Books by David Baldacci

David Baldacci was born in Virginia, in 1960, where he currently resides. He received a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Virginia Commonwealth University and a law degree from the University of Virginia. Mr. Baldacci practiced law for nine years


ONE GOOD DEED by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 9, 2019

"Archer will be a great series character for fans of crime fiction. Let's hope the cigarettes don't kill him."
Thriller writer Baldacci (A Minute to Midnight, 2019, etc.) launches a new detective series starring World War II combat vet Aloysius Archer. Read full book review >
THE STARS BELOW by David Baldacci
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 26, 2019

"Awful on a number of levels—but tidily over at last. (glossary) (Fantasy. 11-13)"
The rebellion against an evil archmage and his bowler-topped minions wends its way to a climax. Read full book review >
THE WIDTH OF THE WORLD by David Baldacci
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 28, 2017

"A quest fantasy that moves further into mediocrity despite plenty of borrowed notions and tropes. (glossary) (Fantasy. 11-13)"
Vega Jane and her cohorts at last find the home base of the evil wizards who have conquered the world—and discover that rebellion carries a high price. Read full book review >
THE LAST MILE by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 19, 2016

"Riddled with implausible situations and light on the research, this plodding tale is for die-hard Baldacci fans only."
Amos Decker, Baldacci's hulking former NFL player and one-time police investigator, is back for a case involving death row inmates, a brutal double murder, and a shattered sports career. Read full book review >
THE KEEPER by David Baldacci
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 8, 2015

"Not a stand-alone episode, but definitely a pleaser for creature-feature fans. (Fantasy. 11-13)"
Baldacci piles on the monsters as he sends Vega Jane and her hunky, clever sidekick Delph through the magical Quag in this follow-up to The Finisher (2014).Read full book review >
MEMORY MAN by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 21, 2015

"Although the crimes and their perpetrators are far-fetched, readers will want to see Decker back on the printed page again and again. "
Perennial bestseller Baldacci unveils an offbeat hero with an unusual skill set and tragic past who takes on the evil mastermind behind a devastating school shooting. Read full book review >
THE ESCAPE by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 18, 2014

"A book that will entertain some readers but won't linger after the final page."
Steel-jawed John Puller is back for another round with the bad guys in Baldacci's latest action thriller. Read full book review >
FACEOFF by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: June 3, 2014

"Promoting 'face-offs' pitting one author against another makes no sense since the goal here is cohesion. That said, this anthology handles its concept well."
Dennis Lehane's Patrick Kenzie, Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch, Ian Rankin's John Rebus and Lee Child's Jack Reacher are among the popular sleuths who mix it up in this story anthology from the International Thriller Writers trade group. Read full book review >
THE TARGET by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 22, 2014

"Robie and Reel fans will thrill to see their favorite spies back in action, no matter what the setting."
Baldacci picks up where he left off with CIA assassins Will Robie and Jessica Reel in this no-holds-barred tale of perfidy and murder at the highest level. Read full book review >
THE FINISHER by David Baldacci
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 4, 2014

"Like many crossover efforts from name-brand authors: overstuffed and underinspired. (Fantasy. 11-13)"
Baldacci takes a late and none-too-nimble leap aboard the children's-fantasy bandwagon with this tale of a rebellious teenager in a town surrounded by a monster-ridden forest. Read full book review >
THE FORGOTTEN by David Baldacci
Released: Nov. 20, 2012

"A solid thriller—though someone tell the fact checker that Bulgaria was never part of the Soviet Union."
"The next time you go on R and R, pick a safer place than Paradise." Mysterian Baldacci (The Sixth Man, 2011, etc.) serves up a gently ironic tale of mayhem, this time set in idyllic Florida. Read full book review >
ZERO DAY by David Baldacci
Released: Nov. 1, 2011

"Relentlessly formulaic, but Puller is a strong enough protagonist to keep the pages turning."
In his 22nd, Baldacci (The Sixth Man, 2011, etc.) introduces a soldier/sleuth who fights like Rambo and thinks like Holmes. Read full book review >
ONE SUMMER by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: June 14, 2011

"Baldacci's muscle-bound style doesn't do subtle: He is best at choreographing fight scenes, rescues and dire brushes with severe weather, all of which, thankfully, are here in abundance. Overall, though, the stilted language and trite sentimentalism are yawn-inducing."
Baldacci (Hell's Corner, 2010, etc.) departs from thriller mode to pen this often-maudlin tale of familial reinvention. Read full book review >
THE SIXTH MAN by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 19, 2011

"Authentic scenario, mystery piled on misdirection and more double-crosses than a tic-tac-toe tournament."
To keep al-Qaeda zealots, megalomaniac North Koreans with nukes and other bad guys at bay, gigabytes of real-time intelligence stream to the Wall, there to be collated and conceptualized by one man, the Analyst. Read full book review >
HELL'S CORNER by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Nov. 9, 2010

"Strap on your Glock. Grab an extra magazine of shells. There's danger and excitement lurking around this Corner."
The Russian mafia, the Mexican drug cartel, billions of dollars and bombs targeting presidents and prime ministers combine to entrap John Carr (aka Oliver Stone) and the Camel Club into another quick-paced adventure. Read full book review >
DELIVER US FROM EVIL by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 20, 2010

"The characters are paper thin, the plot twists mostly telegraphed, but the betting here is that the Baldacci army will once again show the stuff it's made of. "
In Baldacci's 19th (True Blue, 2009, etc.), boy and girl monster-hunters meet cute. Read full book review >
TRUE BLUE by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Oct. 27, 2009

"Gracelessly written, often implausible and inescapably pulpy, but also fast-paced and entertaining. "
Baldacci (Divine Justice, 2008, etc.) presents a law-enforcement sister act, curtain-raiser for a new series that has every chance of keeping the pot boiling. Read full book review >
DIVINE JUSTICE by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Nov. 4, 2008

"Tighter than the writer's most recent efforts, but far from spellbinding."
Baldacci (The Whole Truth, 2008, etc.) moves his recurring Camel Club characters far enough offstage to let tough guy hero Oliver Stone take on a mean mountain town singlehandedly (for a while, at least) in something of the fashion of Lee Child's Jack Reacher. Read full book review >
STONE COLD by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Nov. 6, 2007

"Baldacci (Simple Genius, 2007, etc.) can do this stuff in his sleep now, but it's still entertaining enough."
Baldacci's recurring Camel Club uses its special talents to help a scam artist in distress. Read full book review >
SIMPLE GENIUS by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 24, 2007

"Lamer than usual. Has the formula at last run thin enough to keep Baldacci off the bestseller list?"
Murders, kidnappings, international conspiracies, internecine warfare between alphabet agencies, mad scientists and, oh yes, buried treasure, as Baldacci pours it on. Read full book review >
THE COLLECTORS by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Oct. 17, 2006

"A tepid follow-up to The Camel Club (2005), with few surprises."
Helped by a beautiful grifter, the "Camel Club"—the four-man band of conspiracy theorists—returns to battle a threat to national security. Read full book review >
THE CAMEL CLUB by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Oct. 25, 2005

"Sure to be a bestseller, but the guy's phoning it in."
A lukewarm would-be potboiler of uninvolving intrigue about a kooky quartet of conspiracy theorists—one by the name of "Oliver Stone"—who witness the murder of a federal agent. Read full book review >
FREDDY AND THE FRENCH FRIES by David Baldacci
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 1, 2005

Another bestselling author for adults tries for the youth market, with all too typically dismal results. Sprinkling references to butts, poop and vomit throughout, Baldacci introduces a nine-year-old inventor who uses "potato-nanotechnology" to turn regular spuds into a quintet of walking, talking, brightly colored giant French fries who help him to rout a gang of bullies armed with paintball guns and to save his dad's vegetarian burger business. Despite a plethora of cheap laffs, even indiscriminate readers will find the hackneyed characters and trite, slow-moving plot unappetizing. Illustrations not seen. (Fantasy. 9-11)Read full book review >
HOUR GAME by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Oct. 26, 2004

"Lame but, like its predecessors, bound for bestsellerdom."
A serial killer with a sense of history is the baddie in this latest from Baldacci, one of the reigning kings of potboilers (Split Second, 2003, etc.). Read full book review >
SPLIT SECOND by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Sept. 30, 2003

"Assembly-line legal thriller: flat characters, lame scene-setting, and short but somehow interminable action: a lifeless concoction."
Two defrocked Secret Service Agents investigate the assassination of one presidential candidate and the kidnapping of another. Read full book review >
THE CHRISTMAS TRAIN by David Baldacci
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 1, 2002

"Harmless, obvious, and about as full of surprises as a timetable."
A long-haul potboiler from the indefatigable Baldacci (Wish You Well, 2000, etc.) introduces a hardcase reporter to America and wins him his true love. Read full book review >
WISH YOU WELL by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Oct. 24, 2000

"Well-meant but not very well-written family saga."
A best-selling thriller author turns to down-home melodrama—with mixed results at best. Read full book review >
SAVING FAITH by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Nov. 18, 1999

Wayward politicos, bickering alphabet agencies, conspiracies rampant, gore galore—it must be time for another of Baldacci's ponderous potboilers (The Simple Truth, 1998, etc.). Beltway insiders know that as lobbyists go, Faith Lockhart is top of the line. Attractive, smart, energetic, she can charm with the best of them. It's true, of course, that lobbyists, even winsome ones, are not universally adored. Even so, the position adopted by Bob Thornhill, the CIA's "most distinguished cold war soldier" and current director of operations, seems extreme. He wants Faith killed. It seems she interferes with something he calls his grand plan, which apparently has to do with keeping America safe, though exactly how Faith qualifies as a threat isn't all that easy to grasp. At any rate, Thornhill sets a nasty trap for her, which Faith escapes thanks to the derring-do of p.i. Lee Adams. At first an accidental savior, Lee gets more invested in his new assignment when he falls in love. The two go on the lam, with Thornhill's spooks a hot breath behind them. The FBI is also on their trail, since one of its agents was gunned down in the trap meant to finish Faith, and the feebies can't decide just where it is that Faith fits in. But quick-thinking Lee rises to all challenges to keep saving Faith. Though representatives of both agencies blanket the airport, he spirits her out of D.C., and they flee to the safe house provident Faith bought years ago against a rainy day. There they consummate their love. But it's there too that the chase will end, setting the stage for a tableau of spooks vs. feebies blasting away in an updated version of the OK Corral. Graceless prose and shaky plotting don—t help, but it's those tacky, comic-strip villains that really do in the suspense. Read full book review >
THE SIMPLE TRUTH by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Nov. 18, 1998

A tiresome potboiler in which an appeal to the US Supreme Court sets off a killing spree that produces enough corpses for each justice to go one-on-one. Rufus Harms was put away for murdering a little girl, and for 25 years that was okay with him because he thought he was guilty. But now, by dint of bureaucratic snafu, he learns the real story. On that horrific night, he was drugged—for reasons of a sketchy nature—by a group of wicked conspirators; ergo, he had no control over his behavior. Rufus is no mental giant, yet even he can see he may have an out. He contacts his lawyer, the reluctant Samuel Rider, and intimidates him into filing an appeal before the Supreme Court. One fateful morning, then, Michael Fiske, the brightest and best of the Supreme Court clerks, opens the Court's mail, spots the Rider-Harms document, and decides to steal it, hying himself off to the jailhouse to offer Rufus help. This very act tips off the suddenly wary conspirators, and, naturally, they kill Michael. Enter John, Michael's brother, a former cop, currently a somehow idealistic defense attorney, who vows to search out the perp, in turn making himself a suspect. And then, naturally, there's Sara, a superbrilliant, incredibly beautiful lawyer, whose faith in John is immediate and unshakable. Together, they sniff out clues, a process that takes them into the cloistered chambers of the highest court in the land, where, according to Baldacci (The Winner, 1997, etc.), the justices behave like ill-tempered children—except for the lone woman on the Court who behaves and talks like a character out of a romance novel: "Sara respected your brother," she tells John, "but her heart lies elsewhere." In the final, bloody act, the villain is revealed and denounced amid a Hamlet—like body count. Just another big, silly book about lawyers. (First printing of 500,000) Read full book review >
THE WINNER by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Dec. 2, 1997

Irritatingly trite woman-in-periler from lawyer-turned-novelist Baldacci. Moving away from the White House and the white-shoe Washington law firms of his previous bestsellers (Absolute Power, 1996; Total Control, 1997), Baldacci comes up with LuAnn Tyler, a spunky, impossibly beautiful, white-trash truck stop waitress with a no-good husband and a terminally cute infant daughter in tow. Some months after the birth of Lisa, LuAnn gets a phone call summoning her to a make-shift office in an unrented storefront of the local shopping mall. There, she gets a Faustian offer from a Mr. Jackson, a monomaniacal, cross-dressing manipulator who apparently knows the winning numbers in the national lottery before the numbers are drawn. It seems that LuAnn fits the media profile of what a lottery winner should be—poor, undereducated but proud—and if she's willing to buy the right ticket at the right time and transfer most of her winnings to Jackson, she'll be able to retire in luxury. Jackson fails to inform her, however, that if she refuses his offer, he'll have her killed. Before that can happen, as luck would have it, LuAnn barely escapes death when one of husband Duane's drug deals goes bad. She hops on a first-class Amtrak sleeper to Manhattan with a hired executioner in pursuit. But executioner Charlie, one of Jackson's paid handlers, can't help but hear wedding bells when he sees LuAnn cooing with her daughter. Alas, a winning $100- million lottery drawing complicates things. Jackson spirits LuAnn and Lisa away to Sweden, with Charlie in pursuit. Never fear. Not only will LuAnn escape a series of increasingly violent predicaments, but she'll also outwit Jackson, pay an enormous tax bill to the IRS, and have enough left over to honeymoon in Switzerland. Too preposterous to work as feminine wish-fulfillment, too formulaic to be suspenseful. (Book-of-the-Month Club main selection) Read full book review >
TOTAL CONTROL by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 16, 1997

In a hugger-mugger attempt to follow up his bestselling Absolute Power (1996), Baldacci pits a young widow against corporate villains who want her silenced at all costs. When her husband Jason apparently dies in the crash of a jetliner bound from Washington to L.A., Sidney Archer's near- perfect world implodes. A high-powered attorney working on the latest merger planned by Triton Global (a high-tech multinational that employed Jason on hush-hush computer projects), she can't accept that the beloved father of her precocious little daughter Amy is dead. Sidney's subliminal faith is not misplaced. Jason, who had shopped his company's darkest secrets in an effort to make a quick financial killing, switched planes before takeoff and is alive but not well in Seattle. On the day of his funeral, Sidney hears from him via phone. She keeps her own counsel, but Lee Sawyer (an FBI agent assigned to the case) is suspicious because available evidence suggests that Jason not only sabotaged the downed aircraft but also engineered a megabuck embezzlement. Presciently, however, the missing man had encrypted his proof of Triton's misdeeds on a duplicate disk that he mailed to himself before disappearing. Eager to get a printout that could clear Jason, Sidney sets out on a roundabout odyssey that takes her from suburban Virgina to Manhattan and points north. Although Triton's corrupt CEO and his murderous, stop-at-nothing minions are on her trail, clever Sidney foils them at almost every turn. With help from a besotted Sawyer, the pistol-packin' mama also begins unraveling the mystery of her mate's vanishing act. In a violent climactic confrontation on the stormy coast of Maine, the two learn the truth about an immense conspiracy in which Jason's fate is but a sideshow. A talky, tedious tale of an unlikely heroine's desperate life on the run, longer on confusion than suspense or narrative coherence. (Main selection of the Literary Guild; $500,000 ad/promo; author tour) Read full book review >
ABSOLUTE POWER by David Baldacci
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 18, 1996

The mother of all presidential cover-ups is the centerpiece gimmick in this far-fetched thriller from first-novelist Baldacci, a Washington-based attorney. In the dead of night, while burgling an exurban Virginia mansion, career criminal Luther Whitney is forced to conceal himself in a walk-in closet when Christine Sullivan, the lady of the house, arrives in the bedroom he's ransacking with none other than Alan Richmond, President of the US. Through the one-way mirror, Luther watches the drunken couple engage in a bout of rough sex that gets out of hand, ending only when two Secret Service men respond to the Chief Executive's cries of distress and gun down the letter-opener-wielding Christy. Gloria Russell, Richmond's vaultingly ambitious chief of staff, orders the scene rigged to look like a break-in and departs with the still befuddled President, leaving Christy's corpse to be discovered at another time. Luther makes tracks as well, though not before being spotted on the run by agents from the bodyguard detail. Aware that he's shortened his life expectancy, Luther retains trusted friend Jack Graham, a former public defender, but doesn't tell him the whole story. When Luther's slain before he can be arraigned for Christy's murder, Jack concludes he's the designated fall guy in a major scandal. Meanwhile, little Gloria (together with two Secret Service shooters) hopes to erase all tracks that might lead to the White House. But the late Luther seems to have outsmarted her in advance with recurrent demands for hush money. The body count rises as Gloria's attack dogs and Jack search for the evidence cunning Luther's left to incriminate not only a venal Alan Richmond but his homicidal deputies. The not-with-a-bang-but-a-whimper climax provides an unsurprising answer to the question of whether a US president can get away with murder. For all its arresting premise, an overblown and tedious tale of capital sins. (Film rights to Castle Rock; Book-of-the-Month selection) Read full book review >