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The Fourth Estate

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  7,567 ratings  ·  228 reviews
Lubji Hoch survived World War II on luck, guts, and ruthlessness. At the war's end, renamed Richard Armstrong, he buys a floundering newspaper in Berlin and deviously puts his competitors out of business. But it isn't enough. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, Keith Townsend, the Oxford-educated son of a millionaire newspaper owner, takes over his family's business ...more
Hardcover
Published May 7th 1996 by HarperCollins Publisher (first published January 1st 1996)
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Veronica
I gave up on this half way through.... how many times can you rewrite Kane & Able?
Raven and Beez
Read on blog!!

description

This is another one of Jeffrey Archers great books but if you have read A Prisoner of Birth before then I don't think this will interest you. It is not as fast paced as his other books that I have read. The thing that reeled me into this book was the rivalry among newspaper companies. I had never given a second thought to the way the newspaper industry works but if it's anything like this book then it must be one hell of a roller coaster. It's got humor in the most unexpected situa
...more
Arun Divakar
It has all the markings of vintage Archer. Two men : one rich and one poor start building global empires and come face to face against each other. Long winded story line of greed, money and the race for power. The makings are very similar to Kane and Abel but here the business empire is narrowed to only the media. Pretty fast read and beyond entertaining you for a few hours, there ins't much to it.

Now that we are on the topic, it is also the tale of two first class, solid gold, shining as bright
...more
Cathy
Despite his somewhat dubious personal integrity and a lack of any literary gravitas to his novels,I've always found Jeffrey Archer to be a consummate storyteller and weaver of gripping tales ... until now that is.
The Fourth Estate traces the lives and fortunes of its two protagonists, who are destined to become rival newspaper barons. Predictably, one is born with the proverbial silver spoon firmly ensconced in his mouth, while the other begins life in abject poverty. Their changing fortunes thr
...more
Beejay
I find myself giving this book three stars primarily because of the "How on earth did Archer get away with this" factor. I don't think anybody holds Jeffrey Archer up as a great writer, but he is an excellent story-teller, and therefore a provider of some very good entertainment.

"The Fourth Estate" tracks the lives - successes, failures, treachery - of two media barons, Richard Armstrong and Keith Townsend. The parallels with Robert Maxwell and Rupert Murdoch are uncanny in the extreme, to the p
...more
Diana McMahon Collis
One of the best novels I've read in a long time. It's quite a fat read (just under 600 pages) but I managed to whizz through it in half of a week-long holiday in Mykonos. A gripping tale and it doesn't take too much imagination to pinpoint who the hero and anti-hero are based on! Or maybe antagonist and protagonist would be more accurate terms for describing the two newspaper barons depicted in The Fourth Estate. If you want a real insight into how the media operates and how the news is created ...more
Yunee Ryan
i just finished reading the book yesterday. like in his first three books that i have read, the fourth estate revolves around lawyers, money and the loopholes in laws created by human.

when i read the first and second chapter, i dont have any ideas where the story is going to take me. when i move on, then i know the chapters are actually the ending of the story. this is the first time i ever read a book with two main characters that are put separately, and the characters didnt even meet face to f
...more
Steve
The Fourth Estate follows the fortunes of two men who are both trying to build up the biggest newspaper empire in the world. One of them is a Jewish East European immigrant who comes to live in Britain, the other is the son of a rich Australian newspaper proprietor. In the course of their business dealings they become bitter enemies& [return][return]I hadn t read all of a novel in quite some time, constantly starting books and not finishing them, something I don t like doing, so I decided to ...more
Chinmay Maheshwari
Interesting read. Has a very very slow start and a lot of buildup. But second half more than makes up for it. The narration style is different than the usual Archer novels and how the two separate stories merge eventually at the end is really awesome.
Sammie
If anyone is considering reading this, save yourself the time and just read (or re-read) Kane and Abel instead. The Fourth Estate has the same premise, only without any charm.

The characters are unlikable. The plot is boring and repetitive. I have read several of Jeffrey Archer's novels and this is the first one to disappoint me.

If you start to read it and force yourself to continue just because you hope it gets better, believe me, it doesn't!
Balaji Lakshmi Ramakrishnan
The first two chapters of the book will keep you like "WHAT THE!" and then the flashback. The Master of Storytelling, yet again, span a yarn, so fine, that it will make you wanting it to never end!
Richard Armstrong from Czech and Keith Townsend from Australia.
One born poor and the other born with a silver spoon.
One wants to learn and the other wants to quit.
One faces the war the other isn't slightly troubled by it.
One thing about this book is, you can never predict what will happen next.
Verdic
...more
Gautham Shenoy
This one is a classic Archer novel with two protagonists whose initial lives are bear absolutely no similarity, but who manage to come up in their lives and eventually battle each other to gain some coveted possession. In this case, one of the protagonists Richard Armstrong is a Jew who escapes the Germans during WWII, enlists in the British Army, ends up being a War hero and a crucial person in the British Information Control in Berlin where he successfully manages a coup to control the largest ...more
Joanne
The story of rivals and publishing moguls Richard Armstrong and Keith
Townsend.

An excellent read of greed and power that spans decades. The book starts at the end (1991) and then details the path of these two men in their quest and rise to control the world’s media. Dick and Keith will go to great lengths and expense to out do each other and others while building up their empire.

Read Cain and Abel about 9 years ago and this was similar, but still engaging and intense.
Luffy Monkey D.
It's been a long time in coming, but at last I've got my first 5/5 book of the year. Jeffrey Archer's books, unlike most authors', had always been available to me when I was growing up in the mid 90's. I remember those times. Curiously, though I had been aware of some of his writings (Kane and Abel), I naively thought that writers like him were common in the world. How wrong was I. So, instead of saving up my money to buy his books, I bought instead French and Belgian comics. Stuff like Gaston ...more
Paula Dembeck
This is the story of two very different men who grow up to be rivals vying to control the newspaper trade on the world stage.

Lubji Hoch is a Jew who begins life as pauper living in a small hut. He survives World War II and later spends time in Berlin, reinventing himself with the new name Richard Armstrong. He works hard, slowly and methodically building a newspaper empire.

On the other side of the world, Keith Townsend is an Oxford educated son of a millionaire newspaper owner. Like Armstrong, h
...more
Lori Bigby
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mwai Nyamu
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oriboaz
This book was absolutely riveting. It is a long book, and I read in just three or four evenings. Every night I would come home from work, and simply start reading, ignoring everything else. I had a very hard time putting the book down. When I finished reading the book, I had to take 10 minutes to rest... and could not begin another book that evening. If only all books made me feel like that!

The book is written in Jeffrey Archer's clear style, with lots of dry humor. The plot advances quickly. It
...more
Uke Jackson
Well, I read it all the way through. some one recently tweeted that my Beach Tales reminded him of Jeffrey Archer. I found that very weird. The Archer 1 or 2 books I read in the distant past are vague memories -- more of lumbering, laborious prose. I usually tend to go straight for the jugular, metaphorically speaking of course, when writing a story. Or at least that's what I think.

anyway, this book left me feeling pretty much the same. This is the fictional story of based on the real life press
...more
Lavish
All hail Archer !! Truly a master of story telling.
My views can be contrasting to many of readers here because this is first Jeffrey Archer book I’ve read. At the beginning, story starts from the end and goes into the flashback, and totally drives you crazy as you don’t know what’s going on? But suddenly all things started to make sense. And at the last of the chapter you find yourself at a position where it is difficult to put the book down because of some clue of change in the story.
This book
...more
Dokusha
Zwei junge Männer kommen in den 20er Jahren des 20. Jahrhunderts früh mit der Welt der Zeitungen und Zeitschriften in Kontalkt: der eine als Sohn eines Zeitungsverlegers in Australien, der andere als tschechischer Jude aus armen Verhältnissen.

Nicht nur ihr familiärer und geschichtlicher Hintergrund ist sehr verschieden, sondern auch ihr Charakter. Sie durchlaufen eine sehr unterschiedliche Entwicklung, die auch im ersten Teil des Buches getrennt voneinander in wechselnden Kapiteln erzählt wird.
...more
Rachel
It doesn't help the review that half-way through reading this, I lost interest and the book got lost. And though I did like how the plot unfolded, I'm simply too much of a bum and the book didn't really leave enough of an impression on me for moi to be able to write a decent review.

Sooo... I'll sum up with Jeffrey Archer basically stole the life stories of the two media barons, Robert Maxwell and Rupert Murdoch. Like Robert Maxwell, who became a Jewish refugee at a young age after his country wa
...more
Smit Kothari
With ‘The Fourth Estate’ Jeffrey
Archer grabs a catchy storyline in
his shelf.But the storyteller of the
decade widens his horizon to
make it heart throbbing.Two men
at two different corners start
their journey to become world’s
biggest press baron.
In their topsy-turvy path from
nothing to everything, they try
every ‘modus operandus’ to cram
everything that comes their
way.Pounds or contacts, treachery
or bribery-they retort to
everything that fuels their
automobile to their
destination.Unending desires
lead th
...more
Alan Mills
Two men, one starting as a poor Jew in eastern Europe, the other the son of a newspaper publisher in Australia, become worldwide media moguls, through a combination of drive, dirty play, and brilliant business skills. Inevitably, they increasingly come into direct conflict, contending for the same media properties.

Archer does his usual great job of painting likable characters, and moving the narrative along at a breakneck pace. He resists the easy out of making one of the men into a "good guy" b
...more
Pari {Ridhee}
The book was good. I cant say great because I found some parts boring. When Archer tells the life-story of the two rivals, it is boring. But, when he comes to the main part, it starts to get interesting. In the end, though, he repeats the first part. Te story says about two newspaper barons, who are rivals. Both of them want to be the richest person in the world, but both of them come in the same amount of debt from the same bank. One has someone to guide him, the other doesnt know what to do. O ...more
Simon Taylor
While Archer’s The Fourth Estate is a blatant fictionalisation of the careers of Rupert Murdoch and Robert Maxwell, it’s nevertheless dramatic and interesting, and an intriguing look into what can be a very shady world.

Townsend and Armstrong (as Murdoch and Maxwell are rechristened) are built up slowly for the reader, each of their lives being described in alternating chapters. For the first few chapter couplets, there is symmetry between the events underlined by similar opening and closing line
...more
Cato
Definitivamente Archer sabe como pegarlo a uno de un libro. Recuerdo que el primer libro que me le de una sentada fue "Una cuestin de honor", del mismo Archer, hace como 20 aos.

Cuando empec a leer "El Cuarto poder", me pareci que era un remake de "Kane y Abel", publicado por el mismo autor 16 aos antes de este. Ambos tratan de dos magnates de los negocios, uno por herencia, y el otro hecho a pulso despues de nacer en la pobreza y sobrevivir a la segunda guerra mundial. Pero despues de investigar
...more
Benjamin Thomas
Jeffrey Archer is a master of the short story with a twist. This novel seems to be a number of short stories connected together in the guise of a full-length novel. And thus it loses the elements that could have made it a classic. In addition, it seems that most people who have negative comments on this book, are comparing it to "Kane and Able." I'll have to agree. This entry is a good read but Mr. Archer misses the mark when he fails to keep the reader rooting for the main characters. As the no ...more
Carol Billings
This is a gripping story, about 2 young men: one rich, one poor. They become bitter rivals in the ownership of newspapers, and in both cases their jealousy and rivalry get the better of them. While the story was fast-paced and gripping, I found it dragged in the middle and could have got the story across using fewer "deals".
Neither protagonist is likeable, which is a downside to this book. Worth reading, but not worth reading twice.
Fatima
that was the longest read. ever, and the hardest.
since i know nothing about finance, it was interesting yet a bit difficult to read "the fourth estate"
I'm amazed about how can Jeffery Archer can WRITE a made up life, for a character beginning since they are 6 until they re in their 70s or even until they DIE . but yet again he IS J. Archer.

Richard Armstrong and Keith Townsend fights rules the biggest publishing empires of their history, they made up their minds about being enemies since day one,
...more
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Jeffrey Howard Archer, Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare (born 15 April 1940) is an English author and former politician.

He was a Member of Parliament and deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, and became a life peer in 1992. His political career, having suffered several controversies, ended after a conviction for perverting the course of justice and his subsequent imprisonment. He is married
...more
More about Jeffrey Archer...
Kane and Abel (Kane and Abel, #1) Only Time Will Tell (The Clifton Chronicles, #1) Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less The Prodigal Daughter (Kane & Abel, #2) A Prisoner of Birth

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