Customer Reviews for

The Jefferson Key (Cotton Malone Series #7)

Average Rating 4
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(189)

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(33)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

13 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

This is a brilliant exhilarating thriller

Stephanie Nelle leaves a mysterious message for former Justice Department field operative Cotton Malone to meet her in New York immediately. Not one to ignore a summons from his former boss, Malone and his beloved Cassiopeia Vitt shut down their Copenhagen book store t...
Stephanie Nelle leaves a mysterious message for former Justice Department field operative Cotton Malone to meet her in New York immediately. Not one to ignore a summons from his former boss, Malone and his beloved Cassiopeia Vitt shut down their Copenhagen book store to fly to the States.

In Manhattan, Malone observes an assassination attempt on President Danny Daniels, but intercedes this saving the life of POTUS. However, the Secret Service assumes he is the assassin and attacks him. He soon finds himself in further danger from the Commonwealth Society who has enforced Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution several times with four of them successful in 1865, 1881, 1901 and 1963. Malone learns of a Jeffersonian cipher deployed by Jackson after a failed assault but unused since. Meanwhile he and Vitt struggle to survive as Commonwealth Quartermaster Clifford Knox stalks them. The fugitive pair finds historical evidence of the intent of the Founding Fathers in ratifying that particular clause as the runaways are considered the traitors and the Commonwealth has the highest law in the land behind them.

This is a brilliant exhilarating thriller that uses the Constitution and American history to frame a great tale that will have readers hooked throughout. After spending time overseas (see The Paris Vendetta and The Emperor's Tomb), Malone comes home only to be caught in the crosshairs of a secret powerful group applying Article 1 Section 8: "The Congress shall have the Power to . grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules on concerning Captures on Land and Water". Filled with stunning spins to American history, fast-paced from the opening 1835 Jackson assassination attempt to the final denouement, The Jefferson Key will be on the short list for best thriller of the year.

Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on April 30, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

22 out of 35 people found this review helpful.

BOYCOTT THIS PRICE!!!

Everyone, please start boycotting the prices greedy bookstores and greedier publishers are charging for nookbooks. B&N told me when I bought my nook last year that e-book prices would be much cheaper. This store needs to stand by what it advertised a year ago.

posted by Bandito on May 3, 2011

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  • Posted April 30, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    This is a brilliant exhilarating thriller

    Stephanie Nelle leaves a mysterious message for former Justice Department field operative Cotton Malone to meet her in New York immediately. Not one to ignore a summons from his former boss, Malone and his beloved Cassiopeia Vitt shut down their Copenhagen book store to fly to the States.

    In Manhattan, Malone observes an assassination attempt on President Danny Daniels, but intercedes this saving the life of POTUS. However, the Secret Service assumes he is the assassin and attacks him. He soon finds himself in further danger from the Commonwealth Society who has enforced Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution several times with four of them successful in 1865, 1881, 1901 and 1963. Malone learns of a Jeffersonian cipher deployed by Jackson after a failed assault but unused since. Meanwhile he and Vitt struggle to survive as Commonwealth Quartermaster Clifford Knox stalks them. The fugitive pair finds historical evidence of the intent of the Founding Fathers in ratifying that particular clause as the runaways are considered the traitors and the Commonwealth has the highest law in the land behind them.

    This is a brilliant exhilarating thriller that uses the Constitution and American history to frame a great tale that will have readers hooked throughout. After spending time overseas (see The Paris Vendetta and The Emperor's Tomb), Malone comes home only to be caught in the crosshairs of a secret powerful group applying Article 1 Section 8: "The Congress shall have the Power to . grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules on concerning Captures on Land and Water". Filled with stunning spins to American history, fast-paced from the opening 1835 Jackson assassination attempt to the final denouement, The Jefferson Key will be on the short list for best thriller of the year.

    Harriet Klausner

    13 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 17, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent!

    Right from the start this book draws you in. Espionage, government secrecy, conspiracy, and a history lesson all wrapped up in one. Clear you calendar, because it's definitely a tough one to put down once you start.

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2011

    Confusing...

    There were too many short chapters, with every one focusing on a different character. It was very confusing to keep up with. The story was alright, but too many references to other events in the series.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 10, 2011

    Boring%21

    This+book+is+boring+and+endless.Too+many+characters+and+you+don%27t+really+identify+with+any%21+The+plot+is+ambiguous.+Unnecessary+descriptions.+I+don%27t+really+care+what+happens+to+any+of+them.+Very+shallow+character+development.%0A

    5 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 28, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Technically thrilling but actually boring! Too many main charac

    Technically thrilling but actually boring! Too many main characters (8 or so), none of them developed in the least, and most of them with ugly names (Wyatt, Knox, Kaiser, Cotton, Carbonell...). Jarring switches from one character's actions to another's every page or so. Almost all action scenes, with the "action" being shooting and avoiding getting shot. Superficial. No real suspense due to sub-par writing, and I cared not a whit for what happened to any of the crowd, as I never got to know any of them. A couple of interesting history tidbits did not make up for all that. Couldn't wait to finish it so I could read something else.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 27, 2012

    Great Read!!

    Steve Berry created a very complex character in Cotton Malone. It's great to see that Malone continues to evolve with the new love in his life. The story is a real page turner. Should be a must read series for all adventure enthusiasts.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2012

    Great read!

    If you like Steve Berry books this is a must read. Interesting plot and characters. Keeps you interest from beginning to end.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 31, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Many Fas­ci­nat­ing Tid­bits

    "The Jef­fer­son Key" by Steve Berry is the sev­enth book in the fic­tional series fea­tur­ing Cot­ton Mal­one. The story takes place in the United States, which I under­stand is a depar­ture from pre­vi­ous books in the series.

    Cot­ton Mal­one gets an email from his boss to show up in NYC at a cer­tain time in a cer­tain hotel room. What Mal­one doesn't know is that he is being setup to take the fall in a bold assas­si­na­tion attempt against sit­ting US pres­i­dent Danny Daniels.

    Mal­one and his girl­friend, Cas­siopeia Vitt, find them­selves criss­cross­ing the nation try­ing to out maneu­ver the Com­mon­wealth, a group of rich pirates. Try­ing to solve a mys­tery con­cocted by pres­i­dent Andrew Jack­son uti­liz­ing Thomas Jefferson's encryp­tion algorithm.

    Even though this is the sev­enth in the series, "The Jef­fer­son Key" by Steve Berry was my first intro­duc­tion to Cot­ton Mal­one, how­ev­erI have heard of the char­ac­ter. I'm sure I would have enjoyed the book more if I would have read the first six, how­ever this is a good book as a stand­alone as well.

    The plot moves in a very fast pace with­out any wasted words, the loca­tions are in the United States (which I under­stand is a depar­ture for the series) and the story is clever and full of action. The plot is multi-facet involv­ing sev­eral secu­rity agen­cies and inter­play between sev­eral strong char­ac­ters.

    Even though this is a fic­tional book, there are many fas­ci­nat­ing tid­bits of infor­ma­tion mixed in the fic­tional nar­ra­tive. Mr. Berry did an extra­or­di­nary amount of research and takes great care in sep­a­rat­ing fact from fic­tion at the end of the book. I don't know how the other books mea­sure up (but I intend to find up) but I found the plot very com­plex but also very intrigu­ing.

    Mr. Berry man­ages to tie the assas­si­na­tion of the four pres­i­dents who died by the gun (Kennedy, Lin­coln, Garfield and McKin­ley) as well as the attempted assas­si­na­tion of Andrew Jack­son to the "Com­mon­wealth". This group of pirates/pri­va­teers were guar­an­teed immu­nity in per­pe­tu­ity from Con­gress and are resent­ful when the sit­ting pres­i­dent tries to renege on that promise.

    Besides hash­ing out some his­tory, Mr. Berry also does a fan­tas­tic job writ­ing about pirates and how they lived and oper­ated in days of yore. Sep­a­rat­ing fact from fic­tion while telling a good story is cer­tainly an art I appre­ci­ate more and more.

    I espe­cially loved to read about loca­tions which I have been to (such as Wash­ing­ton DC, Mon­ti­cello and more). Even though I know Mr. Berry didn't have good ol' me in mind when writ­ing the book, I still felt excited when read­ing about those locations.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A very good novel! Lots of action and excitement to keep it mov

    A very good novel! Lots of action and excitement to keep it moving rather fast. Full of interesting history as usual with Berry's writing. This is up your alley if you like historical fiction.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 31, 2011

    Diappointing

    I love Berry's books both for their history and drama. The Jefferson Key is missing the excitement of his previous works as the villians are ridiculous with the brains of fleas and we were shown from the beginning that they were not to be taken seriously. The only one fighting against Malone with any spunk is a rogue agent he had called to task for a shooting. Hopefully his next novel will be better as the only thing that got me to finish this one was the history.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2012

    Highly Recommend

    Great book. Steve Berry is a great author. Keeps your interest alive. Cotton Malone and Cassiopia Vitt rock!! A must get book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 19, 2011

    Easy read, but nonsense

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Posted June 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Typical Berry mystery, fun and entertaining.

    The Jefferson Key by Steve Berry

    This is the latest Cotton Malone book, but the first that is set in America. Mr. Berry Starts with the premise that the four presidential assassinations (1865, 1881, 1901, and 1963) although seemingly unrelated, were caused by the same reason. A group called The Commonwealth composed of pirates that were legalized by Article One, Section Eight of the United States Constitution: "The Congress shall have the power to declare War, grant letters of Marquee and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water."

    Thus, President George Washington on February 9th, 1793 granted a letter of Marque to Archibald Hale, and The Commonwealth was born. Ruled by four families: The Hales, The Cogburns, The Boltons, and the Surcoufs; they were granted license by Congress to pirate enemy ships, with the condition that they contributed 20% of their earnings to the US Treasury. They were to be called Privateers and they were instrumental in most of the wars fought by our country, up to, and including aiding in the Middle East conflict.

    However, in 1835, there was an attempt by the Commonwealth to assassinate President Andrew Jackson, and Jackson punished the Commonwealth by stripping all reference to their letter of marque from the official congressional reports. He hid it in a secret place, a place was coded by Thomas Jefferson. For 175 years it had not been decoded; so the pages were lost, therefore the original marque was null and void--making the Commonwealth desperate to find the document. Otherwise they could lose all their money and power, a thing President Danny Daniels wanted to do.

    The book opens with an email from Stephanie Nelle, chief of the Magellan Billet, to Cotton Malone, an old Billet agent, asking her to go to the Grand Hyatt in NYC as President Danny Daniels goes on a secret meeting to the city. Malone stops the murder attempt on the president but is met by an old nemesis--Jonathan Wyatt--also known as The Sphinx--who was also an agent. The suggestion is that every time the Commonwealth doesn't get what they want from the government they go to whatever lengths they have to--including assassinating the US President--to get what they want.

    The plot is complicate because Andrea Carbonell, the attractive, Cuban/American head of the NIA has greater ambitions as she fears for her job. She is playing the Commonwealth, Malone, and Wyatt against each other in order to solve the Jefferson Key and destroy the Commonwealth at any cost--and also get career advancement.

    In their most perilous exploit yet, Malone and her friend and lover, Cassiopeia Vitt, race across the nation and to the high seas. Along the way, they must break the Jefferson Key, unravel the mystery concocted by
    president Jackson, and unearth a centuries-old document forged by the Founding Fathers themselves, and the only thing that could bring survival to the dying institution of The Commonwealth.

    Typical Berry mystery, fun and entertaining.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 27, 2011

    Mindblowing

    This novel is a true page turner! Packed full of history and accusations, it will certainly make your head spin. Get comfortable because you won't be able to put this one down!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 22, 2011

    Nice to read about American history from this great writer

    I've enjoyed many of Steve Berry's books, but this one was so much more interesting with a trip into America's past and an exploration of piracy and privateering.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 27, 2011

    Always good...

    Add one more certainty to life...Death, taxes and Steve Berry writing an intelligent and fun book. I will definitely be pre-ordering this one.

    1 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 15, 2014

    Another good action story.

    Like all of the Cotton Malnoe series books this one follows the same formula for sequence of events. But they are still very good books, if for no other reason than the historical accuracy Mr. Berry maintains, along with the writers notes that detail what is and is not fictional in the book. They are well written and occur in interesting settings.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2014

    unable to review as I do not have book..

    Unable to rate as I have not received book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    The NEW Bond

    Exciting from start

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2013

    Poor read

    Jerky presentation

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