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Verdict Not recommended for small libraries with limited space and budgets. However, libraries collecting a larger scope of popular authors’ works might consider adding this audiobook for their die-hard Baldacci fans. —JoAnn Funderburk, South Garland Branch Lib., TX
(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Q: What's one thing you've done that you are glad you did but happier that you will never have to do again?
A: Taken and passed the Virginia Bar Exam.
Q: How do you indulge your appetite? Caviar? Burgers and fries?
A: Pasta. I am definitely not a caviar person.
Q: Are you a righty or lefty?
Q: What's your favorite cartoon?
A: "The Tick."
Q: Do you have a favorite day of the year?
A: The day after I've finished a novel.
Q: Will you identify a specific historic event or image that has been especially defining of American culture?
A: Lincoln's assassination. Reconstruction, Jim Crowism, segregation, and discrimination were all, unfortunately, enhanced with his murder.
Total Control opens with an immediate shocker: A plane from Washington bound for Los Angeles explodes and plummets to earth just moments after takeoff. Until the crash, Washington attorney Sidney Archer seemed to have everything going for her: a loving husband, a thriving career, a beautiful daughter. But then her husband Jason's name turns up on the passenger list of the doomed Flight 3223. The FBI seems to think Jason might have been responsible for the crash and not on the plane at all. And then the lies start emerging.
In the hopes of giving his family everything he felt they deserved, Jason Archer entered into a deadly game of cat and mouse, secretly doing business with some extremely dangerous people. Now this high-tech world of hostile takeovers, artificial intelligence, and corporate espionage has forced him to disappear. In an effort to clear Jason's name and recover the family the plane crash destroyed, Sidney, with the help of FBI agent Lee Sawyer, plunges into the center of her husband's secret life, uncovering a sinister plot involving the murder of the country's most powerful individual, and putting her own life and that of her young daughter at stake.
This gripping page-turner, which vividly depicts the dark heart of the country's political and business affairs, proves again that David Baldacci is among the brightest new lights in the thriller scene.
David Baldacci: I love writing, and earning your living doing something you love is wonderful.
David Baldacci: It will be out the early part of 1998.
David Baldacci: Think about why you want to be a writer. If you decide you really like to write, then spend a lot of time learning the craft, and read a lot of good authors.
David Baldacci: If you mean ABSOLUTE POWER, I wasn't anticipating a movie, I was just hoping to get the book published. But I did think Eastwood was a good choice.
David Baldacci: I knew it would be different -- adapting a book to film is very difficult. A number of things have to be cut. Trying to compare the book and the movie really isn't fair because they are such different mediums. I like the book better!
David Baldacci: I work at home so I have to share the computer with my three-year-old daughter.
David Baldacci: A lot is simply imagination, but I do take characteristics of people I know and blend them into characters in the book. The president in ABSOLUTE POWER is not Bill Clinton.
David Baldacci: Thank you!
David Baldacci: Fantasy can be a broad genre. I won't rule it out, I have a lot of interests.
David Baldacci: I was a trial lawyer for five years, and then I did corporate work for about four years.
David Baldacci: John Irving, Ann Tyler, John Updike, Garrison Keillor, Mark Twain.
David Baldacci: It's certainly a possibility. I liked her character a lot, as well as that of Lee Sawyer, so they may appear in future books.
David Baldacci: Thank you very much -- it's a pleasure for me, too!
David Baldacci: He and I know each other, and whenever I'm in Charlottesville I look him up. He's a very nice man.
David Baldacci: My next book is done. It's entitled THE WINNER. I could tell you about it, but then I'd have to...you know the rest.
David Baldacci: Roughly 16 months to two years.
David Baldacci: He won't be in the next book, but he may appear in the future. I really like him.
David Baldacci: There is great pressure on bestselling authors to turn product out. I'm not sure that anyone can maintain high quality at that sort of pace. If it takes me four years to write my next book, then that's what it takes.
David Baldacci: I thought the cast was great, and I thought the adaptation was great. If you forgot the book and considered it only a movie, then it was very entertaining.
David Baldacci: There was one reason for that...and his name is Clint Eastwood. As soon as he signed, I knew the story would build around his character. So, I missed Jack Graham a lot, but I wasn't surprised.
David Baldacci: I think it's both exciting and frightening...as are all new technologies. The upside is terrific, but there are downsides. I enjoy these chats, but I really prefer to meet people face to face. I guess I'm old-fashioned.
David Baldacci: I would agree, but I would add -- make sure you're writing for the right reasons. Then you'll be more likely to finish that book.
David Baldacci: I enjoy music while I'm writing. Everything from classical to Alanis Morissette.
David Baldacci: I grew up with very strong female role models, thus I enjoy writing about women with those characteristics. I don't write about damsels in distress, because I don't know any. My wife is a great sounding board for the female characters.
David Baldacci: I read a lot of books in the thriller genre. I had polished ABSOLUTE POWER to the point where I thought it comparable to the others I had read. As a writer, you run the risk of wanting to edit something forever. But at some point you have to let go.
David Baldacci: It would be impossible to compare them, they're both challenging, and can be very rewarding. My preference is for writing, but I do not regret practicing law.
David Baldacci: I thought it was important that the reader see everything through the burglar's eyes. In that way I was able to get the reader to participate in the story. With that look, chances are they'll enjoy the book a lot more.
David Baldacci: Yes, I was a partner in a firm in Washington. I had been writing for nine years before ABSOLUTE POWER was published. I had been writing for years from ten at night until three in the morning, and working at the same time.
David Baldacci: I was a poli sci major in college, very interested in politics and power. As a lawyer in Washington I got a good dose of it, and I enjoy writing about it.
David Baldacci: Thank you very much; it's good to be an inspiration!
David Baldacci: I do my own research, and I have a person who gathers information for me on some subjects. She's very talented and very hardworking.
David Baldacci: It will probably be spring of 1998.
David Baldacci: I write on and off all during the day. I don't have a set schedule, but I work every day. When I'm not writing, I'm thinking about it.
David Baldacci: I'm trying [laughter]. Sometimes it's not so easy, but I'm not complaining.
David Baldacci: I still have a lot of respect for lawyers and how hard they work. I think the public's perceptions of lawyers is somewhat skewed; they really don't know that much about them or what they do.
David Baldacci: I don't really write courtroom dramas. However, some of the trial strategies were based on personal experiences.
David Baldacci: I've always had a great fear of the slippery slope, so censorship is not something I think is good.
David Baldacci: "The Rockford Files"!
David Baldacci: I am married, and I have two children.
David Baldacci: You may see something other than thrillers down the road. I have a lot of different interests, and there's a lot I want to write about.
David Baldacci: I went to college at VCU, and I went to law school at the University of Virginia.
David Baldacci: I do not use a software product for novels; for screenplays I use a product called Final Draft.
David Baldacci: No. Although she certainly helps with my novels. She has the world's hardest job -- Mom.
David Baldacci: There are about one million lawyers in the U.S. -- in sheer numbers there are probably too many. But if you have a passion for the profession, that shouldn't stop you.
David Baldacci: I didn't. William Goldman did, and I think Bill did a fine job.
David Baldacci: My mother and father. They have a very strong work ethic; they're very honest.
David Baldacci: A very fair comment!
David Baldacci: Yes, I was. With Ed Harris, Clint Eastwood -- had a great time.
David Baldacci: Bill Goldman is a two-time Oscar winning screenwriter -- he didn't need me to guide him at all.
David Baldacci: Me too.
David Baldacci: Losing privacy, yes. And losing personal identities.
David Baldacci: Eighteen. Because at that age they can read anything regardless of what you tell them.
David Baldacci: One can only hope.
David Baldacci: First, I have to come up with a plot that...1) is sustainable as a novel, and...2) is something I'm interested in enough to commit so much time and energy to.
David Baldacci: You have to develop interesting characters -- obviously. Motivations oftentimes are dictated by goals and what values you give the characters.
David Baldacci: Not if you love what you're doing!
David Baldacci: I thank everyone for participating, I enjoyed the questions. Best wishes!
Posted September 17, 2009
This book was incredibly good!! I have only read a few of his book but I have become a huge David Baldacci fan. The plot is way to complex to go into in a review but it has so many twists and turns it leaves most roller coasters to shame. I didn't see how it was at all possible but it actaually did all come together in the end. Also it was not a completly happy ending. I like books that don't end with everything just as it should be, because that is not usually the way they work in real life.(
8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 25, 2012
Posted July 28, 2013
Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite
David Baldacci has done it again! Total Control is an exciting thriller you won’t want to miss. Sidney Archer is a lawyer working on a merger between two companies, one of which is her husband’s. She is devastated when she receives word that her husband’s flight has crashed with no survivors. How is she going to explain to their young daughter that her father will never come home again? Then came the allegations that Jason was the master mind of a multi-million dollar embezzlement plot and had planned the bombing of the plane. Then came the phone call; Jason wasn't on the downed plane. He is being held captive; can Sidney rescue him? FBI Agent Lee Sawyer is investigating the mysterious plane crash in which the Chairman of the Federal Reserve died. The crash was caused by a bomb; who was the intended victim? Could Sidney have been helping her husband? These are just a few of the questions Sawyer must ponder.
I was hooked on this book from the beginning. Once again, David Baldacci brings readers a strong female lead. Sidney Archer came to life on the pages, she was strong and yet realistic. What woman wouldn't do everything within her power to save the man she loves? This review is of the audio format. While I very much enjoyed the book, I do not believe the reader was the one I would have chosen. The author has filled this book with exciting twists and turns that kept me listening.
5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 29, 2012
I've been reading or listening to David Baldacci for years. This was one of his best.
4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 19, 2009
Posted June 2, 2013
My husband, and I both love to read David
Baldacci books. The pace of this book is fast, and characters are believable. I would recommend this book for anyone that likes thrillers.
3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 21, 2011
This was a great book. It had my attention the whole time. It was so good that I am now reading all his books in chronological order.
I recommend this book to everyone. Try it, you'll like it.
3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 9, 2014
Posted December 28, 2013
By LightBlood (Striking in this case)<p>
You say I'm rude,<br>
I say I'm creating order.<br>
And the power?<br>
Few can handle...<p>
Maybe you're right.<br>
Maybe it is wrong.<br>
But is it wrong to all?<br>
Not at all...<p>
I say peace<br>
You tell me hatred.<br>
Why, when all I want<br>
Is to be understood.<p>
Maybe power has driven<br>
Me to unreasonable actions,<br>
Or maybe you just don't see<br>
The reality, the truth, of it all...<p>
Not being understood,<br>
Friendless, for all eternity.<br>
The worst curse possible,<br>
You ask me. Is it hate?<br>
It's always the same, I reply.<p>
It starts with death.<br>
Always starts with death,<br>
Of one you care the most about.<p>
Trust, trust who?<br>
Those who let your mother die?<br>
And you wonder why<br>
I don't feel secure around you.<p>
Then comes abandonment.<br>
Lost, all by yourself,<br>
Who do you blame?<br>
The one who saved you?<p>
Afterwards, you lose hope,<br>
Hope that things will get better,<br>
Because they never do<br>
And never will.<p>
Things look up,<br>
When you find a trusting mentour.<br>
One that seemingly abandons<br>
you, just like the others, in the end.<p>
Why? Why should I<br>
have to put up with disorder,<br>
When I can make it disappear?<p>
That's right. I shouldn't,<br>
I can't. I'm a smart critter,<br>
Born to lead, lead you through the darkness<br>
To the real light, the real pathway...<p>
.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>.<p>(Go to the next result for another poem, please. There will be a concluding message at the end of it, summarizing the poems into something some might understand better.)
1 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 30, 2013
Posted January 29, 2013
Posted October 10, 2014
This book will keep you guessing right to the very end. The plot shows how ugly and evil one can become over greed, but in the fashion of a classic detective story. I enjoyed reading if and know most will too.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 23, 2014
Posted August 29, 2014
I found this book to be as excellent as all of David Baldacci's books that I have read so far. It is a page turner and keeps you looking for the next turn in the story. I would recommend it to any one I know who reads. Great book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 12, 2014
Posted August 8, 2014
I've been wanting to read a David Baldacci book for a long time and I finally started with this one! Even though it was written in 1997, it doesn't hurt the suspense or the storyline one bit and I loved the book! It took me back to how much I used to love the early Robert Ludlum books. It was actually kind of fun to see where technology was (or wasn't) in the mid-90s and you know while you're reading how it would be different today. Throughout the book, subtle nuances made you wonder if you had figured out the whodunit, but the end was stunning and although not a total surprise, still shocking. I will definitely read more of his books and I won't worry about when they were written.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 8, 2014
Posted August 8, 2014
Posted August 8, 2014
Posted August 5, 2014