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Night Fall (Large Print) Hardcover – Large Print, November 22, 2004

4.1 out of 5 stars 909 customer reviews
Book 3 of 6 in the John Corey Series

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

John Corey, former NYPD homicide detective, assigned to the Federal Anti-Terrorist Task Force in the pre-millennium 90's, makes a return appearance in a thoughtful novel offering an alternative to the government's "official" position on what really happened to TWA Flight 800, which crashed off the Long Island coast in the summer of 1996. Accompanying his wife Kate to a memorial marking the five-year anniversary of the crash, Corey's curiosity is aroused by what appears to be a concerted effort by Kate's fellow federal agents to keep him--and her--from investigating a case that appears to be closed. Corey's detecting skills lead him to two witnesses to the crash, who were enjoying an adulterous interlude on the beach at the time the plane went down--and videotaping their sexual escapades while what appears to be a terrorist missile attack takes place in the background. What ratchets up the tension in this capably written thriller is what the reader knows but Corey doesn't as he heads for a showdown with those responsible for the official cover-up as the clock ticks down to the morning of September 11, 2001. DeMille's deft touch with a riddle wrapped in an enigma--what really happened to Flight 800--makes his "what if" scenario a more than plausible theory; you don't have to believe in conspiracies or government cover-ups to find his latest engrossing, entertaining, and enlightening. --Jane Adams

Amazon.com Exclusive Content

Nelson DeMille on Night Fall: An Exclusive Essay

It was a true story, the explosion of TWA Flight 800 off the coast of Long Island in 1996, that inspired Nelson DeMille to write the fictional Night Fall. Read this Amazon.com exclusive essay for insight into the coincidences that made this tragedy a subject DeMille couldn't ignore.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Demille's latest is sure to be a #1 bestseller—but it's also sure to be controversial. The book is centered on an investigation of the July 1996 crash of flight TWA 800, "when... a big Boeing 747 bound for Paris with 230 passengers and crew on board, exploded off the Atlantic coast of Long Island, sending all 230 souls to their deaths." In July 2001, Federal Anti-Terrorist Task Force detective John Corey, a brilliant, smart-ass detective last seen in Plum Island and The Lion's Game, accompanies his FBI agent wife, Kate Mayfield, to the fifth anniversary of the disaster. John, whose wife worked the crash in 1996, understands that Kate has brought him along because she doesn't buy the official finding of "mechanical failure" and wants him to mount his own investigation. There are 200 eyewitnesses who swear they saw a missile lift into the clear night sky and bring down the airplane, a charge dismissed by the CIA as an optical illusion. Though Corey is warned away from the investigation, like any good fictional detective, this only serves to spur him on. He uncovers evidence that a man and a woman, on the beach that fateful night videotaping their adulterous affair, inadvertently caught on tape the missile hitting the plane. The book is primarily about John tracking down the couple, but as the end nears, readers will begin to understand the perilous direction in which Demille is leading them. The pages will turn in a blur as a feeling of dread grows, until the end comes and one's worst fears are confirmed. Readers will think about this one for a long time.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Warner Books; 1 edition (December 15, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446577146
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446577144
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (909 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #664,111 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Tucker Andersen VINE VOICE on December 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Nelson DeMille has managed a truly remarkable feat; to write a suspenseful, taut, interesting and engaging novel about the crash into the ocean off Long Island on July 17,1996 of TWA Flight 800. The book is written in memory of the two hundred and thirty passengers and crew members who perished in that midair explosion; in my opinion he uses the flexibility available to the author of a work of fiction to discuss the alternate theories of the crash and perhaps come closer to the truth than any other discussions that I have read.

The supposedly fictional device which Demille uses to allow him to develop a believable storyline is that a couple engaged in adultery were videotaping themselves on a deserted beach near the site of the crash and caught the flash of light streaking towards the plane from the ocean surface that was seen by so many eyewitnesses but discounted by various alternative explanations in the official version of what caused the accident. Of course, the couple immediately flees the scene and as Chapter One ends they are entering their motel room and arguing about whether they should erase the tape or turn it over to the authorities given the huge personal price each of them would undoubtedly pay if their affair was made public in such a sensational fashion. (The X-rated scenes were very explicit and quite lengthy.)

The story resumes five years later. The investigation has been concluded with an explanation (the explosion of volatile fuel vapors in the nearly empty middle fuel tank) that failed to satisfy not only the usual conspiracy theorists and but the many individuals such as myself who simply remained confused about several elements of the official version of the causes of the crash.
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Format: Hardcover
On July 17, 1996, Trans World Airlines Flight 800 departed New York City's John F. Kennedy international Airport en route to Paris, France, carrying 212 passengers and 18 crew members. It departed JFK at about 8:16 p.m. eastern time and was climbing through 13,760 feet when, 14 minutes into the flight it exploded and fell into the Atlantic Ocean approximately 9 miles off Long Island. All 230 people onboard were killed. This is fact.

Nelson DeMille's novel "Night Fall" is based on factual evidence. The author explores the controversy surrounding the cause of the disaster which the US government still officially attributes to a spark in Flight 800's center fuel tank. The FBI interviewed 154 "credible" witnesses - including scientists, schoolteachers, Army personnel and business executives - who described seeing a missile heading through the sky just before TWA 800 exploded. They reported a "streak of light" hitting the plane just before it blew up." Their testimony was disregarded. Today, more than eight years after the event, questions are still being raised about the accuracy of the findings - about a possible cover-up. DeMille's research is impressive. He stresses that the novel draws on published accounts, plus interviews with investigators and eyewitnesses to the crash. He says he has "tried to represent all sides of this controversy," but adds that he has taken "dramatic liberties and literary licence when there is conflicting evidence." This is, after all, a work of fiction. It is up to the reader to determine the level of believability.

Bud Mitchell and Jill Winslow, an affluent couple in their thirties, are in the middle of an illicit love affair. They're set for a romantic evening at the beach.
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Night Fall is the latest political/detective thriller by my favorite author, Nelson DeMille. This novel features Detective John Corey, formerly of the NYPD, again dealing with terrorists and a mystery to solve. I am not going to get into the story for fear of dropping a "spoiler." Suffice to say, the story deals with the crash of Flight 800 and what might have caused it.

The John Corey character was the protagonist in "Plum Island" which I thought was one of the best detective novels I ever read. He continued in "The Lion's Game" which was also excellent. I thought that "Night Fall" moved at a snappier pace than "The Lion's Game" and frankly it really kept me turning the pages. The only reason that I deprived "Night Fall" of that fifth star is that I thought that "Plum Island" was even better. But this is an excellent, superb novel, and comes highly recommended.

DeMille, like a number of contemporary authors (Tom Clancy comes to mind) sometimes has a tendency to write a longer novel than necessary to tell a story. I personally thought that his novels "Up Country" and "The Lion's Game" were examples of this. Now, for DeMille lovers (like me) this is no problem because we cannot get enough of DeMille's always-excellent writing, but it may put off newcomers. Both "Plum Island" and now "Night Fall" avoid this issue. These are well-written, fast-paced stories with believable characters, a solid plot, and a storyline that moves quickly and effectively. "Night Fall" will not disappoint, and it is good to see DeMille return to a sparer, leaner form of writing. This is not to say that the novel lacks depth. Not at all. One of DeMille's strengths is that he makes his characters become real, and this is certainly the case in "Night Fall.
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