©2007 Clive Cussler; (P)2007 Penguin
"Cussler takes a breather from his several ongoing series with this historical thriller set in the western states, circa 1906. The U.S. government hires the renowned Van Dorn Detective Agency and its equally renowned lead agent, Isaac Bell, to capture the bank robber known as the Butcher Bandit....Once San Francisco gets hit by the 1906 earthquake and the principals climb aboard a pair of fire-breathing locomotives, the novel cranks up a head of steam and some high-speed thrills." (Publishers Weekly)
Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Dad to his 12-year-old daughter.
This is my first Clive Cussler novel and I'll probably give him another look. He certainly came up with an easy-to-dislike antagonist in the form of Cromwell. Apart from a grudging fondness for his sister, Cromwell seemed to be totally without redeeming value. Even his philanthropic work was performed for cover. Our hero, Isaac Bell, was a likable-enough character although the romance that blossomed with one of Cromwell's employees strained credibilty. Much of the story strained credibility but did so in a way that did not detract from a reader's ability to enjoy the listen. I did.
Fast moving thriller. Starts and ends in the 1950s, with most the story taking place in 1906. Gives a great historical context of a detective chasing down a bank robber killer.
I tend to follow Scott Brick's books and this one did not disappoint. Just purchased The Wreck and looking forward to it.
Must like the main characters, be intelligently written and feel like I learned something at the end.
This was an entertaining story as most Cussler books are: very defined bad guys going up against our James Bond like good guy. However, the story is implausible and there are some parts that could just be cut out. Also, I found the characters a bit undeveloped and hard to like. Finally, the narrator, Scott Brick, has done some excellent work in the past, but in this book, he is much too melodramatic. If you're looking for a light, fun listen this is a good choice.
Scott Brick must be one of the worst narrators ever. This is the second book of his I have listened to and I have disliked both. His style is very over-the-top. He is too dramatic and his sentences too often reach an unneeded crescendo. Half the time he cannot keep his voices and accents straight and in one instance a French accent slowly turns into a badly done Irish accent. When he isn't whipping himself into a frenzy or botching the voices, he sounds just plain haughty.
The book itself is just ok. Period references are good if they are done correctly. This book just squeaks by in that department. It starts to get a little annoying with the references (yes, we know 85 miles an hour was fast in 1906), but then backs off before it gets TOO bad. The ending cannot be described as anything but cheesy.
Good reading and not great but good. Worth your time and I could recommend it to all.
This is my first Clive Cussler books - I know, where have I been. What a rush. So much action, great characters in just the right doses. Nothing is wasted in the story. Can't wait for my next one. Read Clive!
...in those hours when I had to eat, sleep and go to work. It was intriguing and exciting from page one and I'm recommending it to some very finicky readers in my family.
I love Clive Cussler but never ventured to try this series because I generally do not enjoy books set in the early 1900's, particularily in the Western US. Boy was I surprised. This book has all of the fast paced adventures of his other thrillers. I love Isaac Bell just as much as I love all of his other heros beginning with Dirk Pit. If you like the NUMA adventures, or the Oregon adventures you will love the Chase and Isaac Bell.
Travel a lot for work and spend a good deal of time in the car.
This is a great series. I can't wait to dig my claws ito the next book. The characters are excellent! I could totally see Dirk Pitt reading all about Issac Bell. :-)
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