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The Winner by David Baldacci

The Winner (1997)

by David Baldacci

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Read this for my book club. The story was interesting, but Baldacci’s writing style is very basic and immature. A lot of words are used twice in the same sentence, and he memorably describes a pistol as “squirting” from someone’s grip. Guns can’t squirt! It might sound like I’m being nitpicky, but it’s frustrating when he turns around and uses two pages to describe a beautiful landscape. It should have been a straight-forward story, OR very descriptive. The ending was predictable, but it was pretty fun getting there. ( )
  howifeelaboutbooks | Nov 4, 2015 |
The Winner by David Baldacci
LuAnn Tyler is striving to escape her abusive life when she meets Mr. Jackson and guaranteed winner of the lottery.
False murder charge and the offer to leave the country takes care of her daughter...She comes back into the US with murder charges hanging over her head.
Mr. Jackson has sent others to find her also for the kill. Matt she befriends and hopes he is a true friend. Others are after her and she feels she has to open up to some...
Lots of twists and turns in this book really moving the plot forward.
Lots of travel, action and adventure. What a story, easy to follow and great information to tie it all together...
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device). ( )
  jbarr5 | Jun 19, 2015 |
Have you ever thought about winning the lottery? Think about all those items on your wish list you could buy? I know I have, and would bet most others have also. What if you knew the game was fixed to give you the winning numbers? Would the fact that the money was essentially stolen curb your enthusiasm? Would your ethics be strong enough to turn down millions in tainted money? This is the dilemma facing single mother LuAnn Tyler in David Baldacci's page turner of a novel "The Winner."

Almost everyone in Rikersville, Georgia, grew up poor and would remain poor, perpetuating a cycle of poverty from one generation to the next. Lu Ann Tyler was no exception. Like most other girls her age, she quit school in 7th grade in order to get a job. After her mother's death left her with no place to stay, she moved in with loser-with-a-capital "L" Duane Harvey, and barely out of her teens soon had a baby girl, Lisa. Lisa became Lu Ann's pride and joy and reason for living. However working as a waitress at a truck stop brought in little more than enough to pay the bills. Most women in Lu Ann's position would resign themselves to living their remaining years with little to look forward to. But Lu Ann had a few things most others did not: despite her 7th grade education, she had an above average intelligence; extraordinary attention to detail; a stubborn streak and iron will; and exquisite beauty.

Lu Ann received a telephone call for a job interview at a rented storefront in the local mall. The man on the phone said the pay would be $100 dollars per day for two weeks, maybe longer. With the $1,000 that she would make, Lu Ann was planning her getaway from Duane and Rikersville. However, at the interview Jackson, the man she had spoken to on the telephone, offered her a more enticing option: Guarantee of winning the lottery, no less than $50 million. Jackson did not tell her if she refused he would have her killed. Lu Ann knew if she accepted the money there would be conditions that went along with the payout. Nobody offers millions of dollars out of the goodness of their heart. But the thing that bothered her most of all was it would be no different than stealing, and Lu Ann was intrinsically an honest person.

Jackson had given Lu Ann a deadline, after which the offer would expire. Lu Ann had resigned herself to follow her honorable instincts when certain events unfolded leaving her with the desire to leave Rikersville sooner rather than later. Lacking enough money to go anywhere, Lu Ann accepted Jackson's offer with only minutes to spare. Romanello, the assassin hired by Jackson, was in position to kill Lu Ann and was called off by his employer in the nick of time. Sensing there was something far bigger going on, Romanello decided to follow Lu Ann. When Jackson discovered the trouble Lu Ann was in, he was not pleased. Pursued by the authorities and a lethal assassin, Jackson agreed to help her change her name and get her out of the country as soon as she collected her lottery winnings, with the caveat that Lu Ann never return to the United States. But her desire to give Lisa a somewhat normal life caused Lu Ann, after an extended period of time, to reconsider the deal she had struck with Jackson.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The pace was steady and picked up gradually until the very exciting conclusion. There was no cliff hanger as I expected the outcome that was presented, however the story was compelling enough to keep the pages turning. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes to root for the underdogs in this world. ( )
  NPJacobsen | Jun 6, 2015 |
Quick enjoyable light read. ( )
  DellaPenna | May 15, 2015 |
The Winner – not!
I had seen the name many times, but had never read anything by David Baldacci until last week. That Baldacci is a prolific writer is evinced in any airport book store. I was expecting something light and easy like Grisham, but it was a whole lot worse.
The two main characters, LuAnn Tyler, and Jackson, are completely implausible, and at times self-contradictory. Jackson was supposed to be ‘terrifying’, we were told so repeatedly, but he was laughable at best. Baldacci also repeatedly tells us how beautiful and sexy LuAnn Tyler is. In fact, she is quite remarkable. Not only is she drop dead gorgeous, but she can lay a man out with one punch and split firewood faster, and for longer than, a seasoned groundsman can. Whew! That’s really hot!
Most of the supporting characters are cliché. Some of that I can forgive, even from a best-selling author, but that was not the worst of it.
The 513 pages of repetitive narrative in a hick voice is hard to not put down as the boredom sets in. Sentence structure at times is abominable. More than once, I had to stop and check that I had read a sentence correctly, and had not drifted off and slipped into autopilot.
The rice-paper plot limps along towards a predictable, melodramatic, one-woman-army ending after which they all live happily ever after.
It will be a long time before I open another Baldacci novel.
( )
  ajsendall | Apr 5, 2015 |
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To Collin, my buddy, my boy, my son
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Jackson studied the shopping mall's long corridor, noting haggard mothers piloting loaded strollers and the senior citizens group walking the mall both for exercise and conversation.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0446606324, Mass Market Paperback)

She is twenty, beautiful, dirt-poor, and hoping for a better life for her infant daughter when LuAnn Tyler is offered the gift of a lifetime, a $100 million lottery jackpot. All she has to do is change her identity and leave the U.S. forever.

It's an offer she dares to refuse...until violence forces her hand and thrusts her into a harrowing game of high-stakes, big-money subterfuge. It's a price she won't fully pay...until she does the unthinkable and breaks the promise that made her rich.

For if LuAnn Tyler comes home, she will be pitted against the deadliest contestant of all: the chameleonlike financial mastermind who changed her life. And who can take it away at will...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:22 -0400)

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A poor young woman is forced to take part in a crooked lottery scheme after she is framed for murder.

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