he is dragged back into the CIA to root out the truth. By way of a complication he is given a treatment that allows him to read people's minds...
The theme here is the fall of Russia at the end of the cold war and the growth of Germany as a key power in Europe. A group within the CIA have been manipulating the stock markets and world events to their own ends and our hero and his wife end up dashing around the world, avoiding bad guys and not knowing who the good guys are.
The time and situation do date this, but it read very much like a Ludlum conspiracy thriller with a bit of mild sci-fi chucked in. The ESP bit was a bit different but slightly underused as if the author, having introduced it, wasn't quite sure where to go with it.
Anyone who has read a few like this will not be fooled by the twists and turns and will predict many of them, but it still ends up being a serviceable thriller.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Less Than Ordinary Fiction, 16 Aug. 2011
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This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
Imagine that you had extraordinary powers; perhaps you can fly, become invisible, or read minds? Now imagine if you didn't bother to use these powers very often and that they had little to no impact on your life. Sound a bit of waste really - welcome to Joseph Finder's `Extraordinary Powers'.

At its core `Powers' is a bog standard spy thriller about Ben Ellison, a man who got out of the CIA, but has been dragged back in. To add some bizarre spice to this bland word soup, Finder introduces the concept of Ben having telekinetic powers. As a science fiction fan this interested me far more than the sub par post Cold War storyline, but it is completely wasted. Firstly, the concept is introduced after some 100 pages of bland introduction and when it arrives it is completely from left field. Suddenly the book changes, only to return back to a bland Cold War thriller again. Throughout the book Ben hardly uses his power and when he does it is next to useless. In the end the entire concept of his extraordinary skill feels out of place and poorly executed.

Even with the bizarre sci-fi lite element, `Powers' could still have been a decent book if the characters and storyline had been interesting. They are not, mostly due to the over examination of how the secret service of the early 90s work. I don't care if it is going to kill the pace of the story. `Extraordinary Powers' is a strange book that is a poor thriller and an awful science fiction book.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Easy Reading Thriller, 11 Oct. 2006
By 
MrShev "mrshev" (Gloucestershire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Extraordinary Powers (Paperback)
I have read Paranoia (which is great) and Company Man (Okay) and they were both corporate thrillers very much of a mould. This is Finder dipping into the world of espionage and spy rings and to a large extent it is successful and a lot of the time believable. Finder obviously did some research - which he sometimes flaunts - and he thought long and hard about the plot which is racy, international and keeps you guessing.

My reservations (hence the three stars) are that the characters are a bit lightweight and I never really got to know the leads and thus never really got to miss them when I completed the book. I found the style to be very generic of the genre which was a bit disappointing (when Paranoia has such a great narrative style) and it reminded me of a bunch of other thrillers.

All this aside, it is a cracking read and there is no doubt that Finder can spin a great yarn, but I think he can do - and has done - better.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A holiday read, 16 Jan. 2015
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Very readable hokum. Unashamably American, and will pass the time well. A holiday read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 20 Jan. 2015
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Mary O. Shea - See all my reviews
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Good political thriller with a twist.
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Extraordinary Powers
Extraordinary Powers by Joseph Finder (Mass Market Paperback - 31 Dec. 2013)
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