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The Broker by John Grisham
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The Broker

by John Grisham

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6,61591571 (3.38)34
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English (83)  Italian (2)  Dutch (2)  German (1)  Norwegian (1)  Spanish (1)  French (1)  All languages (91)
Showing 1-5 of 83 (next | show all)
Good story, let down by the rushed ending which deflated the tension much too quickly. ( )
  VinceK | Aug 14, 2016 |
I was pretty much captivated from the get-go with this novel.

The story whilst a little far-fetched both in technology and initial events is actually excellent. The building tension as you know something is about to happen but not sure when it's going to or where it's coming from. Then suddenly there's a diversion which changes where you thought things were going.... the lead up to the end is probably one of the better hastily travel dialogues of read.

There's also some great information about the scenery of Bolonga, in northern Italy there too which as a good little side bonus.

My only compliant is there's not a part 2, although I can certainly see the value in ending the plot where it finishes with an air of limitless possibility.

I'll definitely be reading some more Grisham in the near future. ( )
  HenriMoreaux | Jul 31, 2016 |
I think maybe John Grisham bought some Rosetta Stone software to try to learn Italian, got frustrated with it, and then spent the rest of the day imagining a situation in which someone would actually be motivated to learn Italian quickly. Presto: you have The Broker, in which a felon is pardoned and whisked off to Italy in a sortof ersatz witness-protection operation, where his life depends on passing for a native Italian. There are pages and pages and pages of description of his Italian lessons and his motivation to learn (he keeps making the tutor start lessons earlier and earlier), and we're inside his head as he recites the Italian word for everything in his apartment.

Now, I like languages and occasionally mumbled some of the words out loud to myself while reading just to test my Italian accent, so I enjoyed the weird preoccupation with learning Italian. However, you have to admit it's a bizarrely academic preoccupation for a run-for-your-life thriller--especially when, in the context of the story, it's wholly unnecessary to the point of being unbelievable. Surely if the point is for this American guy to blend in while in hiding, you'd stash him in... Canada, Australia, England? You know, where the language skills he already has will be useful? And since it turns out that the US government us just waiting to see whether it's the Russians, the Chinese, or the Israelis who will find and kill our fugitive first, I don't understand why they'd bother paying a tutor a full-time salary to teach the guy flawless Italian. So I'm back to where I started: all I can figure is that Grisham really wanted to write a story about learning to speak Italian. ( )
  BraveNewBks | Mar 10, 2016 |
I liked this book, but I kept expecting more to happen--like Backman teaming up with some superagent who helps him escape. It was nice to see him do it on his own, though I did wonder how he learned spylike techniques given his history. I haven't checked, but the ending makes me wonder if there are other books with this character that show how things turned out with Francesca and whether he remains part of his son's family. ( )
  JenniferRobb | Feb 5, 2016 |
I think Girsham as a spy author doesnt make very good. he better stick to legal/courtroom affairs. he marvels in that genre, spy novel is not his flare.
there is nothing in this book, we keep on travelling in italy (and learn a bit ;)), here more about bologna.. i understand italy is a great country but its being bragged about in this novel. trust me dont touch this book if you are grisham fan you might be let down..pick up other grisham book. ( )
  _RSK | Jan 26, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 83 (next | show all)
To make a weak plot even weaker, Beckman is utterly unsympathetic.
 
I had a very good time with The Broker, found Backman believable and charming and interesting, got a few laughs and felt my pulse thumping as the climax approached. But there's a rather hasty aspect to the book: too many short paragraphs, too many unnecessary exclamation points, a rushed and contrived ending.
 
Zippy but uneventful, the book tastes like something Robert Ludlum left sitting on his stove when he died.
 
Readers looking for a non-stop thrill ride won't find it in The Broker. For those ready to relax and settle into an almost sensuous pace, The Broker is benissimo.
added by MikeBriggs | editUSA Today, Carol Memmott (Jan 12, 2005)
 
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In the waning hours of a presidency that was destined to arouse less interest from historians than any since perhaps that of William Henry Harrison (thirty-one days from inauguration to death), Arthur Morgan huddled in the Oval Office with his last remaining friend and pondered his final decisions.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0385340540, Paperback)

Before he was sent to federal prison for treason (among other things), Joel Backman was an extremely powerful man. Known as "the broker," Backman was a high roller--a lawyer making $10 million a year who could "open any door in Washington." That is, until he tried to broker a deal selling access to the world's most powerful satellite surveillance system to the highest bidder. When caught, Backman accepted prison as the one option that would keep him safe and alive, since the interested parties (the Israelis, the Saudis, the Russians, and the Chinese) were all itching to get their hands on his secrets at any cost. Little does he know that his own government has designs on accessing that information--or at least letting it die with him. Now, six years after his incarceration, the director of the CIA convinces a lame duck president to pardon Backman, and the broker becomes a free man--and an open target.

The Broker marries the best of John Grisham's many talents--his ability to immerse himself in the culture of small town life (in this case, Bologna, Italy), and his uncanny mastery of the chase. The first half of the book focuses on Backman's transformation from infamous power broker to helpless victim in his own game. Upon his release from prison, Backman is taken into "protective custody" and whisked off to Italy where he is assigned a new identity, and a tutor to help him blend in. Sure he is on the run, but some readers may feel that Backman's time spent in Bologna is a bit too leisurely--readers join him on an almost cinematic tour through the Italian town, complete with language and history lessons. Impatient readers will be happy to know that the final half of the novel is classic Grisham--a fast-paced, thrilling cat and mouse chase pitting Backman against the numerous agencies that want him dead--as the broker makes a move to take back his life. --Daphne Durham

Exclusive Video Interview with John Grisham


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Grisham: The Books

A Time to Kill, 1989The Firm, 1991The Pelican Brief, 1992The Client, 1993 The Chamber, 1994 The Rainmaker, 1995

The Runaway Jury, 1996The Partner, 1997The Street Lawyer, 1998The Testament, 1999 The Brethren, 2000 A Painted House, 2001

Skipping Christmas, 2001The Summons, 2002The King of Torts, 2003Bleachers, 2003 The Last Juror, 2004The Broker, 2005

Essential Grisham
Amazon Editor Favorites


A Time to Kill


The Firm


A Painted House


The Client


The Rainmaker


The Pelican Brief

Bestselling Grisham
Amazon Customer Favorites


The Last Juror


Skipping Christmas


Bleachers


The Testament


The Partner


The King of Torts

If You Like Grisham, You'll Love...

John LescroartRichard North PattersonDavid Baldacci

Lisa ScottolineRobert CraisMichael Crichton

Harlan CobenDennis LehaneKen Follett

Best Grisham Books on DVD


A Time to Kill


The Pelican Brief


The Client


The Firm


The Rainmaker


The Chamber

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:19 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

With fourteen years left on a twenty-year sentence, notorious Washington power broker, Joel Blackman, receives a surprise pardon from a lame-duck president. He is smuggled out of the country on a military cargo plane, given a new identity, and tucked away in a small town in Italy. But Blackman has serious enemies from his past. As the CIA watches him closely, the question is not whether he will be killed, but rather who will kill him first.… (more)

» see all 16 descriptions

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