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The Inner Circle (The Culper Ring Series) Mass Market Paperback – October 1, 2011
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"Meltzer has earned the right to belly up to the bar with John Grisham, Scott Turow, and David Baldacci."―PEOPLE
"Meltzer is so good."―ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
"Meet the next John Grisham."―MIAMI HERALD
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I had never read anything by Brad Meltzer before. I originally heard about the new Brad Meltzer book, The President's Shadow which sounded really interesting. I had every intention of reading that book until I found out it was the third book in the series. I am glad I started with the Inner Circle. I have since finished the second book, The Fifth Assasin and plan to read The Presidents Shadow now. I have enjoyed the series and hope you do too!
But the book really wasn't my cup of tea. I generally read science fiction, urban fantasy, or YA dystopian these days. I had to force myself through the first few chapters, impatient with the way Brad kept some of the characters' identities hidden, the way so many characters were introduced. I didn't want a book where I'd have to concentrate and remember things. Ugh.
Still, I slogged through and past those first few chapters because I needed to know whether the book as a whole would turn out well or poorly. Would it be interesting fodder for my son? As I pressed through and the story unfolded, I became more attached to Beecher and more intrigued by the conflicting stories he was hearing from various people. He was embroiled in this whole mess through no fault of his own, and now people all around him were telling him things and pushing him in different directions.
That's when I got hooked and didn't want to put the book down. Which way would it turn out? Which of the people who said they were trying to help him were really trying to help him? Which ones who said they were part of a secret society going all the way back to the roots of American history were telling the truth? Who was playing him for the fool, and who was really his friend?
By the end of the book, I had my answers. But another thing I liked about this book was that it didn't tie everything up in a neat little package. I couldn't whole-heartedly blame the "bad guys", given the reasons they'd done what they did. And I couldn't let them off the hook, either. It was complicated. Just like life.
And just like life, when the book ends, it's only the end of one chapter of Beecher's life. And it's the beginning of another, with the promise of more intrigue and peeks into history and the machinery behind the high levels of politics. Sure, it's fiction. But it's still fun to read about the underground caves in Pennsylvania where archival documents are stored, and how the documents of a President's entire life history are collected once he's elected, and other facts you don't get to hear about every day.
Almost as good as science fiction. So despite my experience in the first few chapters, I'm ordering the next book in the series.