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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The first in a GREAT series of books....
Harlan Coben introduces the enigmatic and humourous central character, Myron Bolitar, a sports agent who doubles as a private investigator when the need arises. 3 dimensional characters, plenty of witty retorts and a great storyline makes this book a must buy for all thriller and mystery readers. Read this book I guarentee you wil be coming back for more!
Published on 14 Nov 2000

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Harlan Coben Lite
I have read all of Harlan Coben's standalone novels but this is the first that I have read in the Myron Bolitar series. Deal Breaker takes a familiar Harlan Coben plot (cue a long missing, presumed dead sister who appears to be sending messages from the grave) but employs a lighter, almost Elmore Leonard/Carl Hiassen style tone. It's a disconcerting blend which obviously...
Published on 7 April 2009 by Julia Flyte


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Harlan Coben Lite, 7 April 2009
By 
Julia Flyte - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
I have read all of Harlan Coben's standalone novels but this is the first that I have read in the Myron Bolitar series. Deal Breaker takes a familiar Harlan Coben plot (cue a long missing, presumed dead sister who appears to be sending messages from the grave) but employs a lighter, almost Elmore Leonard/Carl Hiassen style tone. It's a disconcerting blend which obviously works for most, but which left me lukewarm.

Myron Bolitar is a likeable protagonist: a former basketball player who worked briefly (in an undefined capacity) for the FBI before becoming a sports agent. His assistant Esperanza is an ex-pro wrestler and his best friend and sidekick Win (short for Windsor Horne Lockwood III) is a "full fledged whitebread". The missing girl is his client's girlfriend, but he also has a personal connection in that he dated her sister for four years. The book has a large cast of one-dimensional characters and moves quickly, which I found somewhat confusing. The convoluted mystery is also downplayed: there is neglible suspense and it unravels for Myron with minimal difficulty.

Ultimately I prefer Coben's tighter and more suspenseful standalone books to this more lightweight style, but it would make for ideal mindless holiday reading. If I was rating the book on how much I enjoyed it, it would probably only score 2 stars, but I've tried to put my own prejudices aside and to rate it on its own merits.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Old fashioned murder mystery in a modern setting, 9 Sep 2007
By 
Janie U (Kings Cliffe, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
This book is structured in the way of murder mysteries written 50 years agp. There is a murder and a detective - everyone that the detective interviews has a motive. Throughout the book various clues are dropped and are then pulled together at the end by the detective.
I found it a bit difficult to believe how easiy most people confessed to crimes to the hero of the book, Myron, but it allowed the plot to be rolled out fairly quickly.
Myron is a likeable character with a reasonable sense of humour which kept me reading the book at a fair pace.
A good mystery thriller and I would recommend it as such and, whilst this book will not change the world, I will look for others by this author to help pass the time of day.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The first in a GREAT series of books...., 14 Nov 2000
By A Customer
Harlan Coben introduces the enigmatic and humourous central character, Myron Bolitar, a sports agent who doubles as a private investigator when the need arises. 3 dimensional characters, plenty of witty retorts and a great storyline makes this book a must buy for all thriller and mystery readers. Read this book I guarentee you wil be coming back for more!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not perfect, but who cares?, 16 April 2006
By 
J. White "b00km0nster" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
This is the classic definition of a page turner. Yes, it had a few imperfections, but with everything going on in the book, you are often too busy keeping up to even notice.

This is the first Myron Bolitar novel, and I would recommend anyone wanting to read more of Harlan Coben definitely start with this one. The story centres around Myron (a sports agent) heroically solving the mystery of one of his client's missing girlfriends, while somehow juggling the contract negotions, mafia hits and even plumbing problems of his clients - all while getting it on with his estranged girlfriend and slipping in the odd meditation session.

The one thing I liked about this book is that it was a true detective story ... everything you needed to spot the villian was right there in front of you - none of this last minute action which filled in all the missing pieces. Of course this did result in a final unveiling which was straight from an episode of Scooby-Doo (minus the tearing off of a mask) but it struck a nice balance between being able to work out the mystery and having clues shoved in your face.

And the imperfections? This is the first in the MB series, but there are still a lot of hazy references to everyone's deep and mysterious past and although this includes some teases about a history in the FBI, I am still not convinced about the sports agent come detective angle. And yes, some of the characters are a bit shallow - but then again, you would never buy this kind of book expecting a Pulitzer Prize winner!

What you should expect though is a fast-moving story, some very amusing one liners and an absolute page turner that you won't want to put down.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars ... but not a mould breaker, 28 April 2013
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
It's not so much that this book is bad, exactly; it's just that it's not really very good. It fits perfectly well into that collection of pulp fiction that Amazon routinely gives away at 0.99p or less. Think Capote, Kerouac and the distinction between writing and typing. At full price for this, and after hearing the author feted all over the BBC airwaves a week or two ago, I expected much, much better.

Myron Bolitar is a PR for athletes and sports stars, or 'sports agent' in the jargon. He also, for no very good reason, doubles as an amateur sleuth. He and his friends all live in Made-for-TV Movieland, just a couple of blocks over from Columbo, Starsky, Hutch, Angela Lansbury, Dick van Dyke, T.J. Hoooker, Mr T., etc. etc. So no need for any actual writing to set the scene, then.

Plot: involves blackmail via dubious-but-legal soft porn magazine titles. Staking out a PO Box. Cars. Beautiful women. Americans. Dry wit, some of it witty.

Characterisation? Well, people say and do stuff, but only the same stuff all the same people say and do in all the same stuff that's going down just a couple of blocks over in Made-for-TV Movieland. Nobody thinks. Nobody feels. Nobody learns.

Nobody cares.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Typcial Coben Page Turner., 12 Nov 2003
By 
DiBosco "RJW" - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
Coben's Triple act of Myron, Win and Esperanza start their adventures in this book, that explodes with action from start to finish. Coben manages to get more twists and turns into a book that most manage in a career and always manages to write books that make you just want to read one more chapter before you turn out the lights - no matter how heavy your eyelids are!
Although the characters are first introduced in this book, it often doesn't seem like an introduction to a series, little of how Win, Myron and Esperanza meet and how they set up the sports rep firm is explained. This doesn't really distract from a romping good read and shows promise that is fullfilled in some of his later books.
Highly recommended.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining if diluted, 3 Nov 2009
By 
Hardeep (wolverhampton) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
This is the second Harlan Coben book I have read and one must give credit to author for his immense ability to create pace, engender suspense, and fashion mystery.

The plot follows the exotically named sports agent Myron Bolitar through a novel packed with suspense and wonderful wit. Things begin as Bolitar's number one client; Christian "the next big thing" Steele contacts him, upset and shaken by a ghost from the past. A missing ex-girlfriend seemingly back from the dead.
We then follow the narrative though its litany of unscrupulous characters, sharp turns and ever darker swerves into the mystery surrounding the disappearance of Steele's ex girlfriend. The novel is hard to put down much of the time; however it didn't seem as well structured as Coben's other work. It is important to point out that this is a very early Coben book, possibly even his first.

The story is thoroughly enjoyable until its final act. Here all mystery and suspense seems to just unravel and fall into place in a way that was so reminiscent of "Murder She Wrote" I could actually hear the tune playing in my head! The ending felt rushed, almost as though the author had run out of paper and only used half the words he needed This detracted from much of the good work that build up to it. Like I said in the title, entertaining, but the conclusion dilutes the whole thing.

It is a fast read with superb one liners and wit. There is enough in the main body of the novel to keep me curious about the further Bolitar novels, so much so that I've bought the next two. Have a read, you won't be bowled over, but I think it would be hard to complain about the lack of entertainment.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Kick-off of a new series, 1 Nov 2014
Book One of the series of thrillers with Myron Bolitar (MB, 31), ex basketball star, ex-FBI agent, graduate of Harvard Law School, now managing promising and established professional sportspersons. He still lives with his parents. The second hero is his aristocratic school friend and business partner Win, who runs a financial empire two floors above Myron’s premises, a reader of books in Korean and expert in the peninsula’s martial arts. Win (also 31) always has time for Myron. After all, the mafia has the capacity to influence the outcomes of many games and matches and Win protects his best friend’s back whether called for or not, sometimes with deadly force and untraceable…
Does this not make Myron a mafia-type sports manager too? Myron’s secretary Esperanza used to be a famous free style wrestler, his ex-girlfriend Jessica a successful author. Her family is hit by multiple tragedies: her kid sister Kathy vanished some 18 months ago. Much later, her father, a pathologist is knifed to death with a single strike to the heart. She turns to her old flame Myron for help. What follows is an eventful rollercoaster with a surprise ending.
What stands out (or not)? From a reader’s point of view HC’s very inclusive style with Myron bombarding every page with his musings and jokes. When Myron is under duress, he addresses his foes rather flippantly. The book has a nice atmosphere. Plot wise, I doubt if Harlan Coben plans his books carefully in advance. The first 200-odd pages run smoothly (I also read the next volume), what follows is a Houdini act, finding a way out.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Deal Breaker, 3 Nov 2009
This review is from: Deal Breaker (Paperback)
This is the first book in the Myron Bolitar series. Frankly i much prefer Coben s stand alone novels than this series to which i never really warmed up to. This Myron Bolitar first was no exception to the others i read. Dont get me wrong, the book is quite entertaining, the writing modus operandi a familiar one with this author s most devoted readers, that leave u wanting to read more no matter what the time is. However, i found i had to stretch my imagination quite a bit to swallow everything down. I know this is fiction but too much is too much and when a book falls into the pit hole of the non- credible rarely does it come out smelling good.
I wont go into detail so i dont give nothing away. In a nutshell the story revolves around the mysterious disappearance of a young woman (i have yet to read a Harlan Coben book where someone does not disappear in mysterious circumstances)who happens to be the fiancee of a sports star whose agent is none other than the only ethical man in the business, Myron Bolitar. Time has passed with no news whatsoever, so she is presumed dead by everyone. Until one day, a porn magazine turns up, with the missing girl s picture on it....Mystery and suspense is guaranteed till the last page. But here are the points that really annoyed me in this book that i cannot refrain to make. First of all Myron, is an ex- FBI agent and now a modest sports agent but still acts like he runs the FBI. I mean how far can u go in investigating a crime without the badge? People wouldnt even open the door for you let alone answer your interrogations! Then there is the fact that he is threatened by a gun or knife every other page and ends up saving himself with his martial arts skills or by his psycho friend s help Win who puts superman to shame. Our Myron s sense of humour is really admirable, given the fact that when he discovered that a local extremely dangerous criminal put a price on his head to assasinate him he managed to remain his usual funny self..... and what happened in Mr Ache s office borders on the hilarious! Really had difficulty in keeping count how many times the author had to remind us how beautiful Jessica (Myron s lover naturally) is, how incredibly perfect everything she does is and how sexy a certain part of Myron s body is. Yes, it s true i do not particularly like this Myron fellow, always the white knight in shining armour with high principles but who then stood idly by while his friend beat a drug dealer almost to death. Maybe the book should have been titled Leg Breaker....didnt understand what the title had to do with anything! Sorry Mr Coben for this review cause generally i like your books, and even this one wasnt too bad hence the generous 3 stars. But from such a great author i expect something more than this book here had to offer.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Gripping Storyline, 18 Jun 2007
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Harlan Coben continues to prove that he is one of the best thriller writers around at the moment. A page turner is a much used phrase but in this case it is really appropriate. The author's books are always so well structured and his character's well rounded. He is obviously comfortable with his style and ability and this transmits itself to the reader making the reading of his books sheer pleasure from start to finish. Coben has now got a string of best selling crime novels behind him and all I can say is that I hope he continues to write for many years to come. The author lives in New Jersey with his wife and four children.

This is the first of his books in the Myron Bolitar series. Myron Bolitar is a sports agent, that is when he is not using his prowess as an investigator. He has worked hard and is ready to go places. So is Christian Steele, a rookie quarterback and Myron's top client. When Christian gets a telephone call from a former girlfriend, a woman who the police and everyone else thinks is dead, things don't look so rosy after all.

Suddenly Myron is plunged into a the darker side of his business. Trying to unravel the truth where your image and your talent can make you very rich, but on the other side of the coin it can also get you killed.
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Deal Breaker (Myron Bolitar Mysteries)
Deal Breaker (Myron Bolitar Mysteries) by Harlan Coben (Audio CD - 25 July 2006)
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