The Whole Truth (Shaw Series #1)

The Whole Truth (Shaw Series #1)

3.6 190
by David Baldacci

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"Matt, I need a war."

So begins David Baldacci's new book--a thriller unlike any he's written before. "Matt" is Mathew Pender, of Pender Associates--a shadowy organization that specializes in managing seemingly impossible situations for its clients. Sometimes, those services extend to managing--and creating--armed conflict. When Matt Pender is asked by his

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"Matt, I need a war."

So begins David Baldacci's new book--a thriller unlike any he's written before. "Matt" is Mathew Pender, of Pender Associates--a shadowy organization that specializes in managing seemingly impossible situations for its clients. Sometimes, those services extend to managing--and creating--armed conflict. When Matt Pender is asked by his client--the largest defense contractor in the world--to manipulate two nations against each other, a shocking and surprising series of events are set in motion that will possibly bring the world to the brink of World War III.*

In this epic thriller with a global backdrop, David Baldacci delivers all the twists and turns, compelling characters, and can't-put-it-down pacing that readers have come to expect from this master storyteller.

Editorial Reviews

Nicholas Creel needs a war. The head honcho at the world's largest and most aggressive defense contractor is hankering for a bloody hoedown to bolster his company's coffers. That puts him in the crosshairs of investigative journalist Katie James and a mysterious covert op known only as Shaw. David Baldacci's thriller pulsates with intrigue and excitement.

Product Details

Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
Shaw Series, #1
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 7.40(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author

David Baldacci lives with his family in Virginia. He and his wife have founded the Wish You Well Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting literacy efforts across America. He invites you to visit him at and his foundation at

Brief Biography

Northern Virginia
Date of Birth:
August 5, 1960
Place of Birth:
Richmond, VIrginia
B.A. in Political Science, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1982; J.D., University of Virginia, 1986

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Whole Truth 3.6 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 190 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
In, The Whole Truth, Nicolas Creel, an international arms dealer slash world philanthropist, creates conflicts to fuel the demand for his products: weapons of mass destruction. When Creel targets Russia with a smear campaign, things start to get ugly. On the flip side of the coin, to keep out of prison, Baldacci's hero, Shaw, a man with a shady past and a reluctant future, does the bidding of a multinational intelligence agency. When Shaw's fiancé is murdered by Creel's henchmen Shaw vows to get even. Likeable yet recycled characters that lacked consistency and a familiar plot - megalomaniac wanting to control the world - almost ruined this story for me. In addition, portions of the book are stricken with the Talking Head Syndrome with information filtering through the point of view of no perceivable character, coming only from the author. In spite of all of this, I found myself wanting to continue reading the book to see how it all turned out. And in the end that's what it's all about... I think. -- Bob Avey, author of Twisted Perception, and Beneath a Buried House
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read all of David Baldacci's work and I always enjoy them. This book really intrigued me from the start. All new characters and a book setting that is not in America. The first line that comes to mind is 'Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.' As I finished the book, I found myself thinking more and more about the premise and I have continued to think about it for days. Quoting one more line, As Stan Moore has written, "Just because truth has been omitted, does not mean that truth is not true. Just because reality has not been perceived, does not mean that it is not real." I think David just keeps getting better and I applaud him for bringing new concepts to his readers.
fairywand More than 1 year ago
The Whole Truth by David Baldacci was a thrill a minute. But the really scary thing is, it leave you with the thought of is everything in the news propaganda. Are we that influenced by those who can twist the truth to their version. A wonderful read that is really thought provoking. I love Baldacci's writing style.
SP2 More than 1 year ago
Baldacci must have researched Dwight D. Eisenhower's farwell to the nation when he cautioned the country to "beware of the military industrial complex". The author takes Eisenhower's concerns to the extreme and weaves a page turning thriller that probably even the former president couldn't conceive. If you enjoyed the the author's story's about the Camel Club you are certain to be intrigued with his new character Shaw. A great read which I truly enjoyed. Thanks David Baldacci.
Econ_r6 More than 1 year ago
I have been looking for a new series to read and this might be it. Shaw is the type of character that I have been looking for. A new age James Bond meets John Clark (Jack Ryan Series). Nicholas Creel is a character with a great master plan. Does his good out weigh his bad? The build up was great. I never heard of the PM industry, but they seem very powerfull. The end . eh. Baldacci seemed like he had to end the story abruptly. I wouldn't mind if an arthor would not force an ending just to make sure it was a happy ending. It is a great book that some people may truly love. Me, it isn't a Clancy book, but I will read the next edition of the Shaw series.
RobRM More than 1 year ago
Stale themes and cliche characters. Baldacci's other books are much better.
KenCady More than 1 year ago
Yes, I read the whole book and found it a serviceable tale. But do we give Mr. Baldacci five stars because he is a famous author and has written many good books? Well, you can, but I won't. This book seems to have all the typical things thrillers have- bad guys, and usually one good super guy who can pull off stunts that the whole US government with all its' military cannot. Lots of last-minute luck and close calls. Things always seem to break just the right way. Okay, that's just fine. But how about trying something newer, or different, or riskier? A best selling author can surely take a chance, can't he?
Larreview More than 1 year ago
Fast paced, thrilling, a roller coaster of emotions in another Baldacci CLASSIC! Nicholas Creel of Ares Corp., one of the worlds largest arms dealers has seen his business under performing in recent years. Determined to return his business to a success, among other things, he hires a "perception manager". Dick Pender, of Pender and Asso. must convince the world that Russia, the Red Menace, is up to its old Soviet way, of murdering innocent people and instilling fear onto its people. Shaw who is forced to works for a secret agency to keep the world safe, or be sent to prison, makes it his mission to find and kill who ever is behind the smear campaign after someone very close to him is murdered to keep them from voicing their skepticism. A MUST READ!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well worth the time
Daigre More than 1 year ago
I enjoy espionage and this one tops the charts!
sandiek More than 1 year ago
Shaw has a huge problem. A good problem in a way, but a problem nonetheless. He has just proposed to the love of his life, Anna, and she has accepted. The problem? Shaw works for a secret agency of the government, and they don't want to let him leave. The work he does is very dangerous, and finding a replacement with his skills would be nearly impossible. Yet, married life is not a possiblity while he works for them in a job that means any day could be his last. As Shaw works through this issue, he catches the interest of Katie James, a two-time Pultizer-winning journalist. Katie is involved in the story of "The Red Menace", an expose of Russia's treatment of dissidents that is ramping back up the Cold War, and bringing China into the mix this time. Anna, who works for a think tank in London called the Phoenix Group, is also investigating this story. The Phoenix Group is brutally attacked by the organization behind the "Red Menace" story, and that attack brings Shaw and Katie together. They find what the reason behind the attack on the Phoenix Group, and the reason behind the entire Red Menace scenario is, and attempt to put the man behind the entire plot out of business. David Baldacci has written numerous thrillers, and The Whole Truth is another hit. Shaw is a strong figure who could easily turn into a character that an entire series could be written about. The plot is fast and furious, and the reader quickly comes to care about the characters. It grabs the reader by the throat and releases them, satisfied, once they finish reading the ending. This book is recommended for readers looking for an exciting read with lots of twists and turns.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Made my drive much more tolerable during stop-and-go traffic. I didn't mind having to stop as much BUT have listened to other books that made me want to drive around the block to listen to more of the story. This particular selection didn't accomplish that desire. I was more than ready to park and get in the house.
stone277 More than 1 year ago
I don't know why this book has so many negative reviews?.It a very good book,as much thrilling as the Camel Club series.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book held me until the end, but the main character was 'super-sized' in hero proportions and improbable. Some of the author's other books are much better. Still, based on the book, Baldacci got a nice tour of many countries out of the research.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have never posted an online book review before but 'The Whole Truth' has compelled me to do so. I packed 'Split Second' to read on my honeymoon and could not finish the first 20 pages. I thought it was shallow and poorly written. I vowed never to read another Baldacci book again. As time passed - and on the advice/coaxing of a friend - I decided to give the Camel Club series a try. I was fairly impressed. This led me to purchase 'The Whole Truth' two weeks ago. This is easily the worst book I have read in the last 5 years. The plot line is thin, the words are cliche'...if I had to read 'Remember Konstantin' one more time I thought I was going to throw the book out my bedroom window and the line about the sky filling with smoke from burning Konstantin t-shirts was ridiculous...and even for a fiction novel the idea that one defense contractor could wield that much influence over world politics is a joke. I kept reading because I thought the writing would eventually improve. It didn't. To steal from another reviewer - the only reason this book was published was purely on the merits of name recognition. Mr. Baldacci - if you can't think of an interesting, semi-believable storyline with plausible character development don't write the book. If anyone stays at Kona Village in Hawaii you will see my 'Split Second' donation at the resort library. I bet there are a few copies of 'The Whole Truth' there as well.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read many of Mr. Baldacci's novels and have found them all imteresting and absorbing. He is able to create riveting characters that stick with you long after you finish My compliments to him and to those who have helped him with his novels. Sincerely T. William Evans
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Who wrote this book? Must have been a middle school girl. Here we have a "spy" who doesn't know his fiance is following him on a ferry. How big is this ferry? He is crushed by emotion. If David is trying to create another Jack Reacher, he would do better if it was Jack's baby sister. I am a huge fan of David's but if this is the best he's got, he would be better off spending a few years of beach time and get refreshed. I just couldn't read beyond the phone call from his fiance, too lame for me. Get some rest and think of a new plot. Don't bring him back, he's too childish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed this book, but it started off kind of slow. Had put it away for awhile then came back to it. Get passed the first five chapters of character introduction before you decide to put it away. The story begins to reel you in soon after.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago