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The Fourth K Mass Market Paperback – November 1, 1991


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 479 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam Books (November 1, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553292714
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553292718
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.3 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,613,568 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The latest from the author of The Godfather is a surefire success, a political novel that starts with a terrorist assassination of the pope on Easter Sunday, a deed that sends global aftershocks to jolt the power strongholds around the world, from the palace of the sultan of Sherhaben to the White House. The U.S. president is charismatic Francis Xavier Kennedy, scion of the famed and ill-fated clan. Still mourning his dead wife, Kennedy turns his energies to the country's betterment, forging an idealistic "new social contract." But Kennedy is also a target of the terrorists, whose mentalities the novel deftly probes: Romeo, a "Christ of Violence," needs to atone for his pampered upbringing; Yabril, a fierce Arab, privately thirsts to smite--like the angel Azazel--the president's daughter Theresa. After an appalling crime is committed, Kennedy coldly vows to bomb Sherhaben off the map, despite the American fortunes invested there. His cabinet and the wily, aged members of the Socrates Club--who control grain, real estate, oil, the media and Congress--plot to impeach him. Random acts of violence by young Americans (e.g., naive MIT scientists who plant a mini-atom bomb in Manhattan) enliven and multiply the dangers. Within the male power hierarchy, capable women like vice-president Helen Du Pray calculate their moves. Astute characterizations, vivid drama and Puzo's shrewd analyses of the paradoxes of evil detonate a top-notch thriller.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“[A] CLASSIC PAGE-TURNER . . . THE FOURTH K HAS ALMOST EVERYTHING YOU LOOK FOR IN A THRILLER.”
The Washington Post

“FAST-PACED, SATISFYING . . . FINE ENTERTAINMENT.”
Los Angeles Times



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

More About the Author

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Customer Reviews

The characters are well portrayed, and there is a good deal of suspense.
William Tegner
The first time I read this book was in 1993 - borrowed from a friend, then I loved it so much that I bought the book and read it 2 more times.
XNOR
Needless characters and unnecessary plot lines appear to confuse the reader.
Claw

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Rocco B. Rubino on December 15, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Francis Xavier Kennedy, nephew of the slain JFK/RFK has ascended the presidency due, in no small part, to his family name, his political instincts, and his near-adolescent idealisim.

During Holy Week it seems as if the world is falling apart at the seems. The Pontiff has been assasinated, and FXK's daughter has been kidnapped by Muslim extremists and then executed in cold blood.

FXK devises a response that he feels is commensurate with the crimes committed, and one that is befitting defending the honor of the most powerful nation on earth. There is one little snag; an imperial congress, motivated purely by greed,political opportunism, and a visceral hatred for the CINC,is poised to declare him non compus mentis and have him impeached.

An incident of 9/11 proportions takes place in New York that changes the entire dynamic of this political opportunism/intrigue and FXK adresses an emergency session of a join-session of Congress, and is spared the ignominy of being removed from office. Puzo's prescience here is uncanny; a nation in crisis after a terrorist event, a zealous President/Justice Department eager to preserve the Union, to the point of using draconian measures...it is all there, prophetically so. Eerie.

Puzo spins a yarn like no other. His scenarios/character; development/plots, sub-plots are woven into an exciting, breathtaking tapestry that takes the reader on a roller-coaster ride; the thrill of a lifetime. There are so many twists and turns it is likely to give a less engaged reader the literary equivalent of motion sickness. Dialogue is crisp, sometimes raw, and cynical. The stuff a poltical thriller is made of.

Some have decried this work as being a little contrived, but Puzo has a knack for tying up all of the loose ends and leaving the reader satisfied after he/she has read the novel.

A first-class piece of literature.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By William Tegner on August 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I'm not surprised that reviews for this book were mixed. Writing The Godfather gave Puzo a tremendous reputation to live up to. But make no mistake, he is a very fine writer, and this book is a good one. It is easy to read, interesting, and contains a good plot and sub-plots. The characters are well portrayed, and there is a good deal of suspense. Well worth reading.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 16, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I gather that Puzo wrote this book long before 9/11. The narrative is spooky in that it parallels that event and the conspiracies that followed. The concern for loss of civil rights; the never ending central factor of the Israel-Palestine conflict; the bombing to rubble of a middle east capital city.
All of this, read in light of what followed, would speak to Puzo's grasp of international skulduggery, long before most of us anticipated the coming tragedies. On this basis, alone, it is well worth reading.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book has a great premise and looks at the powerplay of Washington and the rich in the US, sadly the ending let the book down. You are kept engaged and turning the pages throughout this book, but the ending leaves a little to be desired and the way certain characters behave is out of character, so to speak. Puzo gets a little lost for fifty or so pages in the middle as well. The problem is that being so spoilt with the Godfather and other mafia related books, you expect such a high standard from puzo, that this book lets you down slightly. Saying that, this is a good political thriller and a good couple of days reading.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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By Kindle Customer on February 3, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When this book came out in the early 90's I had no idea it was on the shelves. Then I walk into a book store and there it was! You have to remember when this was released; the silver anniversary of JFK's death was only a couple years earlier, and Godfather Part III the movie was just released or within a year before publication of this book. So the two story lines seemed to meld into a unbelievable Puzo mix!
My hands were shaking this book was so good the night I started reading it. Then 10 yers later, Clinton Impeached, terrorism internationally on the rise, destruction of Middleastern countries and to top it off, 911.
This has it all plus written by the King of American Pulp fiction.
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By A Customer on August 6, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Even though The Fourth K doesn't rank among his best books, it still provided an interesting read that attempts more than your typical genre thriller. Even so the plot is so ludicrous at times that it almost obscures Puzo's aims.
For a while I was afraid that the terrorist/thriller plot aspects of the book would take precedence, but all this really is only window dressing for the character's motivations and ideals, what I believe Puzo is really trying to get at.
Still, fans of Puzo won't be disappointed, and it is worth the effort to try to track down The Fourth K. I eagerly await Omerta.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book was absolutely great! It is kind of chilling, since this book was written in the early nineties, but deals with a lot of issues that we face in contemporary America (impeachment of a president, terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, war in the Middle East).

The story takes place through a few different characters, who are all somehow intertangled. It is hard to describe the story without giving away too much...but it is definately a great read!
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