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Split Second (King and Maxwell Book 1) by [Baldacci, David]
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Split Second (King and Maxwell Book 1) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 458 customer reviews

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Amazon.co.uk Review

Split Second is David Baldacci at the top of his well-informed game, with a real sense of what the Secret Servicemen who protect the President and presidential candidates think about the job and how it feels to fail. Sean King looked away at the wrong moment and a man died; his career ended and he has spent eight years rebuilding a life. When Michelle Maxwell makes a similar mistake, she becomes convinced that there is a link between the man she lost to kidnappers and the man Sean failed to protect--and the more she learns, the more she can prove.

This is an odd couple thriller--Sean and Michelle have radically different attitudes to the job they both did well--and ingeniously put together in terms of what it tells us about the shadowy villain manipulating events and what it delays telling us about the past. It is a well-informed thriller that wears its research lightly--it has a sense of how it feels to see every large room as a potential killing ground in which you have to protect very vulnerable public men, and some charming scenes of budding romantic comedy. --Roz Kaveney

Amazon Review

Split Second is David Baldacci at the top of his well-informed game, with a real sense of what the Secret Servicemen who protect the President and presidential candidates think about the job and how it feels to fail. Sean King looked away at the wrong moment and a man died; his career ended and he has spent eight years rebuilding a life. When Michelle Maxwell makes a similar mistake, she becomes convinced that there is a link between the man she lost to kidnappers and the man Sean failed to protect--and the more she learns, the more she can prove.

This is an odd couple thriller--Sean and Michelle have radically different attitudes to the job they both did well--and ingeniously put together in terms of what it tells us about the shadowy villain manipulating events and what it delays telling us about the past. It is a well-informed thriller that wears its research lightly--it has a sense of how it feels to see every large room as a potential killing ground in which you have to protect very vulnerable public men, and some charming scenes of budding romantic comedy. --Roz Kaveney


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1155 KB
  • Print Length: 426 pages
  • Publisher: Pan; New Edit/Cover edition (21 Aug. 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003GK21OE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 458 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,760 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I thoroughly enjoyed this book with is large cast of characters, convoluted twists and false leads.
I also liked the interaction between the three secret agents, Saen, Michelle and Joan. Baldacci does his usual fine job creating believable characters and engaging them in challenging situations.
This is not a seat of the pants, page turning, read, but it is a well constructed criminal investigation novel that grips the interest and keeps you reading.
That is until the finale begins on page 364, and then we are thrown into something so bizarre, so totally unbelievable; then the novel degenerates into endless pages of explanatory dialogue that completely destroys the tension and drama.
Even so I expect all Baldacci fans will want to read this, it is only the end that disappoints.
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Format: Hardcover
I always look forward to the next David Baldacci book beacuse they are suspenseful, edge of your seat stuff that you cannot put down. Split Second thankfully did not let me down. It is a very gripping thriller that has you guessing right to the end.
There are two main characters who suffer the same fate albeit at different times (8 years apart to be precise). The characters Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are Secret Service Agents who have more in common than they think. They unite forces to solve a kidnapping. They soon realise that they are trying to solve an assasination which happened years previously.
Both of their careers are ruined because while on duty they allegedly screwed up.
Without giving too much away the characters are believable and the plot is thick. They work closely to solve these and other crimes that tend to happen whenever they are together or are getting close to the truth.
As soon as I started to read the story I could not put the book down. The plot twists and turns and Sean and Michelle are never too sure who to trust.
If you like suspenseful thrillers then this is a must. You will not be able to help yourself from trying to figure out the plot before the book finishes. I was pleased that the ending was realistic and hopeful and not the usual Hollywood ending!!!
The only downside is that there are a lot of characters in the book and sometimes it is hard to keep track especially when some of them are from the past. As ever though, Baldacci ties up all the loose ends paying excellent attention to detail.
All I can say is pick it up I know you won't be able to put it down. I am always sad at the end of a David Baldacci book because true thrillers like this are hard to find. I now have to wait until his next book to get my next adrenaline filled rush. If you haven't read it then get yours now!!
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Format: Hardcover
This book is a terrible disappointment. I'm a great Baldacci fan and all all his previous books have been outstanding entertainment. But Split Second doesn't work, through a combination of lazy plotting and cardboard characters. The plot revolves around three supposedly intelligent and well-trained ex-Secret Service agents, who bumble and stumble thriough the book like Keystone Cops. The bad guys have no difficulty in bamboozling them, running rings aroound them, beating them up, even kidnapping them.Half way through, I lost all interest in the plot's tired convolutions; three-quarters way through, I gave up on it. Baldacci is capable of much, much better. What's going wrong? All my favourite writers (Clancy, Crichton, Baldacci, Grisham) have produced duds with their latest books.
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Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed the Camel Club, so I though I would persue Mr. Baldacci's work. I don't know if there is an order but this was next on my list.

The story follows two lead characters. The older is a retired secret service agent who has long since left his spook days behind and settled into a country town law practice. The younger is in persuit of one of her charges who was kidnapped while she was in charge of him.

Their paths cross as the young agent follows a theory that her case might be linked to one similar that occured in 1996. A presidential candidate was shot and killed whilst in the care of our older lead, a situation that lead to his being asked to leave the service, discraced.

They end up working together, as someone has started killing people our older lead knows and/or have something to do with the original case.
Skelletons start falling out of cupboards as the story progresses, seemingly to the annoyance of the killer.

I have read one or two US secret service based tales recently and so perhaps for me the genre is a bit tired. I did enjoy the book although it did initially seem to move a little slowly, caught up in a lot of prose and discriptive writing. As the story began to pick up pace, I was more than half way through, so this gives an indication of it's general speed.

The lead characters were nicley written and seemed to have all the normal "All American" education and good looks. I was a little disappointed about the way the other characters' lives were unfolded. There was not the attention to detail I would have liked. I appreciate the author was probably trying not to give his story's ending away but even so I would have liked a bit more about the other characters' lives.
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