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Publisher's Summary

Shadow is the Secret Service code name for First Daughter, Nora Hartson. And when Michael Garrick, a young White House lawyer, begins dating the irresistible Nora, he's instantly spellbound, just like everyone else in her world.

It's a world all of us have heard about but few of us really know. A world where power is an aphrodisiac, your father is the President, your close friends wear earpieces and carry guns, and everyone watches your every move.

Like most, Michael thinks he can handle the pressure. Until, while together late one night, he and Nora witness something they were never meant to see - and become ensnared in a secret scheme by a White House insider that includes betrayal and murder.

Suddenly, this young Washington power broker, who just yesterday was out on a dream date, finds himself trusting no one, not even Nora, in a battle to prove his innocence. It's a battle that will shake the walls of the Oval Office to their foundations - and may ultimately cost Michael Garrick his life.

©2001 by Forty-Four Steps, Inc. All Rights Reserved. (P)2001 Time Warner AudioBooks, A Division of Time Warner Trade Publishing

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall

Not even Scott Brick could save it

I am an attorney who typically enjoys "legal fiction". When I saw this book,read by my one of my favorites, it was irresistable. A legal fiction best seller being performed by my favorite reader was something I could not pass up.

I should have. I have never wished to "return" a selection for the 2 years I have been an Aubible member until this one.

The story progresses in difficult to follow fits and starts. Meltzer tries too hard and ends up with an overcomplicated, unbelieveable story that lacks depth in important areas. The story quickly became such a chore to follow, I gave up about three quarters of the way through the program.

Save your money, there are many much better choices if you are looking for Brick's work.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Ray
  • Mount Pleasant, SC, USA
  • 07-01-03

One of the few I haven't finished

I've read and listened to many books, but none with such tedious narration and chopped dialogue. Fully a fourth of his conversations are clipped in the middle of the sentence, making listening a chore. Such as......

"How could you think that I ...... Do you mean to say that you believe I would just waltz in....... You can't say things like...... Now I'm really......"

None of these sentences were finished; they were just clipped as righteous indignation, which runs rampant in this book.

The main characters are all certified paranoid schitzophrenic! Nora is a loony-tune, Michael needs a surgically implanted backbone, his friends are untrustworthy, and the evil boss is just that: evil.

I just finished with the ninth CD of this tome, and decided to put it away. I just can't go any longer thinking this thing will pick up soon and get interesting.

Honestly, if the dialogue wasn't so incredibly tedious, I think I'd have given it a better chance of improving. But Meltzer just keeps on writing the same words coming from the same insecure characters in the same unlikely situations.

A book I read called "Difficult Conversations," (a five star read)defines the parts of a conversation. First is "WHAT ARE THE FACTS." Second is "WHAT WERE THE INTENTIONS." This book spent more than 10 hours so far in conflict about "THE INTENTIONS" and so little on the story line.

One brief outing yields hours of psycho-babble about why someone did this or that. Exceptionally untidy writing.

Sorry to write such a scathing review. I'm a real fan of this author and this theme, but this book is a total bust.

31 of 36 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Waste of time

The narration is so poor as to make it unlistenable. It is very hard to follow the story because the narrator's volume goes from extremely loud to a whisper all in the same sentence. I tried playing it on other formats with the same result. I finally called and got my money back. On top of the poor narration the story is very unbelievable and the characters are all unlikable. Don't waste you time.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Excellent Book

Slow to start, but picks up and keeps you guessing. Interesting to listen to and as always, Scott Brick does a wonderful job at narrating.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

creative and captivating

This First Counsel intensely interesting from cover to cover. Excellent mystery.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

great read!!!

This was a very good book. The Plot was well developed; as were the characters. The pacing was fast and kept hold of my attention. The ending was to me quite satisfying ,as well as a nice twist. Get this book. You won't be disappointed.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

The First Counsel

Before I buy books from Audible I usually read the reviews to get a feel for the book. I didn't read them this time and I'm extreamly glad because if I had I would not have bought the book and, most of all, would have missed one of the best books I've listened to since I joined Audible.
Having been close to inner beltway trials and tribulations for many years, I found all the characters very believable and very easy to almost feel the sometimes intense emothion they display.
A great listen! I strongly suggest this title.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

The First Counsel

Brad Meltzer is a superb story-teller -- Scott Brick responds to the challenge of bringing this fast paced story to life.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Victor
  • manalapan, NJ, USA
  • 01-01-03

the first counsel

choppy and loose ... all together uninteresting at times ... other than the narration the book was just plain boring ... this one is a sweeper not a keeper ...

10 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Anne
  • Yellowknife, Northwest Terr, Canada
  • 05-17-04


I hung in there til the end, but was disappointed with the story and frustrated by the fluctuating narration volume and poor sound quality. The plot was too often contrived, characters were poorly developed, and their actions were often implausible. After enjoying The Millionaires, I expected better from this author.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • 06-02-17

Don't waste your time

Crappy story. I skipped several chapters just to get it finished. Scott Brick's reading dull.