Edwin Arnaudin's Reviews > The Camel Club

The Camel Club by David Baldacci
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's review
May 04, 2010

liked it

May's book club selection. My first Baldacci. Patrons like him and he sounds more interesting than his mystery peers.

Didn't take too long to read and the last half can legitimately be called a page-turner, but it's not necessarily good. Baldacci has a noble purpose (Peace in the Middle East begins at home!), but his method is a bit hokey. It's laughably didactic in parts (i.e. long conversations about the true beliefs of Islam passed off as chit-chat instead of the classroom discussions they aspire to be) and informative to a fault (think Dan Brown without an interesting lead). The characters are active and fun to follow, but are little more than plot delivery devices. I wanted to like the conspiracy-theorists of the Camel Club more, as well, but only "Oliver Stone" was given enough attention to develop into a complex person. Still, the final 200-250 pages are as riveting as any political thriller film (even classics like The Day of the Jackal), even if some of the key events are eyeroll-inducing.

I don't plan to continue the series anytime soon, if at all, but for readers who restrict themselves to the James Pattersons and J.D. Robbs of the bookosphere, you could do a lot worse. At the least, The Camel Club will incite a desire to know Washington, D.C. more intimately.

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