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Split Second (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell, #1)
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Split Second (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell #1)

3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  40,789 Ratings  ·  1,692 Reviews
Michelle Maxwell has just blown her future with the Secret Service. Against her instincts, she let a presidential candidate out of her sight to comfort a grieving widow. Then, behind closed doors, the politician whose safety was her responsibility vanished into thin air.

Living a new life on a quiet lake in central Virginia, Sean King knows how the younger agent feels. He's
Paperback, 512 pages
Published September 1st 2004 by Vision (first published September 30th 2003)
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Teghan of course! You're still engaging your mind and creating a world in your imagination. Stories have been told for millennia in the verbal form, so I've…moreof course! You're still engaging your mind and creating a world in your imagination. Stories have been told for millennia in the verbal form, so I've always thought that audiobooks are just continuing on in that tradition.

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Community Reviews

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Oct 03, 2015 Jonetta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Secret Service Agents Sean King and Michelle Maxwell watched their careers go up in smoke in a split second. Though their events occurred eight years apart, they become connected by the events that altered their courses. It also seems now that the two events might have their own connection.

I enjoyed the story, especially the pace as there was rarely time to relax before the next challenge was presented. I liked the murky characters and odd directions the story would take, sometimes making it a
Oct 08, 2009 Christian rated it really liked it
Do you remember when you first saw Star Wars? If you are a certain gender and a certain age, it was THE defining movie of your childhood. You were either Luke or Han when you played. You craved everything Star Wars.

Then The Empire Strikes Back came out and it added so many layers. You were blown away. “No....I am your father” rocked your little mind. Yoda letting the audience know “No. There is another” led to rampant speculation for a few years about where the story was going to go next.

And the
Erin (PT)
Sometimes you stay up late with a book because it's just that great and you can't bear to put it down; other times, you find yourself up late because you just want this PoS book out of your life as soon as possible.

Like a lot of people right now, I picked up Split Second because it's recently been made into a TV show and I was interested in checking out the source material. Usually the visual media conversion of a book comes off the poorer in any comparison, but after having read the book, I ha
Linda I
Oct 12, 2010 Linda I rated it really liked it
A good quick read by a very talented storyteller. "Split Second" is the beginning of another Baldacci storyline called the "King and Maxwell Series". Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are two disgraced Secret Service Agents whos presidential candidate's both were either killed or kidnapped. Through an elaborately connected chain of events, though not seeming at the time, Maxwell and King team up to discover who is responsible for the conspiracy. Admittedly, I like Baldacci's later "Camel Club ...more
I have completely forgotten to review this book. Read it this summer thought it was ok, nothing really special. The two main character felt a bit boring to be honest it was nothing like reading about Patrick and Angie by Dennis Lehane. Will perhaps read the rest of the series if I run out of

Jan 08, 2016 Rajan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: My friends who like thriller and mystery
I bought it in India international trade fair at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi. I wanted to read a new thriller writer and the salesman suggested this. I am thankful to him.

All it takes is a split second to ruin your career. Maxwell and king of secret service has this is common. Now both unite and try to redeem themselves. will they b successful?

I enjoyed it thoroughly. It is a page turner. Kept me engrossed. Highly recommended.

Sean is very fastidious and judicious. Michelle is very unorganised and
Terri Lynn
Oct 28, 2013 Terri Lynn rated it it was amazing
I loved this. I had read other Baldacci books but none about Sean King and Michelle Maxwell but now I have to read them all.

Sean King is a former Secret Service agent whose split second lack of attention 8 years ago caused a tea party type presidential candidate to lose his life (before there even was a tea party)when a brilliant professor working at a third rate college (he was a UC Berkeley PhD who had fallen from grace after his activism over the Vietnam War and Watergate) stepped up and sho
Jun 19, 2013 Ami rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my first experience with David Baldacci. His books are one of those I see around bookstore a lot (in mystery section) but I haven't felt compelled to try. Now I know that he is the author of Absolute Power (I enjoy the movie) and King & Maxwell series from TNT. Because I like the pilot of King & Maxwell, I decided to check out the series.

I love a good mystery. A good mystery book is a good book. And I think this one provides a good mystery. For a peeker like myself, I'm even able
Kristy James
Sep 24, 2011 Kristy James rated it it was amazing
Just finished Split Second and, as with The Winner, was very impressed with Baldacci's style. The research and planning that went into this book was amazing. Unlike The Winner, I did figure out who 'the bad guy' was about a third of the way in, even when he tried to make it look as though I was wrong a bit later. I was, however, wrong about his accomplice.

It will be interesting to see if Total Control, next on my list, is similar to these two books. David Baldacci seems to have a thing about hi
Dec 25, 2014 Alex rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller, mystery
"Split Second" by David Baldacci is a murder mystery/thriller and my first read of the author. He gave me a good impression. I generally don't read murder mysteries unless they are Jewish murder mysteries but my mother-in-law raves about his books so I decided to try one. This is the first in the series of Sean King/Michelle Maxwell novels where two former secret service agents team up to solve a murder and in this case a kidnapping as well.

The story: A Secret Service agent, Sean King, has his p
Jul 12, 2014 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of tv shows that seek out the original source
Recommended to Mark by: tv series
NCIS: Los Angeles creator Shane Brennan created the show based on David Baldacci's novels, which was the main reason to pick up this book. I did enjoy the first season of this series so decided to have look in the literary origin and see how much the actual difference would be.
Mr Baldacci has been read by me before but those books were more of the one offs written by the writer and as thrillers they did not fail to entertain me. So on that note it would be a great choice in reading about Maxwell
Aug 27, 2016 Gill rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008, month-12
Michelle Maxwell, a Secret Service agent assigned to a presidential candidate, sees her rising career slip away when the candidate is kidnapped. Eight years earlier, Agent Sean King was assigned to a candidate who was killed. With their professional lives similarly shattered, the two meet and uncover unlikely coincidences between the two events. Suspense mounts when a body appears in King's law office and when they are violently attacked.

A decent-enough premise, but I found it disappointing. Max
Brenda H
Jun 04, 2016 Brenda H rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My online reading group plans to read the second book in this series in July. Since I do not like to read a series out of order, I decided to read this in preparation. Once I started the book, it seemed somewhat familiar but I was unable to decide if it was because I had already read the book or if I knew things because of the tv series. Turns out, that I had read the book before but so long ago that I forgot most of it...most importantly - the big reveals. :). Despite being a re-read (something ...more
Nov 27, 2014 Mike rated it really liked it
Great travel, beach, bedside reading. Short, pithy chapters and action that seldom slows down. Two Secret Service agents who make little mistakes on the job with big consequences. The mistakes are related but the plot is pretty complicated and will keep you interested to the slightly hokey end. I might be a little generous at 4 Stars as there were flaws. But I want to see King and Maxwell carry on in future adventures. Maxwell is great, she kicks butt. King is more of the braniac and moody. Shou ...more
☼♎ Carmen the Bootyshaker Temptress ☼♎
This was an awesome beginning to a series. There was twist at every turn with a strong female character. I will definitely continue with the series. I want to see what other trouble King and Maxwell will get into.
I shouldn't actually mark this as "read", because I read about six pages and was disgusted by how bad a writer David Baldacci is, or at the very least, is in this first book in the "King & Maxwell" series. I only wanted to give the book series a try because earlier this summer TNT started a series based on these books. I like the TV series, in spite of being wary of what sounded potentially boring: politicians' business, CIA nonsense and ex-Secret Service agents turned private detectives. ...more
Scott Rachui
Jun 03, 2013 Scott Rachui rated it really liked it
This was my first David Baldacci book, and it reads like a mixture between your standard police procedural looking for a mastermind criminal and a political thriller. Within either genre it works, and I'll be reading Baldacci again. His writing is crisp, plot driven, with lots of dialog. The main characters are Sean King (ex-Secret Service) and Michelle Maxwell (current Secret Service). It deals with a past Presidential assassination, and a modern assassination plot reminiscent of the one in the ...more
This is the first King and Maxwell mystery/ thriller, the story where Michelle Maxwell, a Secret Service agent, whose charge, a presidential candidate, is kidnapped from under her nose, meets Sean King a former Secret Service agent, whose candidate was assassinate while under his protection. Both cases seem to be related. It's an action-filled thriller, with many deaths and explosions. King is now a lawyer, who finds his relatively sedate new life turned upside down. There are many suspects in ...more
Oct 04, 2015 Robin rated it really liked it
Shelves: suspense, 2015
Secret Service Agent Michelle Maxwell knows her career is over when presidential candidate John Bruno is kidnapped on her watch. She sees a parallel to Sean King, another agent whose protectee was gunned down in front of him when his attention was diverted. Michelle contacts King and talks to him about the path their lives have taken. Sean is now embroiled in a murder investigation where he is a suspect. As they uncover information about the murder and their respective cases, they begin to ...more
Virginia Jacobs
Aug 16, 2012 Virginia Jacobs rated it liked it
My library classified this book as suspense, but I wouldn't go that far. I feel like David Baldacci's books aren't literary masterpieces by any stretch of the imagination, but I find them really, really enjoyable reading.

This book is your sort of typical law-enforcement caper, with the law-enforcement people being framed, and then they have to figure out how to prove their innocence.

In fact, it was so typical that I was nearly able to predict the outcome. I say nearly because there was one lit
Paul Lothane
Jun 20, 2016 Paul Lothane rated it really liked it
The author, David Baldacci, is renowned as one of the world's outstanding bestselling authors, and this work serves to show why. The general plot and characterization here is excellent with so many twists and turns. The chapters are essentially short too, making the book easier to read. Also, there is a premium on prurience and outright sex which many might appreciate. And for good measure there is plenty of old-fashioned humour too. The interaction between the male protagonist, Sean King, and ...more
Jan 16, 2016 Eadie rated it really liked it
This was a very good action-packed thriller but I do have a few complaints. First off, there were way too many characters to keep track of. Secondly, it is impossible to even try and guess who the killers were because we never received any reliable clues. Thirdly, some of the scenes were too far-fetched to be believable but they did make for an exciting read. I think David Baldacci is an excellent writer but the reader needs to be given a fair chance especially when the characters seem to know ...more
Noel Kelly
May 11, 2011 Noel Kelly rated it liked it
Baldacci infuriates me. That said, I keep coming back for more. He is adept at character development but tends to be overly heavy on plot. I have read enough of his books to realize that the best part is the first three quarters. But then, having woven such an intricate mess he resolves to explain it all in the final quadrant. This often leads to a sense of desperation resulting in a less than satisfying conclusion. King and Maxwell are both very likable while the protagonist(s) is more akin to ...more
Michelle Bacon
Dec 09, 2015 Michelle Bacon rated it liked it
A Presidential candidate comes up missing thanks to the negligence of Secret Service Agent, Michelle Maxwell. Now she needs to find him while others along her path are winding up dead. Will she get to the Presidential candidate in time?
Good little politicAL thriller which is classic Baldacci. I find his books very entertaining, even when he covers a topic I'm not particularly fond of. Politics are a big snooze for me. Baldacci makes it much more interesting.
Apr 09, 2014 Deanne rated it really liked it
Shelves: crimethriller
Good start to a series, like the two main characters, not sure which is my favourite. They both have interesting pasts and the relationship seems to have chemistry.
There's a good plot, with twists and turns. The added bonus is the knowledge that there are more in the series.
Nearly 12 hours of Scott Brick being earnest, but somehow he's almost just right for this book. I'm pretty sure I've listened to this, or part of it, before, but didn't keep track. It seems that some of the sequels are narrated by others. May have to give them a try.
Neel Tullu
Sep 28, 2016 Neel Tullu rated it really liked it
At first I wasn't much into it. It was my first David Baldacci novel and didn't know what to expect. The book started off very slowly and it was spread at various places so it took me a while to get interested in the main story. I think it'd had to be for the fact that they just had to fill in enough background for both principle characters and then gradually bring them together. Because of this I managed to scrape through the first 200 pages until yesterday. But as the story progressed, I was ...more
Aug 31, 2013 Monnie rated it liked it
As a fan of the TV show "King & Maxwell" that's based on the book series by David Baldacci - who serves as a consultant - I realized I'd never read any of the books despite the fact that Baldacci is a favorite author. So, with nothing else on my Kindle calling my name, I started this one that started it all.

Sean King (played by Jon Tenney on the TV series) is a former Secret Service agent who was disgraced several years earlier when a political candidate he was protecting was assassinated. H
Benjamin Thomas
Nov 03, 2014 Benjamin Thomas rated it really liked it
Well, isn't that a fine kettle of fish! There I was at my lunch break today hoping I would have enough time to finish the last 70 pages or so of David Baldacci's Split Second. I rarely have enough time to read more than 50 pages of a standard novel at lunch so I was expecting that I might have to "forget" to get back from lunch on time, thereby allowing me to wrap it up. However, the pages in this book fly by and I actually finished it with a good 15 minutes to go! There I was stuck with no book ...more
Oct 20, 2011 Peter rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was the first Baldacci book that I had read so was able to come to it with an open mind and with no preconceptions.
The opening few chapters were gripping as the two lead characters with seemingly nothing in common, other than the fact that they were both in disgrace with the Secret Service, have their lives and worlds turned upside down by two unseemingly unconnected events eight years apart. However once this initial burst occurred the book slowed a little in pace and the characters were a
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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
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Other Books in the Series

Sean King & Michelle Maxwell (6 books)
  • Hour Game (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell, #2)
  • Simple Genius (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell, #3)
  • First Family (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell, #4)
  • The Sixth Man (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell, #5)
  • King and Maxwell (Sean King & Michelle Maxwell, #6)

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