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The Fifth Gospel: A Novel
"One part The Da Vinci Code, one part The Name of the Rose and one part A Separate Peace ... A smart, swift, multitextured tale that both entertains and informs ... As much a blazingly good yarn as it is an exceptional piece of scholarship." — San Francisco Chronicle See more books by Ian Caldwell
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. The Wild Zone, a South Beach (Miami Beach, Fla.) bar filled with lusty men—specifically, charismatic personal trainer Jeff Rydell; his cute visiting half-brother, Will, a Princeton graduate student; and Jeff's married best friend, Tom Whitman, a dishonorably discharged Afghanistan war veteran with some serious problems—provides the starting point for bestseller Fielding's nonstop thrill ride. A sexy bar patron, Suzy Bigelow, inspires the trio to make a wager on who can bed her first, and they even ask Jeff's live-in girlfriend, a Wild Zone bartender, for help. Suzy chooses Will for a platonic date, which has some distinctly unpleasant repercussions that involve not only wide-eyed Will but desperate, gun-loving Tom, whose wife takes their children and files for divorce. Fielding (Still Life) combines a fast-paced plot with top-notch character development to create an atmosphere of brooding unease that explodes in a wonderfully wild resolution. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"A wild ride with a life all its own, strewn with surprises and consequences for all parties along the way. Fielding's characters and plot are strong and well-developed. The story is gripping, always leaving the reader guessing, and culminates in a deliciously untamed twist of a conclusion."
Winnipeg Free Press

"[Fielding] sucks you in with end-of-chapter cliffhangers, violent results and wild sex....This is a thriller and, as with all thrillers, there is that twist at the end that forces you to read until the very last sentence."
— The Globe and Mail




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

  • MP3 CD
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio; MP3 Una edition (February 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423362705
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423362708
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.5 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,131,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Joy Fielding is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Still Life, Charley's Web, Heartstopper, See Jane Run, and other acclaimed novels. She divides her time between Toronto and Palm Beach, Florida.

Customer Reviews

I almost feel like someone else wrote the book!
Shar
I think I've read almost all the other books Joy Fielding has written.
karen
Uninteresting and unbelievable characters, ludicrous plot.
Lorazg

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By barry VINE VOICE on March 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I am a huge Joy Fielding fan. The first book I read by her was SEE JANE RUN. From then on I have highly anticipated each release from her. Some of her works are better than others but the reader is usually always promised great character development and a suspenseful realistic plot line. MAD RIVER ROAD and WHISPERS & LIES are also favorites of mine. She's had a couple that didn't quite work but they still managed to be enjoyable works.

I am speechless with this latest THE WILD ZONE. It is not just that I didn't like the plot or theme. It is honestly a very poorly written excuse for a novel. I am stunned that Joy Fielding wrote this, let alone let it be released. And where were her editors? Couldn't someone have caught this dribble before its release. It is obvious she is trying to expand her horizons here for the main characters are three men and that is totally new for her. And even though women are involved in the story it is basically about the lives of these three men. Sadly bringing a realistic male character to life is beyond her reach as an author. Here we have Jeff, Tom and Will and each one is an extreme over the top caricature. She tries to define their personalities through their dialogue and it becomes laughable. She does use language and plot turns that will shock some faithful readers but had they served a purpose in establishing true character development or storyline it would have been acceptable but instead it is very gratuituous. The fact that Joy thinks this is good baffles me.

The start is three men making a bet at a bar. Simple with lots of potential. What follows is plot twists that are shockingly unrealistic and characters that become more laughable with each page turn.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Orlando Bookworm on March 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I'm finding it hard to believe that Joy Fielding even wrote this novel. It was awful. All the male characters were laughably cliche, most notably Tom, who was so superficial and sterotypical that it was just way over the top. Joy can write so much better than this - she should be downrigt embarrassed to have her name on this lousy book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By 4everSLAUGHTERED on February 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Best friends and former soldiers in war, Tom and Jeff, take Jeff's visiting "little brother" Will to the Wild Zone bar were Jeff's live in girlfriend, Kristin is the sexy bartender. The men make a bet as to who can score with a beautiful woman named Suzy. With the help of Kristin, Will is the reluctant winner. Jeff and Tom are in angry disbelief. Then the wild ride begins. All three can't get Suzy out of their heads. As Will seems to flourish with his new found relationship with Suzy, Tom and Jeff deteriorate. The characters deal with Jeff's bad but reasonably controlled behavior and then with Tom's extremely violent and frighteningly out of control behavior that worsens as the book continues. Plus, Suzy struggles with a horrific problem of her own and pulls in those that have entered the "Wild Zone".

The language through the book is very rough. Not for the prudish or Mary Higgins Clark fans. For example, Tom hires an "escort" and she rattles off her menu of services as well as her do's and don'ts for the bedroom. Yikes! There are also a lot of repetitive phrases that drove me nuts. Examples, "Do you want to talk about it", "I don't understand", "what do you mean", "it's because of Afghanistan".

This is a tale that has been told before except for the one amazing surprise at the very end of the book. Before you get to that amazing surprise - everyone gets what they deserve!

I didn't think this was a great book or a fun suspenseful read. It was just so-so for Joy Fielding and somewhat predictable. The best Joy Fielding book with the same feel is my highly recommended pick Mad River Road: A Novel . Her last book Still Life: A Novel was excellent!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By The Lit Witch on April 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The Wild Zone is built upon an interesting premise but never gets off the ground. I honestly found myself wondering if Ms. Fielding really wrote it. I just don't see how such a poorly written novel could have come from a writer with such a distinguished career in this genre.

I must begin with the characters because I knew from the outset that they would be this novel's undoing. They represent a thoroughly unlikable and unsympathetic mass of stereotypes. Jeff is a pretty-boy jock who's a war hero, a personal trainer and a total cad. He spends the entire book laying bets on how fast he can sleep with women, cop a feel with women, etc, etc. His brother Will is the nerdy, brainy little brother who spends the whole book wishing he was more like Jeff. The friend Tom is a degenerate crazy man with a violent streak, post-traumatic stress disorder and anger issues. (Why must every crazy, half-baked, violent, ass of a character be a veteran? It's beyond offensive.) Enter the beautiful, tolerant girlfriend who is actually described as looking like a Barbie doll and the waif-like domestic violence victim and the cast is complete. There is very little in the way of plot to discuss. The angry veteran stays angry, the man-whore stays man-whorish, the sensitive little brother stays sensitive, the Barbie doll contemplates her implants and the victim turns up with new bruises every so often. Will (the nerdy one), while being one of the central characters, contributes nothing to the story at all other than to bear witness to events and get weepy over how he's always looked up to his brother. I understand that writing men is new territory for Fielding, but someone should have told her (an editor, perhaps?) that prolific use of the f-word does not a complete male character make.
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