Friday, June 18, 2010

Book Review of Nelson DeMille's The Lion

Nelson DeMille's latest book, The Lion, the sequel to his best-selling thriller, The Lion's Game, has just come out!
  The Lion      The Lion's Game
To mark the release of The Lion, DeMille sent me (and the thousands of other people on his mailing list) this email about his BEA experience.  It's hilarious, so I thought I'd share it with you.  

Direct from Nelson DeMille:

At the end of May, I went to BookExpo, the annual publishing industry gathering which was held this year in New York City at the Javits Center. When I walked into the convention hall, there were thousands of people jammed into the huge lobby, dozens of photographers, reporters, and TV news crews, all facing me. I was totally overwhelmed by this turnout, and I waved and flashed the V sign to the assembled throng, then I shouted, "Lion!," and repeated it – "Lion, Lion, Lion!" – hoping that the crowd would take up the chant.

Then my publicist whispered in my ear, "They're waiting for Sarah Ferguson."
"The Duchess of York."
"She's here to sign her books. She writes children's books."
My wife advised, "Let's get a cup of coffee."
"Where's the bar?" I asked.

The rest of the day went better and I signed advance reading copies of The Lion, did a stage interview with Scott Brick, and went to the booth of my publisher, who does not publish the Duchess of York, and where I am appreciated.

It was a good BookExpo and there was a lot of buzz about 
The Lion, with many bookstore owners saying, "Nice cover." One book wholesaler commented, "Thank God it's shorter than your last three."

Afterwards, my wife and I went to a party that was generously sponsored by the 
New York Times and I started a rumor that Sarah Ferguson and Nelson DeMille were arriving together. This got everyone moving to the front door and away from the crowded bar where I was able to get a scotch and soda.

But I digress. 
The Lion is on sale today and I've already bought my copy. There are 999,999 left. Father's Day is June 20. Need I say more?

I recently read The Lion without having read the earlier novel and enjoyed it.  While the earlier novel would have informed my understanding of the characters and their history, The Lion can stand on its own. Curious?  Keep reading below!

The blurb:

The Lion is back.
The last time Federal Agent John Corey of the Anti-Terrorist Task Force heard from Asad Khalil -- known in the world of international terrorism as The Lion -- Khalil claimed he was defecting to the US. . . then he unleashed a deadly reign of destruction on American soil.   While Corey and his partner, FBI agent Kate Mayfield, pursued him across the country, Khalil methodically eliminated his victims one by one and then disappeared without a trace.
Now, after the horrific events of September 11th, Khalil has resurfaced, returning to America to take care of unfinished business -- murdering his select group of enemies, with Kate and John topping the list.  The Lion is a killing machine loose in America with a mission of revenge, and John Corey will stop at nothing to achieve his own goal: find and kill Khalil before Khalil kills him.
As suspenseful, gripping, and prophetic as The Lion's GameThe Lion is a chilling novel about global terrorism -- and the consequences of fighting a war with no end in sight.  Told with his signature dry wit and filled with the fast-paced action for which he is famous, this is DeMille at his very best.

With Father's Day coming up and the start of summer, complex and gripping thrillers are particularly welcome. (Though to be honest, I love reading them any time of the year.)

Assad Khalil, a.k.a. the Lion, is a deadly killer and a religious terrorist.   Now that he's back on U.S. soil, he is pursuing his personal vendetta.  He intends to annihilate all the people linked to his family's destruction from the U.S. Air Force pilots to Federal Agent John Corey and FBI Agent Kate Mayfield.  The Lion, like the fictional Jackal (from Return of the Jackal) is one of the world's most skilled assassins and Khalil enjoys the difficult kills.  

Corey tries to take advantage of Khalil's love for the dramatic and Corey needs all the advantages that he can garner.  Khalil seems to have unlimited resources, a wide range of targets, and no inhibitions.   But Corey has his own strengths -- careful detective work, his creative thinking, his deep determination and desire for vengeance.  The battle of between Corey and Khalil makes for an engrossing read and a satisfying thriller. 

If you're looking for a fun weekend read or a thriller to escape with, check it out.  Action-packed, complex, and engrossing, DeMille's The Lion will surely satisfy!

ISBN-10: 044658083X - Hardcover $27.99
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (June 8, 2010), 448 pages.
Review copy provided by the publisher. 

About the Author:

Nelson Richard DeMille was born in New York City on August 23, 1943 to Huron and Antonia (Panzera) DeMille. He moved as a child with his family to Long Island. In high school, he played football and ran track.

DeMille spent three years at Hofstra University, then joined the Army and attended Officer Candidate School. He was a First Lieutenant in the United States Army (1966-69) and saw action as an infantry platoon leader with the First Cavalry Division in Vietnam. He was decorated with the Air Medal, Bronze Star, and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry.

DeMille returned to the States and went back to Hofstra University where he received his degree in Political Science and History. He has three children, Lauren, Alexander, and James, and still lives on Long Island.

DeMille's earlier books were NYPD detective novels. His first major novel was By the Rivers of Babylon, published in 1978 and still in print, as are all his succeeding novels. He is a member of The Authors Guild, the Mystery Writers of America, and American Mensa. He holds three honorary doctorates: Doctor of Humane Letters from Hofstra University, Doctor of Literature from Long Island University, and Doctor of Humane Letters from Dowling College.

Nelson DeMille is the author of: By the Rivers of Babylon, Cathedral, The Talbot Odyssey, Word of Honor, The Charm School, The Gold Coast, The General's Daughter, Spencerville, Plum Island, The Lion's Game, Up Country, Night Fall, and Wild Fire. He also co-authored Mayday with Thomas Block and has contributed short stories, book reviews, and articles to magazines and newspapers. Learn more about Nelson DeMille on his website at

Thank you to Henry and Grand Central Publishing for this review opportunity!

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