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The Final Cut

(Francis Urquhart #3)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  1,212 ratings  ·  88 reviews

In a few months, Francis Urquhart will take his place in the history books as the longest-serving Prime Minister this century.

And yet . . . the country appears to he tiring of him. The movement to force him from power is gathering

Mass Market Paperback, 478 pages
Published 1995 by HarperCollins Fontana
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Average rating 3.80  · 
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 ·  1,212 ratings  ·  88 reviews

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Apr 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Dobbs ties off the House of Cards series with a bang and pens, perhaps, his best novel of the trilogy. Diving head-on into a Thatcheresque prime ministership, our main character, aptly nicknamed F.U. forges ahead and tries to lay the groundwork for a place in the history books as the longest serving prime minister of the 20th century. Little does he know that his actions from decades past will come back to haunt him as his own party stands fractured and on the brink of disaster. Add to that, a ...more
Nov 06, 2016 rated it it was ok
I really enjoyed the first two books in this series so was looking forward to the closing chapter of FU's reign.

Unfortunately, I was disappointed with this last book in the series. It felt like the author had lost his way and was just trying to fill in the pages so he could get to the end - which, in truth, is not a bad ending.

Maybe one too many novels in the series??? For this reader, the answer is a resounding "YES"!!
Well I can tell you I am very happy to have finally finished this awful book. I continued reading after 200 pages jest because I had read the first two, vaguely hoped it would improve towards the end (it didn't, if anything the end, without giving away spoilers, was the most disappointing and pointless part of the book) and because I really hate leaving a book unfinished. However the end of this one was so bad, rushed and hacked that I now wish I had.

Like in the first two books you can't help
Ben Dummitt
Jul 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was actually my favorite book of the trilogy although it had one huge problem. What happened to the story that was unfolding at the end of the 2nd book? In 'To Play the King' we pretty much end with FU having gotten royally served and yet this book picks up a decade down the road with him having become one of the most successful prime ministers in history. This is an oversight of Terminator 2 sized proportion. Otherwise I thought the book was great. I enjoyed the story thoroughly, even if ...more
Tom Hayward
Jun 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The whole series was a great read, especially as a huge fan of the Netflix. Urqohardt, and Underwood are similar in almost every way- savagery, affairs, bullying to gain power, vulnerability at times, etc. One has to wonder if the show will end in the same fashion that the book ended. I am excited to watch HOC season 5 on Netflix now!
Feb 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Francis Urquhart's reign as Prime Minister has come to an end. I don't think this book could have been written any better. It was a perfect way to end the trilogy. Urquhart kept up the scheming until the very end, and when you thought that everyone was against him, they'll all mourned for him. No doubt the best book in the series, and I sure will miss Francis Urquhart.
Apr 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Himanish Prabhakar
Sep 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
First, I want to admit that I first saw the TV series then I read the book. I didn't know about the book until I saw the TV series. After watching the first episode I was keen to read the book, but I was also afraid that it may spoil the fun of TV series so I waited for seasons to finish one after another and then I read the book accordingly.

My review is 4.8 stars for the complete series.

Yeah, you read it completely right that this book is the highest ever rating I have given to any Fiction book
A Man Called Ove
2.5/5 The 5th season of the House of Cards is very loosely based on this book. And while it was cringe-worthy atleast it was worth watching to see the depths to which rascal politicians can descend (in America).
This was the longest book of the trilogy and unlike the prev. 2, it was predictable. The use of war and military to gain political advantage is an evergreen tactic especially known to us developing country citizens. Secondly, the use of police machinery and news media to stop opposition
Aug 01, 2018 rated it liked it
This was an odd book, because it all but ignored the middle book in the trilogy. Francis was Prime Minister still, after a debilitating series of blows in that second book that this book......pretends didn't happen? None of his antagonists from Book 2 are mentioned, nor is Stamper (hilarious in his way in the middle book). I seem to remember Dobbs writing in the forwards (which I admittedly let my eye pass over so I could get to the good stuff) that he'd shifted and changed some things because ...more
An interesting conclusion to an intriguing series. I thoroughly enjoyed the sarcastic comments, quips and off-the-cuff insults the politicians hurled at each other.

The character of Elizabeth is a mixed success. She is an intelligent force to be reckoned with in this book, far more like her counterpart in the Netflix series than in the previous two books. However, therein lies the rub - the previous books firmly established her as a bit of a silly, shallow socialite. It's hard to take the change
Nov 07, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics, thriller
According to me this book is not related with the first two books of the series, except from the title and the name of the main character FU. Even the name of the wife is different and, differently from what happened in this chapter, is better characterized and has a relevant role. She is not just an appearance. Anyway I think this chapter is far more better than the 2nd book of the series. I liked and the story is deeper, i gave a point less than the first one because in some steps it looks ...more
Armando Negron
Jun 09, 2019 rated it liked it
FUs downfall was a bit underwhelming. The spirit of the book seemed a bit different than its predecessors. His ruthlessness showed a bit in the end, but I just felt like it did not connect well from the previous stories. In a certain way would have liked to see other story elements from the pass show up. I felt like some loosed ends were left.
Asha Gopalakrishnan
May 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Like most trilogies, the first book is the best, but the final one is satisfying, nevertheless. Just a nagging feeling that it's not the perfect ending - the villain dies a hero, without any remorse or heroism, but the wickedness is what makes this series so good...
Lisa Brantly
Nov 11, 2017 rated it did not like it
The BBC series was amazing. The books didn't really measure up. This one was awful. What happened to your editor?
Jun 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Not as strong as the first book.
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: k
This last book of the trilogy rather dragged for me. I almost didn't finish it but wanted to see if Urquhart finally had to face the consequences of his actions, especially those in Book 1.
Robert Nash
Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant conclusion. The hubris of politicians is breathtaking.
Stuart Haining
Feb 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good end to the series, surprising finish !
James Ellis
Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well you don't see this coming! Excellen trio of books following the lovable villain FU.
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If you liked the first (and the second) stay away from this.
Jackie G
Mar 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
I hope all "House of Cards" fans will read this trilogy - it was terrific.
Hi guys!

To check out my review for this, or any other book I've read, head over to my blog: https://aprettylilbookblog.wordpress....

Feel free to give me a follow if you're on Wordpress!
Em x
Mike Smith
"Great men are usually bad men. I intend to be a very great man"

I changed my star rating for this book several times during my progress through the final part of Michael Dobbs' House of Cards trilogy. After working my way through the first 120 pages or so it was a mere two star snooze fest. The first book and name sake of the trilogy House of Cards captivated me from start to finish while To Play the King although lacking the end to end thrill was a highly enjoyable read. Surely it could not be
Aug 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Francis Urquhart has become old and after more than ten years of leardship, everyone wants a change.
Everyone wants his head and his place as Prime Minister, but Francis Urquhart won't go down without a fight.

International pressure, traitors everywhere, enemies inside his country and hiding in the shadows, Francis has a lot on his plate to deal with.
And maybe he's too old to deal with them like he would have done a few years before.

But Francis has a strategy for everything, for every aspect
Andrea Maietta
The third star is actually for the ending, even if anyone can foretell it after 20% of the book. I can understand the evolution of the character with respect to the first books, but something does not sound right. Where's the king? How did FU get back to the top of the food chain after HoC2? And how comes that Mortima, the multi-cheated wife, has suddenly become Elizabeth, love of a lifetime?
Plus, the plot is weak and often takes awkward turns.
Sean Randall
Jul 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Who is to tell? All I am sure of is that these are contrary winds, and some boats will be quite swamped before the gale has blown itself out.

This novel really impressed me. It's surely unfathomable to feel for Urquhart, after the previous titles, and yet I did. The cocktail of melancholy versus drive, of age pushing ambition, of journalism abutting discretion, and seeing cultural upheaval writ amidst beautifully-depicted landscapes even if they are arid and dry was a powerful censorious mix
Dermot Willis
Dec 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Easily the best book in the whole series, The Final Cut provides a fitting and wonderful ending to the Francis Urquhart trilogy. Once again filled with perfectly formulated political intrigue but this time including the extra dimension of foreign affairs, this book is truly gripping at times. The ending to the "hostage scenario" in Cyprus is some of the best thriller/military literature I have read and is easily comparible to giants of the genre such as Tom Clancy or Frederick Forsythe.

Sooraj  The Great
Jul 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
To quote another book, "Govinda Shauri always has a plan." The same can be said for Francis Urquhart, the longest serving British PM.
Honestly, after the first two novels, I thought 'The Final Cut' was going to be another dull read, extolling the sins of politics without getting into it properly.
But, 'The Final Cut' impressed me. It was what a political thriller should be: absolute power, a shaky edifice and lots of sacrifices. Lots of them.
Tom Makepeace was too principled for the book. It made
Glen Chern
Dec 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
This third and final piece of the House of Cards trilogy gets off to a rather slow and mind-numbing start. Then, about a third the way through, the pace and story gain momentum, which carry through the remainder of the book. The author, Michael Dobbs, consistently develops his main character, Francis Urquhart. However, he seems to give the reader much less of the supporting characters. The reader doesn't truly get to know Urquhart's wife, Mortima, until the final third of the story. Still, I ...more
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Michael Dobbs was born on the same day, in the same hour as Prince Charles in 1948.

He is the son of nurseryman Eric and his wife Eileen Dobbs and was educated at Hertford Grammar School and Christ Church, Oxford University. After graduating in 1971 he moved to the United States.

In the USA he attended the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, which he

Other books in the series

Francis Urquhart (3 books)
  • House of Cards (Francis Urquhart, #1)
  • To Play the King (Francis Urquhart #2)

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Well, here we all are, sheltering in place, buying canned beans, and generally trying to figure out how to stay inside and keep our minds busy....
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