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The List

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  135 ratings  ·  20 reviews
Sidney Allen is a Fed. Part of the Australian Federal Police's K block, a unit doing whatever it takes in order to stop terrorist attacks on home soil.
But when young Muslim men on the Terror Watchlist start turning up dead, Sid and his partner, Haifa, have to work out what's going on.
Sectarian war? Drugs? Retribution? For Sid, there's nothing unclear about a bullet to
Paperback, 316 pages
Published August 2017 by Hachette Australia (first published July 25th 2017)
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Michael Brissenden is a distinguished and highly respected Australian television reporter and foreign correspondent. His long career has taken him all over the world, reporting in many trouble spots and theatres of war. He has seen first hand and through the eyes of his colleagues and contacts the impact of conflict on individuals and communities. While The List is a novel, I have no doubt that many elements have been drawn from real life.

The story has a fairly simple premise. An Australian
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Very easy read. If I'm brutally honest, it was very predictable and formulaic. If you arent a big reader of crime/thrillers, this maybe a very good read. However there are plenty of novels in this mould that just do the genre better.
Annette Chidzey
Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Michael Brissenden's account of terrorist threats in Sydney have a disturbingly familiar ring to them and gave authenticity to his account. I found it to be a page turner from the outset, though the climax was rather rushed. It is clear to me that the conclusion paves the way for a sequel whether this was intended or not and I am sure it will explore further the Islamic -Lebanese- Australian tensions that have surfaced in recent times. The Cronulla riots, the Lindt lone wolf siege, the Lukemba ...more
Jay Dwight
Aug 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this explosive thriller by journalist Michael Brissenden.

Well-plotted, the story revolves around a potential terrorist plot with Sydney as the target, and the politics surrounding the matter. The main characters are part the Australian Federal Police's K block, a unit focused on stopping terrorism.

This one had me totally gripped, and left me hoping the story is far more fiction than fact. The ending leaves potential for a sequel, and if that eventuates, I will certainly be keen to
Aug 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
The List was an easy to read and well paced contemporary thriller set in Sydney and Canberra. There was nothing terribly innovative about the story, but formulaic as it was, it didn't matter much because it was an outright entertaining read. Lots of action, drama, a bit of suspense and a story that could easily happen. The threat of large scale terrorism hangs heavily on Australia and this book exposes some of the seedier aspects of that threat.
The book had a good set of characters and some
Mark Silva
Aug 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed it immensely, a ripping yarn.
Jul 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Book blurb...
Revenge and the war on terror collide.
Sidney Allen is a Fed. Part of the Australian Federal Police's K block, a unit doing whatever it takes in order to stop terrorist attacks on home soil.
But when young Muslim men on the Terror Watchlist start turning up dead, Sid and his partner, Haifa, have to work out what's going on.
Sectarian war? Drugs? Retribution? For Sid, there's nothing unclear about a bullet to the head and a severed hand. Someone is sending a message.
Deciphering that
Julie Garner
Jun 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: crime-thriller
I am a little ambivalent about this book. I was looking forward to reading something along the lines of a Tom Clancy novel - political intrigue, the war on terror with an Aussie slant. That is exactly what I got but for some reason it just didn't grab me the way I expected it to.
Brissenden has been a journalist and foreign correspondant for over 30 years so he knows his subject matter. There were moments of brilliance and intrigue within this book but there was a lot in there that felt a little
David Jenkins
Oct 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the 'The List' - perhaps it was a bit predictable for its genre, however, being based in Sydney inner southern / western suburbs provides a point of difference to many of its kind. After growing up in the same areas that the book is based in I understood its context and the issues that the book highlights are real. I wouldn't say it was a book I couldn't put down, but as a first book for Mr Brissenden I thought it was an excellent effort. The threat of terrorism reaches out to ...more
Jan 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
If you’re a fan of thrillers then this is worth a look. Without spoiling the plot there are twists and turns you won’t see coming although some are predictable but not in a way I’d criticise. I thought I’d like this book and I wasn’t disappointed. It raises some interesting political, social and media themes and makes you think about them from multiple perspectives. Australians, particularly those who live in Sydney, will probably enjoy the familiarity of the setting or perhaps depending on ...more
Apr 11, 2018 rated it liked it
While not as poorly written as some politicians' efforts at fiction I've seen (they really need to think that through more eh), Brissenden does seem to attempt a large scale story on his usual reporter's word budget. While amusing and occasionally eloquent turns of phrase do appear, they're sadly too often undermined by cliché and sub-par character development. It gets an extra star for at least attempting a multi-faceted context in which to place its terrorism. It's a 'nice try' from me.
Balthazar Lawson
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
Overall this book didn't really grab me. It was lacking a depth that grabs the reader and doesn't let go. There were characters in this that didn't make sense, actions that weren't explained and actions by supposedly professionals that were very unprofessional. Some of it just didn't make sense.

It's a story of a hunt for terrorists in Australia. But a very badly executed hunt.

Very average sort of read.
Ebonie Macleod
Sep 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
A fast paced easy read which to be honest only validated a lot of thoughts I have relating to security in this country. They are not ones of confidence or safety. The book builds towards a huge only ending only to be concluded quite quickly which is a common characteristic of first novels. I look forward to the second book which will build on this one.
Feb 04, 2019 rated it liked it
add the 1/2...set in my hometown gives the book a sense of familiarisation as many of the locations I know very well so I can easily visualise the book. The story is plausible and as a journalist MB writes well enough to allow the reader to 'run' with the story.
Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Highly compelling and scary to think this might be happening now. Great pace and right to the last more secrets are uncovered.
Jan 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Good page turner. Fairly tight writing but a lot of exposition. Exciting plot set in contemporary Australia, raises a lot of issues. Well researched.
Ian Murray
Feb 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A page-turner of a political thriller, set in Australia, even if somewhat predictable
Mark Rugless
Apr 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Entertaining read. Lots of relevance to the issues of the day and the ethnic relationships across Sydeny.
Mike Taverner
Aug 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Rather formulaic plot, but I always enjoy a local thriller
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Currently ABC Correspondent in Washington, Michael Brissenden has been a political journalist and a foreign correspondent for the ABC since the 1980s. He has reported from Russia, the Middle East, South East Asia, Europe, the Pacific and the Americas and has covered many of the biggest international stories from all corners of the globe. From 2003 to 2009 he was political editor for The 7.30 ...more
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