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Ghostman | [Roger Hobbs]

Ghostman

When a casino robbery in Atlantic City goes horribly awry, the man who orchestrated it is obliged to call in a favor from someone who's occasionally called Jack. While it's doubtful that anyone knows his actual name or anything at all about his true identity, or even if he's still alive, he's in his mid-30s and lives completely off the grid, a criminal's criminal who does entirely as he pleases and is almost impossible to get in touch with.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Editors Select, February 2013 - I’m reading Ghostman now, and from the minute I picked it up, I was hooked. The opening chapter drops you into an Atlantic City casino-heist-gone-spectacularly-wrong, and we follow the efforts of “Jack” to clean up the mess in under 36 hours. There’s already enough mystery (Who is “Jack” really? Who else knew about the heist? What’s up with his mysterious employer and even more shadowy mentor? Have the FBI already figured this whole thing out?) to keep me locked in until the end. This debut novel has already gotten a lot of buzz in the publishing world, and I can’t wait to listen to it. —Chris, Audible Editor

Publisher's Summary

Stunningly dark, hugely intelligent and thoroughly addictive, Ghostman announces the arrival of an exciting and highly distinctive novelist.

When a casino robbery in Atlantic City goes horribly awry, the man who orchestrated it is obliged to call in a favor from someone who's occasionally called Jack. While it's doubtful that anyone knows his actual name or anything at all about his true identity, or even if he's still alive, he's in his mid-30s and lives completely off the grid, a criminal's criminal who does entirely as he pleases and is almost impossible to get in touch with. But within hours a private jet is flying this exceptionally experienced fixer and cleaner-upper from Seattle to New Jersey and right into a spectacular mess: one heister dead in the parking lot, another winged but on the run, the shooter a complete mystery, the $1.2 million in freshly printed bills god knows where and the FBI already waiting for Jack at the airport, to be joined shortly by other extremely interested and elusive parties. He has only 48 hours until the twice-stolen cash literally explodes, taking with it the wider, byzantine ambitions behind the theft. To contend with all this will require every gram of his skill, ingenuity and self-protective instincts, especially when offense and defense soon become meaningless terms. And as he maneuvers these exceedingly slippery slopes, he relives the botched bank robbery in Kuala Lumpur five years earlier that has now landed him this unwanted new assignment.

From its riveting opening, Ghostman effortlessly pulls the listener into Jack's refined and peculiar world - and the sophisticated shadowboxing grows ever more intense as he moves, hour by hour, toward a constantly reimprovised solution. With a quicksilver plot, gripping prose and masterly expertise, Roger Hobbs has given us a novel that will immediately place him in the company of our most esteemed crime writers.

©2013 Roger Hobbs (P)2013 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Fast, hard and knowing: this is an amazing debut full of intrigue, tradecraft and suspense. Read it immediately!” (Lee Child)

“A slam-bang, pedal-to-the-metal crime story that fires on all cylinders and then some! Ghostman is a gritty, lean, mean adrenaline machine. Mostly, though, it was just plain fun to read. I absolutely loved this book and cannot recommend it highly enough.” (Christopher Reich)

“This watertight debut [is] at once slick and gritty… Straight out of the gate, Hobbs has mastered the essentials of a contemporary thriller: a noirlike tone, no-nonsense prose and a hero with just enough personality to ensure he doesn't come off as an amoral death machine [as well as] heart-stopping scenes that illustrate how small mistakes can turn catastrophic.” (Kirkus, starred review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (340 )
5 star
 (114)
4 star
 (120)
3 star
 (71)
2 star
 (27)
1 star
 (8)
Overall
3.9 (300 )
5 star
 (105)
4 star
 (103)
3 star
 (55)
2 star
 (29)
1 star
 (8)
Story
4.1 (298 )
5 star
 (134)
4 star
 (100)
3 star
 (37)
2 star
 (20)
1 star
 (7)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Jeffrey Windhorst 03-13-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    22
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Two stories in one"
    If you could sum up Ghostman in three words, what would they be?

    Great heist story


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    It was a bit over the top at times, but it had it's moments.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    I felt the narrator did a decent job creating accents and afflictions for the characters and maintaining them through the story.


    Any additional comments?

    Surface level adventure story about a couple of bank heists. Entertaining certainly, but no moral high ground attained.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dennis United States 03-12-13
    Dennis United States 03-12-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent , once I had got used to the switching!"
    If you could sum up Ghostman in three words, what would they be?

    Intense, absorbing,


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Ghostman?

    the bank in KL


    Which character – as performed by Jake Weber – was your favorite?

    Ghostman


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    A very interesting look into the backgrounds for crime. How much does the author really know?

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan Galax, VA, United States 03-01-13
    Jan Galax, VA, United States 03-01-13 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    102
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    47
    28
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    25
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Highly engaging listen"

    A unique and interesting character (the Ghost Man) escorts you into the world of high profile bank robbery. A great match of voice and character personality.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 02-16-13
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 02-16-13 Member Since 2005

    I am a blessed man!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    972
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    548
    272
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    352
    8
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good plot, but that's all."
    Would you try another book from Roger Hobbs and/or Jake Weber?

    I would, its a good story, but with poor character development. The Ghost is a college graduate, an ancient language geek who is smart enough to translate Ancient Greek, but somehow has no friends or family. A real loner. And there is his far fetched, almost supernatural ability to stare at a photo and begin looking like a stranger.

    Weber does have a great voice, but reads way to slow. I listened at 1.5x speed just to get through it.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    I enjoyed the details of each thief s role in a job. Least interesting was the lack of relationships between any of the characters. I enjoyed the idea of the relationship of our Ghost and the FBI, but it never happened. It would have been nice to see how the agent did her job, but we only saw the results.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Way to slow. Play it at 1.5x speed using the Audible app.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Ghostman?

    Actually, as I said before, I'd have him write about the police work with the same flair he applied to the crimes.


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joy Annapolis MD United States 02-14-13
    Joy Annapolis MD United States 02-14-13 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    155
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    120
    57
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    19
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dark but engaging"

    I liked this book. The narrator fit the character. The story drew me in and kept me listening to it every chance I had. There are a couple of characters I would have liked to know more about - Angela, the mentor for one and Rebecca, the FBI agent for another, but not enough to downgrade my five star designation. I'll listen to other books this author publishes

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. A. Gordon MOAB, UT, United States 03-30-13
    D. A. Gordon MOAB, UT, United States 03-30-13 Member Since 2005

    Ann

    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    150
    45
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Had to listen to it again"

    What a great audiobook. I hadn't read anything by Roger Hobbs before, but was eager to purchase and listen to this book because it was narrated by Jake Weber, one of my favorite actors. I wasn't disappointed. The story definitely kept my interest through the many twists and turns; I couldn't have guessed what was going to happen next. I grew to care for the protagonist and would read another book about the guy. Jake Weber did a most excellent job of narrating Ghostman. I hope Jake narrates more audiobooks!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth L. Clark Bowie, Md 02-21-13
    Elizabeth L. Clark Bowie, Md 02-21-13 Member Since 2002

    Libby Clark

    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narrator made boring story unbearable"

    1. Listen to the book at 1.5 times normal speed if you have any hope of being able to tolerate the narrator's abnormally slow paced reading and odd pauses mid sentence.
    2. Lower your expectations for any type of suspense, drama or originality in the plot. "Twists and turns" are clumsily telegraphed way before the story catches up.
    3. Prepare to hate the protagonist. You will wish for his capture or torturous death. Or both.
    4. Seriously question Audible's recommendations from now on.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gary Butlerville, IN, United States 02-19-13
    Gary Butlerville, IN, United States 02-19-13 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    73
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    60
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Everything you want in a criminal thriller."
    Where does Ghostman rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Top 5%


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The Ghostman, of course. He is flawed and criminal yet you can put yourself in his shoes and see things from his perspective.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I enjoyed breaking it up into my commutes to absorb and think about it as I went along.


    Any additional comments?

    Great first novel. The book weaves 2 stories involving the same character at different times in a way that slowly lets you understand why the Ghostman is the person he is and why he is in his current situation. Like any good book, he teaches you a lot about the subject and makes you feel a part of the action. I listen to dozens of books a year and this is one of the best. I usually don't write reviews, but wanted to share this one with people who like criminal thrillers.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Luke Ruebbelke Phoenix, AZ 02-18-13
    Luke Ruebbelke Phoenix, AZ 02-18-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    30
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Quite Entertaining!"

    I thought this book was quite entertaining. A few observations...

    1. The lack of relationships was criticized but in the context of a 'ghost man' I thought this was appropriate. The main character was ruthlessly pragmatic and ultimately unencumbered by emotional attachments.

    2. There were similarities between Jack Reacher which was a plus since I am a huge fan of Lee Child. Just more of a good thing.

    3. For me, personally, there were plenty of moments in the book where I was pleasantly surprised at the way the way the scenes played out. It was slick and clever.

    So all in all, a solid freshman effort that I would recommend to anyone.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew Stone San Diego 06-17-14
    Andrew Stone San Diego 06-17-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    515
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1879
    59
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    87
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Kept my attention...Interesting Plot."
    Any additional comments?

    I liked the detail about the subject matter of theft (at a high-end) skilled level

    .Parts were a bit too grizzly!

    The tough guy the "hero" is.Kinda like a "Jack Reach" type of guy.

    Hero is smart and knows how to fight.

    I initially listened to this book a couple of years ago. Second time thru is still good.

    You will probably like Lee Child's books if you like this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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