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Born to Run (Jack Swyteck Series #8)
     

Born to Run (Jack Swyteck Series #8)

4.3 33
by James Grippando
 

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When the U.S. Vice President dies unexpectedly during a hunting trip in the Everglades, the President selects his friend, former Florida governor Harry Swyteck, to fill the vacant position. Called to Washington to serve as his father's legal advisor, Jack Swyteck has mixed feelings about working so closely with the parent he's been at odds with in the past. Jack's

Overview

When the U.S. Vice President dies unexpectedly during a hunting trip in the Everglades, the President selects his friend, former Florida governor Harry Swyteck, to fill the vacant position. Called to Washington to serve as his father's legal advisor, Jack Swyteck has mixed feelings about working so closely with the parent he's been at odds with in the past. Jack's duty, however, as a son and as an American, takes top priority.

But the vipers are restless in the D.C. snake pit. A fifty-year-old secret is unraveling, and a cover-up at the highest levels of government threatens to drag both Swytecks under. When hostages are taken, Jack must get to the root of the evil and quickly because suddenly no one is safe, and the presidency itself hangs in the balance.

Editorial Reviews

The Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg)
"A complex plot that . . . doesn’t let up. . . . Grippando leads the reader into a twisted labyrinth in which everyone has something to hide, and something more to gain. Pick up Born to Run and you’ll have trouble putting it down."
The Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg))
"A complex plot that . . . doesn’t let up. . . . Grippando leads the reader into a twisted labyrinth in which everyone has something to hide, and something more to gain. Pick up Born to Run and you’ll have trouble putting it down."
The Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg
“A complex plot that . . . doesn’t let up. . . . Grippando leads the reader into a twisted labyrinth in which everyone has something to hide, and something more to gain. Pick up Born to Run and you’ll have trouble putting it down.”
Booklist
“Grippando ratchets up the action to a breakneck pace . . . stopping to liberally sprinkle the proceedings with snarky dialogue, pointed satire, and some touching father-son moments. Everything you expect in a Grippando novel and more.”
South Florida Sun Sentinel
“Grippando’s innovative spin puts Born to Run in its own category. . . . [He] shows how to shape a plot for maximum suspense.”
Contra Costa Times
“In this multilayered story with greater depth than a traditional potboiler, Grippando’s Swyteck fights a long-standing, but improved, feud with his father. . . . Their interpersonal relationship creates a wonderful platform which Grippando uses to insightfully wrestle with all kind of ethical and familial situations.”
USA Today
“[A] thrill-a-minute novel.”
Lansing State Journal (MI)
“A top-notch thriller with many mesmerizing scenes . . . A distinctive, intriguing tale that could be ripped from tomorrow’s headlines.”
Washington Post
“A veep with a bum ticker, a mishap on a hunting trip . . . In James Grippando’s Born to Run, it takes on Carl Hiaasen-esque proportions. . . . Grippando spins a fun 200-proof yarn.”
Madison County Herald (MS)
“A fast and formidable read . . . Adrenaline-fused.”
Kingston Observer (MA)
“James Grippando is a dependable author who delivers a few hours of thrills every time. . . . You can always count on [him] to offer some time away from the humdrum.”
National Examiner
“From the Florida Everglades to Washington politics, the action is hot and heavy when the U.S. vice president ends up dead. [An] intense thriller.”
Romantic Times
“Grippando unveils his plot layer by layer, adding in colorful characters. Once you’re well and truly hooked, with the suspense drawn tight, it’s all blasted wide open. All you can do is hang on. When it’s over, the only question is, ‘When’s the next book out?’”
Sullivan County Register (NY)
“Grippando’s wise-guy dark comedy is a great strength of this series. . . . Sure-fire really is the word for him.”
Newark Star Ledger
“Plenty of action and the suspense holds firm until the final pages.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061556159
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
11/24/2009
Series:
Jack Swyteck Series , #8
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
384
Product dimensions:
4.16(w) x 6.88(h) x 1.06(d)

Read an Excerpt

Born to Run

Chapter One

The Italians called him the Greek. The Greeks called him the Sicilian. He was from Nicosia. It was a funny coincidence that the largest city in his native Cyprus shared a name with a city in Sicily...the birthplace of his bride.

"Sofia," he whispered in the darkness.

His wife of eleven months lay sleeping beneath a clingy cotton sheet, the gentle curve of her hip a silhouette in the shadows of night. A late-summer heat wave had sent them to bed naked, and like true newlyweds, they'd made the best of it. Cyprus was the mythological birthplace of Aphrodite, the goddess of love, who couldn't have held a candle to Sofia. She was a classic Italian beauty, a strong and passionate woman with dark hair, captivating eyes, and flawless olive skin. The Greek felt lucky to have her, and he marveled that she loved him enough to leave her family and run all the way to Cyprus with him.

He only wished he could stop running.

"Sofia, did you hear that?"

Her head didn't move from the pillow.

The Greek slowly slid out of bed, crossed the room in silence, and went to the open window. The lace curtains were motionless in the warm night air. He crooked his finger and parted the panels just enough to check the quiet street from his second-story apartment.

The cloak of night could hide centuries of decay, and Nicosia was beautiful in the moonlight. Flanked by the Pentadaktylos, the five-finger mountain, Nicosia was one of the oldest cities in the world, the geographic heart of an island paradise in the eastern Mediterranean. Behind thick sandstone walls, Cypriots had defended themselves from a host of invaders andoccupiers dating back at least to the Byzantine Empire. The mid-twentieth century had proved to be another violent chapter, with five years of armed struggle finally bringing an end to more than eighty years of British rule. The Greek had taken no stake in that fight...which was why real Greeks called him the Sicilian (or worse)...but he'd grown accustomed to noisy nights, even gunshots.

It was purely instinct, but tonight the Greek felt another type of raid coming...one that had absolutely nothing to do with Greeks, Turks, or any of the country's traditional ethnic divisions. He stood quietly at the lone window in their one-room apartment and listened. He was certain that he had heard something, and it took more than a cat on the roof to wake him from sleep after sex.

He walked around to the other side of the bed and sat on the edge of the lumpy mattress.

"Sofia, wake up."

She grumbled and propped herself up on one elbow. Even at 3:00 A.M. she was beautiful, but she immediately sensed his concern.

"What is it?" she said.

He didn't answer. He sat and listened for that noise again. There it was...a thumping that came from the first floor of their building.

"They're coming!" he said in an urgent whisper. He sprang from the bed and quickly pulled on his underwear.

"Who's coming?" said Sofia.

He pulled on his pants. The thumping noise was louder, like a herd of stallions charging up the stairs.

"It's me they want, not you."

"Who? Who?"

"Listen to me. Don't tell them I was here. Just say...tell them I left you."

He kissed her before she could protest.

The loud bang on the door was definitely not a knock. Someone had put a shoulder into it. They were busting their way in. The Greek couldn't find his shoes or his shirt, and there was no time to grab anything...except his gun in the top dresser drawer. He dived through the open window and out onto the balcony as the chain lock ripped from the frame and the apartment door crashed open.

He heard his wife scream.

"Sofia!" he shouted...which accomplished nothing, except to give himself away.

"Out the window!" a man yelled from inside the apartment.

The Greek could only run for it. He grabbed the rain gutter and pulled himself up to the second-story roof. His first step loosened an old barrel tile, and it crashed onto the street below. As he regained his footing, the Greek glanced back to see the lead man climbing up onto the roof behind him.

He was wearing a police uniform.

The Greek didn't hesitate to shoot, the sound of Sofia's scream replaying in his mind. The return gunfire told him that he'd missed...and the bullet ripped through his hand. He cried out in pain and dismay as his revolver flew from his grasp, slid down the roof, and landed in the gutter. Another shot shattered the clay roofing tiles at his feet.

The Greek kept running.

The slope of the roof changed from pitched to flat. He gained speed and jumped across the alley...the canyon between buildings...and landed on the neighbor's roof. A quick glance over his shoulder didn't slow him down a bit. Two...no, three...men in uniform were in pursuit. The Greek ran faster, his heart pounding in his chest. Beat after beat, the blood pumped from his wounded hand, leaving a crimson trail across the rooftops. He couldn't stop running. At any moment, he expected a bullet in the back. They were close enough to take him out.

He leaped across another alley, and this time it took his breath away. The ground had gone from two stories to four stories below him. The buildings on his street had the same roofline, but they were built on the slope of a hill, each one of increasing height.

Too high to jump.

He raced across the rooftop, but the footfalls behind him grew louder. His hand didn't hurt...too much adrenaline to feel pain...but the loss of blood was making him dizzy. No way could he outrun these guys. He had to find a safe place to jump down and hide. The roof pitched upward, however, and the only way down from here was through the men with the guns. He climbed even higher, all the way to the crest, where the roof flattened into a wide expanse. It was a big building, like a warehouse. No, a hotel. The Mykonos Hotel...the last building on the block. No rooftop beyond it. No more alleys to jump.

Born to Run. Copyright © by James Grippando. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Meet the Author

James Grippando is a New York Times bestselling author of twenty-four novels. He was a trial lawyer for twelve years before the publication of his first novel in 1994 (The Pardon), and now serves as counsel at Boies Schiller & Flexner LLP. He lives in South Florida with his wife, three children, two cats, and a golden retriever named Max who has no idea that he’s a dog.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Coral Gables, Florida
Date of Birth:
January 27, 1958
Place of Birth:
Waukegan, Illinois
Education:
B.A. with High Honors, University of Florida, 1980; J.D. with Honors, University of Florida, 1982
Website:
http://www.jamesgrippando.com

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Born to Run 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 33 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In his fifties, Vice President Phil Grayson loved hunting so he went to a private land to shoot alligators while officially looking into the reported threat of pythons destroying the adjacent Everglades. Instead he dies when a humongous gator tips the boat and he falls into water filled with alligators and pythons.

President Keys informs former Florida Governor Harry Swyteck that he is on the final list to replace Grayson if he is interested. Harry says yes and asks his son Jack to serve as his chief lawyer; Jack reluctantly agrees as he prefers to remain in Florida but will go to DC. However, Jack hears rumors that Grayson¿s death was not a freak accident, but a homicide. He investigates finding ties back to an incident in 1960 Cypress and a cover-up in 2008 Florida and Washington.

This is an exciting action-packed legal thriller that grips the audience once the Veep dies and never slows down as Jack begins to unravel a murder conspiracy. The story line is action, action, and more action that has readers caught up with all that is happening. Fans will relish Jack¿s latest tale that also strains his improved relationship with his dad and his significant other.

Harriet Klausner
SlickID More than 1 year ago
I had never read the author before, but after "Born to Run" I will certainly read another one. The story line was good and it kept you guessing about the ending.
whoizme88 More than 1 year ago
James Grippando knows how to write a novel. This one is a thriller from start to finish. The characters are believable and not too much larger than life. They manage to get caught up in all kinds of problems which are trying to be solved but do not get solved until the very end. You will not figure out the answer to this mystery before the author tells you about it. It is another good read about the lawyer Swyteck. J. Robert Ewbank, author "John Wesley, Natural Man, and the 'Isms'"
ragingval More than 1 year ago
I recently read this book and found it hard to put it down. I like seeing the progression in the characters. It seemed that Mr. Grippando's writing had matured from some of the previous books I'd read. I look forward to seeing more of the father/son relationship being explored in future books. Until then, I'd recommend this book for people that like to be entertained by a good story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved everyone of the Grippando's novels and read them all. Fast moving plots and characters you want more of. Can't put his books down and can't wait for the next one to come out. Continue Jack Swytect character and these action packed thrillers and write faster Mr. Grippando.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have liked all of the James Grappando's books that I've read. This is part of a series but stands alone as a good read. Didn't know the ending until it came, which I appreciate. Plan to keep reading his work. Never disappointed. I'm looking forward to his new book.
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I cannot get enough of this character and look forward to more..I love this character .
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok im here what do u wnt
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bye till Fool's day, sorry.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey jennykit. Me and micakit thought you quit. How was ur Easter? 6:51
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Hey Zivakit. You on?6:53p.m.
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jcrubicon More than 1 year ago
It has been a long time since I read a novel by James Grippando. Well, before his Jack-Swyteck series. He's a good solid writer from here in Florida...but he seemed to be repeating himself. So I took a break. Chalk this re-visit up to the "separation is good" side of the ledger. As you know, a political thriller can almost never fail to engage me -- and this fast-paced yarn about a secret that the President is willing to kill to keep quiet is fun. Grippando keeps the secret long enough to be a surprise at the end but the cost in growing incredulity is pretty high. From fleeing the Russian mob to Jack's dad being considered for VP while Jack worries that his dad might also be the murderer of the former VP -- all requires a good embrace of your gullible side. Yet, it works! Have fun.
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