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Publisher's Summary

Get ready for white-knuckled listening. Greaney's debut novel - and future feature film - introduces the enigmatic and elusive Court Gentry, a former CIA operative and a legendary hired gun. With a terrifying ability to vaporize targets and a strict moral code, he stalks the gray margins of the world, moving silently from job to job, accomplishing the impossible, then fading away. When his government and former employers turn on him, there is no safehouse to run to, no way to lie low. In a constant state of escape and pursuit, Gentry tears through the Middle East and Europe in a riveting life-or-death race against time.

Fast-paced, well-researched, and fun, The Gray Man is already being adapted for a movie by the company behind Tom Cruise's Knight & Day.

Check out the latest Gray Man novel, On Target, now.
©2009 Mark Greaney (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Through the carnage, Gentry remains an intriguing protagonist with his own moral code. Comparisons will be made to Jason Bourne, but the Gray Man is his own character. The ending screams for a sequel, but it will be difficult to maintain the intensity level of this impressive debut." (Booklist)
"Hard, fast, and unflinching – exactly what a thriller should be." (Lee Child)
"Bourne for the new millennium." (James Rollins)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Story

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  • Overall

Action packed, edge of your seat "page-turner"

I finished this book (over 10 hours long) in one day; you will too if you are a fan of the modern espionage or action genre. The book is well-written and well-researched. The characters, setting and pace are perfectly balanced. More so, the action sequences are fast-paced and believable. Mark Greaney has a new fan in me. I haven't found an author I like this much since I discovered Vince Flynn's books. I'll be downloading Mr. Greaney's new book "On Target" the first day it is available.

107 of 113 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael
  • Oakland, CA, United States
  • 09-25-10

High Energy Ride!

This story is for fans of characters like Jack Reacher, John Rain, Mitch Rapp, Ben Treven and others who prevail due to skills derrived from a history of disciplined practice and training, as well as inclination and talent. Modern supermen, although not invulnerable. Early on, I was afraid the story was going to get overheated, and exceed even my considerable willingness to suspend disbelief, but I was drawn in and was satisfied by the finish. I'll listen to the sequel. I like the reader Jay Snyder as well and will look for his name in the future.

62 of 66 people found this review helpful

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  • Eugenia
  • Chatsworth, CA, US
  • 08-08-16

Fun Thriller

Although I agree with some of the other reviewers about a few "jump the shark" moments, I really enjoyed the first book in this series.
Granted the main character is a bit one-dimensional, but the story moved along at a good pace and with some excellent villains (especially that American guy, how refreshing it wasn't just some nasty foreigner) and some characters we actually care about (like the eight year old Claire), there was a lot to like in this thriller.
I didn't mind all the wounds and mayhem heaped upon our hero because how many times have you read in books or seen in movies of this genre where the person crashes through a plate glass window and emerges unscathed and you accept that?
I just wish there had been a little less of all the weapons detail with lots of Guns 101 where I got to know more about guns than I care.
I also wish there had been a smidge (yes, just a smidge) of romance with someone along the way. Maybe the next book.
And I first heard Jay Snyder with the Ex series and except for the eight year old's voice, he does a terrific job.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Terri
  • Colorado
  • 03-09-12

A real life superhero

I completely enjoyed this book and promptly went on to read the others in the series. Yes it is very improbable that 1 person could survive even the first attack let alone all the others and then go on to best the villains and rescue the victims but the character that Mark Greaney weaves and the narration by Jay Snyder makes it a "can't put down book" or in this case "can't remove my headphones book".

I really enjoyed the parts when he knows he needs to get out of "Dodge" so he can save his own life but after some entertaining inner consternation turns around and helps out those in need.

Since my parents are 90 & 89 and not used to audio books (I have tried) I bought them the paperback and they both tore through it. Dad's statement was "improbably but very entertaining & enjoyable" - he finished in the book in under 2 days. It would have been 1 but we dragged him away from it to do a few real life things. Mom loved it.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • David
  • Edmonton, AB, Canada
  • 04-21-12

They Run, They Fight, They Run Some More

This book is one loooooooooong chase.

He's running...and is being set up again and again by some mysterious force. Repetitive and tiresome -- relentless in the running and/or chasing. Poorly developed characters doing exactly what you expect...a villain that will make you go "ho hum" and a hero the author has not taken the time to develop or make you care about even a little (which is kind of important in novels like this.)

A predictable cliche filled thriller ISN'T a thriller.

This isn't a thriller.

109 of 122 people found this review helpful

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  • Ed
  • Saint Augustine, FL, United States
  • 03-25-17

Move Over Jack Reacher

Stumbling across The Gray Man by Mark Greaney could not have come at a better time. I was beginning to become disenchanted with my favorite "take-no-prisoners" character, Jack Reacher in the series written by Lee Child. Along comes Court Gentry, aka the Gray Man, aka Jim. He gets stalked. He gets shot. He gets stabbed. He bleeds. He fights against insurmountable odds. He wins. Mostly he goes after bad guys, just like Paladin did 150 years earlier in Have Gun Will Travel. And best of all Greaney keeps the action going pretty much non-stop while Child has Reacher spending nearly a quarter of one of his recent books riding in the back seat of a car. I thought I was going to have to reread some of the earlier Reacher novels to rekindle the excitement that the series used to generate. Instead I'm going to jump into The Gray Man series. I like my chances.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Js
  • 09-08-10

Perils of Pauline

The "Gray Man" of the title is an uber-assassin, moving like a ghost, striking unstoppably. That is what everyone in this book says, anyway. It turns out, this is no Day of the Jackal" and our hero is no "Bob Lee Swagger". In reality, as presented, he bumbles his way through Europe escaping the massive efforts of an evil (French, of course) corporation through a combination of extreme marksmanship and fighting skill while wounded, and dumb luck; he is often saved by the missteps of his enemies or, I kid you not, things like umbrellas. At one point he defeats an enemy who, as presented, he should lose to.
Speaking of wounds, this begins to seem like a Road Runner cartoon and the massive injuries our hero keeps bouncing back from become laughable. The dialog is sometimes very good indeed, and then, next paragraph, wincingly bad: chest-thumping macho stuff instead of the cold communication of professionals.

To give credit to the author,he presents us with an individual representing the corporation whom you really, really hate; good job there. Our assassin is a "good guy", trying to knock off only those who are evil. That may be unrealistic or impractical, but it is refreshing. He also makes an effort to respect the reader's intelligence by providing practical motivations for the corporations egregious allowance of general mayhem and emotional motivations for the hunter and the hunted. I cannot buy the corporations ultimate, unsatisfying reasons.

The ending is illogical and unsatisfying, but obviously designed to set up a sequel.

76 of 86 people found this review helpful

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Couldn't turn it off!

Any additional comments?

What a spectacular book! Finished it at 2 am and bought the next one at 2:01. It's exciting, action-packed, wonderfully descriptive of the place and people, and not at all preachy. I'd write more but I'm going to buy book 3 now.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • rhl60
  • Jamestown MA, United States
  • 11-09-10

Utterly unbelievable, but very good...

If there is an espionage counterpart to Peter Benchley's "Jaws", this would seem to be it. The author serves up an unpretentious, fast-paced thriller featuring Court Gentry, a white knight assassin with more lives than Rasputin. Don't look for a lot of nuance here. But if you are going for a page turner, capably executed from beginning to end, this is it...

33 of 38 people found this review helpful

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  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 09-26-10

The Gray Man

This is my first book by Mark Greaney. I chose it because it was on a list by Audible. It is a great book, glad I tried it out. Lots of nail biting action and suspense. Jay Snyder did a good job narrating the book. Hope the real world of large corporation and spy agency are nothing like the in the story.
You will enjoy this on your commute.

33 of 38 people found this review helpful

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  • d
  • 08-09-14

worst book i've ever had

Would you try another book written by Mark Greaney or narrated by Jay Snyder?

he only seems to be able to co-write books .Having just read support and defend (Tom Clancy) I was shocked and disappointed with this rubbish .Even Jack Reacher would not have survived this .It was so unbelievable.

What was most disappointing about Mark Greaney’s story?

starting it

Would you be willing to try another one of Jay Snyder’s performances?

doubtful

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

anger

Any additional comments?

How someone who co-wrote Tom Clancy books could write such utter drivel .

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Mark
  • 10-30-13

Escapism

The narrator really does make a hash of some place names and his accents are hilarious, one Scottish character had several dialects, none of which i would describe as Scottish! The plot is ridiculous but, I actually enjoyed it, I listen to audio books after a hard day at the office whilst walking my dogs, 75% of books i listen to are background noise and i end up calling work colleagues rather than relaxing. The Gray man actually fell into the ultra rare 10% that made me look forward to my walk and actually the last 1/3 of the book made me add extra miles to my walk! Why? I really dont know, as i have said it is ludicrous, but it is a very easy listen and bizarrely you do want to know how it is all pulled together. If you are stressed or have a big project and want to switch off.....dive in, I dont think you will regret it.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Steven
  • 10-24-13

Worse thriller I have ever read!

What disappointed you about The Gray Man?

The unbelievable plot

What will your next listen be?

The next Jack Reacher book by Lee Child

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Awful accents and wrongly pronounced place names

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The first chapter, which showed promise

Any additional comments?

This book should have been placed in the comedy genre as I had a good laugh over the awful accents and mispronounced names

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Wayjor
  • 01-14-17

Not for me.

For years I've enjoyed the Tom Clancy novels - having learned to bypass the politics and enjoy the main characters' romps. Given the collaboration between this author and Clancy I anticipated enjoying this book. Not the case. It's written as a series of film scenes, designed for some über-action man to show how tough he is. I love fiction, be it thrillers, adventures, science fiction, fantasy, so I have no expectation of "real life"; I live real-life , thank you! The exploits depicted here, however, beggar even suspended dis-belief. I don't like dissing writers, who are at least putting pen to paper, their money where their mouths are, etc, unlike me, an untalented non-writer, but reviews are requested and these are my honest opinions. Obviously a talented writer, this author should write either a screenplay or a novel and not try to combine both under one heading; concentrate on story rather than merely linking overly contrived events, thus ensuring the reader's involvement rather than seeming determined only to catch the eye of the movie-makers. (W's Missus.)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • E-book worm
  • 11-07-17

Hmm don't believe the hype

I can see where this author is trying to give us a new Jack Reacher or Jason Bourne but sadly is failing miserably. I note the book already has film rights and that Mr Cruse is frothing at the mouth to play Court Gray. I can see why he was attracted to the role I just hope the movie comes over better than the audio book.

I digress, the gentleman reading it sounds like a computer reading - maybe this was the issue but I think not. The author has a writing style that borders on childlike.

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  • nigel
  • 10-19-17

Awful.

I am not familiar with Mark Greaney, but the fact that he has worked with Tom Clancy suggested that he should be good. This book was awful and so far removed from the likes of Frederick Forsyth, Andy McNab, Gerald Seymour etc that this was probably made for TV, such is the pointless puns. I hated this book and had it refunded. The narrator made a bad book worse.

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  • sue
  • 10-17-17

Like being spoken to by your satnav

The narration kills an already dodgy story. The accents are impenetrable and incorrect pronunciations are downright irritating. Who knew we had a tunnel under the North Sea !! One of the glaring mistakes. Can’t believe I listened to the end.

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  • Macon
  • 10-14-17

Rubbish

Bad story badly narrated.
Other much better examples of this genre can be found. Not recommended.

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  • James G. Hartman
  • 07-26-17

Lacks Depth and Performance

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No. In the highly-trained-assassin genre there are other authors who manage to imbue far greater depth in their protagonists. The Grey Man is two dimensional and ridden with cliche.

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

It was so implausible. I know the genre relies on a certain amount of implausibility, but this was taken too far. Much of the character's success was down to blind luck or, frequently, the convenient location of pal with a stash of arms.

How could the performance have been better?

The accents were truly terrible. The English accents were appalling, the German characters sounded French, the French sounded like a generic European accent plucked from the air, and the French towns and street names were butchered. As so much of the novel is set in France, it seems daft not to hire a voice artist who can handle the pronunciation. Having said this, he has a great voice and paces the narration well. But the narrator should stick to American characters in books set in America.

Was The Gray Man worth the listening time?

Just. Kept me entertained as I did the housework.

Any additional comments?

Still looking for a rival to Mark Dawson's John Milton series. This wasn't it.

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  • G. H. Lewis
  • 05-26-17

Unbelievable!

Would have been more enjoyable if the story didn't get increasingly implausible as it went along. I made it to the end though, so it wasn't _too_ bad. Narrator had good style, but obviously hasn't done his pronunciation homework!

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  • Adrian Panow
  • 10-12-15

Solid story and main character.

A good yarn. The "world" is described in sufficient detail that it's easy to travel along with the Gray Man. The action scenes are gripping with only a little suspension of reality required to make it all possible. Narration is generally good although some of the characterisation, particularly accents" jars. It is, however, always clear who's speaking.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Grahame
  • 06-17-17

Court Gentry, Good guy and your worst enemy.

The introduction of the Gray Man, a lethal weapon and a man with his own integrity.
This guy is loyal and fearless. He seems to experience a lot of bad luck but always seems to achieve the primary objective, often very worse for wear.

Great escapism and perhaps a vehicle to release some of the pent up energy from my highly structured and stressful life.

Loved this book, now listening to Book 3 and just purchased book 4.

Keep them coming Mark Greaney!

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  • Raymond
  • 05-12-17

Twice Purchased Thrill

Lost a lot of books transitioning from USA to Australia Audible and remembered this one with relish. Jumped in and obviously it's been a few years so I actually enjoyed it as much as the first time, unknown drama around every corner. Predictability gets stomped on, while the narrator sucks you into tense shoulders and urges you to get back into listening at very next opportunity. Not for faint hearted but not crass.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-10-17

Awesome debut for the Gray man..

My love for reading had waned, this book has changed that, can't wait to read the next book in the series.

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  • steve
  • 03-20-17

Clean fast action from the start

good fun action from the start. A heroes struggle against insurmountable odds. The Gray Man

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  • PiratePete
  • 02-10-17

Not for everyone

Any additional comments?

I scored it a 4 and will buy another one in the series but need to make it clear that the book is not going to be for everyone. <br/><br/>It's fast paced and action packed in a similar vein to Tom Wood's "Victor" series. However, you will need to the ability to accept the fanciful and push reality aside to enjoy the entertainment. <br/><br/>Without giving away any spoilers you will need to be able to believe that the best assassin in the world has a moral compass and his body is able to withstand amazing injury and still out-fight dozens of able bodied military trained professionals.<br/><br/>Jay Snyder did a pretty good job. Some of the accents were a little suspect and some of the cuts from different recorded takes were evident but the latter is really a production issue rather than the narrator's to be fair.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-19-16

A cookie cutter hero, in a cookie cutter story....

I usually like this type of story. A degree of suspension of belief is always needed with these stories, and i happily do so and enjoy the ride.

Unfortunately, in this case i felt that it was just too much. The hero is just too much of a cliche; the main bad villian is a cliche villian and sadly, the story is very predictable.

The narrator did a good job it depicting the charactors, using different accents for the charactors although it seems a heavily laid on, but overall it did not detract from the stort.