Matthew Quirk

The 500

"..I bet you’ll be seeing a mass of this book on many a sandy beach this summer."


Mike Ford was following in his deadbeat father's footsteps, embarking on a young life of crime, when he turned himself around and worked his way into Harvard Law School. Now the reformed con man has landed a plum job at the Davies Group, Washington's most high-powered and well-respected strategic consulting firm. Their specialty: pulling strings and peddling influence for the five hundred most powerful people inside the Beltway, the men and women who really run Washington—and by extension the country, and the world.

Henry Davies, Mike's boss, knows everyone who matters—and he knows their secrets. Now he's looking for a protégé to tackle his most high-stakes deal yet, and Mike fits the bill. Quickly pulled into a seductive, dangerous web of power and corruption, Mike struggles to find his way out. But how do you save your soul when you've made a deal with the devil?

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With any debut novel, the author is an unknown quantity, but I felt when I was reading 'The 500' I was reading a book by an accomplish author. From page one I was immediately hooked, and Quirk gave the characters enough depth to enable the reader to identify and empathise with them to ensure that not only was there an interest in what happened to them, but also that you were rooting for them as well. Quirk also managed to weave a little intrigue into some of the other characters so that it was hard to know whose side each person was on, making the plot a little more unpredictable, although there were of course some characters firmly entrenched on either side. Despite this being based around politics, I found this was a different side of politics, perhaps dealing more with blackmail and persuasion rather than the inner workings of Washington. 'The 500' is a mix of the great legal novel (think Grisham at his finest) combined with an action thriller in the vein of Lee Child. 'The 500' is fast paced, and whilst the plot may be a little fantastic, this only made it all the more enjoyable for me. 'The 500' is a great read from a new and exciting author and I bet you'll be seeing a mass of this book on many a sandy beach this summer. I am very sure we will be hearing a whole lot more of Quirk in the future.

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