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The Broker (John Grisham) (Englisch) Audio-CD – Gekürzte Ausgabe, Audiobook

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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

    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


    The Testament

    The Partner

    The King of Torts

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

    Best Grisham Books on DVD

    A Time to Kill

    The Pelican Brief

    The Client

    The Firm

    The Rainmaker

    The Chamber

    -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch.


    “Most and best of all, it’s Grisham living up to his reputation as a great storyteller.”—Entertainment Weekly

    “A fast-paced, fun read with echoes of something deeper. The author’s command of pop fiction delivers crisp, sharp prose.”—The Boston Globe
    “[Grisham] is exceptionally good at what he does. . . . Indeed, right now in this country, nobody does it better.”—The Washington Post
    “Where Grisham leads, millions of readers follow.”—New York Daily News

    From the Paperback edition.

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    Format: Taschenbuch
    I love many of Grisham's books. "A time to kill", "The Rainmaker", "The Runaway Jury" and the "Street Lawyer" are among my most favorite books and are certainly a must for everybody who likes fast paced law thrillers and brilliant dialogues in court rooms.
    However, in his newer books Grisham can unfortunately not keep up with his earlier work. "The Broker" is another example which starts out with a promising setup, but then quickly drifts off and becomes a barely average story about a guy who is on the run and tries to hide from a number of evil, but stupid intelligence agents.
    In the author's note Grisham writes: "My background is law, certainly not satellites or espionage". I think that's exactly the point. Maybe Grisham should simply return to his roots and write about the things he understands, instead of boring us with medium quality CIA stories.
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    Von Ein Kunde am 4. Februar 2005
    Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
    Yes, finally Grisham is back as one of the most entertaining thriller writers. I skipped " Christmas " and " The Bleachers " because I had regretted buying quite a few of his previous novels, but thought I might give him another chance with this one. And was unexpectedly but pleasantly surprised!
    " The Broker " is the story of a former Washington lobbyist who took his luck too far and gambled too high trying to sell highly classified information to several countries at the same time. When he notices he's up the creek without a paddle, he decides he'd rather spend a few years in an American jail than getting killed out in the streets. Alas, an outgoing president grants him an 11 o'clock pardon and he finds himself in Bologna, Italy, with a new identity and under close CIA observation. He thinks he's a free man but soon it dawns on him that he's just bait for a number of intelligence agencies who by trying to kill him might show that they are connected to the secrets that he tried to sell. And on it goes.
    This is not exactly a legal thriller, more like something by Robert Ludlum. Grisham spends a lot of time trying to describe an American's attempts to understand - or even adapt to - the ways of life in " OLD " Europe. This is interesting, informative
    ( you get a free Italian language lesson ) and occasionally quite funny. And I have never known Grisham for his sense of humour, so far.
    Anyway, if you thought Grisham was a " has-been ", you might want to give him another try.
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    There was a time long ago when Grisham was the master of storytelling. I was absolutely spellbound by "Time to Kill" and I loved "The Rainmaker". The concept of the little guy versus the establishment was one I loved. Then after a promising start came the stinkers ("Painted House" being the worst offender) and I was desperately hoping for a storming return by Grisham. But after reading the Broker, I am once again bitterly disappointed. How can Grisham take a great story idea and turn it into one big mess?
    The start was quite promising but from the moment Backman arrives in Italy, the story instantly self-destructs. It becomes one big promotional puff-piece about tourism in Italy, Italian food and the Italian language. Characters such as Luigi are wooden and one-dimensional, sub-plots start and then quickly fizzle out and the bad guys are portrayed as stupid clowns. You are constantly waiting for the plot to suddenly take off and when it doesn't, you constantly get frustrated and annoyed. You end up skipping pages when the dialogue gets boring and rambling. Then it's the end - Grisham doesn't really end the story in the best way and you are wondering if the last 5 pages got accidently chopped off at the book printing factory.
    Grisham does inject some humour at the start when the incumbent president loses every state in the election with the exception of Alaska. The winner decides he wants Alaska too and he challenges the election result to get the 3 remaining electoral votes! I thought that was amusing. But from chapter 2, I was extremely bored and there was no rescuing me.
    People buy Grisham's books because they feel obligated to as a reader. It's like Jack Higgins' books - you feel you're missing out on something until you've read the book.
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    Von Ein Kunde am 11. März 2006
    Format: Taschenbuch
    When Washington power broker Joel Backman gets a presidential pardon after serving six years of his twenty-year sentence in federal prison for compromising national security, he is given a new identity and sent to Italy. He undergoes an intensive language and culture training program to integrate him into Italian life and hide him from danger... at least that's what he's told. What he doesn't know is that he has been set up by the CIA as a target for assassination in order to determine which foreign agency he tried to sell secrets to.
    Joel Backman might be a former lawyer, but this is no legal thriller. There are no courtroom scenes, crime investigations, or legal maneuvers. It borders more on an espionage thriller, although the cloak-and-dagger action is minimal. The book consists mostly of Backman's struggles to keep a low profile in a foreign country and outfox his nameless pursuers. There is some amusing humor at the start of the book as the completely inept president, in his last hours in office, is bullied by the CIA into pardoning Backman. But that rapidly falls by the wayside as Backman goes into hiding. I found that the best part of the book was its delightful travel narrative, with Backman playing tourist and absorbing the local color of Treviso, Bologna, and other Italian cities. I imagined myself sitting with Backman in the cafes, drinking espresso and dining on fantastic local cuisine, learning Italian, and wandering the arched portico-covered sidewalks while absorbing the scenic panoramas of Bologna.
    Although the first half of the book was fairly suspenseful, the ending was very disappointing. It seems that Grisham grew weary of Backman's predicament and decided to tie up the loose ends far too tidily.
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