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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprise from first book
This was the first book I got my hands on from Brad Meltzer. This was given to me by my friend. He said that book was fine.
I fell in love with it in first pages. This book is great if you like mystery, secrets, action and stories about Freemasons. Brad will take you spinning in the mystery through out the book. It will keep you up at night time and it will be hard...
Published on December 29, 2009 by Peteris Mikelsons

versus
83 of 93 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A huge caveat should come with this book
I've enjoyed Meltzer's work in the past, and I have to admit that the title grabbed me. Further, the blurb on the inside jacket really piqued my interest. This book sounded like a combination of "National Treasure" and "All the President's Men", with a hint of the supernatural thrown in for good measure. I quote from the inside book jacket: "The Book of Fate holds...
Published on September 19, 2006 by Brian Baker


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83 of 93 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A huge caveat should come with this book, September 19, 2006
By 
Brian Baker (Santa Clarita, CA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
I've enjoyed Meltzer's work in the past, and I have to admit that the title grabbed me. Further, the blurb on the inside jacket really piqued my interest. This book sounded like a combination of "National Treasure" and "All the President's Men", with a hint of the supernatural thrown in for good measure. I quote from the inside book jacket: "The Book of Fate holds everyone's secrets. Especially the ones worth dying for. The Book of Fate. What does it say about you?"

Well, after reading this book, I don't have the foggiest notion what that blurb's supposed to mean. I don't even have any idea what the Book of Fate is.

This book turns out to be simply a political conspiracy book, a pale imitation of a Baldacci book, and nowhere near as good. I have absolutely no idea at all what the title refers to, there's no Jeffersonian or Masonic history in here worth mentioning, and whatever that blurb's talking about never takes place. Maybe the blurb and title were meant for some other book and got mixed up in the computer; who knows?

The plotting is pedestrian. The characters are unsympathetic; I didn't care one bit about any of them. The "conspiracy" was so contorted I couldn't even follow it. And didn't even care. This was a very clumsy book.

1.5 stars, and I'm being generous with that.
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56 of 66 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars garbage, October 13, 2006
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
I have read all of Meltzers books and have to say that I am shocked at just how bad Book Of Fate is. Meltzer has a lot of talent. Its apparent if you read his earlier books. Sadly it is greatly mis-spent here.

The Book of Fate has so many holes it is difficult to point to them all. From Wes, the main characters disfiguring involvement in an assassination attempt on a future president to the "three", a group of law enforcement officers who pull off evil escapades far beyond belief.

The whole story is a house of cards. One damnably idiotic silly plot strain stacked upon another and bringing it to a point in the end that is almost laughable. I wonder if Meltzer sketched out the story before starting on this book, or if he just had some idea and it built momentum as he wrote. Either way, its a disaster. I cant think of an author actually penning out the ideas for this book and saying "hmmmmm, this is a good idea."

The worst thing is Meltzers use of the Da Vinci code phenomena. He plops in a few bits of cryptic gobley gook pertaining to Thomas Jefferson and the Masons, only it leads nowhere at all.

I would not recommend this book to anyone. I was totally looking forwards to reading it, and ended with thoughts of disgust.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprise from first book, December 29, 2009
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Paperback)
This was the first book I got my hands on from Brad Meltzer. This was given to me by my friend. He said that book was fine.
I fell in love with it in first pages. This book is great if you like mystery, secrets, action and stories about Freemasons. Brad will take you spinning in the mystery through out the book. It will keep you up at night time and it will be hard to put down. Really recomend it to people who like mysteries and Freemason stories. After this book I started to read more about Freemasons. Also I thing Meltzer has done a good job on research for this book.
Enjoy.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars the book of redirect, November 25, 2006
By 
Mom of (almost) 2 (Catonsville, MD United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
I read Brad Meltzer's book "Zero Game" and loved it. I just finished "The Book of Fate" (easy read - quick to get through) and found that the title and masonry dropping left a lot to be desired.

In the author's notes on page 509 Brad said his information about freemasons are based on three years of research. If he said 30 minutes... I might believe it. There was little mention of fate or masons throughout the book. It almost seemed that Meltzer knew that a lot of freemason stuff is coming out with Dan Brown soon and wanted to jump on the bandwagon ahead of Dan. It feels like he wrote this book and then later came back and added a few freemasons things in to create more buzz.

Brad should stick with politics and interplay. He knows politics. He seemed way over his head trying to be the next Dan Brown. He should refrain from making profound statements about life - there is simply no gravity. He should write about things he knows about.

Saying that... was the book fun? Yes - but Brad should stop the pity angle with his main character... it was overplayed. Was the plot worth it? Not really. Too simple in a very complicated arena of intelligence (another area that Brad only seemed to understand just a little). Would I recommend "The Book of Fate"? Change the mason draw (since there isn't much at all about freemasons) and the title.. and then maybe just for fun. But definitely read "The Zero Game."
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56 of 71 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A pretty fair read....., September 6, 2006
By 
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
I'm always amazed at the disconnect between us nonprofessional book reviewers with our paid counterparts. Some of the early reviews of Meltzer's The Book of Fate are less than stellar. However, from the still very few reviews from real readers, The Book of Fate seems to have some redeeming value.

President Leland Manning and his entourage are attending the 4th of July NASCAR race. In the Presidential limo is Wes Holloway, a cocky, hotshot Presidential aide and center character of this story. Also in the limo is Ron Boyle, the President's oldest friend. Before they complete their visit, Ron Boyle is dead and Wes Holloway is disfigured.

Fast forward eight years. Wes is still working for the former President. On a junket to Malaysia Wes spots a man he takes for Ron Boyle, supposedly dead eight years earlier. It is this chance spotting that send Holloway on a fast paced and suspenseful adventure.

Meltzer who has such hits as Dead Even, The First Counsel, The Millionaires, may not quite hit one out of the park with The Book of Fate. However, it is a good read. Meltzer sprinkles enough suspense throughout the pages that he keeps you turning the pages. The story may be a little predictable in places but keep reading...it'll get better. The addition of secret codes and mysterious places adds to the atmosphere of the book. Masonic contrivance? You decide. I thought it worked.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars One Word: Overwritten, October 12, 2006
By 
B. Merritt "filmreviewstew.com" (WWW.FILMREVIEWSTEW.COM, Pacific Grove, California United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Audio CD)
Wes Holloway, an aide to the President of the United States, is shot and his face disfigured during an attempt on the President's life. But that's not the worst of it. Even more devastating is the death of Ron Boyle, one of the President's close friends and advisors. Shot through the chest by the deadly assassin, Boyle bleeds to death on the way to the hospital in the back of an ambulance normally reserved for the President himself. And Wes had put Boyle in the President's car, making him feel as though he were responsible for Boyle's death.

Fast forward eight years and we find President Manning now a former President because of that "fateful" day. A picture surfaced during the scuffle with Secret Service agents and the shooter that showed Leland Manning (the Prez) behind a woman. The photo looks as if Manning is hiding behind her, even though he wasn't, thus awarding him the public name of "the cowardly lion." Wes remains at his side but his life is eventually thrown into disarray by the presence of a man who sounds like ...like Boyle. Could he still be alive?

That is the basic gist of this extremely heavy tome. To go into further detail would risk putting book review readers to sleep ...which is what THE BOOK OF FATE will do for many. That readers may actually finish the book is more an act of determination than joy, as the story is so poorly put together that its very structure nearly defies description.

However, there is one word that fits it perfectly: overwritten. Checking in at over 500 pages (or 15 CDs for the unabridged audio version), the novel could've easily been cut in half, if not in a third. Most of the problems lay with overly-drawn descriptions or overly-dramatic prose. There are so many times in the book where Mr. Meltzer (author) starts in on an initially tense action scene, only to have it fall completely flat by describing every hair follicle on a character's arm, every chair in a room, every piece of paneling on a wall, and every crook in a person's finger. It boggles the mind that an editor didn't get his/her fingers into this forgettable story and cut it down just for the sake of saving a few trees!

This one is a definite bypass...
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Garbage, January 3, 2007
By 
Daniel (Fairfield, CT, United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
For a book that starts with a note from the author about how he researched Freemasons for two years, you'd think there would be some indication of it. It has almost nothing to do with Freemasons, the plot is standard thriller fare sans any real shocking or surprising moments. The main characters is barely likable and mostly pathetic. The other problem I had with it was Brad Meltzer's writing style. In almost every paragraph, the narration will interrupt itself. For example, "He ran into the room and found...no...it can't be." After the billionth time, it gets really old. Also, the sheer amount of melodrama made me roll my eyes on more occasions than I could count. Do yourself a favor and read something else. This book is garbage.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars SHAME! on you Brad Meltzer!, December 30, 2006
By 
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
Shame on you Brad Meltzer. This is an UNFINISHED work that you allowed to be published. Cover to cover this is an AWFUL book. The plotline is steady enough, but seriously. You lead the reader down a number of interesting threads that NEVER go anywhere. The Masonic backdrop? You know the cover of the book? NEVER goes anywhere. Please at least do a droplet of research (see Freemasons for Dummies). Your main character...I was left really not liking the guy at all in the end.

BRAD MELTZER...do the right thing. Recast this book! It is far from finished. You have cheated your readers. A good start...but you are a year away from publication quality. Oh yes, and shame on you Warner books. i won't forget.
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Confusing, at best, September 21, 2006
By 
A. Husted (Overland Park, KS USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
Too many "what if's" in this book make it a lesser read. The author spends so much time spinning different scenarios, that by the time the mystery is actually solved, I didn't care anymore. I thought maybe it was just another "what if." The main character, Wes, is such a whimpy, low self-esteem character, that I had a hard time relating. (Okay, I know, he was shot and that would get me down, too, but MOVE ON ALREADY!) And the ending Epilogue section was just pointless and full of filler. I would not recommend this book for anyone looking for a "thinking man's" thriller.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars just not worth it, September 22, 2006
This review is from: The Book of Fate (Hardcover)
I've just finished reading this book, and I'm sorry I bothered. Once I got about 1/2 way through, I really felt like I should put it down and move on, but the time already invested made me stick with it. A mistake.

The novel features an incredible level of detail, bulking up (bloating) the story far beyond a fairly conventional, straightforward plot. The heavily foreshadowed major twist will be easily predicted by many readers. I've read that the author had unprecedented access to former President Bush in researching the novel...the details from his research may have been more interesting as non-fiction.

Most of the characters start out two dimensional and stay that way...very little development. The main character is too unlikable to be a hero and too milquetoast to be an anti-hero. All of the characters are hard to care about.

The Masonic imagery and the references to Jefferson are plot gimmicks that take up all of about 10 of the nearly 600 pages. The whole "package" seems to be geared towards marketability: Psychotic killers sell, check; political thrillers sell, check; lawyers sell, check; secret codes sell, check; hidden history sells, check...

...overly long novel including all of these, uncheck. I am giving it one star because the writing is technically competent
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The Book of Fate
The Book of Fate by Brad Meltzer (Mass Market Paperback - May 1, 2007)
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