MLA Platinum Award Press Release

Summary and book reviews of The Prophet by Michael Koryta

The Prophet

by Michael Koryta

The Prophet by Michael Koryta X
The Prophet by Michael Koryta
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Aug 2012, 416 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 2013, 432 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Donna Chavez
Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

Michael Koryta, long hailed as one of the best young thriller writers at work today, has written his greatest novel ever - an emotionally harrowing, unstoppably suspenseful novel that proves why Michael Connelly has named him "one of the best of the best."

Adam Austin hasn't spoken to his brother in years. When they were teenagers, their sister was abducted and murdered, and their devastated family never recovered. Now Adam keeps to himself, scraping by as a bail bondsman, working so close to the town's criminal fringes that he sometimes seems a part of them.

Kent Austin is the beloved coach of the local high school football team, a religious man and hero in the community. After years of near misses, Kent's team has a shot at the state championship, a welcome point of pride in a town that has had its share of hardships.

Just before playoffs begin, the town and the team are thrown into shock when horrifically, impossibly, another teenage girl is found murdered. When details emerge that connect the crime to the Austin brothers, the two are forced to unite to stop a killer - and to confront their buried rage and grief before history repeats itself again.

Michael Koryta, long hailed as one of the best young thriller writers at work today, has written his greatest novel ever - an emotionally harrowing, unstoppably suspenseful novel that proves why Michael Connelly has named him "one of the best of the best."



Part One
PLEDGES

PROLOGUE

THE TOWN FEELS LIKE home immediately, and he credits the leaves. It must be a pickup day. Plastic bags bursting with withered remains of life are stacked on the curbs, a few spilling over onto the sidewalks, flecks of crimson and copper that dot the white concrete like blood splatters on pale flesh. The air is that contrary blend: alive with a smell, but the smell is death.

Those who pass him have their heads down and shoulders hunched, turtles seeking their shells. He stands tall as he walks, embracing the cold wind, which is wonderfully unblocked by concrete walls, unmarred by razor wire fencing. He is grateful for that. There are other people in this town who have similar feelings, memories of days when one could not embrace the wind and longed to, no matter how bitter and chill. He knows some of them, and he knows that those very memories—realities—are in some cases exactly what chased them to this town, a chance to hide from the past.

At ...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
  1. Discuss the title, The Prophet. What is its meaning, and why do you think this is the killer's moniker? How does the title infl uence your conception of the book?
  2. "Everyone was driven by the past, all the time," Adam thinks when he first meets Rachel. To what extent do you think this is true for the characters in the book? Is it possible to break free from the past, or only to change your relationship to it? Cite specific examples from the book.
  3. The book alternates between Kent's perspective and Adam's. Which brother did you feel closer to as a reader? In what ways is this Adam's story? In what ways is it Kent's?
  4. At the opening of the book, Kent and Adam Austin are estranged brothers who lead very ...
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for a year or $39 for 3 months
  • More about membership!

Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

Hot diggity! How can you lose by reading a gritty whodunit about football, smack in the thick of football season? Here's the thing: You can't. Even if you're not a football fan. Even if you can't tell a cornerback from a lineman. Because, see, I don't even know the difference between those two positions and I loved this book. Michael Koryta takes full advantage of the football theme in The Prophet. It serves as a story arc, a metaphor and - most interestingly - structure for this dark thriller...continued

Full Review (517 words).

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access, become a member today.

(Reviewed by Donna Chavez).

Media Reviews

Publisher's Weekly
Starred Review. [A] suspenseful, twisty plot with a probing, unflinching look at his protagonists' weaknesses.

Kirkus Reviews
Starred Review. [A] brilliantly paced thriller that keeps its villains at a tantalizing distance, a compelling family portrait, a study in morality that goes beyond the usual black-and-white judgments, and an entertaining spin on classic football fiction. A flawless performance.

Booklist
Starred Review. Koryta's recent novels (e.g., The Ridge, 2011) have combined suspense with horror and the supernatural, but this time he returns to his mainstream thriller roots. With its crisp writing and steady suspense, this is a must-read for his fans both old and new.

Reader Reviews

Diane S.

The Prophet
A small town in Ohio, once the home of steel, now dying, population decreasing and a very good high school football team that means much to the people who haven't left. Two brother, taking different paths after the murder of their sister and someone ...   Read More

Write your own review!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for a year or $39 for 3 months
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

More books by Michael Koryta

If you liked The Prophet, try these:

  • Deception Cove jacket

    Deception Cove

    by Owen Laukkanen

    Published 2020

    About this book

    More books by this author

    For fans of CJ Box and Michael Koryta, a thriller about an ex-Marine, and ex-convict, and a rescue dog caught in the crosshairs of a ruthless gang in remote Washington state.

  • Twelve Sharp jacket

    Twelve Sharp

    by Janet Evanovich

    Published 2007

    About this book

    More books by this author

    Bounty hunter Stepahie Plum is once again struggling with her tangled love life, her chaotic family, and her gift for destroying every car she drives. Not to mention her attempts to bring in the sometimes scary bail jumpers of Trenton, and the sudden appearance of a mysterious female stalker.

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member
Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for a year or $39 for 3 months
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Join Now!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: How to Pronounce Knife
    How to Pronounce Knife
    by Souvankham Thammavongsa
    Many examples of immigrant fiction dedicate a portion of their storytelling to exploring details of ...
  • Book Jacket: The Easy Part of Impossible
    The Easy Part of Impossible
    by Sarah Tomp
    Teenager Ria Williams is a skilled diver. She is on track to compete at the Olympic level, but ...
  • Book Jacket: Fire in Paradise
    Fire in Paradise
    by Alastair Gee , Dani Anguiano
    On November 8, 2018, a fire started in Northern California's Butte County after 50-70 mph winds ...
  • Book Jacket
    Circe
    by Madeline Miller
    Voted 2018 Best Fiction Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers

    Towards the end of Madeline Miller...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Daughter of the Reich
    by Louise Fein

    A spellbinding story of impossible love set against the backdrop of the Nazi regime.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Paris Hours
    by Alex George

    One day in the City of Light. One night in search of lost time.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
The Henna Artist
by Alka Joshi

The Henna Artist opens a door into a world that is at once lush and fascinating, stark and cruel.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win The Adventurer's Son

The Adventurer's Son

"A brave and marvelous book. A page-turner that will rip your heart out."
--Jon Krakauer

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

B I T T Water

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.