Turn-of-the-century detective Isaac Bell pursues a blood-thirsty bank robber—and perhaps one of the world’s first sociopaths—in the first novel in the #1 New York Times-bestselling series.
In 1906, the western states of America suffer a string of bank robberies by a single man who then cold-bloodedly murders any and all witnesses, and vanishes without a trace. Fed up by the depredations of “The Butcher Bandit,” the U.S. government brings in the best man it can find: a tall, lean, no-nonsense detective named Isaac Bell, who has caught thieves and killers from coast to coast.
But Bell has never had a challenge like this one. From Arizona to Colorado to the streets of San Francisco during its calamitous earthquake and fire, he pursues a fiend who seems to draw pleasure from the challenge and a woman who may to hold the key to the man’s identity. As Bell begins to suspect a new term used among top psychologists, sociopath, may describe his target, the Butcher Bandit turns the chase around on him. The hunter becomes the hunted. And soon, it will take all of Bell’s skills not merely to prevail . . . but to survive.
Filled with intricate plotting, Cussler’s signature dazzling set pieces, and not one but two extraordinary villains, The Chase is the master working at the height of his powers.
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. The Butcher has gunned down 38 men and women and two children, leaving behind neither witnesses nor clues. Bell heads the manhunt and finally figures out the Butcher's true identity, which is when the real chase begins. Unfortunately, Cussler's style is patterned on the clunky dialogue ("I pray you catch the murdering scum") and improbable characters of the period's dime novels, and his in-depth research makes his descriptions sound like advertising. 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.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Great book. Kept me interested and reading through the entire story. Thoroughly enjoyable.
Just Plain Fun
A fun ride from start to finish. If you like Cussler, you're in for another page-turning treat. Some pretty poor reviews on this one, but you just have to let it happen, make it an escape and go along with it. Twists, turns, unbelievable scenarios, it's all there. And it's all good. If you want to overthink it, you're not going to like it.
Do a little research on Cussler's style before diving in
Mr. Cussler has enjoyed a long career due to his ability to tell a good story in a way that a large number of people can relate to. This is not high-brow fiction; it is more like a summer blockbuster movie. This is endearing to his fans, but to many readers it is a turn off. Just because it has a good rating does not mean YOU will like it.
As we do with movies, we must enter into a frame of mind where "realistic" and "realm of possibility" are relative. This is the point of a book of fiction. It is imagined reality. Granted, not all fiction follows this, but you must expect it with Cussler.
I find it humorous that some people feel compelled to write a review without finishing the book. How can you review something you have not read? Is not their review worse fiction than what they are claiming to review? I listened to this book during a road trip and found it quite exciting. Letting go of reality, I let Mr. Cussler lead me through his story, and thoroughly enjoyed it. The version I have was read by Scott Brick and he does a great job. This book is not one to read again and again, but it is well worth the time to read once.