Book Review | Absolute Power by David Baldacci

Title: Absolute Power
Author: David Baldacci
Category: FICTION

Subformat: CD (AUDIO)
Edition: Unabridged
Publish Date: 1/16/2010
Price: $24.98/$29.98
ISBN: 9781607883210

From the Publisher:

Available for the first time Unabridged on CD in an all-new recording by Scott Brick, the first of the blockbuster thrillers by New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci. The book that will change the way you think about Washington – and power – forever. In a heavily guarded mansion in a posh Virginia suburb, a man and a woman start to make love, trapping a burglar behind a secret wall. Then the passion turns deadly, and the witness is running into the night. Because what he has just seen is a brutal slaying involving the president of the United States.

Luther Whitney is the career break-in artist who’s in the wrong place at the wrong time. Alan Richmond is the charming U.S. president with the power to commit any crime. And Jack Graham is the young attorney caught in a vortex between absolute truth and… ABSOLUTE POWER

My Review:Here’s the thing about Absolute Power: It’s long. We’re talking 17 disks, for a total of roughly 19 hours of listening. There’s another thing about Absolute Power, though: It is so good, you will find yourself hanging on every word. David Baldacci’s Absolute Power is without question one of the most intense and riveting dramatic novels I’ve come across.

The story opens up with Luther Whitney, career criminal, committing the biggest score of his life. He is inside a bedroom vault that just happens to be on the viewing side of a one-way mirror into the bedroom. He’s planned the caper out to the last detail, but as Luther admits, something could always go wrong. As it turns out, it couldn’t go more wrong. In the middle of his heist, some unexpected visitors happen by. One is the woman of the house. With her is her lover for the evening and several of his companions. His entourage happens to include the chief of staff and two Secret Service agents.

Luther watches in disbelief  and soon-to-be horror as the intoxicated president of the United States begins manhandling the diminutive woman. The situation escalates until the agents burst into the room, shooting the woman to death. They then proceed to scrub away any evidence of their involvement but accidentally leave behind one vital piece of evidence, which is snatched by Luther.

These events are merely the starting point in an exquisitely written tale that is overflowing with betrayal, deception, secrets, heartache, and regret. We are acquainted with characters of great depth whose lives (and careers) are intricately woven together, causing the deeds of one to have a significant ripple effect with the potential to devastate many. From one chapter to the next, you’re left wondering who exactly does have the power in this complicated situation? Is it Luther, the eyewitness with the evidence that could topple a president? Or does the commander in chief have absolute power, simply by virtue of the office he holds? What about his chief of staff and two Secret Service agents who are working behind the scenes, manipulating the investigation and conspiring at all costs to cover up the crime at all costs? Then there’s the filthy rich widower, a man whose wealth can buy him anything  including power. Luther’s attorney, Jack Graham, sits at the center of at all, trying to juggle his relationships with Luther, Luther’s daughter, his law firm partners, the head detective on the case you get the idea.

I found myself listening intently, anxious for the truth to get out, but savoring every twist, turn, and obstacle that Baldacci tossed in my direction. On more than one occasion, my eyes were open wide as I leaned in to hear every syllable, waiting for a resolution to one conflict or another – or just anticipating what could possibly happen next. It is a breathtaking and unforgettable ride to find the truth.

Just to warn you, there are several sex scenes. They are not horribly graphic, but they are descriptive.

Disclaimer: I received this book from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. No monetary compensation was involved.


Kristin is the mom of two boys and two girls and lives outside of Philadelphia, PA. She loves to read, write, shop, and spend as much of her summer as possible at the Jersey shore!

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