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Publisher's Summary

In his final hours in the Oval Office, the outgoing President grants a controversial last-minute pardon to Joel Backman, a notorious Washington power broker who has spent the last six years hidden away in a federal prison. What no one knows is that the President issues the pardon only after receiving enormous pressure from the CIA. It seems Backman, in his power broker heyday, may have obtained secrets that compromise the world's most sophisticated satellite surveillance system. Backman is quietly smuggled out of the country in a military cargo plane, given a new name, a new identity, and a new home in Italy. Eventually, after he has settled into his new life, the CIA will leak his whereabouts to the Israelis, the Russians, the Chinese, and the Saudis. Then the CIA will do what it does best: sit back and watch. The question is not whether Backman will survive, there is no chance of that. The question the CIA needs answered is, who will kill him?
©2004 Belfry Holdings, Inc (P)2005 Random House, Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"The spy-versus-spy intrigue is well constructed and fast paced." (The New York Times Book Review)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 02-26-05

Why all the bad reviews?

I am a Gresham fan and enjoy his style of writing. There is action, mystery, suspense and tense moments, all the elements of an enjoyable book. I was not looking for anything that was heavy, rather something that was intelligently entertaining. The broker won. I am glad I didn't read all the negative reviews first because I would have avoided this book. I enjoyed this book.

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33 of 34 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By Roxanne on 02-23-05

Not Grisham's Best

I have read every John Grisham book, and this was my least favorite. It lacked the suspense, engaging plot, and interesting character development that made this author famous. This book reads more like a travel guide for Italy, complete with descriptions of restaurant menus, and lessons on how to speak Italian.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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