Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Zero Day (John Puller, #1)” as Want to Read:
Zero Day (John Puller, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Zero Day (John Puller #1)

3.98  ·  Rating Details ·  40,878 Ratings  ·  2,615 Reviews
War hero John Puller is known to be the top investigator in the US Army’s CID. So when a family with military connections is brutally murdered in a remote area of West Virginia, Puller is called to investigate, and soon suspects the case has wider implications.

As the body count rises he teams up with local homicide detective Samantha Cole. As the web of deceit is revealed
Hardcover, 434 pages
Published October 31st 2011 by Grand Central Publishing
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Zero Day, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Will Thor writes for a living. He probably wanted to develop a terrorist theme as Angela and Jean suggest but ran out of time and failed to finish editing…moreThor writes for a living. He probably wanted to develop a terrorist theme as Angela and Jean suggest but ran out of time and failed to finish editing his book. Still I enjoyed this book as I have enjoy his other novels. I especially like it that his hero would not stand out in most crowds and SPOILER ALERT he will let important people die.(less)
Too Much Information by David  HaskellReckless Endangerment by Amber Lea EastonRiptide by Amber Lea EastonSon of a Serial Killer by Jams N. RosesBlue Coyote Motel by Dianne Harman
Recommended Thriller/Suspense
80th out of 812 books — 961 voters
The Da Vinci Code by Dan BrownThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg LarssonAngels & Demons by Dan BrownThe Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg LarssonThe Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson
325th out of 2,486 books — 3,122 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Ben Jackson
Dec 11, 2013 Ben Jackson rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
And just when I thought I had finished the Jack Reacher series, Lee Child er...David Baldacci writes another Reacher the first Puller novel.

Jack Reacher John Puller is a crackerjack military investigator, who heads out of the DC area to the south, to check out the death of a senior officer in unsavory conditions. Reacher sorries, Puller is a big dude, and he likes to punch people. Also he travels light. And punchy.

Jack Reacher John Puller comes from a military family. His father died now has Al
Nov 22, 2011 Bill rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Those that really need to read every Baldacci book
The good guy is perfect and the bad guys are really, really evil. Sometimes David Baldacci gets it just right and sometimes he just falls flat. I am putting Zero Day in the latter category.

John Puller is in the Army's Criminal Investigation Division and is called upon to investigate a murder in a small West Virginia coal mining town. While there, he learns these deaths may have very large implications.

The story really falls short in a number of ways. First, the sheer size and scope of the invest
Alex is The Romance Fox
I really like this author and have enjoyed reading most of his books.

This is the 1st book in the John Puller Series and introduces John Puller, the hero, who works in the military.

Good writing, good plot and some great characters.

Enjoyable read.
I enjoyed my last book by Baldacci, but this one hit too many of my hot buttons. The hero was too heroic, a super hero who could solve a murder, beat up the toughest, be a CSI tech, & figure out the crime from a mark in the dust. Think NCIS with Puller in all the roles from Gibbs down to that cute, weird girl in the lab. Seriously, he was doing better than Ducky at one point. But he can't figure out the difference between the sound of a fan & a possible opponent. Ugh.

Possibly worse, Bald
Jul 25, 2012 Relic rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It's not often I'm compelled to drop a book out of sheer despair, but this is one of them. Well, not literally, since it was in audio format on my phone, and dropping it would have had serious consequences. But at the 54 minute mark of the 57 minute second cd, enough was enough. At a crime scene, Baldacci's shameless clone of Jack Reacher, here called Puller, started explaining in relentless, unpitying and irrelevant detail how to take a flash photograph. This took several chapters, or seemed ...more
Moonlight Reader
Sep 07, 2016 Moonlight Reader rated it did not like it
Shelves: w-o-b-b-l-e
Poorly written.

This is a book. It is a book with a red cover. It is written in short sentences. Like this. That is supposed to make the reader feel like things are happening. I guess.

This book is about a man, Puller. Puller is in the Army. He's just a man. In the army. Where he belongs. He investigates things. Like a badass. Sometimes, he saves people's lives. Except when he fails. He remembers combat. Sleeps. Lightly. M11 in his hand. Three seconds to wake and shoot. He has ma
Katherine Adams
May 14, 2012 Katherine Adams rated it did not like it
I've read several of David Baldacci's books, and enjoyed them. "Zero Day," however, isn't one of them. Baldacci's main character -- Army investigator John Puller -- is a dull twin of Lee Child's popular protagonist Jack Reacher. It was surprising to see so many similarities to such a well-known character like Reacher. The first time Puller craved coffee, I thought "Reacher." Aside from a strange (I hope coincidental) similarity to a well-known contemporary character, this book is filled with ...more
Nov 26, 2011 Nancy rated it liked it
I really like David Baldacci's books. He is intelligent and provides a suspense filled story with clean dialogue and well written characters. This particular book just didn't grab me. The problem was the acronyms for me. The protagonist is military and a lot of acronyms are used that I don't know. They are defined but I didn't want to keep looking back in the book to be reminded. Like I said, Baldacci is brilliant and he understands a lot of things that I don't having to do with forensics which ...more
William Bentrim
Nov 14, 2011 William Bentrim rated it it was amazing
Zero Day by David Baldacci

Baldacci has a new hero, a new ethos and another, never boring cliff hanging, throat grabbing thriller.

John Puller takes over for John Carr without a Camel Club or a gang of cronies. Although Puller is dedicated Army, he runs without a safety net throughout the book. The Army is his life and his passion is it’s Criminal Investigative Division. He is an elite Army cop and he is thrown into a situation involving mass mayhem. Every time he turns around there is another mu
Nick Brett
Nov 04, 2011 Nick Brett rated it liked it
oh, what to make of David Baldacci? A capable and entertaining author, much of his recent work has not been up to the standard set by his early books. My personal view is that this came about as he started producing books on a more regular basis, quantity over quality if you like. And now we have "Zero Hour" which is a very hard book to review...
The good news is that this is the best book from the author in some while, a fast paced page turner about an US Military investigator looking into some
Jul 20, 2012 Wanda rated it did not like it
Listened to this exercise book while on treadmill. Derivative. Predictable. Cliche ridden. And annoyingly patriotic. Spare me the rhapsodies about the U.S. military. If we were a bit more honest about the fact that war was legalized killing, perhaps we would get into fewer of them. Glorifying our military misadventures in the Middle East and Afghanistan isn't helpful. It speaks only to manipulating the patriotic fervor of others.
Puller's love interest never comes to fruition - so he is left (lik
Mark Chisnell
Dec 15, 2012 Mark Chisnell rated it liked it
I’ve not read any David Baldacci books before, and I only started with this one because it sat at the top of the UK charts with a bunch of good reviews and a 20p price tag – but I’m glad I picked it out, and I’m giving it four stars. It would be three and a half, but that isn’t possible.

Zero Day is the first in what I’m sure will be a series starring Jack Rea... sorry, not Jack Reacher, John Puller. Spot what Baldacci did there? Many other reviewers have drawn the comparison between Lee Child’s
Dec 03, 2012 Spinster rated it it was ok
Shelves: do-not-bother
Zero Day was like bad action movie, so clichéd that my fingers and toes combined aren't enough to count the times I rolled my eyes or laughed at the absurdities in the story. I mean, a hardass super soldier who knows everything about anything and if there is one very precise area of knowledge he's not an expert on, he has a family member that is. Murders, guns, explosions, sweat and muscle - that's the recipe for a good story. Or not.

The book reeked with testosterone and Baldacci clearly wasn't
Mar 10, 2012 Skip rated it liked it
Shelves: crime-detective
Eerily similar to Lee Child's The Affair. An Army CID goes to a small town to investigate the murder of an Army officer and his family, and becomes embroiled in local town politics and policing. Nobody is quite sure why John Puller is alone nor why Homeland Security and other senior governmental officers have an ongoing interest in the case, especially in a small coal town in West Virginia. Local motorcycle gang is cooking meth, but the real danger is much more dangerous, involving an Army ...more
Nov 05, 2014 Jimmy rated it did not like it
Shelves: 28, deployment-12-13

Reading this book made me feel elitest and I don't enjoy that feeling. The story wasn't bad by any means. I wanted to know how it ended but getting there was pretty rough.

So the main character is John Puller Jr. Puller is an Army CID Investigator who is the son of America's greatest Soldier and is no slouch himself. Unfortunately for Mr. Baldacci, I am also a Soldier and I found the description of Puller to be almost offensive. He does everything the way the Army trained him to
Mike (the Paladin)
I put this on my "Thriller" shelf as that's what this is supposed to be. Sadly it doesn't really move fast enough to actually give, "thrills".

Our hero a warrant officer investigator for the Army CID (Criminal Investigation Division) gets called to WV when a flag officer and his entire family are murdered. The flag officer (Full bird colonel) was an intelligence type.

Things get odd rather quickly... The crime is important enough for a CID investigator but then he's sent in alone with no back up
Jan 27, 2012 Jill rated it really liked it
I have never read a book by David Baldacci that I didn't like, and Zero Day is no exception. It kept me awake nights and that is one of the things that determine how well I like a book. The situations were borderline unbelievable, but then so are most of Dean Koontz, Stephen King and others ... it doesn't detract from the pleasure of the book.

John Puller is a career military man, a CID investigator with a tough exterior and soft heart and soul. His brother is serving a life sentence for treason
Jonel Boyko
Oh my goodness! Could you just imagine? Baldacci has taken one of the most terrifying possibilities and brought it to our backyard in a chillingly realistic manner. Chilling narratives combine with an intricate storyline to create a very believable, chilling, and entertaining whole. The plot twists were never ending. I couldn’t believe that I never figured out the mastermind. I actually had to wait to be told in the last chapter. At the same time, I didn’t feel as if it came out of left field. ...more
Sep 24, 2012 Kelly rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, thrillers
I really hope I'll be reading more about John Puller soon! Masterful character development.
Nov 21, 2011 Cheryl rated it liked it
John Puller works for the Army’s Criminal Investigation Unit. So whenever the Army is in need of the best to help solve a murder, they turn to John. This latest murder case is a gruesome one. A colonel and his family including two little children were slaughtered.

John is joined by local authority Samantha “Sam” Cole. Together they head down a path of deceit, greed and murder.

It has been several books since I have read one from Mr. Baldacci. I have to admit that this was not one of his stronges
Sep 13, 2014 Jackie rated it really liked it
So, I was needing "good read" and I got it with this one. Mr. Baldacci remains one of my favorite authors. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this (probably more than usual because I had just finished a rather disappointing novel from another of my favorites, who maybe won't be one of my favorites any more...but I digress).

One nit-picky complaint: I got a bit weary of reading about how someone was fat. Too many fat someones.

That said, the hero of this one was "larger than life", a nearly perfect exam
Oct 02, 2012 Emilie rated it liked it
Picked this up at the airport on a whim. I typically like Baldacci's books and this one was ok. Other commenter's have remarked on the main character's uncanny similarity to another well-known character. I have never read any of those books (although now I'm going to!) to make that comparison, so that was lost on me. There is a lot of exposition and sort of dumbed-down/white-washed military/law enforcement stuff. I noted in the acknowledgements that Baldacci seemed to do quite a bit of research ...more
Nov 19, 2011 gert rated it really liked it
ok, there's no question that while reading this book comparisons will be made between its protagonist - john puller - and good ol' jack reacher. they share far too many characteristics for that not to happen. but john is far more chatty, and still in the army. thereby following those rules and hierarchy. and he uses suitcases.

although there were parts in this book that i felt just went to slow - i will admit to some skimming - generally, the story moved along. as well, sometimes it felt like a t
Feb 08, 2012 Loripdx rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book by David Baldacci, but I kind of felt like I was reading a Lee Child book!

Did anybody else notice the following?

1) The name of Baldacci's main character in this book is John Puller. In Lee Child's books, the main character is Jack Reacher. John = Jack and PULLer vs REACHer.

2) (This one's a stretch, but a sort of cool stretch nonetheless!) John Puller meets up with a lady cop in Zero Day whose last name happens to be Cole. Now Child's Jack Reacher is not Joe Pike (of Robert Cr
Barbara ★
I'm definitely in the minority on this book. I loved it! Sure it's ridiculous but aren't all armageddon books? I liked John Puller's no-nonsense attitude (it's an army thing) and even though his brother has been convicted of treason, John doesn't forsake him. I thought the conspiracy was interesting and involved enough that it was hard to figure the bad guy. Oh don't get me wrong, there were lots of bad guys but the biggie was a surprise. I will definitely be reading the next installment as ...more
Michael Clifton
Nov 14, 2011 Michael Clifton rated it really liked it
This was the best book I have read by Baldacci since Absolute Power and Total Control. It sizzled almost from the first chapter and there were times I had a hard time putting it down. I don't get that too much anymore, so it is always a welcome pleasure when I do come across a book that captures my attention to that degree.

In Zero Day, John Puller, a no-nonsense, tough-as-nails military investigator for the Army's Criminal Investigation Department (CID), is called in to investigate the murder of
Doug Clark
May 28, 2013 Doug Clark rated it really liked it
I recently finished both Zero Day and The Innocent by David Baldacci. I thought I would write a quick review of both of them together as the lead character in each novel is very similar. John Puller, a CID investigator in Zero Day, and Will Robie, a government-sanctioned hit man in The Innocent are both what is commonly known as the strong, silent type, made famous by such actors as Gary Cooper in High Noon, Alan Ladd in Shane and Clint Eastwood in countless spaghetti Westerns. Both Puller and ...more
Nov 18, 2011 Alla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In “Zero Hour” David Baldacci introduces Army CID (Criminal Investigation Division) investigator John Puller, who is tasked with solving the murder of Colonel Matthew Reynolds, an employee of the Defense Intelligence Agency and stationed in the Pentagon, who is murdered in a small house in West Virginia—along with his wife and two teenage kids. Puller is partnered with the local detective, Samantha Cole, as they work to uncover the secrets held in the small West Virginia town—and face a second ...more
Brandon Collinsworth
Ok, well we have to deal with the elephant in the room first. David Baldacci has either never read a Reacher book and it is just the most amazing coincidence that he created the exact same character or he owes Lee Child some money. That is really the most polite way to say this. I loved this book, and enjoyed it immensely but I also kept checking myself and reminding myself that I wasn't reading a Reacher book. It would take less time and words to list the way the two characters are different ...more
Mar 08, 2014 Mark rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of decent thriller & david Baldacci
Recommended to Mark by: the previous read books by mr Baldacci
SO I headed of the Belgian Ardennes,where we have a little place, where according the time of year it is still winter, and sat reading this novel in the absolute silence of nature in a lovely sunbathed and luscious green surrounding in 20 degrees celsius.

And then it takes a very poor book to break my good mood. Thankfully this book was not awefull. Having read earlier Baldaccis this novel was somewhat predictable for a first installment in a new charaters series. The main character John Puller,
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Mysteries & Crime...: BOM Dec 2015/Jan 2016 - Zero day 8 97 Jan 17, 2016 08:39PM  
LOVED IT...!!! 1 12 Nov 21, 2015 07:13PM  
2015 Reading Chal...: Zero Day by David Baldacci 4 36 Mar 10, 2015 01:18PM  
did we read the same book? 17 380 Mar 09, 2014 03:13PM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: Zero Day 1 2 Feb 09, 2012 09:00AM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: Zero Day by David Baldacci 1 3 Jan 23, 2012 10:34AM  
  • Full Black (Scot Harvath, #10)
  • The Drop (Harry Bosch, #17; Harry Bosch Universe, #20)
  • The Inner Circle (Culper Ring, #1)
  • The Last Man (Mitch Rapp, #13)
  • Coup d'Etat (Dewey Andreas, #2)
  • Capitol Murder (Dana Cutler, #3)
  • Buried Secrets (Nick Heller, #2)
  • The Secret Soldier  (John Wells, #5)
  • Portrait of a Spy (Gabriel Allon, #11)
  • The Intercept (Jeremy Fisk, #1)
  • The Lion (John Corey, #5)
  • Locked On (Jack Ryan Universe, #14)
David Baldacci writes because he can't imagine not writing. He published his first novel, Absolute Power, in 1996; one year later, it was adapted for film, with Clint Eastwood as its director and star. In total, David has published 30 novels for adults; all have been national and international bestsellers, and several have been adapted for film and television. His novels have been translated into ...more
More about David Baldacci...

Other Books in the Series

John Puller (4 books)
  • The Forgotten (John Puller, #2)
  • The Escape (John Puller, #3)
  • No Man's Land (John Puller, #4)

Share This Book

“Facing fear is better than running from it," he said.
"What if it's fear you can't beat?"
"Then it might be better to be dead," he answered.”
“Reed said he could maybe find out where it came from back at his office. Check the certified mail records.” 0 likes
More quotes…