Ghostman by Roger Hobbs

Posted April 20, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Thriller / 0 Comments

Ghostman by Roger HobbsTitle: Ghostman (Goodreads)
Series: Ghostman #1
, 2012
Pages: 336
Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

When a casino heist goes bad, there are a lot of loose ends to tidy up. Loose ends like a million dollars and only 48 hours to find it. The Ghostman is sent into find the money and make sure the crime isn’t connected back to his employer. Only problem is he is in the Wolf’s territory now and he wants the Ghostman’s head in a bag; if they can find him.

First of all, this is a pretty stereotypical heist novel, with all the normal thriller elements that you expect, the double crosses, the cops, the clearly laid out plan, it is all there in this book. So why did I enjoy this book more than I should have? The Ghostman, let’s just call him Jack Delton as that is the name he uses the most in the novel, is nothing really special. There isn’t much character development; he continues to remain an enigma the entire time. Yet there is something about him that I liked; he has the ability to hide in plain sight, to blend in and he is pretty much a grifter sent in to clean up the mess. He is also a pretentious book worm; he admits to reading a lot in the book and has a soft spot for Homer and epic Greek poetry. These elements of his character, and the fact he knows how to handle himself when things get rough, really come together to make a character I enjoyed reading about.

All other characters in the book were completely underdeveloped and just felt like backdrops that got in the way of Jack Delton’s tasks. But then again, you do need conflict and twists and turns to drive a story like this; there was nothing too shocking about the plot, I would have loved a good twist or maybe a darker narrative but all in all, Ghostman was a lot of fun to read.

This is Roger Hobbs’s debut novel and he is only 24 years old which makes you wonder; where did he learn all the skills to pull off a casino heist and cover it up? The detail put into the different ways of doing things was incredibly detailed, so much so that you can’t help but think this is the voice of experience. My main problem was that I felt like sometimes the author was dumbing down the information too much; I think he wanted to make sure every reader knew what was happening but the information felt over done.

Delton spends all this time tying up all the loose ends from the heist, that at times I thought things were going to end up incredibly neat and, to an extent, it did, but I was glad to see not everything goes to plan. I thought maybe Delton had a complex plan to get himself out of mess but instead he decided to live by the motto “Flectere si nequeo superos, Acheronta movebo” If I cannot move Heaven, I will raise Hell. Simple but effective, but then again that’s the book in a nutshell.

I still don’t have no idea what really made this book so enjoyable; there really isn’t much in the novel that was special, it all felt like it was done before. In the end I was just sucked into the story and enjoyed the ride; it is a good heist novel and I think it will give most thriller writers a run for their money. Sure it was predictable and nonsensical but sometimes you just need some light entertaining junk to read. It is still worth checking out, even if it is just to see what Roger Hobb can do and then spend some time trying to work out how he researched this book.

0 responses to “Ghostman by Roger Hobbs

  1. Nishita

    I am currently reading this book now…just in 80 pages or so. So far, it’s ok, no great shakes. Hoping things get a little less cliched and a lot more thrilling from here on.

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