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by David Hagberg

In Washington, CIA operative Todd Van Buren meets with a Washington Post investigative reporter who has uncovered strong evidence that a powerful lobbyist has formed a shadowy group called the Friday Club, a cabal whose members include high-ranking men inside the government:a White House adviser, a three star general at the Pentagon, deputy secretaries at the State Department, Homeland Security, the FBI and even the CIA.

That afternoon Van Buren, son-in-law of the legendary spy Kirk McGarvey, is brutally gunned down because of what he’s been told. The same evening the reporter and his family are killed, all traces of the shadow group erased.

A grief stricken McGarvey is drawn into the most far-reaching and bizarre investigation of his career, the stakes of which could destabilize the U.S. government, and shake the foundations of the world financial order.

Download The Cabal (McGarvey) epub
ISBN: 0765320207
ISBN13: 978-0765320209
Category: Mystery
Subcategory: Thrillers & Suspense
Author: David Hagberg
Language: English
Publisher: Forge Books; 1 edition (July 6, 2010)
Pages: 352 pages
ePUB size: 1986 kb
FB2 size: 1832 kb
Rating: 4.5
Votes: 165
Other Formats: lrf mobi mbr azw

First off, let me say that I am a David Hagberg fan ... and this book as some reviewers point out is "ultra-fast paced" ... BUT that itself is a big part of the problem, since this mach 4 pace and action don't give the author the "novelistic space" that any author needs to slowly and interestingly build character ... AND establish plot credibility.

And this last is why I gave this book 3 not 4 stars - even by the end of the book, I simply didn't feel very convinced that the motives and evil vision of "The Cabal" of bad guys (and they are painted well as scary bad) were all that clear, nor did I feel that what they were up to was even all that convincing or realistic. So the global politics context of the book was rather weak and disappointing and the bad guys were basically comic-book type stick figures.

What I did like in regard to character development was how Otto and Louis were given bigger and more human roles, and how Kirk is still #1 in "the spy with integrity" competition! I also liked the way Hagberg pointed out the scary role that DOD contracters are being given in our various wars, such as Iraq.

Don't avoid buying this book, however, just because I gave it a 3, if you're a Hagberg fan or (especially) if you like really fast-moving action thrillers!
Cherry The Countess
I picked up The Cabal at random, last December, not even realizing it featured an ongoing protagonist (McGarvey). Within six pages of the book, I was completely mesmerized. I KNEW I should put the book down and go back to the beginning of the series, because Hagberg was a major find for me and I didn't want to miss a word of the series. However, I could not tear myself away from the book in hand. I passed on a free tour of a Picasso exhibit, a Christmas dinner catered by my employer at a major art museum - with an open bar to boot - in order to curl up at home and finish reading.

I dare not say more because I just detest plot spoilers. Simply know that Hagberg excels at fast-paced plotting and insightful characterization, so much so that I backtracked and have now, as of late January 2011, read nearly all of the other McGarvey novels. I CAN say that the McGarvey of The Cabal is a very different man from the earlier novels. He is still the ultimate patriot, still the embodiment of honor, but he is also devastatingly human.

If you can restrain yourself, start at the beginning of the McGarvey series, and save the best - The Cabal - for last.
I agree with those that believe that the Kirk McGarvey series by David Hagberg is something special. I have read every one of them and with the exception of Dance With the Dragon, there are just no weak links. This book clearly did not prove to be an exception. It may be the darkest and most pulse pounding of all of them as many bad things happen to the ex-CIA Director between the covers of this novel, but Kirk McGarvey doesn't get nightmares. He gives them to those who mess with him. To try and detail the plot would be a mistake as the reader needs to find his or her own way through the landmines that (literally) await the central character. Tightly written, great action and suspense and an ending which promises more to come. You will begrudge the time that you have to put this book down to do things like eat and sleep.
The best Hagberg book to date.

You won't be able to put this one down. Catch up on your sleep before you start.
The Cabal tackles the loose ends from David Hagberg's previous two Kirk McGarvey novels, Dance with the Dragon and The Expediter, with the ex-CIA director unravelling a conspiracy among powerful figures in the US governmnet to alter the world's political and economic balance of power. Meanwhile, McGarvey is wanted for treason and his own government is after him.

It's a different type of story from Hagberg's usual novels of the US versus some foreign enemy and resembles Robert Ludlum's paranoid conspiracy thrillers, but Hagberg does it well.

As always, Hagberg is great at building suspense, creating realistic scenarios, and quickly moving the plot along, without getting bogged down in too much detail or background information. There's some great new locations here, with McGarvey operating out of Iraq, and some real surprises as Hagberg kills off major characters. People close to McGarvey die and although the case becomes a personal one for him, Hagberg is a skillful enough writer not to write a trite, rehashed revenge story.

The book does get a little repitive at times and some more pages devoted to the villains would have been nice. The villaisn are an interesting bunch this time around, but Hagberg focuses very little on them, except for their assassins.

It's a good but not great Hagberg thriller and doesn't quite match the qaulity of The Expediter. But it's still a fast and enjoyable read. David Hagberg is extremely prolific, and I have no idea how he manages to write so many good books.
I don't ever recall having an unfavorable review of a David Hagberg (or Sean Flannery) book, but The Cabal has to be one of his very, very best. No descriptive words are necessary as anyone reading this review knows Hagberg well enough to know what I am saying. Just enjoy! It is a shocker.
Great book