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The Lord's Day

de Michael Dobbs

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946223,294 (3.8)2
Once a year, the most powerful people in the land gather together in one room. The Queen, the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the judges and the bishops - leaders spiritual and temporal - assemble in the House of Lords for the State Opening of Parliament. On this particular Lords' Day, the gathering is still more impressive, for sitting beside his mother is the heir to the throne, and up in the galleries are the sons of both the US President and the British Prime Minister. But all are about to be taken hostage. It is the greatest siege of all time. It will lead some to selfless sacrifice, others to lose the respect of those they love most dearly...… (més)
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I stayed up till 1.30am to finish this, a nail-biting ending. Dobbs really knows his stuff - his afterword is disturbing. ( )
  mlfhlibrarian | Feb 23, 2015 |
Well written. Absolutely horrifying because you know in the present terrorist climate were now living in this story could come true. ( )
  bennyb | Jan 17, 2011 |
As usual with Michael Dobbs a well-crafted thriller set around the House of Lords, where terrorists have seized it on the State Opening of Parliament and are threatening the queen, Prime Minister and others. Keeps you turning the page right to the end. ( )
  edwardsgt | Dec 31, 2009 |
Wow! Absolute cracker of a book. No idea where the story is going so lots of twists and turns. Would make a good film... ( )
  cbinstead | Sep 2, 2009 |
This is one of those titles that is just a little bit misleading. The occasion is the opening of Parliament in London, which actually takes place in the House of Lords, and has done since the death of Charles I. It is a great ceremonial occasion, with of course the Queen, the Prince of Wales, the Cabinet, and most of the peerage in attendance. Among the special guests are the son of the Prime Minister, and his great friend, the son of the American President. Terrifyingly the House of Lords is taken over by 8 terrorists intent on the release of a brigand from Indian sub continent's North West frontier.

David Thorpe does a wonderful job in the voice characterisation but Michael Dobbs has given him such wonderful text to work with. He takes us inside the minds of so many people first of all on the eve of this great state occasion, but then as the siege unfolds. It becomes a story of parents and their sons, of terrorists pushed to the brink, of world rulers who just don't understand the ramifications of acts of war. This is one of those unthinkable situations that could so easily happen. Get a little careless, accept things at face value, become just a little complacent, and the very icons of civilisation come under threat.

As those who watch what is going on inside the House through a myriad of television cameras, and try to plan a rescue operation, those inside show their true colours. The only member of the Cabinet who was absent from the house, the Home Secretary, takes charge, but her authority is challenged by the American President, concerned for the safety of her son. COBRA, the emergency administration, is paralysed by indecision and the desire to extricate the Queen without critical injury.

I liked the insights into the thoughts of the Queen and the Prince of Wales, both before and during the seige. COBRA attempts to resolve the situation without giving into the demands of the terrorists, but each individual also wants to make sure that none of the blame for failure can be laid at their door afterwards. ( )
  smik | Nov 5, 2008 |
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Once a year, the most powerful people in the land gather together in one room. The Queen, the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the judges and the bishops - leaders spiritual and temporal - assemble in the House of Lords for the State Opening of Parliament. On this particular Lords' Day, the gathering is still more impressive, for sitting beside his mother is the heir to the throne, and up in the galleries are the sons of both the US President and the British Prime Minister. But all are about to be taken hostage. It is the greatest siege of all time. It will lead some to selfless sacrifice, others to lose the respect of those they love most dearly...

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