Tuesday 14 April 2020

A Wanted Man - Robert Parker - Ben Bracken Book 1

A Wanted Man
Ben Bracken Book 1
Robert Parker
Endeavour Press
ISBN 9781911445821

I saw an advertisement for this book claiming it would be great for fans of Jack Reacher. Other than the fact that they can both be brutal in a fight and are ex military I do not really see any similarities. While reading this book I also thought it was a debut story. I did manage to finish this story, but it is extremely unlikely that I will pick up another. While researching the author and the series to write the review I discovered that these books have been repackaged at least three times. The original title of this one was The Baby And The Brandy, and published under the name Robert Parker. By no way to be confused with Robert B. Parker of the Spencer For Hire novels and fame. The most recent iteration is the version I read.

I believe currently there are 4 novels available in this iteration of the series. And there is another Series Called Ben Bracken Origins with 5 stories but can only find paperback editions of that and am not certain if it is the same series under yet another name and titles.

The story is part Equalizer and part Punisher. Ben Bracken has escaped prison and is intent on getting the guy who set him up. He is a disgraced former British soldier. He by chance gets pulled into a top criminal gang because of a guy on the outside who owed him. And everything falls into place for him. And he will attempt to clean the floor with them before moving on to his original target. Consider it a warmup, or test run.

Reading or watching fiction there is a certain suspension of disbelief. I found this one just stretched the bounds way too much. The inconsistencies in Ben’s character, his sense of justice but willing to break any rule. Everything falling in place like dominos lined up in a row. And if I had not been on a long commute to and from work, I likely would have given up on the story. Part of me wishes I had.

Advertised as the UK’s answer to Jack Reacher, this is not that! And if that is the reason you are picking it up, don’t bother.

Books by Robert Parker:
Crook’s Hallow

Ben Bracken Series:
1.0 A Wanted Man (previously The Baby and the Brandy)
2.0 Morte Point (previously Apex)
3.0 The Penny Black
4.0 Till Morning is Nigh

Ben Bracken Origins:
The Deansgate Deadline
From Steel
The Baroness
The Things We Can’t Undo
The Big Smoke
Ben Bracken Origins (Books 1-5)

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