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By: John Grisham
ISBN: 0385340540
3.5 Stars
Rating(s): 6
Review(s): 4
Added by: 5
Category : Thriller
The protagonist of this novel is Joel Backman, who was once a Washington power broker and one of the top lobbyists but is now serving time for the role he played in trying to broker a billion-dollar deal for some software that controls the latest spy-in-the-sky satellite system. What is unknown is who put up the satellite and who was trying to buy the software. The CIA has the usual suspects: the Chinese, the Israelis, the Saudis and the Russians. So they arrange for Backman to be pardoned after serving only six of his twenty year sentence in order to tempt the suspects. Each of them has the cause, the resources and the opportunity, but only one will take the bait and try to kill the broker, and that will be the country that has the highest stake in the satellite program. The C.I.A. ''hides'' the broker in Bologna, Italy where Backman realizes that he is the target and does not intend on playing along as a dummy. Thus begins the chase, as the broker attempts to dodge both his C.I.A. ‘guardians’ and the motley collection of foreign agents, who are after his life. The spy-versus-spy conspiracy is well structured and fast-paced, but it essentially focuses on high-tech satellites and modern Internet communication. Backman is convincing and remarkably appealing. The climax is described in delightful detail that will keep the reader hooked till the very end. Kudos to Grisham for giving us yet another enjoyable thriller that is hard to put down.
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