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The Exile Hardcover – August 12, 2004

93 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Folsom, the author of the thrilling Day after Tomorrow (1994), which has no connection to the recent movie, and the decidedly less thrilling Day of Confession (1998), returns mostly to form in this fast-paced, exciting adventure. John Barron, a young LAPD detective, assists in the capture of a vicious killer, who dies during surgery following a gunfight. But some of his fellow cops are also killed in the process, and Barron is forced to leave the department, and the country, to avoid retribution from his former colleagues and friends. He assumes a new identity, moves to Europe, meets a nice lady--and then is confronted with the terrifying prospect that the villain who supposedly died in L.A. is not dead after all and is moving forward with his original plan. Written in short chapters, with a sturdy hero and a despicably clever villain, the novel grabs readers from the opening scenes and rarely lets them loose. Although it seems as though the author has written the book with an eye toward a future movie adaptation--short chapters, plenty of physical action, a constant reminder of the date and time, some scenes even written from an audience's point of view ("The viewer realized that somewhere out there was Raymond")--it isn't an outline posing as a novel. Sure, it's slick and a bit superficial, but it does what it sets out to do: deliver breathless excitement. David Pitt
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Review

"A heart-thumping, stay-up-late novel . . . Wild, unputdownable . . . Brilliant."
---Los Angeles Times Book Review on The Day AfterTomorrow

"Once you start The Exile, forget sleep. Its fierce, complex suspense is fast as a 9mm slug and tight as a hangman's noose."
---Stephen Coonts

"More twists and turns than a strand of DNA."---William Peter Blatty, bestselling author of The Exorcist, on The Exile

"Hold on tight---from the first scene Folsom spins a tale of page-turning suspense."
---W. E. B. Griffin on The Exile

"You only have to read the explosive opening to know you're in the hands of a natural storyteller."---Andrew Klavan on The Exile

"A chilling jigsaw puzzle . . . This thriller doesn't leap out of the starting gate---it's catapulted."---Cleveland Plain Dealer on The Day After Tomorrow

"Folsom is an enthusiastic storyteller with a talent for vivid characterization on a big canvas."
---Chicago Tribune on Day of Confession





"Once you start The Exile, forget sleep. Its fierce, complex suspense is fast as a 9mm slug and tight as a hangman's noose." (Stephen Coonts)

"Hold on tight---from the first scene Folsom spins a tale of page-turning suspense." (W.E.B. Griffin)

"More twists and turns than a strand of DNA." (William Peter Blatty Bestselling author of The Exorcist)

"You only have to read the explosive opening to know you're in the hands of a natural storyteller." (Andrew Klavan Two-time Edgar Award winning author of True Crime and Don't Say a Word)

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 704 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books; 1st edition (August 17, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765309467
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765309464
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.9 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (93 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,383,886 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Haugh VINE VOICE on September 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
There was a lot of buzz when Mr. Folsom's first book, The Day After Tomorrow, was published some years ago. Though Mr. Folsom's work has never had the success of Dan Brown's, he works a lot of the same territory--thrillers with a "conspiracy theory" subtext. The Exile is another good example of the genre.

This novel, however, will unlikely have the success of The DaVinci Code. In some ways Mr. Folsom is a better writer. He certainly writes a better chase sequence--the opening 60 pages of this novel are as exciting as any I've read with an excellent red herring, slight-of-hand result. But successful novels like this are often helped by controversy and Mr. Folsom isn't likely to generate much here.

Though I find The Exile to be in many ways as controversial as The DaVinci Code, the choice of target makes all the difference. Mr. Brown has religion and the Catholic Church, whose adherents were quick to jump at the publication of the novel. It is the LAPD that receives the biggest slap from Mr. Folsom--incompetence and killing squads anyone?--but it is unlikely that anyone will feel it important to stand up for the police. In some ways, I think that's too bad; and telling about the state of the American psyche.

And, of course, there is the fact that Mr. Folsom's conspiracy centers around a surviving Romanov dynasty trying to come back to power in Russia. Something that's not like to generate that much interest to an American reader despite the fact that the Romanov's seem "hot" right now.

Still, all in all, The Exile is a good read. Mr. Folsom is an excellent writer who does generate a lot of excitement and a pair of excellent characters in John Barron & Raymond Thorne.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Denise M. on September 1, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This novel is a page turner until the very last word on page 702.

John Barron, the main character is a police officer with an elite branch of the LAPD called the '5-2'. Once a member, a member for life or more appropriately, till death do us part. The 5-2 is a vigilante unit and John Barron isn't quite the vigilante type.

Enter Raymond Thorpe who kills all across the country and then ends up on a train and in LA. He is captured, then escapes, kills a bunch of people and all the while, the wonder is "who is Raymond Thorpe and what does he want". The 5-2 squad finally captures Thorpe and Barron helps him escape his ultimate "capture" by the 5-2. Unfortunately, Thorpe is captured again and is ultimately killed..or was he.

Barron must leave the country, obtain a new identity (enter John Barron aka Nicholas Marten) and start anew in Europe. After all, the LAPD doesn't forgive and sure isn't about to forget. Life in Europe progresses nicely for a moment but John just can't let go of the Raymond thing. Murders start to happen in Europe which are eeirly familiar. John's best friend is murdered and John begins to think.."is Raymond really dead?"

The balance of the story involves politics, a constitutional monarchy, a madman with a royal bloodline, a scorned woman seeking revenge and the future of a country.

This is truly a gripping, page turning, incredibly well written novel which WILL NOT disappoint.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By mrliteral VINE VOICE on January 12, 2006
Format: Hardcover
On a train heading from Barstow to Los Angeles, a vicious killer named Raymond Thorne notices several plainclothes cops in his passenger car. Have they somehow caught up with him? No, because coincidentally, there is another killer on the same train, and when the police converge on him, Raymond winds up being a hostage. Although not the original target of the police, he soon becomes entangled with them and will need to go on a homicidal rampage to escape their grasp.

One of the cops on the train is John Barron, newest member of the elite 5-2 Squad, which he will soon find out is actually an execution squad, bypassing the judicial system to execute the worst criminals. Barron is not pleased to find out that this is the squad's purpose, but he is locked in, dealing with the moral dilemmas even as he helps pursue Thorne.

The first part of The Exile is almost nonstop action. Things don't start to slow down until the middle third of the book, at which time we start learning about Thorne's agenda. He is no ordinary psychopath, but is acting on a plan that could lead him to a position of real power. For Barron, he is nothing less than an obsession, and there will come a point where he is willing to endanger himself, his family and his friends to stop Thorne.

With plenty of action and suspense, The Exile makes a fast-paced and entertaining read, but it also has enough clear weaknesses to rate more than a high three-stars. In particular, the plot is far too contrived and driven by too many coincidences. The motivations of the main characters are also questionable: it's hard to tell what makes Barron so perilously obsessed with Thorne.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Edwards VINE VOICE on October 14, 2005
Format: Hardcover
The Exile is a rather big departure it would seem from his first two novels, but do not make the mistake of letting that keep you away from picking up this large adventure-laced, conspiracy-filled yarn. The Exile is going to be absolutely HATED by the vast number of law enforcement members in the country, but taken simply as fictional entertainment, this book DELIVERS.

While not quite as good his his first scorching read (The Day After Tomorrow, still one of my favorites) I would place it way AHEAD of his 2nd novel (Day of Confession). Even though this book is quite different from the other novels, it DOES share one major theme: Conspiracy...and plenty of it. This time the conspiracy comes at the expense of the Los Angeles Police Department. Is there a secret band of Officers who quietly kill perps instead of arresting them? Do they painstakingly arrange for all the deaths to look justifiable under the circumstances? Before he even realizes what has happened, young LAPD Detective John Barron finds himself waist-deep into the Brotherhood. A conspiracy that he realizes there is NO escape from. The ONLY way out of the Brotherhood is through Death. Everyone involved, including some of his early career heroes, firmly believes in what they are doing. Saving the system millions by eliminating violent scum before some attempt to bankrupt the California Justice System or through some lucky twist of fate, get off scott-free due to some crazy fluke or technicality. On the surface, John can see the logic behind it all, but it doesn't take long before he realizes how being involved violates all he holds sacred.
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