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The Prophet

3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  2,622 ratings  ·  432 reviews
Adam Austin hasn't spoken to his brother in years. When they were teenagers, their sister was abducted and murdered, and their devastated family never recovered. Now Adam keeps to himself, scraping by as a bail bondsman, working so close to the town's criminal fringes that he sometimes seems a part of them. Kent Austin is the beloved coach of the local high school football ...more
Hardcover, 416 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by Little, Brown and Company (first published January 1st 2012)
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Anna Karenina by Leo TolstoyThe Aeneid by VirgilThe Real Life of Sebastian Knight by Vladimir NabokovThe Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. SmithThe Prophet by Michael Koryta
Gray n Red!!!
5th out of 41 books — 7 voters
Onyx by Jennifer L. ArmentroutEternal Beast by Laura WrightOrigins by Jessica L. PadillaThrone of Glass by Sarah J. MaasNevermore by James Patterson
Best books of August, 2012
98th out of 107 books — 265 voters

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Community Reviews

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This story is kinda like if Coach Eric Taylor on Friday Night Lights and Nick Stefanos from the crime novels by George Pellecanos were brothers who had been pulled apart by a family tragedy and now faced a killer.

Actually, I’m just being glib and that’s not doing justice to this book. Let’s start over:

In 1989, Adam Austin was a high school football star and his younger brother Kent looked to follow in his footsteps. As their team was in the middle of a season that would culminate in a state cha
Check out my interview with Michael Koryta in August 2012 >>

Kent Austin a coach of a football team and is brother Adam Austin, a bail bondsman, are two main characters from this story.
Coach is a family man who walks with prayers in mind and hopes he has conquered vengeance with forgiveness and offered redemption for the guilty.
Their kin had been murdered in the past and a recent murder with possible links to people near him, bring t
Mallory Heart Reviews
36 stars!

Review of The Prophet by Michael Koryta

Publication date August 7, 2012

I had hoped this would be one of my favourite author’s stunning Supernatural thrillers (this is what happens when one doesn’t read the blurb LOL). It isn’t-but it is a stunner nonetheless. As far as I am concerned (and I believe I’ve read all his books to date), author Michael Koryta cannot write an imperfect book. Yet in “The Prophet” he has gone above and beyond even his usual perfection, and written a book so deep
Fantastic read from Koryta, who does crime fiction much better than supernatural. The writing is top notch and the charecterizations are spot-on. The troubled relationship between brothers Adam and Kent is well-played and the football background is blended in nicely without overwhelming the main storyline. The ending is powerful and satisfying. Very highly recommended.
3 Stars

Michael Koryta is one of my favorite authors writing today. His books are creative and unique in that they often combine the everyday with a touch of the supernatural. His environments and his locations are characters in themselves, giving the books life and imagination. The Ridge and The Cypress House are two of my favorite reads of his that I recommended to my family and my friends. In this book, The Prophet, Koryta steers his tale in a direction of the main stream. This is his most acc
Kelly Hager
Adam and Kent are brothers, but couldn't be more different. They haven't been close in years, probably ever since their sister Marie was murdered. Kent is a high school football coach and Adam is a bail bondsman and occasional private detective.

One of Kent's players' girlfriends goes to Adam to help find her father. He tracks him down and gives her the address. When the girl is later found murdered, Adam vows to find him and kill him. In his mind, it's all wrapped up with his sister's
I really like Michael Koryta's recent novels. So Cold the River, The Ridge, and The Cypress House were all really good mysteries with a supernatural twist. They were suspenseful without really being gory enough or scary enough to fall into the horror category. I also really liked the first of the Lincoln Perry mystery series, Tonight I Said Goodbye. It was a tightly crafted detective novel that kept me guessing.

Because his last three novels were supernatural suspense, I was expecting this novel
Mary Gramlich
At some point we all answer for what we have done

Brothers Adam and Kent have lived through the worst that any person could imagine a murdered family member. Each had made a decision the night their sister Marie was abducted and murdered to be consumed with their own teenage lives and shirk the responsibility of taking care of their sister. The brothers grew up and moved on to other adult lives with Kent coaching their hometown team and trying to save the world through religion. Adam became a ba
George Lichman
Michael Koryta's ninth book, The Prophet, is scheduled for release on August 7, 2012. After three paranormal thrillers, The Prophet is a return to Mr. Koryta's roots: a mystery set in northeast Ohio. Since I am a fan of mysteries, a fan of Mr. Koryta, and a northeast Ohioan, I was excited to get my hands on a copy of this thriller. And I was not disappointed. On page five, still part of the prologue, I knew I was hooked after reading this, a glimpse inside the mind of the as of yet unknown anta ...more
Way too much football in this book, both literally and (perhaps?) as a metaphor. Not a big fan of the game, so there were many pages of boredom and skimming of excrutiating (to me) high school football game details. Kent Austin, one of two brothers who are the novel's protagonists, is a beloved high school footbal coach. He and his brother Adam have not spoken in years, since their sister was abducted and murdered. Adam is a bail bondsman, struggling with overwhelming guilt and remorse relating ...more
Oct 28, 2014 Mark rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of thrillers and American football
Recommended to Mark by: Susanne Leist
Well this book was mostly about a football coach and his brother, they lost their sister to a murder, and the story tells how they both coped with this loss in their lives.
When another young girl loses her life in a horrific way when one is a successful American football coach and the other one a bailsman it will change their lives again and set them on a course that unites them again in a way.

And that was the thriller bit and the rest is about the game of American football. While a writer like
Morgan Mussell
Half the storefronts are empty in Chambers, Ohio. Abandoned steel mills stand as silent monuments to a past that will never return. Two brothers, Kent and Adam Austin, work in two of the biggest industries that remain in the town - high school football and bail bonds. Their careers, like most everything else in their lives, were defined the night someone kidnapped and murdered their sister when the three of them were in high school.

The brothers have hardly spoken during the 22 years since their
When I started this, I thought I was in for a Raymond Chandleresque treat, complete with hard-boiled detective, savvy resigned beautiful secretary, innocent but evasive young girl, etc. etc.

And then it turned into a football novel. I'm not a big fan of football. It's violent and the game seems to be comprised of people in helmets lining up, shouting a few words then crashing into each other, piling up on top of whomever has the ball until the whistle blows. Then they stand up in virtually the s
THE PROPHET is a mystery that seems to say that everyone could reach a point in their lives that could cause them to be the villain that they feel they normally would condemn. I've read glowing reviews, and reviews that trash this book as being too much about football and not enough about a mystery. I think perhaps those one star reviews are missing something that make this book so much more than just a mystery. Will not say lots more on that because I believe the real discerning readers will be ...more
Marie Austin was picked up on her way home from school, brutally attacked and killed. The death of Marie had a profound effect on her brothers Adam and Kent. The family was torn apart by the tragedy. Both boys were outstanding football players. Kent went on to become a coach at the high school. Adam became a bondsman and private detective. Adam felt responsible for his sister's death. He was to pick her up and give her a ride home from school but instead he picked up Chelsea Salinas and spent th ...more
Daniel Bland
"There's no fear that can break true faith, isn't that right? I always admired your conviction. Your foolishness. Will you forgive me, too, coach? Will you pray for me? Will you remain unbroken?"

It is a cool autumn evening in Chambers, Ohio, and beloved football coach Kent Austin's team is just a few wins away from an undefeated, record-breaking, state-championship season. His older brother Adam Austin, a bail bondsman in the same small town, meets a young woman looking for her father, asking Ad
This is definitely a four-and-a-half-stars book, but I'll round up, in Koryta's case. This is my first book by this author, and really, I should never have read it. I only picked it up because it has an interesting cover (birds of any sort, even dead ones, attract me) and when I started skimming a few pages, I noticed a large part of it was about football. GAH. Football. I dislike pretty much all team sports, but I have a special hatred for football.

But the writing...the writing was clearly good
This book had a good solid serial-killer-thriller premise and got off to an interesting start...and then it unraveled in a few different ways by the end, with a sudden and too-unexpected twist, too much hand-wringing over the same subjects all the way through, and, most irritatingly, a tendency for the author to make his characters suddenly forget how to speak in contractions ("I will not let that happen...", "I do not know how...")over and over. Clunky dialogue makes me crazy: it's not like an ...more
John Yearwood
I enjoyed this book, a thriller-mystery and an entertaining break from my other reading. I stayed up to 4 am to finish it, it was so engrossing. Well paced and carefully crafted, the novel's outcome was in doubt until the final pages, so don't spoil the fun by reading the last pages too soon! I also enjoyed the use of football as the background metaphor for the story. Overall, well done. I give it four stars because the reconciliation between the brothers seemed unnatural, forced. I also find th ...more
Matt Nestler
The Prophet was a very interesting book that mixed both football life and murder and tied it all together. The two main characters in the book are Adam and Kent Austin, one of the brothers is the coach and the other brothers works to bail criminals out of jail. After experiencing the abduction of their sister and the murder when they we were younger. The book takes place in a small town that has a lot of support around their football team. Just before playoffs begin, the town and the team are th ...more
Mal Warwick
I grew up in a gritty Ohio industrial town before industry fled and the rust set in. But Lima, Ohio, in the 1950s seemed a lot more like Buzz Bissinger’s Odessa, Texas, in Friday Night Lights than nearby Chambers, Ohio, of The Prophet by Michael Koryta. Even nearly 60 years ago, the racial tensions, the gangs, and the class conflicts were clearly in evidence in my home town, just as they were in Odessa decades later. Those overarching facts of life in the Rust Belt were hard to find in Chambers. ...more
Susan VanKirk
Excellent novel and worthy of following all the others by Michael Koryta. The Prophet combines plots about Midwestern football and two terrible murders that are strangely connected.

Brothers Kent and Adam Austin have taken their lives in different directions since the murder of their sister years earlier. Adam is a bail bondsman living with the criminal underbelly of Chambers, Ohio, and Kent is the local football coach, poised to win a state title. He has clung to religion as a way to dissolve th
The Prophet is about two brothers and two murders in a small town in Ohio. When Kent and Adam were teenagers their sister, Marie, was murdered. This becomes a defining moment for their family. Kent eventually becomes the high school football coach; he also turns to religion and volunteers to minister to prisoners. Adam becomes a private investigator and bond bailsman and is determined to keep criminals off the street. About twenty years after Marie's death, another teenage girl is murdered and b ...more
I'm not sure about all the high ratings and reviews for this one, because personally I was not impressed. In fact, I was bored. Very bored. Only when I reached the climactic ending was I not. For like 2 pages of 400. Okay, I'm being a little harsh here, I did after all give this three stars.
Here's the thing, Koryta actually did a very good job building up the stories and personalities of the strong-willed Austin brothers. He even did a great job showing the progression of relationships between
I first read Michael Koryta when his supernatural thriller So Cold the River came out. It was very good. When his next supernatural novel came out, The Cypress House, I was sold--this novel was excellent. I also read his third supernatural (The Ridge), and while I didn't find it as good as the previous two, I still recognized him as a major talent. I had not, however, read any of his earlier crime novels; I was interested but just didn't think those could be as good as the supernatural genre so ...more
This book, as with most of Koryta's others, grabbed my attention from the beginning, kept me interested, and took me on a ride with unexpected twists and turns. I enjoyed the story of estranged brothers, Adam and Kent Austin, and became invested in both of their charaters.

After surviving a tragedy while in their teens, brothers Adam and Kent Austin are not able to cling together as a family, and have lived estranged from one another for years. Adam works as a bail bondsman, while Kent is the tow
This book deserves 5 STARS from all the readers who rated it so high. It was an engaging story by a talented writer. The character development was fantastic. I was really into Adam. However, I'm not a big football fan and all the references to the games eventually became tiring for me. Also, this is not what I'd call a feel good book and the ending left me depressed. Sooooo, even though the writing style amazed me at times, I walked away just "liking" it and kind of mad at Koryta for one of his ...more
I really wanted to like this. I loved his last 3, all horror of some type. And perhaps that was my problem: I listened expecting that kind of book. (Now, if I could remember reviews or had read the blurb first...) Petkoff narrated the others and I loved those, so I can't blame him. It just wasn't the book I wanted. Having said that it's a great story of brothers and a crime from the past that continues to haunt them and high school football and redemption. What more can one ask? As are his other ...more
Diane S.
A small town in Ohio, once the home of steel, now dying, population decreasing and a very good high school football team that means much to the people who haven't left. Two brother, taking different paths after the murder of their sister and someone who wants to test one of the brothers faith. Another winner by Koryta, a thriller that explores the concepts of revenge and redemption, faith and acceptance. It is also a novel about what family means, that despite differences there may be times when ...more
This is my second Michael Koryta book and I liked it much better than the first I read (Those Who Wish Me Dead). You knew the path Koryta was leading you down couldn't be the whole story, but I honestly couldn't figure out what it was. The book also didn't end the way I would have anticipated, which I liked.
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Michael Koryta (pronounced ko-ree-ta)has written nine novels, praised by such authors as Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Michael Connelly and Dennis Lehane, and his most recent novel, THE PROPHET, was called "Friday Night Lights meets In Cold Blood...a flawless performance" by Kirkus. His last three novels, THE RIDGE, THE CYPRESS HOUSE, and SO COLD THE RIVER were all New York Times notable books and no ...more
More about Michael Koryta...
So Cold the River Those Who Wish Me Dead The Cypress House The Ridge Tonight I Said Goodbye (Lincoln Perry Series #1)

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