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The Children's Game

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  256 ratings  ·  36 reviews
A frighteningly plausible, fast-paced thriller about a Russian cyberattack on America, involving fake news and anonymous hackers.

The CIA has learned that the Kremlin is about to launch a sophisticated propaganda operation aimed at discrediting and disrupting the United States and ultimately restoring Russia to great nation status. Intercepted intelligence suggests that th
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published March 13th 2018 by Arcade
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Average rating 4.26  · 
Rating details
 ·  256 ratings  ·  36 reviews

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Drew Stevens
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Here's a novel that couldn't be more timely. Russia is waging a war against the United States and the US is only vaguely aware it is happening. The weapon of choice is disinformation, the "soldiers" are Russian cut-outs and scheming oligarchs with ties to Vladimir Putin. "The Children's Game" refers to beginner's mate in chess, a four-move game that ends with the US coming apart from internal conflict. This was a real page-turner with lots of twists and real-world ramifications, as ex-CIA man Ch ...more
This is going into the DNF pile for me. It just was not my kind of book.
Emma Donovan
Jul 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
I give this 4.5 stars!

**I received a free copy of this book in return for an honest review**

I have to start this review by stating my LOVE for this book. OK, it's is EXACTLY my kind of thing (give me an American political spy thriller any day of the week) but even so, I was hooked from the moment I started reading!

It has twists and turns and you think you are on the inside and know whats going on .. and then you don't. It has several different relationship dynamics (lovers/siblings/political/fri
Jun 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a goodreads win, thank you.

Although I am enjoying the story line of this book, I am finding it hard to figure out what is going on with all the acronyms, and no, they have not been spelled out beforehand, so you know what they are. I worked in the government community for some years, so have, I thought, quite a good knowledge of many Acronyms, however, this is hard going. I am, as I read marking the book, and then coming back to a computer and finding out what each one means. Also, I am
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: high-marks
Very well written and fast moving thriller.
Mar 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This isn't a typical thriller, with a lot of shootings, fight scenes and a hero who's nearly invincible. It's a novel more concerned with ideas, and kind of a wake-up call about Russia's role in the world today. But it's also just an enjoyable read, a cleverly plotted, nicely paced tale geared to fans of classic Cold War thrillers.
Cindy Olga
Jul 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
The best parts are the scenes set in Ukraine, especially the ones that are obviously based on real events, such as the shooting down of the Malaysian plane. Those really came to life for me. Ukraine is the wedge, although this is basically a Russia versus United States cyber spy novel set in the present. The story is told through a varied cast of characters and it was amusing, if also sadly authentic, to see the same events interpreted so differently by the Russians and Americans. As someone who ...more
Jul 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Reminiscent of Ludlum and Morrell.
Lori L (She Treads Softly)
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Children's Game by Max Karpov is a highly recommended geo-political thriller, both timely and insightful, involving a Russian cyberattack on America.

Intelligence has learned that a cyberattack is imminent - perhaps already started. The attack is code-named the "Children’s Game," which is a chess strategy that results in a checkmate in four moves. The attack itself has been in the making for a long time and was the plan of Andrei Turov, a Russian billionaire and former FBS officer. He recruit
Mar 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. It's a spy story that reads at times like a non-fiction account of a secret war between Russia and the United States. A page turner. What if a fake news story got loose and ended up changing the world? Food for thought.
Stan Kusch
Jul 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Children’s Game, much better than expected!

A really great read, hard to put down! Great story line and characters in plot that could have come from last weeks headlines. Well researched US vs Russia thriller.

Harold Kasselman
Jul 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a novel cut straight out of current headlines. This is a novel of intrigue, deception, and contemporary warfare. The plot is engaging, intricate, and plausible. I think this is a top notch espionage story with interesting characters to accompany a thoughtful story line.
Humphrey Hawksley
Dec 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A great read! Max Karpov takes us inside Russian power, peeling away the layers of corruption, ambition and broken dreams that is now becoming such a danger to the West. The scene in France is particularly chilling.
Samantha Turley
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
I think the thing that struck me the most with this novel was the fact that Max Karpov was able to connect me to his characters from the get go. It really added investment in the story and what happened to the characters.
The plot was very well paced and there were no aspects that I was able to out-rightly predict.
This novel is jam packed with shocks and twists that will have you immersed in the story Karpov has created.

The characters are very well developed and multi dimensional which allows the
R.K. Emery
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
Get your thinking cap ready and make sure you don't have any pets that can make sudden noises while reading, this one may make you a bit jumpy.

I really enjoyed the individuality Karpov brought to this novel. It manages to set itself apart from other Thriller novels I've read recently. There is a definite theme and setting that he wants his reader to understand when reading.

A wonderful cast of characters and a mystery that will keep you on your toes.
Ronnie Lent
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Children's Game is a highly realistic and very human story of contemporary espionage. The book has all the intrigue of a classic Cold War spy story, but the threat here isn't nuclear annihilation, it's self-destruction brought on by a Russian disinformation blitz (the "children's game" of the title). It's the characters who give the story its greatest strength, in particular Chris Niles, the former-spy, and his fiancee Anna Carpenter, a US senator. But some of the lesser characters are just ...more
Gina Stamper
Aug 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
This novel is unlike anything I have read. I think that it is a great testament to the imagination of a writer that I can say that. This novel really kept me on my toes as far as expecting the unexpected.
I think that Max Karpov really managed to keep his readers up to speed by giving them just enough along the way without making them feel lost or bogged down with information. It really shined light on to the characters and plot in general.
This was a thriller novel that really made me think on a
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first Max Karpov novel; I liked it and will look to read more of his work. This was a very up-to-date story of Russia's undercover meddling in shaping American and worldwide opinions. It was more of an intellectual puzzle than an action thriller. It kept me interested throughout, even though not sitting on the edge of my chair, as it were! The protagonist, CHris Niles, was a likeable and sympathetic figure - the reader wants him to succeed.
Steve O'neill
Fizzles at the end

Ripped from the headlines, suspenseful page-turner for first eighty percent, but then an abrupt and improbable final action scene, followed by an inexplicable change in world opinion and about ten rambling final chapters that seemed like an overly long and uninteresting epilogue. It almost seemed like the author was rushing to meet a deadline and so couldn't come up with a polished ending.
Brandy Mulder
Mar 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The devil is in the details, and they can be so easy to miss. The phrase "noise at the expense of comprehension" caught my attention and stuck with me through the book. This story is a clever twist of espionage, lies, half truths told to reporters, and how easy it is to sway public opinion. The other things this book highlights is how hard it is to get people to believe the truth after they believe the lies, and how far people are willing to go to hide what they have done.
Pat Eroh
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An incredible story of the cold war or today, depending on how you look at it. I would say a bit of both. While the beginning was very difficult, it is necessary to understand the rest of the story. I was engrossed in this because it is so believable. It might've happened, it could happen.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Nov 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I won this book--thank you! I'm so glad that I did, too.
I thought it was well-written, with good characters, plot and a reasonable amount of suspense. It made you think about what was going on, rather than being trite & too easy to figure out the twists. Sadly, it is all too topical right now, and that made reading it a bit scary.
I DO recommend this book.
Anthony Hanson
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Timely, insightful, plausible geo-political account of today's quagmire of what's news.

Enjoyed it thoroughly. It was difficult in the middle to sort out the characters but smoothed out as it progressed. Exposed the possibility of the layers of deep state activity that exists in our government.
Blake Kanewischer
There are some genuinely interesting twists and turns in this political thriller that hits a little too close to home, with Russian manipulation of global politics. Unfortunately, it's marred by an entirely too-neat ending.
C. Gonzales
Jul 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
I was hooked from the first couple of chapters.

This book went by very quickly for me because the plot was intense and really fast paced.

A good suspense novel that doesn't require much thought. It was a compelling storyline that kept the book interesting until the end.
Nov 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Russians are about to launch an attack on America by trying to ruin them. What are they planing? Will they succeed? Follow the story and see just what will happen and if the Russians will succeed

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Arthur D.
Apr 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Remarkably current

This book examines the attempts by Russia to use fake news to influence policy and the world. Not a bad read although I did spend more time than I liked remembering who all the characters were.
Sep 01, 2018 rated it liked it
It dragged and the ending was obvious.
Oct 09, 2018 rated it liked it
A solid, timely thriller—I just didn’t get into the characters all that much.
Matt Sulliva
Feb 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Starts slowly, but picks up nicely. Very timely read.
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MAX KARPOV is the author of THE CHILDREN'S GAME, the Amazon best-selling thriller about Russian cyber warfare, fake news, and modern espionage. The novel features former CIA officer Christopher Niles.

THE CHILDREN'S GAME "...captures perfectly the mentality of Vladimir Putin's Russia ... And on top of that, the book is near impossible to put down. A must-read." - Former Acting CIA Director Michael

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“Russia gains by August 13, the US loses; they were the same story, two ends of a seesaw. A new, more effective means of warfare. Instead of taking lives and destroying property, which was the old way, you won by simply changing what people thought about the United States.” 1 likes
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