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Publisher's Summary

Lod Airport, Israel: Two Concorde jets take off for a U.N. conference that will finally bring peace to the Middle East. Covered by F-14 fighters, accompanied by security men, the planes carry warriors, pacifists, lovers, enemies, dignitaries - and a bomb planted by a terrorist mastermind.

Suddenly they're forced to crash-land at an ancient desert site. Here, with only a handful of weapons, the men and women of the peace mission must make a desperate stand against an army of crack Palestinian commandos - while the Israeli authorities desperately attempt a rescue mission. In a land of blood and tears, in a windswept place called Babylon, it will be a battle of bullets and courage, and a war to the last death.

©2003 Nelson DeMille (P)2010 Hachette Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Patti
  • Valencia, CA, United States
  • 12-09-10

A good story, but a lot of characters

I always have enjoyed this author, and especially this narrator. I listened to this book, and it was an exciting story. Even though I enjoyed it, I got very confused with all the characters. I still don't know who some of them are. There were so many names and nationalites that I got confused. But that being said, it had me on the edge of my seat. Even if you can't remember all the characters, you get the gist of the story, and it's very exciting and entertaining. I recommend it. Maybe take notes....

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Non stop action ...

I guess some people found it hard to keep track of all the characters. I had no such problem. I found the pace a little hectic at times and had to take a break just to catch my breath. It is a very intense book, but very well written and surprisingly (especially for this genre) believable. He accurately captures a lot of the politics of the middle east ... not easy to do. I lived there for a decade and the politics are incredibly complicated if you haven't lived them ... but DeMille succeeds where so many authors have failed. Highly recommend this book if you like your action mixed with politics and complex characters.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Judith
  • Naples, FL, United States
  • 08-24-11

Not the usual entertaining characters

I have read everything that Nelson DeMille wrote, and I think he walks on water among writers. He, not only is a master of intrigue, character development and plot interest, but usually manages to bring levity to the most tense situations with a clever, articulate male protagonist. This one had virtually no character development, from my point of view, and almost read like a tragic documentary. It was a tragic historical thesis, and heroic on the part of the characters; but they were shallow--just political. I'm not sorry I got it, but was truly looking forward to a DeMille treat. I have read his books, admittedly, in reverse chronology; but am rarely disappointed.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Allison
  • Jacksonville, FL, United States
  • 11-21-10


I enjoyed this audiobook, and I generally don't have a problem following characters, but there was quite a few in this so that on occasion I was like who is that person? This audiobook I feel like I could go back and listen to it again, and glean more from it. Nelson DeMille's books are always so informative, though, and I always learn a lot along with the story. I was curios to look up Babylon after this book. I had just listened to Spencerville by Nelson DeMille before this one, and I, personally, liked Spencerville more, but this is a good book, too.

12 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Too many silly mistakes

What did you like best about By the Rivers of Babylon? What did you like least?

I've read most of Mr DeMille's books. This is an early one - so I expected it to be a little rough around the edges. I wasn't disappointed.

Would you recommend By the Rivers of Babylon to your friends? Why or why not?

I'm ambivalent about this. Maybe if they were really desperate but I'd certainly not suggest this over (say) Word of Honour or In Country.

What does Scott Brick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

His performance is very good and his mastery of multiple accents makes it easy to distinguish the characters - even when DeMille doesn't spell it out.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

Probably not. It's not that good, the plot reads like a film script and the topic is really dated.

Any additional comments?

I was annoyed by silly errors - things like expecting the moon to rise and set between sunset and sunrise. This NEVER happens.This might have been necessary as a plot device but it is either sloppy or it shows a lack of inventiveness..

It's also weird to think that at the time the story was written - 1978 - BAe and Aerospatiale hadn't realised that the Concorde was a technological triumph but a financial disaster.... Trying to convince readers that Israel - the most pragmatic nation on earth - would buy these aircraft is just weird.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Implausability Gives Way to a Great Story

Would you listen to By the Rivers of Babylon again? Why?

Probably not...I already know how it turns out!

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

I could see some things coming, but several of the scenes were really compelling

Have you listened to any of Scott Brick???s other performances before? How does this one compare?

He's great, and he can do character 'voices' changes without being jarring or confusing.

Who was the most memorable character of By the Rivers of Babylon and why?

Jacob Hausner

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Dana
  • Bella Vista, Arkansas, United States
  • 04-23-12

Slow, steady, Good

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

This book is a good book, but I don't know if I would recommend to any of my friends. I had a hard time following the characters. The overall story was good.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Michael
  • Roswell, NM, United States
  • 07-27-11

Loved this book

I loved this book. Some parts were a little dry, but i still enloyed it as a whole. I didn't care for the ending, but that is one of the little twists.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Bill
  • Inman, SC, United States
  • 05-11-11

Another Fantastic Job! Nelson Demille and Scott Brick! This book keeps you at the edge of your seat at all times. Wonderful work in my humble opinion.
Thanks for many hours of entertainment.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • William
  • Beloit, WI, United States
  • 12-07-10

Outstanding, As Expected

Mr. DeMille is an author whose work I always wait for with great expectations, and I'm never disappointed. The story is exciting and more than well presented by Mr. Brick. All that much better when you get out your National Geographic maps and see the path of the adventure.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful