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The Winner Hardcover – Large Print, April, 1998

4.3 out of 5 stars 1,517 customer reviews

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Hardcover, Large Print, April, 1998
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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Absolute Power. Total Control. And now The Winner: Baldacci doesn't settle for second best. Here, his heroine, who gets rich after being forced to participate in a fixed lottery, is wanted for murder.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

From Kirkus Reviews

Irritatingly trite woman-in-periler from lawyer-turned-novelist Baldacci. Moving away from the White House and the white-shoe Washington law firms of his previous bestsellers (Absolute Power, 1996; Total Control, 1997), Baldacci comes up with LuAnn Tyler, a spunky, impossibly beautiful, white-trash truck stop waitress with a no-good husband and a terminally cute infant daughter in tow. Some months after the birth of Lisa, LuAnn gets a phone call summoning her to a make-shift office in an unrented storefront of the local shopping mall. There, she gets a Faustian offer from a Mr. Jackson, a monomaniacal, cross-dressing manipulator who apparently knows the winning numbers in the national lottery before the numbers are drawn. It seems that LuAnn fits the media profile of what a lottery winner should be--poor, undereducated but proud--and if she's willing to buy the right ticket at the right time and transfer most of her winnings to Jackson, she'll be able to retire in luxury. Jackson fails to inform her, however, that if she refuses his offer, he'll have her killed. Before that can happen, as luck would have it, LuAnn barely escapes death when one of husband Duane's drug deals goes bad. She hops on a first-class Amtrak sleeper to Manhattan with a hired executioner in pursuit. But executioner Charlie, one of Jackson's paid handlers, can't help but hear wedding bells when he sees LuAnn cooing with her daughter. Alas, a winning $100- million lottery drawing complicates things. Jackson spirits LuAnn and Lisa away to Sweden, with Charlie in pursuit. Never fear. Not only will LuAnn escape a series of increasingly violent predicaments, but she'll also outwit Jackson, pay an enormous tax bill to the IRS, and have enough left over to honeymoon in Switzerland. Too preposterous to work as feminine wish-fulfillment, too formulaic to be suspenseful. (Book-of-the-Month Club main selection) -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 744 pages
  • Publisher: Thorndike Press (April 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786212810
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786212811
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.8 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,517 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,590,557 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

David Baldacci published his first novel, ABSOLUTE POWER, in 1996. A major motion picture adaptation followed, with Clint Eastwood as its director and star. In total, David has published 31 novels for adults, all of which have been national and international bestsellers; several have been adapted for film and television. His novels have been translated into more than 45 languages and sold in more than 80 countries; over 110 million copies are in print. David has also published five novels for younger readers, including the #1 bestseller THE FINISHER, which is in development for feature film.

David received his Bachelor's degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law, after which he practiced law in Washington, D.C.

While David is involved with several philanthropic organizations, his greatest efforts are dedicated to his family's Wish You Well Foundation®. Established by David and his wife, Michelle, the Wish You Well Foundation supports family and adult literacy in the United States by fostering and promoting the development and expansion of literacy and educational programs. In 2008 the Foundation partnered with Feeding America to launch Feeding Body & Mind, a program to address the connection between literacy, poverty and hunger. Through Feeding Body & Mind, more than 1 million new and gently used books have been collected and distributed through food banks to families in need.

David and his family live in Virginia.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this book a few years ago but it has retained it's place in my top ten ever since. This is a a wonderfully crafted story that keeps you turning the pages until the end. This was the 2nd Baldacci book I had read; the first having been The Simple Truth. Although that book was enjoyable, this one was, in my opinion, just better. Baldacci is better well known for his political thrillers and this one doesn't quite fall into that genre, which is a welcome change. Always a good thing when a writer can be diverse with his subject matter.
The story itself is interesting, and what makes it interesting is that it is sort of unique. A little far fetched that someone could fix the lottery and cook up such an elaborate scheme to control people's lives? Perhaps. But that is not something you think about while reading this book-the characters are engrossing. Particularly the character of LuAnn. You can't help but care about what happens to this woman, and no matter how much wealth is bestowed upon her, you can't help but feel for her and sympathize with her situation. She is definitely someone you can identify with, whether you are male or female. I didn't particulaly care for the character of Charlie, but it would have been nice to know a little more information about him. Jackson is a wicked and diabolical character that you just love to hate. The combination of this and an excellent storyline that keeps moving at a good pace equals a great read. I would definitely recommend this book!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Winner is my first David Baldacci book, and was I ever impressed! I normally read 2 to 3 books a week, and I must say this was one of the most riveting reads I've encountered in some time. The action is nonstop; there's absolutely no part of the book one could find boring. The plot is clever and unique, and the characterization is excellent. Add to this a very satisfying ending, and you have a true winner...maybe that's why the author chose The Winner as his book title! I'd enjoy hearing any recommendations from other readers who loved this book...
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The idea is fascinating- what would you do if someone offered you a guaranteed chance to win 100 million and all you had to do was to keep your mouth shut? What would you do? How would you spend the money?
Of course nothing is that simple, or you wouldn't have this third rate "thriller." Naturally the person who "wins" is flawed and on the same day she is to buy the winning ticket gets involved with what looks like a murder, with her as the murderer. Of course.
And it goes downhill from there, one unbelievable thing after another happens, stretching even the most open "John Grisham" minded minds. The main villain here continently speaks in "expose," like some James Bond villain, telling his would be victims exactly how he did things. This is lazy writing folks, show, don't "tell."
There are "amazing" coincidences that pop up in the book, connections between characters that you never see coming because they are not necessary to tell the story, people being able to anticipate other's actions- 100% of the time, the list just goes on.
The story also skips a ten year period that would have been interesting and helpful to character development. Instead the ten year period is used as a handy way to explain away an changes in the characters.
Good idea, lazy execution.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book was one of the best suspense novels i've read in a LOOONG time. I personally want to pat the author on the back if i ever had the chance. THe character "Jackson" was so unbelievably cold and remarkably intelligent, you almost want to be him, despite the fact that he's the villain! Or at least I did. And a book about money...earning money, the way people do things or manipulate people to gain more money, etc. It was a flawless, edge-of your-seat novel to me!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
David Baldacci's books always leave me on edge. Wondering what will happen next, are we really to believe what we have just read, what strange twist will the plot take next. Never predictable and always a mystery up until the last page are two statements that sum up Baldacci's writing.
The Winner appealed to me because it was about a young woman who had the opportunity to change her life and her daughter's life. Once I was taken in by the novel I was immersed in the world of schemes, role-playing, and incredable twists and turns that only a writer as skilled as Baldacci could introduce into the story line.
Jackson, Charlie, LuAnn, and Matthew Riggs are unforgetable characters who are now emblazoned upon my memory forever.
This book is terrific! Go out and buy it today!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this book about 5 years ago, and then again recently. I had forgotten enough that the re-read felt like I was reading it for the first time. And as I re-read it, I remembered why I had liked it so much.

In short, Baldacci gives us both a fantastic protagonist and an equally fantastic antagonist in this story. He delivers an excellent thriller with a highly imaginative, highly original plot. It's all the right ingredients for a best-selling page turner.

Our heroine, LuAnn Tyler, is poor white trash but with supermodel looks, tomboy athletic prowess, and never-say-die tenacity. A single mom barely out of her teens, LuAnn works nights waitressing at the local truck stop to make ends meet for her and her infant daughter. She dreams of giving a better life to her daughter, but with no money, no education, and no prospects, it appears that LuAnn's life is destined to be nothing more than unrealized dreams in a shabby trailer at the end of a shabby dirt road.

But all of that could change in the blink of an eye as LuAnn stumbles across a remarkable opportunity when she goes to interview for a job at the local mall: a man who never reveals his identity explains to LuAnn that he has rigged the national lottery and offers to give her a winning ticket. However, there's a catch - she must leave the USA and never return while the mystery man invests her millions for her.

Fast forward 10 years. Now we find our protagonist fabulously wealthy, fabulously educated, fabulously refined, and still fabulously beautiful, but fabulously unfulfilled as well. LuAnn is profoundly weary of living as a quasi-recluse in countries not her own - and ultimately ashamed of the facade she's constructed to shield her daughter from her mother's true origins.
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