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By the Rivers of Babylon

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Overview

Two Concorde jets take off from Lod Airport in Israel for a U.N. conference that will finally bring peace to the Middle East. Covered by F-14 fighters and accompanied by security men, the planes carry warriors, pacifist, enemies, dignitaries - and a bomb! Forced to crash-land, the men and women of the peace mission make a desperate life or death stand against Palestinian commandos.

Lod Airport, Israel: Two Concorde jets take off for a U.N. conference that finally ...

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By the Rivers of Babylon

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Overview

Two Concorde jets take off from Lod Airport in Israel for a U.N. conference that will finally bring peace to the Middle East. Covered by F-14 fighters and accompanied by security men, the planes carry warriors, pacifist, enemies, dignitaries - and a bomb! Forced to crash-land, the men and women of the peace mission make a desperate life or death stand against Palestinian commandos.

Lod Airport, Israel: Two Concorde jets take off for a U.N. conference that finally will bring peace to the Middle East. The planes carry warriors, pacifists, lovers, enemies, dignitaries--and a terrorist bomb. Forced to crash land at an ancient desert site, the men and women of the peace mission make a desperate stand against an army of crack Palestinian commandos. (Spy Thriller)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780446358590
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 6/28/1990
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 148,015
  • Product dimensions: 4.25 (w) x 6.75 (h) x 1.32 (d)

Meet the Author

Nelson DeMille is the author of 18 acclaimed novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Night Fall, Plum Island, The Gate House, The Lion, and The Panther. His other New York Times bestsellers include Wild Fire, The Gold Coast, and The General's Daughter. For more information on the author, you can go to www.NelsonDeMille.net.

Biography

Nelson DeMille has a dozen bestselling novels to his name and over 30 million books in print worldwide, but his beginnings were not so illustrious. Writing police detective novels in the mid-1970s, DeMille created the pseudonym Jack Cannon: "I used the pen name because I knew I wanted to write better novels under my own name someday," DeMille told fans in a 2000 chat.

Between 1966 and 1969, Nelson DeMille served in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. When he came home, he finished his undergraduate studies (in history and political science), then set out to become a novelist. "I wanted to write the great American war novel at the time," DeMille said in an interview with January magazine. "I never really wrote the book, but it got me into the writing process." A friend in the publishing industry suggested he write a series of police detective novels, which he did under a pen name for several years.

Finally DeMille decided to give up his day job as an insurance fraud investigator and commit himself to writing full time -- and under his own name. The result was By the Rivers of Babylon (1978), a thriller about terrorism in the Middle East. It was chosen as a Book of the Month Club main selection and helped launch his career. "It was like being knighted," said DeMille, who now serves as a Book of the Month Club judge. "It was a huge break."

DeMille followed it with a stream of bestsellers, including the post-Vietnam courtroom drama Word of Honor (1985) and the Cold War spy-thriller The Charm School (1988) Critics praised DeMille for his sophisticated plotting, meticulous research and compulsively readable style. For many readers, what made DeMille stand out was his sardonic sense of humor, which would eventually produce the wisecracking ex-NYPD officer John Corey, hero of Plum Island (1997) and The Lion's Game (2000).

In 1990 DeMille published The Gold Coast, a Tom Wolfe-style comic satire that was his attempt to write "a book that would be taken seriously." The attempt succeeded, in terms of the critics' response: "In his way, Mr. DeMille is as keen a social satirist as Edith Wharton," wrote The New York Times book reviewer. But he returned to more familiar thrills-and-chills territory in The General's Daughter, which hit no. 1 on The New York Times' Bestseller list and was made into a movie starring John Travolta. Its hero, army investigator Paul Brenner, returned in Up Country (2002), a book inspired in part by DeMille's journey to his old battlegrounds in Vietnam.

DeMille's position in the literary hierarchy may be ambiguous, but his talent is first-rate; there's no questioning his mastery of his chosen form. As a reviewer for the Denver Post put it, "In the rarefied world of the intelligent thriller, authors just don't get any better than Nelson DeMille."

Good To Know

DeMille composes his books in longhand, using soft-lead pencils on legal pads. He says he does this because he can't type, but adds, "I like the process of pencil and paper as opposed to a machine. I think the writing is better when it's done in handwriting."

In addition to his novels, DeMille has written a play for children based on the classic fairy tale "Rumpelstiltskin."

DeMille says on his web site that he reads mostly dead authors -- "so if I like their books, I don't feel tempted or obligated to write to them." He mentions writing to a living author, Tom Wolfe, when The Bonfire of the Vanities came out; but Wolfe never responded. "I wouldn't expect Hemingway or Steinbeck to write back -- they're dead. But Tom Wolfe owes me a letter," DeMille writes.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Jack Cannon; Kurt Ladner; Brad Matthews; Michael Weaver; Ellen Kay
    2. Hometown:
      Long Island, New York
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 22, 1943
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, New York
    1. Education:
      B.A. in political science, Hofstra University, 1974
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 70 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(29)

4 Star

(20)

3 Star

(9)

2 Star

(9)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 70 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2007

    Great

    I had this book for years before I read it. I read it July 2001. I thought as always with Mr. Demille's books it was well written. It at the time was unbelieveable. Hijacking 747's and bringing them to Babylon. The book is action packed and fast reading. Great book!

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2004

    This book is Outstanding in every way-

    Unbelievable as it may sound, this is my 1st Nelson Demille book ever but it certainly will not be my last. From the 1st page until the last, I was mezmerized by the details and charachters of the novel- Each one was easily identifiable and very true to life. I am a huge fan of any book that pertains to Palestine and Israel and this book was all I hoped for and more. You won't be able to put it down, and like me, will be sad when it finally concludes. Excellent work.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2005

    New car, caviar, 4-star daydream...

    Well, not 4 but 5-star, and a daydream as well since I wasn't able to but this book down even walking home from the subway. A real thrill from the first to last pages, no cliche included and a perfect resolve. Add the perfect-thought characters and the stunning atmosphere, and you'll be reading day and night as well.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2003

    riveting

    couldn't wait to turn the pages. a great thriller. Wish someone would make it into a movie!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2010

    Best Ever

    I have read and reread this book at least once every five years (since 1980). It is clearly my favorite book of all time. Packed with excitement it is the consummate page-turner.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2002

    Great Read

    This is one of De Mille's best, a page turner about the conflict in the middle East. A group of men and women on a peace mission have their plane forced down in the desert and they are faced with a unit of Palestinian commandos. Apart from the usual suspense and action we have come to expect from the author we are shown a picture of what it might be like to be high-jacked. As usual De Mille brings his characters to life and weaves a great story around them.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2002

    WOW!! I can't Believe it!1

    the way the author describes the scenery, and situation, its as though you are on the plane. i read this book twice it was so enjoyable. this book will capture you and your imagination of reality. i am a big fan of Mr. Demille and i have yet to read a book that i do not like.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2011

    Good but dated

    Liked this only because I love Nelson DeMille.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 4, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    River Landings

    "There were contingency plans for just about everything, but no one, not even the think-tank boys in Tel Aviv, had foreseen this." This was a Concorde jet making a very sloppy landing in the Euphrates River. This was 30 years before one landed in the Hudson, much more smoothly, and while actually in flight. So Nelson DeMille anticipated it. His novel took a considerable undertaking that is nothing short of brilliant. Absent cellphones, satellite phones, and GPS, that is. They might have brought a different story, so it's very interesting to read this novel in its period.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2003

    A great read!

    I thought I would spend my spring break "not reading." However, I started reading "By the Rivers of Babylon" and could not put it down. I agree with another reviewer; this book should be made into a movie. This book has an assortment of politics and history. Highly recommended!

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2000

    awsome a must read

    begining to end sex and terror. Demille makes you think you are there

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2013

    A little long but still interesting.

    It was not one of the best of DeMille's but it was interesting to some degree. A little
    long in places.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2012

    Great

    Whoever gave this a bad review is crazy

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 23, 2012

    Riveting!

    Another of DeMille's "can't put it down" books. I love his work and if you like intrigue, suspense and a little humor or romance thrown in right in the middle of it, you'll love By the Rivers of Bablylon and anything else he writes! Highly recommend!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 22, 2011

    Hugely Disappointing

    Unless you have a thorough knowledge of or interest in the history of the Middle East, you won't be able to get through this one. Couldn't relate to ANY of the characters, and not at all the type of fiction DeMille is known for. More of a military novel with very strong biblical/historical overtones than anything else. Tried to get through it but gave up about two-thirds of the way through. Just wasn't interested in the story.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Boring

    Not what I expected. It was a let down but I still am a huge fan of his.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 7, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    "A great company shall return thither..."

    By the Rivers of Babylon is just what I've come to expect from a Nelson DeMille novel: suspenseful, action-packed, and nuanced with shades of politics and character complexities. That it was written over thirty years ago doesn't make it any less compelling, and in fact, despite any changes in the Middle East since then, By the Rivers of Babylon still provides an insightful glimpse into the hearts and souls of the people residing in that part of the world. DeMille is especially adept at highlighting the conflicts between peace and safety, the importance of history and faith, and the damage war's displacement has had on Jews and Arabs alike.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2000

    One of the best books ever written

    This story had so much action, heroism, and intensity. And with the way things are today, the story can be compared to a story you would see in today's headlines. I hope they make it into a movie.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2000

    who are his peers?

    I used to think only a Kinky Friedman mystery could entertain and make me laugh. And the Kinkster's first three books are as funny as it gets. But it seems that Nelson Demille is not only the brightest writer being published today. He is also in a class by himself. Having read all his books except the Talbot Oddessy. Which I start to-night. Where do I go from there. Who writes like him? Who builds moments and creates characters like him? I have tried many other authors. None with his style. None. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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