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FaceOff Hardcover – June 3, 2014


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; First Edition/First Printing edition (June 3, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476762066
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476762067
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (525 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,314 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Baldacci and the International Thriller Writers have cobbled together what can only be called a thriller reader’s ultimate fantasy. How cool would it be if a pair of celebrated crime-fiction protagonists, the creations of different authors, teamed up together on a case, in a story jointly penned by the two writers? Even if it was just 1 pair, it would be pretty darn cool, but 11 pairs? Way cool. Start with the dream duo of Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch and Dennis Lehane’s Patrick Kenzie. Bosch is in Boston working a 15-year-old murder case when he spots another guy staking out the suspect’s address; naturally, the other guy is Kenzie. Another stellar pairing finds John Sandford’s Lucas Davenport, a world-class wiseass, joining forces with Jeffrey Deaver’s Lincoln Rhyme, who doesn’t suffer fools, gladly or otherwise. Other notable pairings include Lee Child’s Jack Reacher teamed with Joseph Finder’s Nick Heller, and Ian Rankin’s John Rebus alongside Peter James’ Roy Grace. Baldacci includes backstory for each entry and biographies of all the contributors. Great fun for thriller fans. --Wes Lukowsky

Review

“So good it demands a sequel.” (Publishers Weekly)

“A thriller reader’s ultimate fantasy. How cool would it be if a pair of celebrated crime-fiction protagonists, the creations of different authors, teamed up together on a case, in a story jointly penned by the two writers? Even if it was just 1 pair, it would be pretty darn cool, but 11 pairs? Way cool. . . . Great fun for thriller fans.” (Booklist)

"A marvelous anthology. This innovative concept entertains as each author works in concert with another to deliver a story worth every word on the page." (RT Book Reviews, 4.5 Star Review)

“In FaceOff, nearly two dozen authors take their most popular characters and have them interact in 11 stories. . . . Familiarity with the authors and their creations is a huge plus in reading this collection, but not knowing a particular character or writer should not be a deterrent. . . . Some great collaborations and stories.” (The Associated Press)

FaceOff is a unique offering in that it teams up some of the genre’s most esteemed authors in stories that allow their beloved protagonists to combine forces. . . . An impressive accomplishment that celebrates the genre in both style and substance. Enthusiasts will dig it for what it is—an abundance of chills and thrills delivered by an inspired lineup of literary heavyweights—while casual readers just might be tempted to pick it up for the sheer novelty of it all. Regardless of motivation, they will find themselves turning pages late into the night. This just may be the optimal summer read.” (Hartford Books Examiner)

“When I settle in with an anthology, it's that same wonderful feeling of being presented with a box of chocolates. You can start at one corner and methodically gorge yourself, or study the chart and pick out the caramels. With an anthology, you can start at page 1 and read through, or peruse the table of contents for favorite writers. If the anthology is good enough, it won't matter. And FaceOff is. In fact, it is brilliant. . . . The teaming up is what makes this anthology so special. It's a fair bet that fans will first turn to their favorite authors, but after devouring those stories, try the others. It is like a wonderful box of chocolates -- without the guilt.” (The Newark Star-Ledger)

FaceOff is like a literary Mortal Kombat.” (The Chicago Tribune)

“Pow! That’s the sound of thriller fans’ heads exploding when they hear the bold premise of this anthology. . . . This collection is 11 fever dreams come true.” (Reader’s Digest)

Customer Reviews

Great stories...was only disappointed by one story, and that was by one of my favorite authors (Lisa Gardner).
Terri Lamberti
Just when you think there is a possibility that the stories might get interesting, they abruptly end and move on to the next boring go nowhere story.
Ronnee Bienstock
Great reads by authors I am familiar with; very interesting to have two well known characters interacting in the same story!
Helen Croke

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

70 of 74 people found the following review helpful By G. Henson VINE VOICE on May 14, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This compilation of short stories by the best of the action thriller genre is on the whole very good. The writers are paired up and each contributes a character in a kind of literary mashup. I don't know why, but all the weaker stories are first up in the batting order. I was initially very disappointed as the first stories seemed only long enough to give the heroes an excuse for meeting with little story. After the third story, however, the enjoyment level increased measurably. One word of explanation, though—the cover uses the word "versus" when pairing up the authors. Neither they or their characters are working against one another with only a couple of exceptions. Most work together. Some of the pairings work better than others, but don't give up too soon. While I was familiar with the majority of the writers and their characters, I was exposed to a couple that I want to read more of. The mashup of characters is an interesting and unique opportunity to see these characters in the same plots, and, for the most part, it works.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By TUCSON ROBERT on June 20, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
FACE OFF, edited by David Baldacci, features eleven stories by 22 different authors (two authors team up to write each story). An introduction of several hundred words precedes each story explaining the authors’ backgrounds and how they worked together to develop their story.
The anthology opens with Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch and closes with Lee Child’s Jack Reacher—two great anchors. Out of the eleven stories there are some good, some bad but no ugly; some show brilliance and a couple are dogs. However, there’s an ample amount of good writing to make the book a worthwhile read. Following is my rating for each story:
REDEYE, with Harry Bosch—how can you go wrong with Bosch—he made it interesting. Rating, 4.
THE NICK OF TIME, takes place in Scotland and England. A weak plot with little going for it. Rating, 2.
GAS LIGHTING, a compelling tale, a page turner. Rating, 4.
THE LAUGHING BUDDHA, a long drawn out intriguing mystery. Rating, 4.
SURFING THE PANTHER, a fascinating storyline, a true legal page turner. Rating, 5.
RHYMES with PREY, intriguing, a worthwhile read. Rating, 4.
INFERNAL NIGHT, boring. Rating, 2.
PIT STOP, a fast paced criminal chase, a fun read. Rating, 5.
SILENT HUNT, unrealistic, but nevertheless a good read. Rating, 4.
THE DEVILS BONES, boring. Rating, 2.
GOOD AND VALUABLE CONSIDERATION, features Jack Reacher and Nick Heller. A bar scene and a fun read. Rating, 5.
For a short story book Face Off is not a bad read. My overall rating is, 4.
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86 of 102 people found the following review helpful By Brian Baker VINE VOICE on May 6, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I really enjoy short-story anthologies, both in the thriller/mystery and sci-fi genres. You get a lot of bang in a small package with a short story; a full story, usually with a punch ending, in a one-sitting read.

This collection was put together by the ITW (International Thriller Writers) group and edited by David Baldacci. ITW has published thriller anthologies before, some of which I've read, and I really enjoyed them. Usually, the stories are a mix from both established and new writers, affording us an opportunity to see our "usual" heroes in a different venue and/or context, as well as allowing us to become acquainted with upcoming talent.

The decision was made that for this anthology, all the contributors would be established thriller writers of series, and that they'd be paired up so that each of the 11 stories would be written by two of the authors, 22 authors in all. The idea would be that we readers would get to see our "favorite" series characters interacting with each other, in addition to solving the crime or whatever.

Sounded highly intriguing to me. This could be something very groundbreaking.

Unfortunately, I think it's a complete fizzle, for a host of reasons.

First of all, 22 authors. I read a lot of thrillers, but I was only truly familiar with the works of 12 of these people, which means that the characters of the other 10 authors were complete strangers to me. Therefore whatever "gimmick" they were bringing to the party flew completely past me. I suspect this is going to be the case with most readers, with the exception of maybe a few people with so much time on their hands that all they do is read thriller novels.
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32 of 39 people found the following review helpful By prisrob TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 29, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Thrillers, I had no idea some of the writers I followed were known as Thriller Writers. I always thought they were police procedural/mystery writers, but, now I know. In 2004, two thriller writers, Gayle Lyndsey and David Morrell initiated a group of fellow thriller writers. This began in Toronto, and today there are 2,500 members of the International Thriller Writers. They meet every July in New York City, at the Thrillerfest. They have no membership fees. They sustain their group by creating books that are sold to publishing houses, and the money is used to sustain the group. This book, 'Faceoff' is their latest creation.

This year the book is edited by David Baldacci. There are eleven short stories, each co-written by two authors. My two favorite stories follow: The first of the stories was written by Dennis Lehane vs. Michael Connolly, with Patrick Kenzie vs Harry Bosch. The story entitled, 'Red Eye', is one of the best. Right away we are caught up in a complex mystery with both detectives on the scene with their own point of view. The second, Ian Rankin ( my all time favorite writer) vs. Peter James, their alter egos, John Rebus vs. Roy Grace, 'In The Nick Of Time'. This pairing could have been tricky, but they pull it off. The other nine short stories are just as well written with the two pairings. The authors are: RL Stine vs. Douglas Preston, M.J. Rose vs. Lisa Gardner, Steve Martini vs. Linda Fairstein, Jeffrey Deaver vs. John Sanford, Heather Graham vs. F. Paul Wilson, Raymond Khoury vs. Linwood Barclay, John Lescroart vs. T. Jefferson Parker, Steve Berry vs. James Rollins, and Lee Child vs. Joseph Finder.

Outstanding thriller writers that are very well known. No short cuts were taken, the writing in every short story is exemplary and satisfying.
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