Brilliance (The Brilliance Trilogy)

In Wyoming, a little girl reads people’s darkest secrets by the way they fold their arms. In New York, a man sensing patterns in the stock market racks up $300 billion. In Chicago, a woman can go invisible by being where no one is looking. They’re called “brilliants,” and since 1980, one percent of people have been born this way. Nick Cooper is among them; a federal agent, Cooper has gifts rendering him exceptional at hunting terrorists. His latest target may be the most dangerous man alive, a brilliant drenched in blood and intent on provoking civil war. But to catch him, Cooper will have to violate everything he believes in—and betray his own kind.

From Marcus Sakey, “a modern master of suspense” (Chicago Sun-Times) and “one of our best storytellers” (Michael Connelly), comes an adventure that’s at once breakneck thriller and shrewd social commentary; a gripping tale of a world fundamentally different and yet horrifyingly similar to our own, where being born gifted can be a terrible curse.

A 2013 Edgar Award Nominee

“The kind of story you’ve never read before.” —Lee Child, New York Times bestselling author of the Jack Reacher Series

“Ridiculously good. I love this story so much.” —Gillian Flynn, New York Times bestselling author of Gone Girl

Nominated for the Edgar, Lovey, Sideways, and Prometheus awards.

Author Gillian Flynn Reviews Brilliance by Marcus Sakey

Gillian Flynn

Let me first begin by saying, Marcus Sakey is a friend of mine. He’s a friend because I read his whip-smart thrillers years ago (The Amateurs is one of my favorites) and loved them so much I decided I had to meet the twisted mind behind them. So I was a fan before I was a friend. After reading Brilliance, the scales may have tilted: I may now be more fan than friend—it’s that ridiculously good.

Brilliance is the kind of novel that makes you grin at its high-flying feats of imagination, and then grin harder because it sticks the landing. It’s thrilling and funny and disturbing and sharp as hell… Read the rest of this review at

Nanci Arvizu, Writing and Reviews Editor

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About Nanci Arvizu, Writing and Reviews Editor 2429 Articles

Write, Publish, Promote. Words I am learning to live by. Want this to be your motto too? Join me and together we’ll navigate the path to publishing success.


  1. Fantastic Light Science Fiction Novel First off, take all those blurbs about “nothing you’ve ever read before” and throw them out the window. You’ve read it before. What you will discover though is that Brilliance takes a decent idea and spins it into a absolutely fabulous story. 

  2. Conspiracy ad nauseum Brief plot summary: yes, it’s like x-men. It IS the kind of story you’ve read before. Brilliants, a genetic anomaly, are a small segment of the population with special abilities. They are treated by most as a threat, a group to be strictly controlled and used like tools or instruments. A secret agent figures out the big bad conspiracy, gets the girl, and saves the day. If you have good taste in books, don’t read this, or else you will be slogging through it. It’s just another book written…

  3. Disappointed The premise is fascinating, I’ll admit. Starting in the 80’s some kids were born with almost Super hero abilities, but what makes this grounded is that they are only extraordinary, not supernatural. This requires some suspension of disbelief, but the author does not make the abilties disobey the basic laws of Physics or anything like that. In fact, this book is more thriller than SF. 

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