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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on October 2, 1999
This book hits the ground running. It doesn't allow you the typical expository, introductory period. Instead, it completely sweeps you away, practically from the very first page, into one of the more interesting and creative mystery storylines that you will ever read.
I felt completed engrossed by its stunningly realistic views into the inner workings of a presidential administration. The dialogue was so natural and the setting descriptions so vivid, that I often forgot that this was a novel. It felt more like I was actually witnessing events that were not meant to been seen by a Washington outsider, such as myself.
Quite an accomplishment for a first time novelist. Watch out, Clancy, there's a newcomer on the block.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 1999
This is a good one! Corn, the Washington editor of The Nation, makes effective use of his insider perspective, not to mention the D.C. locale. You'll have fun deciphering the references to classic political literature (where DID he get the idea for the stuttering faithful retainer). The roman a clef aspects come at you like a Pedro Martinez change-up; for example, the Clintonesque president is a Vietnam hero, not a draft evader.
Well-paced, written with a reporter's eye, and sophisticated, Deep Background is an all too believable account of the aftermath of a political assassination. Hang on tight as presential aide Nick Addis, CIA analyst Julia Lancette, and discredit Secret Service chief Clarence follow paths that ultimately converge on the inevitable, disillusioning truth.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on October 14, 1999
I am a great fan of thrillers and this is just top drawer. David combines the smartest of prose with the greatest dose of real-life inside-the beltway insight. When my very favorite, Ross Thomas, passed away a few years ago I was sure he could never be replaced. Hey.. Ross.. old buddy, catch this!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 16, 2000
This book has all the elements for a highly charged political tour de force -- a presidential assassination, White House intrigue, deep cover hit squad, conspiracy at the CIA, don't ask-don't tell Marines, etc. Unfortunately, the elements are handled in too rambling and disjointed a manner to work. Even the foray into the wonderful city of New Orleans is stiff and wooden and, ultimately, boring. The central character, White House aide Nick Addis, just can't seem to catch a break. Everyone he comes in contact with while searching for answers about the assassination of President Hanover -- and whether a shady land deal back in Hanover's home state of Louisiana where he was governor has any bearing -- ends up dead, maimed, or missing. All of this should have provided fodder for some super-charged action and complexity of plot, but it just doesn't happen. How deeply knowledgeable about or even involved in the assassination plot is the widowed First Lady, or the Vice President-cum-new president, or assorted other Cabinet members and government officials? By the end of the book, I was still in the dark about exactly what happened, why it happened, or "who done it" all. At 370 pages, this was a good length to read in 1 sitting; instead, it took me 5 days, with 2 other books read in between. The author obviously has a deep working knowledge of the inner workings of Washington but, alas, that is not enough to make the concept of this offering work -- which is too bad, because it SHOULD have worked.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2000
Despite this novel starting out like another political thriller in which the Bad Guys are always the Right Wing and the heroes are the Liberals, Corn actually borrows much of his material from today's White House to paint some unflattering pictures of a Presidency far too similar to Clinton's (Obscure land deals, a political megalomaniac wife, etc. Only Monica was missing). As the plot unravelled, however, I ended up enjoying the story quite a bit. There were quite a number of characters to keep track of, and Corn wasn't able to make them interesting enough to remember consistently which probably caused me to miss some character or plot nuances. Overall, I give it 3.5 stars - But I rounded up on the review.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 30, 1999
Who is this David Corn guy and where has he been hiding? Well, regardless of where he's been, he's here now. And he has written a breathtaking, heartstopping political thriller--perhaps the best Washington-insider novel since Jim Grady's "Six Days of the Condor," which was cut in half for the Robert Redford movie. Who will play Nick Addis in the film that will surely be made from Corn's "Deep Background"?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 20, 1999
David Corn is one great writer. The intrigue and suspense kept me gripped until the end. I can't wait for his next thriller!
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on September 26, 1999
Combine the political acumen of Allen Drury with the plotmanship of John Grisham. Throw in some flashes of wit and plays on every political cliche of recent years (Governor-Presidential candidate personally oversees execution of retarded black man for campaign advantage; First Lady as co-President and ambitious candidate; Chappaquiddick-style drowning of appealing young woman; corrupt covert operations with high-level approval, etc.), and you have the flavor of David Corn's impressive debut novel, Deep Background. The President is killed, but not by a conspiracy. Even the cover-up isn't truly conspiratorial. But the killer's motive, and the lethal efforts of high officials to prevent its disclosure, drive this complex and (because it's so very plausible) frightening tale that will leave you hungry for real-world heroes like Corn's.
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on September 21, 1999
This is a thriller par excellence! It has action and probably the most exciting car chase ever. The details engage one's attention and the plot isever thickening, creating the strong desire to keep turning the pages to find out what happens next. Entering the not-so-hallowed halls of Washington is eye-opening and Corn's style of writing makes it an adventure worth taking. Not to be missed!!!!
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on October 2, 1999
Deep Background kept my attention from the first page to the last. The attention to detail was amazing. I bought it just as hurricane Floyd hit and started reading. As I finished it, I realized that the storm was over. Congratulations to the author, David Corn, on a wonderful novel.
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