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The 500: A Novel (Mike Ford Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Matthew Quirk
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (183 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $8.00
Kindle Price: $7.49
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Sold by: Hachette Book Group

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Book Description

A gripping thriller debut, set deep in the heart of the world's most powerful political arena

A year ago, fresh out of Harvard Law School, Mike Ford landed his dream job at the Davies Group, Washington's most powerful consulting firm. Now, he's staring down the barrel of a gun, pursued by two of the world's most dangerous men. To get out, he'll have to do all the things he thought he'd never do again: lie, cheat, steal-and this time, maybe even kill.

Mike grew up in a world of small-stakes con men, learning lessons at his father's knee. His hard-won success in college and law school was his ticket out. As the Davies Group's rising star, he rubs shoulders with "The 500," the elite men and women who really run Washington -- and the world. But peddling influence, he soon learns, is familiar work: even with a pedigree, a con is still a con.

Combining the best elements of political intrigue and heart-stopping action, THE 500 is an explosive debut, one that calls to mind classic thrillers like The Firm and Presumed Innocent. In Mike Ford, readers will discover a new hero who learns that the higher the climb, the harder -- and deadlier -- the fall.

Books In This Series (2 Books)
Complete Series


  • Editorial Reviews

    Review

    "A thundering David-and-Goliath tale of corruption...This is a real page turner, with high stakes action that doesn't stop. Expect this to be one of the season's most talked-about debut thrillers. A sequel is in the offing and will be much anticipated." (Michele Leber, Booklist (Starred Review) )

    "Quirk's engaging first novel transplants the milieu of Grisham's The Firm to the world of political lobbyists...Quirk supplies just enough characterization and journalistic detail of Washington, D.C. life to ground his story as he launches into a streamlined, gripping man-on-the-run thriller." (Publishers Weekly )

    Review

    "A thundering David-and-Goliath tale of corruption...This is a real page turner, with high stakes action that doesn't stop. Expect this to be one of the season's most talked-about debut thrillers. A sequel is in the offing and will be much anticipated." (Michele Leber, Booklist (Starred Review) )

    "Quirk's engaging first novel transplants the milieu of Grisham's The Firm to the world of political lobbyists...Quirk supplies just enough characterization and journalistic detail of Washington, D.C. life to ground his story as he launches into a streamlined, gripping man-on-the-run thriller." (Publishers Weekly )

    Product Details

    • File Size: 958 KB
    • Print Length: 337 pages
    • Publisher: Reagan Arthur Books; 1 edition (June 5, 2012)
    • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B005SCRX2S
    • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Not Enabled
    • Lending: Not Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #185,170 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    3.8 out of 5 stars
    (183)
    3.8 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    135 of 158 people found the following review helpful
    1.0 out of 5 stars Hard to believe the raves June 28, 2012
    By katzzz
    Format:Hardcover
    I admit I didn't get past the first 50 pages because the author's style was not to my liking -- pedestrian thriller stuff and not very believable. But that's not why I'm writing. I looked over the Amazon reviews and I was struck by the similarity of the five star reviews, all gushing gee whiz-this-book-is-so-exciting-I-couldn't-put-it-down, with little else to say except for maybe a brief plot summary straight out of the press release. All of which makes these "reviews" seem suspicious, don't you think? I'm sure a few are from real readers who enjoyed the book, but most of them seem fake. Heck, even some of the three star reviews are glowing recommendations, as if they were planted on purpose so as not to make them appear like obvious put up jobs. I usually find Amazon reader reviews informative and entertaining, but what I smell is a disingenuous marketing campaign in a forum where it does not belong. Boo.
    Was this review helpful to you?
    75 of 88 people found the following review helpful
    1.0 out of 5 stars poorly executed Grisham rip-off January 31, 2013
    Format:Hardcover
    It takes a bad book for me not to finish reading it but in this case it was a relief. If Grisham wasn't so wealthy he could sue for copyright infringement because this book is an blatant ripoff of The Firm. Instead of Mitch having a brother in jail in the 500 it's the father. Too many similarities to overlook and poor writing, characters, plot, etc.
    I did not read any reviews before taking this book out of the library so had no preconceptions.

    I can understand why some people would like this book if they hadn't read any Grisham but once you've read good writing you will not be able to put up with a poor copy job. (I will stipulate that not all of Grisham novels are top notch, just the majority).
    Was this review helpful to you?
    28 of 35 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars "Every Man Has A Price" June 29, 2012
    By Ethan
    Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
    "Every man has a price". That seems to be the motivating factor in the debut novel, "The 500", by Matthew Quirk. In the book, Quirk depicts the inner workings of Washington D.C.'s five-hundred most influential people, through an imaginative and engaging thriller.

    Mike Ford is an outsider. As a student at the prestigious Harvard Law, Mike works hard to live up to the societal standards of his affluent classmates. Unlike his peers, Mike, the son of a convicted felon, has grown up in a world of crime. After his disease stricken mother passed away, he was left with a jailed father, his mother's medical bills, and the choice to either make a better life for himself or meet the same fate as his father.

    A standout at Harvard, Mike is given the opportunity to be an associate at The Davies Group, a powerful consulting firm in Washington. The group is paid by individuals, corporations, and special interest groups to influence the movers and shakers of Washington, the 500. Henry Davis, who formed the company, sees a spark of himself in Mike and quickly appoints him to a high profile deal that could lead to his partnership.

    Essentially, The Davies Group uses the knowledge that "every man has a price" to find ways to "influence" the heavy players in the D.C. scene. Mikes street knowledge helps him to climb the ladder, providing more fortune, connections, and prestige than he could ever have dreamed of. When Davies pulls Mike off of his major deal, Mike immediately suspects foul play. He enters a conspiracy that threatens everything he has worked for and even his life.

    Matthew Quirk has been compared to veteran legal thriller author John Grisham.
    Read more ›
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    24 of 30 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars Exciting June 7, 2012
    Format:Hardcover
    Matthew Quirk's debut novel, The 500, has arrived just in time to please those summer readers who love a heart-pounding fast-paced plot. Protagonist Mike Ford has been recruited out of Harvard to work for the Davies Group, the most powerful consulting firm in D.C. Much of the action in the novel is so implausible that every reader's willing suspension of disbelief is severely tested. I can almost imagine Quirk's strain in deciding how to place Ford into a particular sticky situation, and then struggling to get him out. I kept reading because I found the excitement to become fun as the novel progressed, and once I gave in, it was easy to reach the end. I'm always willing to overlook a few clunky elements in a debut novel, and I was entertained by this one. Readers willing to give a first-time novelist a try should consider reading this novel.

    Rating: Three-star (Recommended)
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    5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Like a frog in boiling water... June 14, 2012
    Format:Hardcover
    I have often heard it said that if you place a frog in boiling water, he'll hop right out. But if you place him in cold water and turn up the heat slowly enough, he'll cook to death. The "frog" in Matthew Quirk's debut novel would be grad student Mike Ford. Coming from the wrong side of the tracks, this kid has pulled himself up by his bootstraps. Despite losing his mom to cancer while in his teens and his dad still in prison, Mike's about to graduate Harvard Law--up to his ears in debt--but having turned his back on his youthful criminal past. When a visiting professor offers Mike a lucrative job at his DC firm, it seems like a dream come true.

    The Davies Group is a "high-end strategic consulting group." After four months on the job, Mike elaborates, "The firm was a strange place, opaque by design. If you asked, they told you they did government affairs and strategic consulting. Usually, that's a euphemism for lobbying." It's a little more euphemistic than usual in this case. In addition to being hired for his smarts and business savvy, Mike was hired for some of the skills he acquired on the street. He knows a few tricks that average Harvard Law grad doesn't have up his sleeve. He acknowledges, "It never seems obvious when you cross the line." But cross the line he does, in order to succeed and prove himself. And by the time he realizes that things at The Davies Group are not as they seem, he's deep in the boiling water.

    That's all you really need to know. This book has been compared to novels like John Grisham's The Firm and Joseph Finder's Paranoia for fairly obvious reasons. The comparisons are apt, but while this debut is strong and enjoyable reading, I don't think it's quite up to par with those two excellent thrillers.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Book
    This is a well written book. However, it is not my type of book. I feel that the author did a very good job of developing the characters and the story line was OK. Read more
    Published 17 days ago by Ed
    1.0 out of 5 stars Negative 3 Stars would be a more appropriate rating
    Well, at least this one only cost me a buck at the dollar store. Made it to page 96 before 86ing this one. Read more
    Published 21 days ago by 24fanatic365
    4.0 out of 5 stars FAST TRACK READ
    Reviewers who complain this is a The Firm spin-off are unfair. Crime stories have basic
    concepts that are used in different ways and different treatments all the time. Read more
    Published 1 month ago by Karen Yochim
    5.0 out of 5 stars Good book
    Super for a quick read. The plot keeps you wanting to read on and the characters are believable to suck you in fast.
    Published 4 months ago by Dane L. Ryan
    1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
    It's Road Runner and Wile E Coyote playing Poke a Mole
    Published 4 months ago by Tom
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Happy with this item
    Published 4 months ago by sprattbc
    5.0 out of 5 stars Experienced thriller readers will enjoy this one
    I downloaded and read the sample. Having read and enjoyed many dozens of novels written in the first person, as well of all Grisham's works, and over 700 novels since first... Read more
    Published 4 months ago by Arthur Tirrell
    4.0 out of 5 stars ... bit bizarre and somewhat unrealistic but it was a fun read.
    Fast paced although a bit bizarre and somewhat unrealistic but it was a fun read.
    Published 5 months ago by A movie fan, WA USA
    5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING BOOK
    I normally don’t like reading, but this book might’ve changed my whole perspective on that. This is the best book I’ve ever read in a very long time. Read more
    Published 6 months ago by Vonda L. Washington
    3.0 out of 5 stars page turner but a bit over the top
    It's a page turn, but a bit over the top. I am some conspiracy theorists will be convinced that this is exactly what is going on in D.C. Read more
    Published 6 months ago by Common Sense
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