The first counsel

by Brad Meltzer

Hardcover, 2001



The runaway bestseller that takes us down the rabbit hole of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. John F. Jennedy, Jr., was Lark. Amy Carter was Dynamo. Chelsea Clinton was Energy. Meet Shadow. Shadow is the Secret Service code name for First Daughter Nora Hartson. And when White House lawyer Michael Garrick begins dating the irresistible Nora, he's instantly spellbound, just like everyone else in her world. Then, late one night, the two witness something they were never meant to see. Now, in a world where everyone watches your every move, Michael is suddenly ensnared in someone's secret agenda. Trusting no one, not even Nora, he finds himself fighting for his innocence--and ultimately, his life.


(167 ratings; 3.6)

User reviews

LibraryThing member taylorsteve
If anything, I have learned more about my own reading pleasures through this book. I prefer a book that is realistic but still helps me escape from the realism of daily life, that develops relationships that matter, where evil is unquestionably identified, and where good clearly triumphs over evil. This book struck me as similar to a long, hard game of chess with a total stranger - at the end I know little of my opponent, in fact only what he has deliberately chosen to reveal, and it still ends in a clear stalement. No one wins, and it leaves a sense of discouragement and failure. Despite the clear suspense and unpredictable twists, this book left me regretting I had spent the time reading it.… (more)
LibraryThing member miriamparker
My favorite of Meltzer's books until I read THE BOOK OF LIES. A super fun read about the first daughter and the trouble she gets into.
LibraryThing member losloper
JFK Jr. was Lark. Amy Carter was Dynamo. Chelsea Clinton was Energy. Meet Shadow. "Shadow" is the Secret Service codename for the First Daughter, Nora Hartson. And when she starts dating young White House lawyer Michael Garrick, he starts feeling like the First Counsel. That's what happens to everyone who lives in her world. It's a world all of us have heard about, but none of us truly know - a world where your dad's the President, your close friends wear earpieces and carry guns and a world where everyone is watching. On a date, Nora and Michael see something they shouldn't. To protect her, he admits to something he shouldn't. And when the problem snowballs out of control, she may have to do something she shouldn't. The First Counsel. The President's Daughter.… (more)
LibraryThing member cmeilink
I have read a number of Brad Meltzer's books, and I don't know how I missed this when it first came out.

The First Counsel is an outstanding book--well written and with a great plot. Michael Garrick is a White House lawyer who begins a relationship with Nora Hartson, daughter of the President of the United States. Taking on such a relationship would definitely bring its own set of problems; however, with Nora, nothing is normal, and "problems" is an understatement.

A seemingly innocent night out on the town throws Michael into the center of a murder investigation with $10,000 of money intended for the victim in his name at a police station. The Secret Service, the FBI, and internal staff are all out to find the killer, and most of them are looking at Michael.

Can Nora help him or will she throw him to the wolves?

Great book!
… (more)
LibraryThing member ktptcruisin
After hearing an interview with the author I was excited to read his newest book "Book of Fate" but alas it had not yet been released, so I settled for the First Counsel to acquaint me with the author. The book was good, but I thought it was a little too drawn out, I think the author could have summed up the story in about 200 less pages.… (more)
LibraryThing member kaylol
The last chapters were good.
LibraryThing member FerneMysteryReader
I read The Tenth Justice earlier this year and was looking forward to finding more titles by Brad Meltzer. This one certainly does not disappoint. One of the professional reviewers suggested that some of the other authors of legal fiction "move over" for Brad Meltzer. I think Brad Meltzer definitely knows how to use the setting of Washington, D.C. to fullest advantage as a setting to his legal thrillers. His characters captivate your attention as each is introduced and as they begin to interact, the adrenaline starts pumping and doesn't stop until the riveting conclusion. Can't wait to find another title by this author. I'll be particularly interested if he can illuminate another thriller beyond 'the district'.… (more)
LibraryThing member techeditor
This is a ridiculous story with a dumb main character, a lawyer working at the White House, and a deranged and spoiled First Daughter. I dislike it so much that I forced myself to read half the book, then could go no further.

Because it is not fair to rate a book I have not entirely read, I leave it unrated.… (more)
LibraryThing member yvonne.sevignykaiser
I would have rated this a little higher normally because I do enjoy reading Brad Meltzer and have been working my through his books since I first read Book of Lies. After reading that book I decided I need to work my way through the authors other works. So far this is the only one that I felt was slow to get going, but once the story moved I loved the twists and turns. Even though I gave this one a three start I still plan on reading the rest of the authors books so far.… (more)
LibraryThing member gpaisley
Could not put it down for about the last 80 pages.

Taught, stressful story.

Great Washington detail and political feel.
LibraryThing member susandennis
Brad Meltzer knows how to right a political thriller. This latest of his is as good as the rest. Michael Garrett is a White House lawyer and he's dating the First Daughter. For a kick one night they try, successfully, to ditch the Secret Service agents and then see Michael's boss drop what has to be blackmail money in a hiding place. And the adventure begins. It's wild and it's fast and it's really good. This book won't be out until December but it is worth the wait, I promise.… (more)
LibraryThing member carolynsuarez
plot twists and turns are good.


TimeWarner., c2001.

Original publication date





0446527289 / 9780446527286


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