The Law of Nines

( 234 )

Overview

Turning twenty-seven may be terrifying for some, but for Alex, a struggling artist living in the midwestern United States, it is cataclysmic. Inheriting a huge expanse of land should have made him a rich and happy man; but something about this birthday, his name, and the beautiful woman whose life he just saved, has suddenly made him - and everyone he loves - into a target. A target for extreme and uncompromising violence...In Alex, Terry Goodkind brings to life a modern hero in a whole new kind of high-octane ...

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Overview

Turning twenty-seven may be terrifying for some, but for Alex, a struggling artist living in the midwestern United States, it is cataclysmic. Inheriting a huge expanse of land should have made him a rich and happy man; but something about this birthday, his name, and the beautiful woman whose life he just saved, has suddenly made him - and everyone he loves - into a target. A target for extreme and uncompromising violence...In Alex, Terry Goodkind brings to life a modern hero in a whole new kind of high-octane thriller.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Yes, the author of this thriller is that Terry Goodkind. The man who gave the world the 11-volume Sword of Truth science fiction epic has taken a break from that genre series classic. Make no mistake, though; the switch is no leisurely breather. The Law of Nines snaps the reader along at a near frantic pace, catapulting into the terrifying predicament of 27-year-old struggling artist Alex, who finds himself the target of hot homicidal pursuit. While Alex is running for cover and searching for reasons, we're propelled along in a thriller that proves that first-class writers can jump genres.
Publishers Weekly
Science fiction author Goodkind takes a new approach to the modern-day thriller in this fantastic tale featuring Alex, a down-and-out artist set to inherit a fortune on his 27th birthday. The catch is that Alex is set to inherit his mother's insanity as well, which overcame her when she reached the same age. Mark Deakins proves a master storyteller; his strong performance shines with excellent stage presence from start to finish. Deakins speaks in a strong, commanding tone and is a virtuoso at accents and dialects—and Goodkind gives him plenty of each to play with. A Putnam hardcover (Reviews, June 22). (Sept.)
Kirkus Reviews
In this thriller from Goodkind, a man named Alex Rahl, hardworking artist, blameless citizen of a nice little Nebraska town, is about to turn 27 in a most memorable way. In the process, he will encounter an Alex he never would have believed possible, discovering things about himself, his lineage, the world he inhabits-and the alternative one he doesn't-that will prove dramatically transformative. Consider his name. As series buffs know, it's one to conjure with: Richard, Lord Rahl, is Seeker of Truth, puissant possessor of the eponymous Sword of Truth and, not so incidentally, Alex's antecedent, going back some thousand years. Then there's the fraught numerology of being 27, with all those evocative nines (two plus seven; three times nine). The whole astonishing business begins when Alex saves the life of a strange and, of course, beautiful lady, who undertakes his education. It's through Jax that he first learns of a co-existing world "on the other side of darkness, on the other side of nothing." And it's with her at his side that he battles an assortment of Iago-like bad guys in order to save the world(s). Goodkind departs from his hot-selling Sword of Truth series (Confessor, 2007, etc.), but not entirely.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781615515172
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 8/18/2009
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 2.10 (d)

Read an Excerpt

1 .

It was the pirate flag flying atop the plumbing truck that first caught his attention. The white skull and crossbones seemed to be straining to keep from being blown off the flapping black flag as the flatbed truck, apparently trying to beat the light, cannonballed through the intersection. The truck heeled over as it cut an arc around the corner. White PVC pipe rolled across the diamond plate of the truck bed, sounding like the sharp rattle of bones. At the speed it was traveling the truck looked to be in danger of capsizing.

Alex glanced to the only other person waiting at the curb with him. With his mind adrift in distracted thoughts he hadn’t before noticed the lone woman standing just in front of him and to the right. He didn’t even remember seeing where she’d come from. He thought that he saw just a hint of vapor rising from the sides of her arms into the chill air.

Since he wasn’t able to see the woman’s face, Alex didn’t know if she saw the truck bearing down on them, but he found it difficult to believe that she wouldn’t at least hear the diesel engine roaring at full throttle.

Seeing by the truck’s trajectory that it wasn’t going to make the corner, Alex snatched the woman’s upper arm and yanked her back with him.

Tires screeched as the great white truck bounced up over the curb right where Alex and the woman had been standing. The front bumper swept past, missing them by inches. Rusty dust billowed out behind the truck. Chunks of sod and dirt flew by.

Had Alex hesitated they both would have been dead.

On the white door just above the name “Jolly Roger Plumbing” was a picture of a jovial pirate with a jaunty black patch over one eye and a sparkle painted in the corner of his smile. Alex glared back as the pirate sailed past.

When he looked up to see what kind of maniac was driving he instead met the direct, dark glare of a burly passenger. The man’s curly beard and thick mat of dark hair made him look like he really could have been a pirate. His eyes, peering out of narrow slits above plump, pockmarked cheeks, were filled with a kind of vulgar rage.

The big man appeared infuriated that Alex and the woman would dare to be in the way of their off-road excursion. As the door popped open there was no doubt as to his combative intent.

He looked like a man stepping out of a nightmare.

Alex felt a cold wave of adrenaline flood through him as he mentally choreographed his moves. The passenger, who seemed to be getting ready to leap out of the still-moving truck, would reach him before the driver could join in, making it one against one—at least for a brief time. Alex couldn’t believe that it was happening, but it was and he knew that he was going to have to deal with it.

Calm fury filled him as he prepared himself for the unavoidable. Everything slowed until each beat of his heart seemed to take an eternity. He watched the muscles in the man’s arm bulge as he held the door open. In response, Alex’s own muscles tightened, ready to meet the threat. His mind was cocooned in silence.

Just as the passenger’s stout leg swung out the open door, flashing lights and the sudden wail of a siren made the burly man turn his attention away. A police car, tires squealing, launched across the intersection in a way that suggested the cops were angered by the truck’s stunt. The police car had been parked beside a hedge to the side of the drive into the parking lot across the street. As they had sped past, the men in the truck apparently hadn’t seen the parked police car watching traffi c. Lost in his own thoughts, Alex hadn’t, either.

The loudspeaker crackled to life. “Pull it over!”

The world seemed to rush back in.

The white plumbing truck, trailing a fog of dust, slowed as it rolled off the curb up ahead, the black-and-white police car right behind it. As the truck stopped, two policemen leaped out, hands resting at the ready on their guns as they approached from both sides of the truck at the same time. They yelled orders and both men carefully emerged with their hands up. In an instant the officers had them out and leaning on the front fenders of the truck.

Alex felt the tension drain out of his muscles, leaving his knees feeling weak.

As he turned his glare from the men being frisked, he found the woman’s gaze fixed on him. Her eyes were the luscious color of his finest sable artist brushes. It was clearly evident to him that behind those sensuous brown eyes she appraised the world around her with an incisive intellect.

She glanced deliberately down at his big hand still tightly gripping her upper arm. He had intended to toss her back out of harm’s way so that the passenger couldn’t hurt her, but the police had shown up first.

She looked up at him in silent command.

“Sorry,” he said, releasing her arm. “You were about to be run down by pirates.”

She said nothing.

He had meant his comment to be lighthearted, to ease the fright of what had nearly happened, but by her calm expression she didn’t appear to be the least bit amused. He hoped he hadn’t hurt her arm. He knew that sometimes he didn’t realize his own strength.

Not knowing what to do with his hands, Alex combed his fingers back through his thick hair as he stuffed his other hand in a pocket.

He cleared his throat, changed his tone to be more serious, and started over. “I’m sorry if I hurt your arm, but that truck would have hit you if I hadn’t pulled you back out of the way.”

“It matters to you?”

Her voice was as captivating as her eyes.

“Yes,” he said, a little puzzled. “I wouldn’t like to see anyone get hurt in an accident like that.”

“Perhaps it wasn’t an accident.”

Her expression was unreadable. He could only wonder at her meaning. He was at a loss as to how to respond.

The memory of the way she’d been standing at the curb still hung in the shadows in the back of his mind. Even lost in distant, dejected thoughts at the time, he had noticed that her body language hadn’t been quite right. Because he was an artist, a person’s balance, either at rest or in motion, stood out to him. There had been something out of the ordinary about the way she had been standing.

Alex wasn’t sure if, by her answer, she was simply trying to do the same as he had been doing—trying to lighten the heart-pounding scare of what had nearly happened—or if she was dismissing his chivalry as a presumptuous line. He imagined that a woman as attractive as she was had to deal with men constantly trying clever lines in order to meet her.

The satiny black dress that hugged her curves looked to be either high fashion or oddly out of time and place—he couldn’t quite decide which—as did the long, deep green wrap draped over her shoulders. Her luxuriant fall of soft, summer-blond hair could have gone either way as well.

Alex figured that she had to be on her way to the exclusive jewelry store that was the anchor of the upscale Regent Center across the street. The slanted glass façade was just visible beyond the shade of ash and linden trees spread across the broad grounds separating the upscale shops from Regent Boulevard.

He glanced over at the plumbing truck sitting at the curb. The strobing lights from the police car made the white truck look alternately blue and red.

After getting handcuffs on the passenger, the police officer pointed at the curb and told the man to sit beside the driver. The man sat and crossed his legs. Both wore dark work clothes covered with grime. While both men quietly did as they were told, neither looked to be the least bit cowed.

One of the officers started toward Alex as the other spoke into the radio clipped to his shirt at the shoulder.

“Are you two all right?” the man asked as he approached, his voice still carrying an adrenaline edge. “They didn’t hit you, did they?”

Both of the cops were young and built like weightlifters. Both had bull necks. Black, short-sleeved shirts stretched over the swell of their arms served only to emphasize the size of their muscles. “No,” Alex said. “We’re fine.”

“Glad to hear it. That was quick thinking. For a minute I thought you two were going to be roadkill.”

Alex gestured toward the men in handcuffs. “Are they being arrested?”

With a quick glance he took in the woman, then shook his head. “No, unless they come back with warrants. With guys like this you never know what you’ve got, so we often cuff them for our own safety until they can be checked out. When my partner is finished writing up that ticket, though, I don’t think they’ll be in the mood to pull a stunt like this again for a while.”

That two cops this powerfully built would be worried about the guys in the truck to the point of cuffing them made Alex not feel so bad for being spooked when he’d looked into the dark eyes of the passenger.

He glanced at the badge and extended his hand. “Thanks for coming along when you did, Officer Slawinski.”

“Sure thing,” the man said as he shook Alex’s hand. By the force applied to the grip Alex figured that the man was still keyed up. Officer Slawinski turned away, then, eager to get back to the pirates.

The driver, still sitting on the curb, was thinner but just as mean-looking as the burly passenger. He sat stone-faced, giving brief answers as the officer standing over him asked questions while writing the ticket.

The two officers spoke briefly, apparently about the results of the warrant check, because Officer Slawinski nodded, then uncuffed the passenger and told him to get back in the truck. After climbing back in, the passenger rested a hairy arm out the side window as the other cop started uncuffing the driver.

In the truck’s big, square side mirror, Alex saw the man’s dark eyes glaring right at him. They were the kind of eyes that seemed to be out of place in a civilized world. Alex told himself that it had to be that in such a newly built, luxurious part of town the work-worn construction vehicles, despite there being a lot of them, all seemed to be out of place. In fact, Alex recalled having seen the Jolly Roger Plumbing truck before.

Alex’s small house, not far away, had once been at the outskirts of town among a cluster of other homes built in the seclusion of wooded hills and cornfields, but they had long since been swallowed by the ever-expanding city. He now lived in a desirable area, if not exactly on a desirable street or in a desirable house.

Alex stood frozen for a moment, staring at the grubby, bearded face watching him in the truck’s mirror.

Then the man grinned at him.

It was as wicked a grin as Alex had ever seen.

As the black flag atop the truck lifted in a gust of wind, the skull also gave Alex a grim grin.

He noticed then that the woman, ignoring the activity, was watching him. As the light turned green, Alex gestured.

“Would you allow me to escort you safely across the street?” he asked in a tone of exaggerated gallantry.

For the first time she smiled. It wasn’t a broad grin, or a smile that threatened to break into laughter, but rather a simple, modest curve of her lips saying that this time she got the lighthearted nature of his words.

Still, it seemed to make the world suddenly beautiful on what was otherwise a rather depressing day for him.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 234 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(108)

4 Star

(51)

3 Star

(31)

2 Star

(23)

1 Star

(21)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 234 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 28, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Terry Goodkind Breaks Free from Tradition in Spectacularly Successful Fashion

    I didn't know what to expect upon my first read-through of Terry Goodkind's new book, which promised to be a break from his long-standing fantasy genre and epic 'Sword of Truth' series. Simply put, I was astounded. Goodkind's first mainstream work is a great thrill, rife with captivating characters, sinister antagonists, a well-executed plot, and the same enchanting writing I had grown to love this author for, from his 'Sword of Truth' masterpieces.

    Fans of "the good" Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and other modern thrillers will not want to miss this book. It's a great read and a refreshing take on an under-served mainstream segment. I hope to read much more of this "evolved" Goodkind for many years to come.

    20 out of 22 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 31, 2009

    Great read for first in genre - Highly recommended

    Like the previous reviewer (Richtor), I was not sure what to expect from 'The Law of Nines'. It is clear from the success of the 'Sword of Truth' series that Goodkind is a very talented author, but initially I was unsure if his gift for fantasy would lend to an easy transition to more mainstream thrillers. 'The Law or Nines' is a fantastic first showing for mainstream Goodkind. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. This action packed story has a well developed plot and a riveting cast of characters. Look out Stephen King and Dean Koontz! If you enjoy the works of these authors you should definitely give it a read. I will certainly add Terry Goodkind to my list of go-to authors for a satisfying thrill ride!

    15 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2009

    Terry Goodkind disappoints with Law of Nines

    First, let me say that TG is my favorite author and I have been a fan for a very long time. Also, I'm not the type of reader who can only read one genre to be happy. I was really looking forward to this book. I was excited to see TG attempt to go "mainstream". Unfortunately, I was beyond disappointed with this book.

    I thought that Law of Nines was a dumbed down, pathetic copycat, Reader's Digest version of the story of Richard and Khalan. When I finished that book, my first thought was, "What a waste of my time and money." I was shocked that a man known for such rich characters and captivating stories had written such drivel. If this is an example of his "mainstream" writing, then I hope when he's finished with the 3 books he's contractually obligated to write he has the good sense to go back to what he's good at....because this book was not good. I tried very hard to like it. I really did, but it was an awful book, with one dimensional characters and a plot that was a rip off of his better books. I don't know, maybe he thought he had to write a cheap rip off of WFR in order to keep his readers, or maybe some moron at Putnam this story would be the best way to start out in either case, the book was an insult.

    14 out of 27 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 29, 2009

    Surprise Thriller

    I've never read Terry Goodkind but this book landed in my lap for review last week and I was just blown away. The level of detail in which Goodkind writes is just astounding. He is very passionate about his characters and it shows. Alex is a wonderful character of surprising depth and Alex is one bad-ass chica.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this light read and I'll certainly consider stepping into Goodkind's earlier works as a result. I was at first a bit worried knowing the author hails from a dominately fantasy background, but all preconceptions were thrown aside by the conclusion of the first chapter. This is a vibrant, colorful, exciting story with wonderfully grounded elements wrapped around a fantasy/horror element that is carefully woven into an undoubtedly real world.

    A+. I would recommend this book to any thriller fans and agree with the earlier review that suggested Stephen King and Koontz. Very much in the same spectrum but better! More detail and a faster-paced story than the traditional arcs of the aforementioned.

    11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 8, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The next Stephen King?

    Received this book as a buyer for Minnie's Books in California last week. The editor's review suggested Terry Goodkind's first step into the mains tream thriller segment would please Stephen King fans and boy did this book ever! I have been a long time SK fan beginning with Dead Zone and Law of Nines brought me back to that wonderful period. Fastly writ, wonderfully engrossing, and highly entertaining this story is a must read for fans of thrillers. Stay sharp Goodkind, I will keep reading for more.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2010

    OMG

    In this book, Goodkind is at his worst. The plot is not only a ripoff of his earlier works but the author dosen't even attempt to have it make sense. People from his old universe invade our world hundreds if not thousands of years after the victory of Richard Rahl. Amazingly, they speak english perfectly (and write it!!) The Rahl line still exists unchanged after hundreds years (they even have the exact same name!!).The bad guy's are not only ridiculously brutal but amazingly stupid (and trust me the "good" guys aren't much better!!). Then we are supposed to admire a man who cares more about a woman he just met than his own mother!! As if this were not enough, we are continuously boombarded with Goodkind's conservative/humanist agenda. Frankly, for someones who's characters are always ranting about man's ability to reason, I found none in this novel.

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 11, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Best read of the summer so far

    Great read, quick book, easy page turner with lots of great plot twists. Definitely the best read of my summer so far. Falls right into my top recommended list for 2009.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Mediocre

    I've always been a huge fan of goodkinds writing, the sot series is probably still my favorite. That said, this book fell pretty short of the mark. It seemed almost hurried in some parts and slower in other. It also seemed almost like a contemporary rehashing of the SOT series and left some things lacking such as the deal with the mirrors, and any number of other things, alex not being able to go to her world made no sense given the pillars of creation... anyway it wasnt a bad book, it just didnt hold up compared to the SOT series and some parts were very good and some were even funny. In brief, it definately isnt the SOT series, but it is a reasonable book.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 16, 2009

    Jax rocks! A+

    I'm a rep for B&N Upper Darby and received this book as an advanced reading employee copy. Its the first thriller type book Ive read in months and I LOVED-LOVED-LOVED it! Jax is a super cool riotfemme and I loved the story of her and Alex. There were lots of great twists and a few fun surprises. It's my first Terry Goodkind book and I liked it A LOT. A+ recommended!!

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2013

    It pains me to give 3 stars and that may be a stretch

    If you haven't read Wizard's First Rule...... stop now. This book i feel will ONLY be appreciated by people who have connnected to the characters of the Sword Of Truth series... and it wont make much too much sense overall unless you were able to keep up with the chainfire/orden story arc at the end of the series. I've read the entire SOT saga multiple times, including Debt of Bones, and this was stilll almost a painful read (partly cause I had such high hopes). Felt like Terry was just grasping at straws. The world he created in his epic lives on but this book does not do it justice. Start at the beginning with First Rule and I almost guarantee you will buy the next 6 books.... Pillars of Creation was a bit of a drag but a least added a lot to the story. Things get complicated after Naked Empire. And richard gets way too long winded. However, there are elements of a good story here but I don't know which book left me with more questions or confusion: this or Omen Machine.

    Bottom line: if you randomly found this book; stop and go get Wizard's First Rule. If you're already a true fan, you're going to read this anyway just like you probably read Omen Machine

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 14, 2010

    A Super Sequel!

    Alex finds his world turned upside down when he shoves a woman to safety out of the path of a rampaging truck. The near hit wasn't an accident, and soon they're both fleeing for their lives. Jax explains how Alex is a target because he's the prophesied savior according to the Law of Nines. She's here to protect him. Alex scoffs at her story at first. He's an artist, and even though his grandfather taught him how to defend himself, he refuses to believe her story, until men materialize right before his eyes and try to kill him. He accepts his destiny and joins Jax's quest to save both their worlds. From their last names, I am wondering if this is a sequel thousands of years into the future of when Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth finishes. I'm only on book five of that series so I won't know for a while, but it certainly seems as though this brings the action to present day.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Add Me To The List

    Read the reviewer's copy this week and I was impressed. Well written, genuinely great thriller. I'd recommend this book.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2012

    Don't waste your time

    The worst book I have ever read! The author kept repeating himself as if writing for a bunch of idiots, which I guess I am for wasting my time reading this stupid book! Ugh

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    In 1 word. Boo

    In 1 word. Boo

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2010

    Spoiler alert - terrible -

    Yeah, this was pretty terrible. Some authors create a world for their characters to inhabit with a bit of suggestion, a nod to something recognizable in the real world, and then just the right amount of a fantasy element to flavor everything over the course of a plot that draws you in despite your disbelief.

    Then there are authors who repeat the same four things over and over like an autistic temper tantrum. "Don't look in mirrors! The bad guys have knives! The-good-guy-has-a-gun (a gun). If-a-bad-guy-shows-up-you-shoot-them (with-your-gun) [they have Knives!]

    The first chapter was ok, setting up an interesting guy and hinting that spooky stuff was about to happen. From there it was "Bad guy appears, he has a knife. Wait it's the mirrors! I-have-a-gun-shoot-the-bad-man. Damsel in distress. Repeat."

    Also in the several references to some other series this author wrote you could hear the "©T® Buy my other book$!©T®" in the background.

    I felt less intelligent after reading this book. I wasn't expecting a great work of literature or anything but the intelectual tone was aimed very low. Yeah I actually feel dumber now. Although I've learned that if bad guys were to appear With A Knife! From The Mirror! All I need is a handgun and I will be completely invinsible and also will get to have awkwardly described sex with magical mirror ladies in their late thirties/early forties.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Not Up to Brooks' Best

    I liked the first six books or so of Goodkind's Sword of Truth fantasy series, which connects up with this book. At first I found the characters and the world-building great. But while some authors simply get better with successive books, others get bloated, self-indulgent, get tired blood. In Goodkind's case his at first appealing hero became the worst Marty Stu I have read in professional fiction, and his world-building, narrative and dialogue got more and more bogged down by Ayn Rand polemic. (He makes no bones about being a devotee if you look on his website.)

    I'm not going to sneer. Ayn Rand was an early influence, and if these days I don't swear by her by chapter and verse, neither am I someone to think she didn't have some valuable ideas to offer. But especially because I went through my fangirl days, I can see the Randian influence in this book--and it's not to the good. This book is being billed as a thriller, and starts out as a present-day story, but the fantasy element is hinted at in the early chapters, and eventually it ties into his popular fantasy Sword of Truth series.

    That could have been a chance at a fresh start, but by the third chapter we're right into the heavy-handed Randian polemic on aesthetics--that no abstract art has any value. Mind you, it's not even a view I don't have sympathy with, but the way it is presented through the artist hero and the gallery owner--well, real people don't talk like this. Real enthusiasts of modern art don't talk like the straw man Goodkind creates. And that's a lot of the problem with Goodkind's characters in this book: cardboard. I couldn't make myself read beyond the first ten chapters of the book (although I flipped though some of the rest). Also, Sword of Truth kept me as long as it did because the characters created and developed in the first books: Richard, Kahlan, Zed, Cara among others were characters I liked.

    Alex and Jax of The Law of Nines though couldn't hold me. They seemed watered down version of Richard and Kahlan, and very, very square-jawed romance aisle versions at that. Alex started annoying me just about from the first when he complains about his girlfriend Bethany texting him all the time. He doesn't like her. He doesn't look at the text messages, but apparently he can't get up the nerve to simply say, "Look, I'm just not that into you." (And man, I just met a blonde Hottie and you're so yesterday).

    It's a shame. Goodkind is capable of much better, as the first several books in his series proved.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 24, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Fantasy Clashes with Reality

    Terry Goodkind's "The Law of Nines" takes us from the familiar fantasy world of Richard Cypher and Kahlan Amnell and places us in our modern-day Earth. Though the Midlands are left behind, the fantasy is not so easily dislodged. It wasn't intended to be.

    Think of "The Law of Nines" as "Wizard's First Rule" in the United States, with murkier motivations and no supporting cast. The simple fantasy solutions are disquieting when applied in the more familiar contexts of a hospital or of a hiking trail on a private preserve.

    "The Law of Nines" is not truly trying to escape the fantasy world. In fact, the book informs us that the Earth is actually descended from the Midlands and that villains from that realm have infiltrated our home. As battles are waged with tasers, guns, and pharmaceuticals, things start to feel uncomfortably ridiculous. A Lee Child thriller looks realistic and logical by comparison.

    In the end, "The Law of Nines" feeds off of Goodkind's established universe without delivering anything of its own. Everything about the book is less effective than a Goodkind fan would expect. The characters fail to develop as well. The grandiose schemes of the villain are less defined. The chemistry between the heroic duo does not react.

    The hero's habits and ideas clash with the established behaviors and beliefs of the book's denizens, as expected from Terry Goodkind. This time, however, WE are the denizens and we may not take kindly to the sermon.

    For a loyal fan, this book delivers an additional unwelcome payload. The clear view we had of the Midlands becomes muddied. The promise of a bright future that we were given in "Confessor" gets a nod and is then cast as ancient history, and discarded. The magical world that is, apparently, Earth's twin is now populated with plot holes in place of the peoples we knew.

    While I fully intend to avail myself of Goodkind's next effort, I would happily un-read "The Law of Nines" were I able.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 23, 2010

    Very very good

    If one was awed by the Sword of Truth series, they may not be as excited at first with the Law on Nines book. But the writer Terry Goodkind that we all love comes through by the time you finish. I am hungry for more and hope he makes this a series. PS if you go to his website and click on the video link (after you get past page 155) there is a really well done video of part of the book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 9, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Hope for a revised and edited copy to be made

    I am a huge Terry Goodkind fan and was so excited to see this book on the shelves. So I bought it immediately and set home to read it. As I started reading I was intrigued that he was basing a book here, in our world, until he mentioned the main character's last name. Then I realized where this book was heading.

    As another reviewer noted, it is much the same story line as the Sword of Truth series centralized around a new couple based here in our world with quite a bit of gore. None of this bothered me except, among the pages were multiple things that could have been edited out. Every couple of pages he practically rewrote what he had just written forcing me to skim through a lot of the book (I finished in one day if that is any indication) I personally also feel it wasn't much of a thriller I could guess pretty much where things were headed (especially once the last name was revealed) most of the way and there wasn't much 'mystery' or 'thrill' about it.

    Overall, if you are an avid Sword of Truth fan you will buy this book, or at least rent it from the library (I recommend the latter) as it seems as it will be the first in a new series. However, I hope for your sake he comes out with an edited version that cuts out all the duplications. It would be a much better book if it was more concise.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 23, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Loved this book.

    My first experience with this author, I was pleasantly surprised. The characters were most realistic and it was so well done that you start to believe the concept of parallel worlds.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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