Customer Reviews for

First Family (Sean King and Michelle Maxwell Series #4)

Average Rating 4
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

13 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

First Family

I've been a fan of David Baldacci from the beginning and have read all of his novels. First Family did not disappoint!
Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, Secret Service Agents turned private eyes, are contacted by the First Lady - Jane Cox. Her neice has been kidnapped. T...
I've been a fan of David Baldacci from the beginning and have read all of his novels. First Family did not disappoint!
Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, Secret Service Agents turned private eyes, are contacted by the First Lady - Jane Cox. Her neice has been kidnapped. The FBI is heading up the investigation, but Cox has dealt with King in the past and trusts him. She wants an extra set of eyes looking that report to her alone.
This was an excellent story, told from both the viewpoint of the kidnapper and those looking for him. The reasons behind the kidnapping are slowly and deliciously eked out, keeping my interest piqued. The character development is excellent as is the secondary plot line involving Michelle.
Ron McClarty was the reader and he did a phenomal job of bringing the characters to life. His voice is rich and pleasant to listen to. Each character was easily defined with a different voice. His inflections conveyed the emotions and nuances of the plot extremely well.
I knew I would enjoy the story as I knew the author from previous reads. Excellent book.

posted by Tidbitsofscott on September 8, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

Very Disappointed

I love David Baldaci and have read most of his books, so I was thrilled to get a copy of his newest novel.
After struggling through 200 pages, I closed the book and decided that my time is too valuable to waste on the nonsense I was reading. This is by far from Baldac...
I love David Baldaci and have read most of his books, so I was thrilled to get a copy of his newest novel.
After struggling through 200 pages, I closed the book and decided that my time is too valuable to waste on the nonsense I was reading. This is by far from Baldaci's best, and I was shocked at the poor quality of the writing.
I very rearely put a book down in the middle of reading it, but this one is not worth the struggle of finishing.

posted by Omarika on August 19, 2009

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  • Posted August 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Impossible Plot by Improbable Characters

    I like political thrillers and I am willing to suspend some belief for a good story, but this story is just too convoluted and unlikely. The basic facts behind the story are believable, but the primary villan in the book is just too big a stretch to your imagination.
    I found that I wanted to finish the book just to see how they author was going to bring everything together.
    Some of the physical elements surrounding the villan reminded me of the old TV show The Wild, Wild West.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 11, 2009

    Ho Hum

    While I wanted to know how the story ended, it was almost a tedious read. I'm not fond of David Baldacci's style, and this was my least favorite yet. I was disappointed to say the least.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2009

    Not his best

    This was definitely not my favorite Baldacci book. The subplot regarding Michelle's mother detracted from the other story and was boring, and the resolution of that subplot was anticlimactic. Not his best, by far.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Is this the end of the series?

    First Family is an entertaining Thriller but a predictable one. Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are back trying to find the niece of The President of the United States. Their trail leads to shady dealings, questionable motives and a secret that the First Lady will do anything to keep. (You'll figure it out within the first hundred pages) Baldacci pulls out all the stops as usual in this latest addition to the King/Maxwell series. He also wraps up some loose ends from the previous book, Simple Genius. It's highly entertaining with one good twist at the end. The problem lies within the characters. I've never found them as engaging or interesting as The Camel Club. King never felt fully developed and Maxwell's past takes up to much of the book. By the end, everything seems wrapped up so Baldacci could move on to hopefully, the follow up to 2008's excellent, The Whole Truth.- BobsViews

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2009

    Good solid thriller; typical Baldacci; moves fast.

    Several plots going on simultaneously. You know who the culprit is but how will they capture them and what is the motive. It is certainly worth your time.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2009

    Have enjoyed these characters in his other books and was looking forward to more plots involving them. I was a little disappointed in their development in this story line.

    I felt that this was not one of Baldacci's better novels, but still entertaining and kept my interest to continue reading. There were two plots which I felt confused the reader and were unnecessary to the overall story line. I would still look forward to D. Baldacci's books and would say this makes for a good beach read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Predictable but a Fun Read

    I have read several of Baldacci's books and he never disappoints by providing the reader with a good solid story that entertains. This book is no different. It has Baldacci's usual plot twists. While this was not quite what I would call one of those "hate-to-put-it-down" reads, it had an engaging story. Characters, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are. as usual, fun to follow as they try to unravel another mystery that has national implications. I would recommend this one to other Baldacci fans.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Bizzaro

    The plot of First Family requires such a suspension of belief on the part of the reader as to be unfair. I found it to be a totally bizarre scenario that barely carried my interest. The characters in the Alabama scenes were hardly believable, but worse yet, they were not very interesting as a result. It's a shame when a book that I expected to entertain me falls so short.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 13, 2012

    Confused

    This book had two separate plots and not sure why. Each was O.K.and sometimes confusing to follow, so why do it this way?

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  • Posted April 20, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The First Family is not Baldacci's best

    The accomplishments of the 'villain' to carry out this convoluted plot are not fully credible and the book just seems weak and contrived. Very disappointing.

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  • Posted March 20, 2010

    More Deception in Washington

    I liked the characters of King and Maxwell. However, the idea of two murders at the same time, which were directly and indirectly connected to the main characters, was a little out of it, for me. I usually am pretty good at figuring out the culprit in a detective or mystery; this one threw me off, as to the guilty party in the Washington case. The murder of Maxwell's mother wasn't too hard to figure out; at least not for me.
    All in all, it was a book that kept me reading. I would recommend it for someone who is looking for something that is good, but not too heavy.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 30, 2009

    Uncalled For !

    While I thought the book was good there were some bad scenes I thought could have been left out. Some sex and bad language. I did not expect this and therefore was dissapointed.

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  • Posted September 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Wish we had more Willa

    In the fourth novel with Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, David Baldacci presents a kidnapping and a second plot.

    Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are called to Pam Dutton's home. She wants to hire them. When they arrive, somone has killed Pam and kidnapped her daughter, Willa. Since twelve year old Willa is the First Lady's niece, the First Lady hires King and Maxwell to find Willa outside of the official investigation.

    Sam Quarry is a fanatic, he arranged the kidnapping. He had his son and another man carry out the crime. When Pam put up a fight, Sam's son killed her by mistake. To teach the two men a lesson, Sam kills the other man, Kurt.

    Sean and Michelle begin their search for Willa. As they begin, Michelle gets an emergency call from her home. Her mother has died. When Michelle gets to her parent's home, she finds that her mother was murdered so she stays home to help with the investigation.

    Sean carries on the search for Willa. At first he thinks the guilty person is Willa's father because Sean found that he had been having an affair. Sean figured that the father, Turk Dutton, might have wanted to have his wife killed so arranged it and the kidnapping.

    Quarry also kidnapps another woman. Her name is Diane Wohl. He tells Diane that she is actually Willa's birth mother and that Willa is the child Diane put up for adoption twelve years ago. We also learn that Quarry has a daughter who is in a coma. He wants revenge for something that happened to his daughter in the past.

    The story takes too long to develop and the reader must put up with a subplot concerning Michelle's mother's death. This takes away from the suspense of the kidnapping and adds confusion. This is the 4th Baldacci novel involving King and Maxwell and in this novel their character isn't developed, instead, they come across as somewhat stiff, cardboard characters.

    Sean's clashes with the FBI and CIA who were also attempting to find Willa are stereotypical of the knowledgable PI against the inflexible, hardnosed Federal Agents. This has been done many times and doesn't come off well.

    Willa is a charmer and I hope to see her in a future Baldacci story.

    Overall a fun read but not up to the author's prior intensity and drama.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 15, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Sean and Michelle are Back!

    I admit I'm a sucker for David Baldacci's politically-tinged thrillers. This one was good, but not the page-turner "Absolute Power" or "Simple Genius" were. I particularly like the Sean King/Michelle Maxwell characters so it was nice to see them back. However, the bulk of the story revolved around another, more complex character with Sean and Michelle ending up as supporting players this time around. I'd still recommend it as a good "summer read," but for the real deal - check out "Split Second" - the book that introduced Sean and Michelle.

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  • Posted May 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Middle Family

    Not his best work.

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    Posted May 23, 2010

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    Posted November 21, 2009

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