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The Finisher

(Vega Jane #1)

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  13,451 ratings  ·  1,611 reviews
Enter a village imprisoned by its fear of the unknown. Where curiosity is discouraged, and no one has ever left – or wanted to. Until now.

Then a mysterious bequest turns one teenage girl’s life upside down. A curious map and a ring which connects Vega to another time lead her to discover an unknown world beyond the perimeter walls. A world filled with possibilities, and cr
Paperback, 506 pages
Published February 27th 2014 by Macmillan
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Mackenzie There will be a sequel. It is called 'The Keeper' and it comes out in September 2015
Amy Allen I'm a 6th grade teacher and I probably would not read it to my students. It's too confusing and not really a stand alone story. It's fine to put on th…moreI'm a 6th grade teacher and I probably would not read it to my students. It's too confusing and not really a stand alone story. It's fine to put on the shelf though, no bad words or anything.(less)

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Average rating 3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,451 ratings  ·  1,611 reviews

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Feb 21, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya-fiction
I was bitterly disappointed in this book. I expected better of Baldacci, being an established prize winning author, but I guess he just can't write for Young Adults. The basic plot of the book is sound, good strong male and female leads, mysterious past, yada yada, but Baldacci can't write fantasy/other worlds. He just goes too far. The point of writing about other worlds is that they are different but have many things the same so that the reader can relate. Baldacci changes things that there is ...more
jv poore
As all readers, I’ve seen “David Baldacci” in every bookstore and library I’ve entered since 1996. My friends on GoodReads adore his writing, his titles are peppered through-out my To-Read List and as a fellow Virginian; I’ve really and truly been looking forward to joining the mania. I couldn’t have been more excited to discover The Finisher in my latest box of brilliance from Buried Under Books.

Admittedly, I did a double-take. My treasure chest is always loaded with Middle-Grade and YA books.
Ash Wednesday
Feb 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers who like getting their questions answered with questions or not answered at all
I had come to learn that while Wormwood was full of many things, the truth was not one of them.
And the truth was what I needed.
I had nothing else left.

I’ve always wondered who David Baldacci is.

Okay not really. But it seems like every time I visit our local big chain bookstore, his books are out in display right beside Dan Brown. Okay that’s not exactly what drew me to read this either, but I have to admit I was a bit curious when I saw his name in a young adult fantasy novel about a
Oct 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a wonderfully, strange dystopia. It had adventure and was imaginative. It also was not soured down by romance, if anything it was a fantasy aimed more towards adventurous. I really enjoyed it and am hoping to pick up books two and three from my library for this weekend.

Overall, fast-paced adventure, interesting lingo, good and quick world building, & intriguing characters make for a quick read.
Gerry Bartlett
I admit I was drawn to this book because I was intrigued that suspense author Baldacci had written a book that is more middle grade than young adult and fantasy! Different. First, I had to get into his world. He creates his own language too, which I admit I fell in love with. I know, weird, but I was an English major and have a thing for clever writing. He blew me away with his consistency with this new language. His heroine is 14, almost 15 "sessions" old and has a pretty horrendous life in Wor ...more
Mar 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read many books written by David Baldacci. But I have never read one quite like this. His usual mystery, suspense, triller was not to be seen in this young adult novel.
The closest fantasy stories that I have read are the Harry Potter stories. Yet, here I have read a fantasy quite extraordinaire.
The main character Vega Jane. She is 14/15 year-old girl who discovers her special powers. She lives is a simple world with simple people and leaders who want to keep things that way. Vega wants t
Jan 12, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, e-books
A 14-year-old girl named Vega Jane lives in a village called Wormwood, where the citizens have been told that the forest surrounding them (the Quag)is full of deadly monsters. When Vega's mentor disappears, leaving behind a secret message, she begins to realize that Wormwood is built on dangerous lies. She is forced into a physical competition, with the strongest males in the village, and has to rely on her wits, her only friend Delph, and her canine, Harry Two. Her intrepid, questioning nature ...more
kartik narayanan
When I found out that David Baldacci has written a fantasy series, I was 'What'? Now that I read the first book, my reaction is 'What?'

The Finisher is quite slow until about a critical event in the book that happens midway. That event was a bit predictable though as were all the other main story points. If it were only for the main storyline i.e. Vega Jane and her miserable life in Wormwood, I would have tossed the book out of the window.

But, David Baldacci adds some elements around the back-st
Amber Argyle
Jan 10, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I hate this book so much. I kept cheering for the ambiguous monsters to eat the main character. If her heart pounded hard in her chest, or she ran faster than she ever had before (again), or her lungs heaved in her chest one more time...
What was the point if that entire monstrosity? What was the character’s journey besides survive all the horrible people around her?
I recently bought this book at Barnes and Noble and it was a pretty good read for my first ever David Baldacci novel.

When Vega Jane witnesses one of her co-workers Quentin Herms escape out of Wormwood and into the Quag (which is a dangerous forest-like place), The town of Wormwood begin to accuse her of helping him escape when she did not. Strange things then begin to happen. Can Vega Jane find out the truth about her town, what happens to her family, and more before she gets killed? Find out in
With a heroine that breaks the mould, The Finisher is a mix of adventure, magic & harsh realities which is certainly a brilliant example of YA written, & thought out, well. I especially liked how the romance was subtly fed into the story, and wasn't made to overpower the plot. A gripping novel with an intriguing tale to tell :) ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Aug 21, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: didn-t-finish
I'm sorry. I know a lot of you like this and I get that. tastes differ. That said I just don't want to put any more time into this one. For one thing it's just so young.

It strikes me a bit more as a juvenile read than a YA read. I'm laying it aside so it gets the one star I give for books I decide not to finish.

Not insulting you who like it, please enjoy. Not for me.
Alayne Emmett
Jun 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a re-read for me. Having just bought the four and the final one in this series I decided to start right back from the beginning and I’m glad I did. It’s been awhile since I first read this book and I had forgotten a lot of the story. It is well written and very clever. I really enjoyed reading it again. It has its own language and it’s a Y/R it’s easily good enough for adults to read it and enjoy.
Jan 26, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade, fantasy
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This is my first experience with a David Baldacci novel and unlike most older readers who will pick up The Finisher, I was truly a tabula rasa. My knowledge of what this book was about was limited and all I knew was that there's a major Sony movie deal, it's written by an acclaimed author, and that it's some some sort of fantasy. I think knowing as little as I did worked in my favor because I didn't come in with high expectations.

The Fini
Mar 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It seems like the is no genre of writing that David Baldacci can't excel in. With his latest, The Finisher, he takes on the fantasy genre and does a great job with it. As I was reading this I was getting Hunger Games meets the Book of Revelation kind of vibe from it. The protagonist is a young 14 year old girl who lives in a somewhat dystopian society called Wormwood. She and her younger brother are living on their own, as their parents are in a facility awaiting their death. There are mysteries ...more
Kahleia Corpuz
*unfinished* - I couldn't go any longer with this book. Usually, I'm very resilient with books I don't enjoy to finishing it but this book will probably be my BIGGEST exception. It seemed like some really interesting action scenes were really not all too great. The author doesn't even TRY to explain the lingo that's passed around in the book. It seemed to drag on on some plot points which made me lose interest in this book very quickly.
Apr 05, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Despite my efforts, I could not get into this anti Baldacci like story. This novel is victimization from start to finish. The main character is by and large exploited and mostly in the light of feebleness. 1 of 10 stars
Sydney .L
Sep 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Will vega live to tell her story or will she die trying. She and her brother are living in an isolated town called wormwood. Far beyond the walls is a world that nobody has seen. She id forced to keep her secret from the whole town or else she will face the consequences. (execution).
Patricia Hamill
I enjoyed this a bunch!

It's not overly complex, but I liked how the story unfolds and how Vega encounters the magical aspects of her world. I also dug how she tries to be ethical, even when faced by daunting odds.

Delph (not sure of spelling due to audiobook) is an interesting partner. There's some mild glimmers of youthful, innocent romantic interest, but it's more the friendship and the just starting to notice the extra feelings sort of thing. It's sweet.

The narrator does a very good job on th
May 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When I read the first couple of pages of ‘The Finisher’, I thought that it would be a bearable read. The style was good enough but I felt it would jar with my personal preferences and therefore stop me from really getting into the story. The characters didn’t capture me particularly but it wasn’t bad. Then I read about twenty pages and it was great. Forget everything I just said… this was a good read.

Although obviously aimed at younger readers the story caught my imagination and really did hook
Aastha Dhuppad
Mar 14, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ahhh! I couldn't keep this book down and now it's finished :'( and what's worse is that it ended with a cliffhanger! And now I don't know what to do. It follows the story of a fourteen year old girl named Vega Jane who lives in a place built on lies. To discover the truth about herself and her past, she has to take a perilous journey into the unknown lands known as the Quag which is not easy and safe. To achieve her freedom she has to fight stupid egoistic men and a powerful woman who detests cu ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Oct 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, fantasy, adventure, 2017
David Baldacci has a long career writing adult mystery-thrillers (with book covers indistinguishable from John Grisham, James Patterson etc. etc.), so I felt like I'd never heard of him when I saw this Young Adult Fantasy - in fact, I still have a hard time reconciling the two authors as the same man! Never having read anything by Baldacci before, I can't compare writing or narrative styles between the genres, but was pleasantly engaged in The Finisher. With some very lovely (and dark) illustrat ...more
Mar 31, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
I have been reading this book for a year and in that year I have done what I often do when I read a book that takes me a long time, particularly if I don't like it -- I take notes about it on my phone. Usually, I take those notes and craft them into a review to post on Goodreads, but this time I think I'm just going to type my notes verbatim and leave it. Needless to say, SPOILERS. Here goes:

If this book is representative of the works of David Baldacci, then I hope never to have the misfortune t
Debbie Belue
Apr 26, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Thought I would enjoy this book because David Baldacci is one of my favorite authors. Knew this was not his typical style....but still good fantasy should paint a picture so clear you can see the setting, action, characters. This book delivers none of the elements that make fantasy work. Too many questions never answered, action is so slow, plot makes no sense. Read this book only if you know up front you will have to read more to even understand what is going on. Think I will stick to King and ...more
Aug 10, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020-reading
What even is this book?!? This cover, title and blurb do not match the kind of story that is inside.

This is a weird, kiddy, everything is made-up, fantasy book. Not whatever the hell the publisher is trying to sell.

The Finisher is set in a cutesy little fantasy village, with a cutesy little map. The people call each other "wugs" (no explanation provided) and use male, female, young and very young (???) instead of the usual terms. Time is measured in, ahem, a unique way; a year is a "session" (?
Nov 29, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really struggled with this book. Went back and read a lot of the reviews and find that you either like it or you don't. Don't know why it was such a struggle for me. Baldacci is one of my favorite authors, but this genre doesn't seem to fit with my reading style.

He has good descriptive abilities, as the scenes and characters were easy to identify, it's the plot that didn't fit with me. I don't want to offend anyone, but sorry---this book is not for me!
I thought this was interesting and entertaining. At first I didn't think I'd be that into it, but I found myself get more and more involved in Vega Jane's quest. I liked her and was rooting for her, and the village of Wormwood was an interesting (if not altogether pleasant) place.

I, like Vega Jane, was frustrated by how few questions were answered by the end. I know there are more books to follow but most of the time I didn't feel like I knew quite what was going on, and while in some ways that
3.5 rounded down.
I really enjoyed the plot and character development throughout the book. However I had a difficult time connecting with the story. It was filled with monsters and mayhem and fast paced. I understand why my son enjoyed it. Very different from the typical adult Baldacci novel.
Heather Brinkerhoff Burdsal
David Baldacci’s first foray into the world of fantasy is not without serious issues. If an untried author had approached a publisher with this MS, he would have been tossed out on his ear. But Baldacci was able to trade on the strength of his name, giving us 497 pages of “Hey, look, everybody, I’m writing fantasy!” to struggle through. But struggle I did, since the book was a gift from my mother.

My biggest gripe is the haphazard and ridiculous substitution of gobbledygook for perfectly servicea
This is Young Adult Fantasy. I will start off by saying that I'm not the target audience for this book but because the author is my "most read" author ever, I had this one on my TBR list.

I'm more than a bit disappointed with this one. I expected better, so my expectations may have ruined this for me. This was barely 2 stars for me. I added a third star because it is age appropriate for the intended audience.

I had so many issues with this one. I will just mention the two biggest ones. The charac
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David Baldacci has been writing since childhood, when his mother gave him a lined notebook in which to write down his stories. (Much later, when David thanked her for being the spark that ignited his writing career, she revealed that she’d given him the notebook to keep him quiet, "because every mom needs a break now and then.”) He published his first novel, Absolute Power, in 1996; it was subsequ ...more

Other books in the series

Vega Jane (4 books)
  • The Keeper (Vega Jane, #2)
  • The Width of the World (Vega Jane, #3)
  • The Stars Below (Vega Jane, #4)

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