The Chase

The Chase

Large Print - 2008
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Isaac Bell, the lead detective of the renowned Van Dorn Detective Agency, is hired by the U.S. government to capture the bank robber known as "The Butcher Bandit."
Publisher: Detroit : Gale, Cengage Learning, 2008, c2007
Edition: Large print ed. --
ISBN: 9781594132834
Characteristics: 587 p. : ill., map


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Apr 04, 2020

I was upset to hear that Clive Cussler had passed away, and I felt guilty that I had never read any of his novels. I picked up this little gem in a used book store and dove right in. The story takes place during 1906 in the Western part of the US. The characters bounce around using trains and the latest automobiles of the time period, the brilliantly villainous Cromwell staying one step ahead of our protagonist and James-Bondesque good guy Bell. It's believable to a point, except Bell can do no wrong and all the women fall over themselves in his presence. It's a bit of a Gary Stu fantasy, but there's still a good time to be had here. If you enjoy heist stories, and the good cop figure chasing after the bad thief, then this is the book for you. The reason why I've rated it lower is the fact that the narrative stalled around 1/3 of the way in, and it took some convincing to dive back in and finish it. The other is the appalling romance. Granted, Cussler isn't known for his romance stories, and there's a reason for that. The insta-love happened so quickly that I was sure that Bell was using Marion for her connection to Cromwell, and didn't believe that he really cared about her until the end. There's no relationship development for either of them. I wasn't expecting a great American romance story, but come on, Cussler. All this to say, it was fine, enjoyable for what it was, but not much else.

Aug 01, 2019

In 1906, western American banks have been terrorized by the "butcher bandit": a man (or women, who knows?) who robs, then murders the witnesses, only to vanish. Realizing they are not handling some two-bit crook, The American Government hires the best man they can find. Enter Isaac Bell, a serious tall, detective, who also can handle a gun. This book is well written and is a good start to the series. It also is a window to the rough sections of historical San Francisco, as well as the more well-to-do areas. This book contains some moderately mature scenes and topics, but nothing too explicit. The only fault I could find in this book was the ending was a bit anticlimactic but overall, a great thriller novel. 4/5. @mittopic of the Hamilton Public Library's Teen Review Board.

Nov 10, 2018

Builds up a head of steam that unrelents, combine that with a dastardly villain, a heartbreaking depiction of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake, and the greatest steam locomotive chase in literature, and this is one book that doesn't disappoint. just don't expect a good whodunit, they literally reveal the villain's name on the tenth page.

Aug 17, 2015

The story was enjoyable. Very descriptive, enough that it drew a picture in your mind.

Low rating was due to a certain amount of sensuality and a few coarse words.

Sep 06, 2013

This is my first Clive Cussler book and I loved It !!!!!

Oct 08, 2012

My first Cussler book and I enjoyed it. Loved the gadgets and the fact that the story took place in 1906. BOBBARNETSON I would suggest you not read anymore of Cussler's books.

Aug 16, 2011

The good news is that the book is set at an interesting time--the turn of the 20th century. The mixture of old and new technology creates interesting situations for a chase mystery. More books should be set here as characters cannot rely on technology to get them out of jams.

The bad news is that it is written by Clive Cussler. Thus we get his affinity for gadgets, and his endless (and needless) description of every place, person, mechanical process and item to cover up the lack of character development, horribly wooden dialogue and turgid prose.

The plot is unbelievable and there is an entire chapter devoted to the characters driving from San Francisco to LA. The entire chapter focuses on the mechanics of driving. They get a flat tire. They fix it. They get another flat. They also fix that one. A bridge is out. They drive fast. They drive slow. The driver is exhausted by the end. But not so exhausted he can't drive on to San Deigo in the next chapter.

Seriously, does Cussler not have an editor? This is a vomitously bad book--don't waste your time unless you were 14 years old in 1950 and your sense of "good read" was cryogenically frozen at that point.

Jun 21, 2011

A good read. A nice change from Cussler's usual.

Jun 03, 2010

My 1st Cussler novel did not disappoint. Good read !

Feb 09, 2010

Great read, unusual plot. A real page turner.

View All Comments


Add Notices
Sep 06, 2013

Violence: alot of violence its not graphic but the criminal is person who kills for fun and enjoys it...o there is some shooting stabbing

Sep 06, 2013

Sexual Content: a lot of references but mild for a adult book

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability
Sep 06, 2013

JihadiConservative thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


Add a Summary
Jun 19, 2014

April 1950: The rusting hulk of a steam locomotive rises from the deep waters of a Montana lake. Inside is all that remains of three men who died forty-four years before. But it is not the engine or its grisly contents that interest the people watching nearby. It is what is about to come next . . .

1906: For twelve years, the western states of America have been suffering an extraordinary crime spree: a string of bank robberies by a single man who cold-bloodedly murders any and all witnesses and then vanishes without a trace. Fed up by the depredations of the "Butcher Bandit," the U.S. government brings in the best man they can find-a tall, lean, no-nonsense detective named Isaac Bell, who has caught thieves and killers 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 what is quickly becoming clear to him is the sharpest criminal mind he has ever encountered, and the woman who seems to hold the key to the bandit's identity. Using science, deduction, and intuition, Bell repeatedly draws near only to grasp at thin air, but at least he knows his pursuit is having an effect. Because his quarry is getting angry now, and has turned the chase back on him. The hunter has become the hunted. And soon it will take all of Isaac Bell's skills not merely to prevail… but to survive.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at PPL

To Top