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Extended Audio Sample Balance of Power Audiobook, by Richard North Patterson Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.33 out of 53.33 out of 53.33 out of 53.33 out of 53.33 out of 5 3.33 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Richard North Patterson Narrator: Patricia Kalember Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2003 ISBN: 9780739301326
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Richard North Patterson’s masterful portrayals of law and politics at the apex of power have made him one of our most important writers of popular fiction. Combining a compelling narrative, exhaustive research, and a sophisticated grasp of contemporary society, his bestselling novels bring explosive social problems to vivid life through characters who are richly imagined and intensely real. Now in Balance of Power Patterson confronts one of America’s most inflammatory issues–the terrible toll of gun violence.

President Kerry Kilcannon and his fiancée, television journalist Lara Costello, have at last decided to marry. But their wedding is followed by a massacre of innocents in a lethal burst of gunfire, challenging their marriage and his presidency in ways so shattering and indelibly personal that Kilcannon vows to eradicate gun violence and crush the most powerful lobby in Washington—the Sons of the Second Amendment (SSA).

Allied with the President’s most determined rival, the resourceful and relentless Senate Majority Leader Frank Fasano, the SSA declares all-out war on Kerry Kilcannon, deploying its arsenal of money, intimidation, and secret dealings to eviscerate Kilcannon’s crusade—and, it hopes, destroy his presidency. This ignites a high-stakes game of politics and legal maneuvering in the Senate, the courtroom, and across the country, which the charismatic but untested young President is determined to win at any cost. But in the incendiary clash over gun violence and gun rights, the cost to both Kilcannons may be even higher than he imagined.

And others in the crossfire may also pay the price: the idealistic lawyer who has taken on the gun industry; the embattled CEO of America’s leading gun maker; the war-hero senator caught between conflicting ambitions; the female senator whose career is at risk; and the grief-stricken young woman fighting to emerge from the shadow of her sister, the First Lady.

The insidious ways money corrodes democracy and corrupts elected officials…the visceral debate between gun-rights and gun-control advocates…the bitter legal conflict between gun companies and the victims of gun violence…a ratings-driven media that both manipulates and is manipulated—Richard North Patterson weaves these engrossing themes into an epic novel that moves us with its force, passion, and authority.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[A] spellbinding novel…Patterson’s extensive research, plot skills, and ability to create engaging, authentic dialogue set his writing apart…Believable and eloquent.”

    Associated Press

  • Balance of Power and Protect and Defend stand as a remarkable project in popular fiction: an extension of the genre of the legal thriller to explore the morality and strategies of U.S.’s greatest civic controversies.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Patterson has done his homework, and Balance of Power presents a clear picture of the arguments and political realities on both sides of the debate.”

    Denver Post

  • “One of [Patterson’s] best…Fascinating…A thoughtful exposition of an important issue…[Balance of Power] will entertain, challenge, inform—and, just maybe, open a few minds.”

    Richmond Times Dispatch

  • “Revealing…Will leave you lobbying for more.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Patterson turns up the heat.”

    Dallas Morning News

  • “Thought-provoking…[Patterson’s] passion for politics, public discussion, and gun control are infectious and admirable.”

    USA Today

  • “An engrossing blend of courtroom and political drama.”

    London Times

  • “Important reading, even essential…Patterson masterfully touches all the right historical reference points to lure us into his story…The image of the gun—and what to do about it as a society—linger long after the covers close.”

    Ft. Myers News Press

  • “A powerful, in-your-face, condemnation of the American political system that abets gun violence…Patterson makes no apologies as he denounces a system in which money buys Congressional votes [and] ethics mean nothing.”

    Midwest Book Review

  • “A harsh, persuasive indictment of the politics that breeds gun violence in America…Bare-knuckle, page-turning, political infighting. For ordinary folk, it’s good stuff. For political junkies, think Harry Potter.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “A rip-roaring novel about guns, lawyers, and politics…This is a great read by a masterful writer.”

    Senator Edward M. Kennedy

  • Balance of Power is a compelling story, fully worthy of Richard North Patterson, which is made even more intriguing by its detailed insight into the world of special-interests politics in Washington, D.C.”

    Scott Turow, New York Times bestselling author of Innocent

  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Don | 1/9/2011

    " An interesting read about just how ridiculously complex the battle over the 2nd Amendment is, and why nothing worthwhile ever gets done. I found it depressing, although a good yarn. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lauriezeitlin | 1/9/2011

    " good story, but slow and hard to get through "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Julie | 7/4/2010

    " Not nearly as good as his others I've read - mostly because the other ones had some suspense right up to the end. Whether a bill will pass in Congress just doesn't do it for me as much. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 J. | 6/3/2010

    " This is a good rad but the outcome is somewhat predictable by the time you get into it. I do like his writing and enjoy his books.

    J. Robert Ewbank author "John Wesley, Natural Man, and the 'Isms'" "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ruth | 3/31/2010

    " ok. could have been about 200 pages shorter without diminishing the story. a lot of court procedural. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lorin | 11/29/2009

    " A political novel which features the power of lobbyists in Washington, especially the gun supporters. Patterson does a nice job of the ins and outs of political maneuvering. I liked this one so much, I stepped back to the one that preceded it, No Safe Place. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary | 7/10/2009

    " Fabulous book about gun control and the emotional issues surrounding it. I read it long ago and don't remember too many details, but like his writing and this is one of the best. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Heather | 6/18/2009

    " The last of the 3 'Kerry Kilcannon' books- takes on the goliath that is gun legislation and gets right into the wheeling and dealing of Congress. Loved it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ferris | 11/24/2008

    " Audiobook.............So-so story of a family's efforts to enact gun control laws. Not particularly engaging. "

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About the Author
Author Richard North Patterson

Richard North Patterson is the New York Times bestselling author of The Devil’s Light, In the Name of Honor, The Spire, and a number of other bestselling and critically acclaimed novels. Formerly a trial lawyer, he was the SEC’s liaison to the Watergate special prosecutor and has served on the boards of several Washington advocacy groups. Patterson has appeared on such programs as the Today show, Good Morning America, Hardball with Chris Matthews, and Buchanan and Press

About the Narrator

Patricia Kathryn Kalember is an American actress best known for her role as Georgiana “Georgie” Reed Whitsig in the NBC drama series, Sisters. Kalember also had the leading roles in a number of television films and co-starred in several feature films including Fletch Lives, Signs, The Company Men, and Limitless, as well as recurring roles in the TV show Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.