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The Fifth Internationale Mass Market Paperback – April, 2004

4.3 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

King, a former courier of top-secret information, delivers a tightly wound debut thriller centered around a complex and sometimes cloudy conspiracy theory. While working as the deputy legal attache for the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw, down-to-earth FBI agent Stan Penskie witnesses the assassination of his sister's fiance, a CIA agent who'd posited a shocking conspiracy theory. The event throws Stan's life into a tailspin and leads him on a frenzied chase after a group called the Fifth Internationale, "an elusive organization of unthinkable resources and proportions" that may be bent on destabilizing world power structures and financial markets. Through his quest, Stan meets people from various government agencies, but he has no idea who to trust or even where his investigation is leading. Readers will empathize with Stan's bewilderment as they try to untangle the story's many threadsâ€"a task that will challenge even the most diligent reader. Intelligent dialogue, relentless pacing and well-rounded characters (including a hauntingly familiar American president) compensate somewhat for the byzantine plotting, but the story's primary saving grace is its deft evocation of the Polish culture and cityscape.
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Review

"If you like spy thrillers with shady characters, twisting plots that involve international conspiracies, and fascinating foreign locales, then you must read Jack King's The Fifth Internationale."
The Beach Metro News

"King's debut novel is powerful, riveting and an incredible ride through the back passageways of international politics. Strong characters, believable (if incredible) plot lines and nonstop action almost make each page turn without the reader's help."
TheBestReviews.com and the Old Book Barn Gazette
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 375 pages
  • Publisher: Leisure Books; First Edition edition (April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0843953373
  • ISBN-13: 978-0843953374
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,167,442 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Fifth Internationale by Jack King is an engaging thriller set in the espionage establishments of Europe, but the story reaches far beyond the boundaries of the Old Continent. Current events are expertly mixed with fiction. The author's writing style is fresh. I particularly enjoyed the lack of long descriptions that are so common in other novels, even my favorite author Ludlum lacks in this area. Thanks to Kings concise writing the story is tense and satisfyingly original. SaraJane
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have read the fifth internationale twice in the past year and what I found extremely interesting about this novel were the true events the author had tied together by weaving a fictional story around them.

To name just a few, and starting with the most obvious: the portrayal of (THE) Zbigniew Brzezinski, the former National Security Adviser. There is also the still ongoing investigation to the mysterious murder of the chief of police, general Papala. Indeed the killing of the general in king's novel could not be mistaken for fiction, down to details I best not mention here.

The true events make me wonder where authors draw the line between fact and fiction in finding inspiration.

Far as the story goes, I found it fresh and exciting. It draws on the peculiar situation in that part of the world: Poland as the bridge between Western Europe and Russia is a hotbed of activities of Russian organized groups, and world's intelligence agencies who wheel and deal here for their own benefit. The race is on for a piece of information that will not only secure control over this region but also the world. Stan Penskie, the FBI agent stationed at the embassy in Warsaw gets a scent of the secret when his friend is killed while fleeing the Polish Secret Service. Stan follows the clues and soon is drawn to conspiracy that might topple US government and cost the lives of his family members. His friends turn into enemies and Stan himself becomes a primary target for assassins. To his help comes a beautiful and mysterious woman. Together they arrive at a dark and forbidding place where a meeting of shadowy characters is taking place. From then on it's a race against time to save the world.

For my tastes jack king is a master crafter of fast-paced intrigue.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
FBI agent Stan Penskie is put through terrifying ordeal when he inadvertently learns of a huge conspiracy involving espionage agencies of the USA and countries around the World. Stan is drawn to it by clues left by a friend who is killed in front of his eyes. Bit by bit he dwells deeper into conspiracy, learning secrets that can topple the government of his country and destroy his professional and personal life. Dodging bullets from unseen assassins, Stan finds the truth at a murky medieval castle where heads of States and directors of intelligence agencies tie the final knot on a devilish plan to take over the world.

Pros: Good pace, great intrigue, good dialogs and very likeable hero.

Cons: Would like to see more of the story taking place in the USA, after all Stan is an FBI agent.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
liked the strong female lead and dialogs. belieavable story line and fast-paced action. good thriller.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
In addition to really liking this novel I'd like to offer this technical comment: Excellent job on change of scene. so many writers spoil the flow of reading their novels by inserting scene changes, but King managed to achieve what others often cannot. his scene changes result in strong tension and suspense buildup making The fifth internationale an excellent tale. someone called king a "new king of thrillers" (see his webpage at spywriter.com) and I hope his future stories are as good as this one. Recommended!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
holy moly! this book swept me off my feet! it has everything that's happening these days: 9/11, war on terrorism, thinly desguised president bush, spies running the government and bush's run to control the world! really good writing style and a facinating story! highly recommended particularly given what's happening out there in the real world of espionage and intrigue!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Fifth Internationale is a fascinating roller coaster ride through deception and conspiracy in the very institutions and pinnacles of power that are the foundations of our, so called "free" or "democratic" world. Excellent pace, and hard to put down thriller! Read it in under two days! The twists will keep you guessing till the last paragraphs. Loved the setting, a true eye opener on the mysterious and often scary world of post-cold-war Eastern Europe, where corruption and organized crime run out of control. Can't wait for King's next novel!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
got it from my neighbor and hed to get one of my own from the author with his authograph - absolutely loved it! the story is rewarding in its complexity.
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