Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Nelson DeMille's The Charm School ☭Review☭

On a dark road deep inside the Russian woods at Borodino, a young American tourist picks up an unusual passenger with an explosive secret: an U.S. POW on the run from "The Charm School," a sinister operation where American POWs teach young KBG agents how to be model U.S. citizens. Their goal? To infiltrate the United States undetected. With this horrifying conspiracy revealed, the CIA sets an investigation in motion, and three Americans--an Air Force officer, an embassy liaison, a CIA chief--pit themselves against the country's enemies in a high-powered game of international intrigue.

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This was my very first book by the NY Times Best Selling author Nelson DeMille. I have to say he is absolutely brilliant. The setting, as he says in his Author's Forward at the front of the book, is one that isn't told much. The Cold War isn't written about often nor is there a plethora of movies made about it. Because of the subject I was so excited to delve into the book. 

From the very first chapter I was completely hooked! The characters drew me in with their individual and very discernible voices. Even if the book wasn't so well written as to have each voice clearly indicated I would know who was speaking just because they were so unique from one another. Then there is the amazing attention to detail. I have not read a book in so long that has had the amount of detail this one has. It brings the book to life and I lived it beside these characters because of the vivid imagery. 

I was completely swept away with this plot, literally on the edge of my seat waiting for the next shoe to fall. The book inspires one to feel a plethora of emotions, so much so it slayed me emotionally and it made me think as well. It was so perfectly written it could be true and it made my imagination soar. I loved this. I will be delving into many more books by this author after reading The Charm School. I very highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys espionage, Cold War, a touch of romance and a story that is going to blow you away.   

About the Author
Nelson Richard DeMille was born in New York City on August 23, 1943 to Huron and Antonia (Panzera) DeMille, then moved with his parents to Long Island. He graduated from Elmont Memorial High School, where he played football and ran track.

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

After his discharge, DeMille returned to Hofstra University where he received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science and History. He has three children, Lauren, Alexander, and James, and he and his wife reside on Long Island.

DeMille's first major novel was By the Rivers of Babylon, published in 1978, and is still in print as are all his succeeding novels. He is a member of American Mensa, The Authors Guild, and is past president of the Mystery Writers of America. He is also a member of International Thriller Writers and was chosen as ThrillerMaster of the Year 2015. 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, Wild Fire, The Gate House, The Lion, The Panther, The Quest, Radiant Angel, and The Cuban Affair. He also co-authored Mayday with Thomas Block and has contributed short stories to anthologies, and book reviews and articles to magazines and newspapers.

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