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The Accident Hardcover – March 11, 2014

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* New York literary agent Isabel Reed plows through an anonymous manuscript in one night and immediately knows two things: The manuscript, a biography of a media mogul, will be a blockbuster, and people will die if word of its existence leaks. She’s also fairly sure she knows who the author is, but he’s dead. Word does leak, in New York and Hollywood, and ambitious young women in publishing quickly die violently. Isabel and her chosen editor, Jeffrey Fielder, are on the run from resourceful, relentless killers. Pavone’s plot twists tirelessly, shifting focus among a large cast of well-drawn characters and using flashbacks and changes of locale (Copenhagen, Zurich, Manhattan, Hollywood, the Hamptons) to build suspense. The Accident is a somewhat more conventional thriller than Pavone’s fine debut (The Expats, 2012), but he excels at developing characters’ backstories. Isabel and Jeffrey, for example, are successful but frightened that changes in their business and the onset of middle age might make them has-beens, and they’re both recalling the mutual attraction they once had but didn’t act on. Like Isabel, many readers will read this one through the night. --Thomas Gaughan


St. Louis Post-Dispatch Best Books of 2014

“[Pavone is] a reliable new must-read in the world of thrillers. . . . You will want to finish The Accident at a nice, rapid clip to see how [the] pieces come together. . . . Unputdownable.” —The New York Times
“A taut, bookish thriller.” —People

“If you like real nail-biters, this is the best one so far this year. . . . Couldn’t put the damn thing down.” —Stephen King, on Twitter
“Savvy. . . . [With] plenty of swift action and sudden twists.” —Wall Street Journal
“Smart and stylish. . . . Thrill-a-minute. . . . The Accident never stumbles as it confidently and most entertainingly barrels forward toward shocking revelations and a bombshell of a finish.” —Chicago Tribune
“A must-read…gripping.”—USA Today
“Chris Pavone is the new best thing. The Accident proves the promise of The Expats. It is as intelligent and timely as it is relentless and gripping. Pavone is going to be around for a long time and now is the time to jump on the train.” —Michael Connelly
“A fast-paced, airport-ready thriller. . . . Pavone writes well about the politics of modern publishing.” —Entertainment Weekly
“The thriller-of-the-year. . . . Pavone’s characters seem genuine, with some flaws in the good guys and some virtues in the bad guys.” —St. Louis Post-Dispatch
“Maximum enjoyment at maximum speed.”—Dallas Morning News

“A sly globetrotting spy thriller that gives new meaning to publish or perish.” —Family Circle
“A propulsive A-train of a thrill ride and worthy successor to Pavone’s debut.” —Los Angeles Times
“A fast-paced, dangerous ride. . . . That intricate plot [propels you] forward, twisting and turning right up to its final, ultimately satisfying conclusion.” Fort Worth Star-Telegram
“A clever, sophisticated mystery.”Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
“[Pavone] has outdone himself with this amazing thriller. . . . Full of constant surprises [The Accident] is jam-packed with everything from media moguls to conspiracies. This is a truly great read!” Suspense Magazine
“Tantalizing. . . . With terrific surprises and high-quality writing in this engaging thriller.” —Associated Press
“Marvelous. . . . The deft plot globetrots and en route provides glamorous locales as well as twisty turns in suspense.” —New York Daily News
“A high-wire thriller featuring a Wolfe-ian cast of characters.” —
“[A] high-wire thriller. . . . The suspense is palpable.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Pavone’s plot twists tirelessly, shifting focus among a large cast of well-drawn characters. . . . many readers will read this one through the night.” Booklist (starred review)
“[An] engaging thriller, driven by compelling portraits of desperate characters.” Library Journal
“Pavone knows the formula for a best-seller and keeps the reader turning the pages.”Kirkus
“Chris Pavone's many fans will not be disappointed with The Accident, his fast-paced, twisting, smart follow-up to The Expats. Cleverly plotted, filled with surprises, a terrific read.” —William Landay, New York Times bestselling author of Defending Jacob
“The world of book publishing has never been more perilous or mesmerizing than in Chris Pavone’s dizzyingly good follow-up to The Expats. The dark eruption of long-buried secrets, complex betrayals further snagged by sex and greed, and eleventh-hour desperate gambits for reinvention all propel a whirlwind story that will keep you up way past your bedtime. Crafty, stylish, satisfying.”  —Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Wife
“Clever, sophisticated, and propulsive.  I am constantly awed by Chris Pavone's writing.  He's already one of the best in the thriller business.” —Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of Paranoia and Suspicion

Praise for The Expats
"Sly. . . . Pavone strengthens this book with a string of head-spinning revelations in its last pages. . . . The tireless scheming of all four principals truly exceeds all sane expectations.” —The New York Times

“Bombshell-a-minute. . . . Pavone creates a fascinating, complicated hero.” Entertainment Weekly

“A gripping spy drama and an artful study of the sometimes cat-and-mouse game of marriage.” —Family Circle

“Smartly executed. . . . Pavone is full of sharp insights into the parallels between political espionage and marital duplicity. . . . Thoroughly captivating.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Superb. . . . [Pavone] expertly draws readers along with well-timed clues and surprises. . . . An engineering marvel.” —Richmond Times-Dispatch

“Expertly and intricately plotted, with a story spiraling into disaster and a satisfyingly huge amount of double-crossing, The Expats certainly doesn’t feel like a first novel. This is an impressively assured entry to the thriller scene.” —The Guardian (London)

“Refreshingly original. . . . Part Ludlum in the pacing, part Le Carré in the complexity of story and character, but mostly Chris Pavone. . . . A thriller so good that you wonder what other ideas [Pavone] has up his cloak, right alongside the obligatory dagger.” —The Star-Ledger

“Amazing. . . . Impossible to put down. . . . Pavone invokes memories of the great writers of spy fiction of the past, and he has the chops to be mentioned with the best of them.” —Associated Press

“A blast. . . . Pavone is spinning a fantastic tale with action that spans the globe.” —Dallas Morning News

“Highly entertaining.” —Mystery Scene

“Thoroughly enjoyable.” —Suspense Magazine

“Hard to put down.” —San Francisco Bay Guardian

“Stunningly assured. . . . An intricate, suspenseful plot that is only resolved in the final pages.” —Booklist (starred review)

“Brilliant, insanely clever, and delectably readable.” —Library Journal (starred review)

“Meticulously plotted, psychologically complex. . . . The sheer amount of bombshell plot twists are nothing short of extraordinary, but it’s Pavone’s portrayal of Kate and her quest to find meaning in her charade of an existence that makes this book such a powerful read.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Impressive. . . . With almost more double-crosses than a body can stand.” —Kirkus (starred review)

“Bristling with suspense and elegantly crafted, The Expats introduces a compelling and powerful female protagonist you won't soon forget. Well done!” —Patricia Cornwell

“I often thought I was again reading the early works of Ken Follett, Frederick Forsyth, and Robert Ludlum. Smart, clever suspense, skillfully plotted, and a lot of fun to read.” —John Grisham

“One of the best-written spy thrillers I've ever read. . . . A riveting story of great-game deceptions wrapped inside the smaller deceptions of marriage. At moments horrifying, hilarious, and very wise, The Expats has given Chris Pavone a permanent place on my short list of must-read authors.” —Olen Steinhauer

“A gem. Clever, suspenseful with a jet fueled story that rockets from one corner of the globe to another, it is never less than a thrill a minute. . . . An absolute winner!” —Christopher Reich

“Spy stories need to budge over to make space for Kate Moore—mother, wife, expat and far more than she appears. I loved her.” —Rosamund Lupton

“Riveting. One of the most accomplished debuts of recent years: not just a worthy addition to the literature of espionage and betrayal, but a fine portrait of a marriage disintegrating under the pressure of secrets and lies.” —John Connolly

See all Editorial Reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Crown; First Edition edition (March 11, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385348452
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385348454
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (440 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #413,532 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chris Pavone's first thriller, THE EXPATS, was winner of both the Edgar and Anthony awards, as well as a New York Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, and international bestseller, with a major film deal and published in twenty languages. His second novel, THE ACCIDENT, was also a national bestseller. He has appeared on Face the Nation, Good Day New York, All Things Considered, and the BBC. Chris grew up in Brooklyn, graduated from Midwood High School and Cornell University, and was a book editor for nearly two decades, as well as an expat in Luxembourg. He lives with his wife and twin schoolboys in New York City. His third novel, THE TRAVELERS, will publish in January 2016.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 56 people found the following review helpful By Red Rock Bookworm TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 11, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
What author Chris Pavone gives us in his new novel "The Accident" is a series of "ones". One day in the lives of a group of inter-related characters , one explosive non-fiction manuscript that threatens the very lives of many of these individuals, and one ruthless media mogul and his assorted cronies bent on keeping the manuscript from ever being published. Unlike Pavone's first novel "The Expats" which dealt primarily with spies, this story is set in the world of publishing with side trips into political maneuvering and dirty dealing performed under the guise of national security.

It appears that the world of publishing is filled with individuals who will do whatever it takes to survive in a cut-throat business. (Ditto for CIA and FBI operatives.) From New York literary agent Isabel Reed and her assistant Alexis to owner/publisher Brad McNally and his editor Jeffrey to subsidiary rights director Camilla Glyndon-Browning, each sees the anonymous submission as a ticket to success, while CIA Copenhagen station chief Hayden Gray is trying desperately to hold on to his own "golden ticket."

Although all the action takes place in one day it does initially take a bit of concentration to keep the cast straight since the author moves back and forth in time via the various characters recollections of old secrets and lies and more recent revelations. No spoilers here but I will say that the end of this book contains an extra layer of complexity that elevates the story from average to remarkably satisfying. 31/2 stars
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43 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Bonnie Cehovet VINE VOICE on January 27, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Chris Pavone has a winner here! It took me a couple of chapters to get the rhythm of the book, but I ended up loving it. A well written story-line that keeps the reader turning the pages, with just enough reality to make it believable. The story revolves around literary agent Isabel Reed, and a mysterious, anonymous manuscript that she receives. She is both drawn to it, and terrified by it. The revelations in this book form a web that encompasses secrets involving a powerful media media empire, its owner, government agencies and officials, and a secret from Isabel's own past.

The manuscript could be a career maker for many people .. including Isabel's young assistant,Alexis; Camilla, an ambitious rights director searching for a golden parachute; Stan, a larger than life producer in LA, by Brad, a struggling publisher in New York, and by Isabel's friend Jeff, a veteran editor. It could also get them killed.

Each character is well scripted, and the movement between them flows seamlessly. They each have their strengths, and their flaws. In the background we have the anonymous author, who is supposed to have committed suicide, and a CIA type operative that ... isn't.

This is all about betrayal at the highest levels, and how one incident can form a shadow over so many lives, for their entire life. All of this action takes place within the space of one day ... 24 hours. Well worth a read!
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Format: Kindle Edition
Pavone's The Accident, the follow-up to his very good first novel, The Expats, has all the makings of a bestseller. Its plot is fast-paced and exciting, its characters are credible and its narrative makes the reader feel that he/she is "right there" in the middle of the excitement.

So, here's a bit of what The Accident is about to whet your appetite.

A female, NYC literary agent has just finished reading a manuscript by an anonymous author that provides mysterious revelations about some very powerful people -- one of whom is a billionaire media mogul, as well as long-hidden secrets about her own past. It is a manuscript that she feels will explode its way onto bestseller lists, and help rejuvenate her career as well as that of the editor she's chosen to help get this book published. A very experienced CIA operative is determined that this story stay buried, and is willing to "remove" anyone exposed to the manuscript. And, The Accident is about the anonymous author himself who is "living in shadows" in Copenhagen, trying to atone for a lifetime's worth of lies and betrayals by wanting to get his book published.

Needless to say, these lives collide as the book begins on the path towards publication and towards saving or ruining careers and companies...a path that places everything at risk and everyone in danger of their lives.

Is The Accident great literature? Definitely not. What it is, however, is an exciting, entertaining and suspenseful thriller that demonstrates that Pavone's successful debut with The Expats was no accident.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Susan Bryan on March 20, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Someone once told me that I needed to be able to sit down with a new book and read the first 100 pages. I have never had that time so never thought this was particularly true.....until this book. I started this book, restarted, and re started again. I thought about doing a flow chart of characters so when I could read a few chapters I wouldn't be so lost. I loved the plot and my only real complaint, and this is probably the fault of the e-reader, is when switching back and forth between present day and 25 years ago, those paragraphs need to be in italic so it is readily recognized. Drives me crazy when I am reading along and the very next paragraph is something from the past. No page break, no indentation - something so I don't need to go back to see what I might have missed! Would I recommend, yes, but don't think it is as good as his first book.
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