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Fall from Grace: A Novel Hardcover – March 20, 2012

4.0 out of 5 stars 242 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Blaine Trilogy Series

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Editorial Reviews


“A skillfully plotted murder mystery ripe withtwisted, painful family dynamics, as readable and rewarding as Mr. Patterson’sforays into more dangerous corners of the world. Fall from Grace is anexcellent read, an exciting mystery and character study.” -Vineyard Gazette

Fall from Grace is a stunning tale of betrayal and love—family members torn apart as the possible murder of the patriarch, whose power and prestige have dominated for decades, unravels secrets and scandals against the dramatic backdrop of the unforgiving Vineyard landscape. Richard North Patterson delivers thrilling suspense every time.”

—Linda Fairstein, author of Silent Mercy

The Devil’s Light will grab you from the very first page and never let go. Patterson’s amazing storytelling is made all the better by his emotionally complex characters. I was intrigued.”
—Kathy Reichs, #1 New York Times best-selling author of 206 Bones

“Richard North Patterson is a terrific novelist.” —The Washington Post

“Readers…will be dazzled by [Patterson’s] depth of knowledge." -The New York Times

“Patterson has redefined himself as a writer willing to take risks.” —USA Today

About the Author

Richard North Patterson is the author of The Devil’s Light, In the Name of Honor, The Spire, and sixteen other bestselling and critically acclaimed novels. Formerly a trial lawyer, he was the SEC liaison to the Watergate special prosecutor and has served on the boards of several Washington advocacy groups. He lives in Martha's Vineyard, San Francisco, and Cabo San Lucas with his wife.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; First Edition edition (March 20, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451617054
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451617054
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (242 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #657,514 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Nitty's Mom TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Richard North Patterson, in my humble opinion, wrote the two best courtroom novels ever written "Degree of Guilt" and "Eyes of a Child" . Then something disappointing happened, his latter books became unreadable. I was pleased to read the reviews of "In the Name of Honor" and gave it a try two years ago. While not quite up to the old standards, still a very well written courtroom drama.

His latest entry "Fall From Grace" is an interesting psychological drama, however, it does not have any courtroom scenes, which is where Patterson as a writer is unsurpassed. "Fall From Grace" is basically a two man story between Adam Blaine and his recently deceased father. Adam is a CIA operative, who comes back home to Maratha's Vineyard, to attend the funeral for his estranged father Ben. Ben was a world renowned writer with a ruthless desire to be the best at at everything no matter the damage to others. Ben had many mistresses during his 40 year marriage, however, at the time of his death, has left his 12 million dollar estate/home to his actress girlfriend. A one million dollar bequest was also given to Adam's old girlfriend, Jenny, an aspiring writer who lives on the Island. Adam must sift through the evidence and determine whether Ben Blaine's death, a fall from a cliff, was an accident, suicide or murder. He must also find a way to help his disinherited mother and brother, while keeping one step ahead of the police, who are attempting to build a case against a family member. This is a daunting task especially since Adam hated his father.

"Fall from Grace" is told through many flashbacks and interviews. Adam and Ben are well defined characters.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Over ten years ago, I wrote my first novel. It was a rambling epic filled with long passages of flashbacks that tied intimately into the present day. The inspiration for my writing style at the time was Richard North Patterson. He's always been one of my favorites, and I even enjoyed his political novels even when I didn't agree with the politics. FALL FROM GRACE unfortunately fails on so many levels. But, since Patterson is such a talented author, the book ends up being interesting.

The plot is typical of his earlier novels. Take a bunch of people who are messed up. Create a current crises, and have the answer to that crisis be a tragic event in the past. In this novel, Ben Blaine has died. The rich best-selling author fell from a cliff at Martha's Vineyard, and son Adam Blaine has returned home for the funeral.

Adam hated his father, and soon discovers the conflict will continue after his father's death. His father's will has left out his mom and his brother, and given everything to an actress he was dating and Jenny Leigh, Adam's ex-girlfriend.

Why this novel is HORRIBLE: Two reasons. First, for the vast majority of the novel, nothing happens. Second, the flashbacks are handled incredibly poorly. Here's what happens for most of the novel. Adam Blaine decides to investigate what happened to his dad, and to try and have the will changed. He begins by talking to people. He talks to his mom, his brother, and then a doctor. Then a psychiatrist. Then the actress, then Jenny, then a cop, then a DA. That's it. Chapter to chapter is Adam going down a list talking to different characters. Patterson never shows us anything. Everything is told, all the events of the novel are recounted. Everything is too contrived.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Once upon a time, Richard North Patterson was one of my favorite authors. Early books such as Degree Of Guilt, Eyes Of A Child, The Final Witness and Silent Witness are top notch. Then, he went on a long downward spiral which, for me, only started to reverse itself somewhat with a few of his more recent books. However, Patterson has fallen again with his newest book, Fall From Grace.

I won't take your time by providing a summary of the book, which can be obtained in the Amazon Book Description above, as well as in many of the reader reviews. What I think might be of more value in helping to decide if this is a book you want to read is to provide my opinion of Fall From Grace.

Overall, while the plot concept has some merit (albeit one that is not very different from lots of other books), it's executed in such a way in that the investigation by the main character, Adam Blaine, into the death of his father takes wwwaaayyy too long before anything of real interest or excitement occurs. And, while Patterson provides some interesting twists towards the end of the book, they come about wwwaaayyy too late to make this a book I would recommend highly to you.
7 Comments 24 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I went into this book expecting one of the best contemporary fiction authors to provide me with a fast-moving page turner. Unfortunately, those pages turned very slowly for almost two-thirds of the book when Patterson seemed to finally decide to add excitement to the story.

The tale is not a new one, that of an exiled son returning home after the death of a parent. In this case, the lead character is a CIA operative who upon arriving home is drawn into the mystery surrounding his father's death. We follow him in his efforts to solve the mystery, while also piecing together events from his own past and how they relate to who he has become.

While the resolution is satisfying and not completely predictable, I found that the first half moved slowly without reason. We don't really see a lot of character development (very little about our hero's "work" role, for example), and I felt the flow of the book just wasn't what I expect. Perhaps I have my expectations too high based on some of the excellent works he's written in the past, but this was overall a bit of a disappointment. There are certainly far worse efforts out there, but this won't rank with Patterson's best.
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