Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Gun Seller” as Want to Read:
The Gun Seller
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Gun Seller

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  11,948 ratings  ·  1,323 reviews
Paperback, 340 pages
Published October 10th 2004 by Arrow Books (first published 1996)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Gun Seller, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Gun Seller

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
This book is F-A-N-T-A-S-T-I-C !!!

Maybe you haven't recognized the name of the author, but this Hugh Laurie is THE Hugh Laurie who was the star on the TV series House, M.D..

Sure, maybe some of you would say "So what? He is an actor but can he write?" Oh, yes! He CAN write!

Pain is an event. It happens to you, and you deal with it in whatever way you can.

If you ever watched some episode of House, M.D. you can be familiarized with the personality of the character that Laurie portraited there, and
I wish I could give this book 6 stars.

I love Hugh Laurie. I love his dry, sarcastic wit. I love his accent. I want to hump his leg for writing this book.

Yes. I really just said that.

I picked up this book BECAUSE I love Hugh Laurie, but I didn't really have high expectations. I thought it would be humorous, but not a book to really be taken seriously. I thought it would be a little bit like a parody of the espionage genre, like Johnny English or Spy Hard, etc. I was prepared for it to be silly
I would like to please find the person who in the description of this book promised an "uproarious cocktail of comic zingers" and give them my best "Grandma Lydia look" (*)
(*) If you are NOT familiar with the "Grandma Lydia look", which you probably aren't since the chances of you actually having met my grandmother are slim to none, I will explain. This is the look you get from a tiny 5-foot-tall sweetest Eastern European grandmother that makes you stop in your tracks and beg forgiveness for an
Thanks to Chris for turning me on to this fun romp. Every now & then I'd just bust out laughing & it kept me up past my bed time to finish it. Random, odd, & meandering as it seems at times, the humor was a constant thread & I found that everything really was spot on. If the story occasionally took the long way around the barn, it was only so we'd sneak up on something unexpected.

It's at least a 3 star thriller & is written so perfectly in Laurie's voice that I could hear &
Feb 05, 2012 Amanda rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of Spy Novels
Shelves: young-adult
The only reason I read this book? You guessed it, Hugh Laurie. Anything to which his name is attached is worth a looksee. I'm not typically a fan of spy novels, so I must admit that some of the spoofing was probably lost on me. However, Laurie obviously enjoys the English language and bends and twists it to wit-laced results. As a narrator, Thomas Lang is sarcastic and self-deprecating, but also a genuinely nice guy. He's likable, someone you'd like to go have a drink with just to hear his runni ...more
Robert Kroese
The Gun Seller is a strange book, in a way. The first few chapters are sort of random and whimsical, with at least one laugh-out-loud line on every page. About a quarter of the way in though, it seems like it occurs to Laurie that he actually has some storytelling to do, and sets about doing it. The book grows gradually more serious from that point, until it is close to being a Robert Ludlum-style spy thriller. It also gets rather confusing. I had a hard time figuring out the motivations of some ...more
Fantastic. Fantastically funny. Fantastically savvy. Fantastically clever. Fantastically political. Fantastically cinematic. Fantastically entertaining. Fantastic.

Hugh Laurie has only written one novel, but I hope there are more to come after his near perfect debut, The Gun Seller.

Laurie takes a fairly standard "dirty CIA" story (ala Jason Bourne), tosses in some Wodehousian humour, takes the p*ss out of modern politics and democracy, builds suspense with some cracking chases, gun fights and 00
Maryscott OConnor
Jul 24, 2008 Maryscott OConnor rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone I know.
I had to stop reading The Gun Seller around 1am, halfway through it, and believe me, the ONLY thing stopping me from reading to the end was an unfortunate dearth of eyelids propper-uppers, a la A Clockwork Orange.

It is LITERALLY laugh-out-loud funny. Adam (spousal unit)couldn't concentrate on his computer war game, so often did I punctuate the living room's ual silence with raucous laughter and stifled snorts.

But it is ALSO one helluva spy tale. He wrote it in 1996 and I can't for the life of me
Cynical, wry freelance soldier of fortune Thomas Lang is hired to kill a man, but being a nice chap, refuses the money and goes to warn the intended victim. His discovery that the victim, an American industrialist, is also the man who hired him is only the beginning of a series of bizarre surprises and twists in store for Lang, as he is reluctantly involved in a plot to instigate a terrorist act so that a new attack helicopter can be tested out in actual combat. He falls for the industrialist’s ...more
Jun 18, 2007 E.H. rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like PG Wodehouse or spy novels
Hugh Laurie is...I suppose I should begin by saying I have something of a crush on him. In the beginning he was fantastic in "Blackadder" as the various Georges, then he was extremely fabulous opposite Stephen Fry in "Jeeves and Wooster", and then, having proved himself one of the best comic actors of his generation, he came to America to star in "House", and became not just one of the most versatile actors, but a sex symbol to boot.

It was on the strength of this reputation that I started to re
Perhaps it's unfair to review this book seeing as I haven't finished reading it yet, but I'll do it anyway! I think, perhaps, I picked up this book for the wrong reason. I wasn't particularly interested in the story, though it did intrigue me. In all honesty, I picked it up because Hugh Laurie wrote it and I love him. (More specifically, I love Robert Sean Leonard who stars with Hugh Laurie on 'House', but has not actually written a book so this was the best I could do...) This, I have discovere ...more
Ben Babcock
This book has been on my to-read list for ages. Adding it was as simple as, “Hugh Laurie wrote a novel? Sold!” The fact that it’s a novel about a British ex-military freelancer trying to prevent the assassination of the American businessman he was hired to kill … well, that’s just a bonus. Some books keep their wit bottled up and dole it out carefully over the course of the story. The Gun Seller isn’t like that: from the very first page, Laurie makes it clear that this is a tongue-in-cheek, semi ...more
“Death and disaster are at our shoulders every second of our lives, trying to get at us.”

I will try to prevent my adoration of the brilliant Hugh Laurie affect my review of his first (and, to date, only) published novel, but I will admit that it was the only reason I was initially interested in reading The Gun Seller. While the book itself might not be expressly profound or lasting, it’s great for some light reading (or airplane reading, as it was for me).

Overall, this spy-genre spoof is great
I have a piece of advice for you if you decide to read this book (which you should):

Do not read it in an elevator, on a bus, in a hotel lobby, in a hospital waiting room, in the car when you're a passenger (or when you're the driver, for a more obvious reason), while standing in line at the bank/grocery store/customer service desk, while standing round waiting for the mechanics to finish with your oil change, at school, at work, or any other public arena where people can observe you.

Why, you may
L.T. Fawkes
The Gun Seller, by Hugh Laurie $8.25 ***** Yeah. The author is that Hugh Laurie.

If you've been reading these reviews of mine, you know I'm pretty tight with a buck when it comes to Kindle books. I love to troll through looking for promising freebies and I rarely buy a Kindle book priced higher than $4.99. And this book is priced pretty steepishly at $8.25. Yikes, right?

HOWEVER . . . if you download the free sample, as I did, and read it, as I did, I'll bet you end up parting with that
colleen the contrarian  ± (... never stop fighting) ±

So, I picked this book up because it came recommended and because I like Hugh Laurie both from House and Black Adder, so I was curious as to what a book of his would be like.

Well, the one aspect which seems to be promoted above all others is the humor - it's dry and droll and nigh constant. But, while I did find some of the observations wry and humorous, I did not, unfortunately, find it nearly as uproarious as some others did. I also found it to wear kind of thin after not too long a while.

This was a clever send up of the spy genre, but if Hugh Laurie were not working so hard to be clever in every single line, I think it would be a smoother read.

While the narrator's thoughts on sex drives, cars, how people look like their desks, etc, etc, are wry, witty, and amusing - they do not further the plot or the move the action along.

I will grant that it may be half the point of a spy novel to never know quite who is working for or with whom, this novel was overly full of characters who ap
The immediately striking thing about The Gun Seller is that our hero's interior monologue is really desperate for approval. Every other line is a joke, a stammered-spluttered gag with no regard for the rhythm of the story because it's time for another wry aside. I don't know if there are 50 pages to this book if you cut out the wry asides (which are hard to distinguish from the extended set-ups to wry asides).

And, credit to Laurie, most of them are somewhat humourous and many raised a smile (but
Very Bond-like plot, with macho-smartass hero, evil guy who wants to destroy everything and everyone and "les femmes fatales".

The main protagonist is almost like Dr House in House MD, just less misanthropic. He is smart, not politically correct, sexist, and yet likable carrier of a positive force. I couldn't devote myself fully to reading due to heavy schedule, but at times i felt like missing the guy and wandering what's gonna happen next.

I loved author's sense of humour, at times the book was
Hugh Laurie's first novel, The Gun Seller, is a witty, well written novel. A hired assassin is contracted to kill a target, but instead decides to renege on the deal and warn the target. Before long everybody is out to get him.

I bought the book because it was Hugh Laurie who wrote it. I loved the book, in part, because it was Hugh Laurie who wrote it. However, in my heart I doubt I would want to give it five stars if it had somebody else's name on the cover. So it gets a four from the head inste
Vaughn Demont
More often than not, “celebrity books” are derided by critics but manage to sell rather well. A Night Without Armor by Jewel is filled with mediocre poetry, yet it’s one of the best selling poetry books of all time because she released it at the height of her fame. The Gun Seller was published in 1996, yet it’s only seeing wide release in the United States now because of the author, Hugh Laurie’s starring role in the medical drama House, M.D. The casual reader might pick up the novel thinking th ...more
Frank Botos
This is one of those books that I feel anyone can get into. It has a little bit of everything: action, intricate plot, a bit of philosophy and politics, and a ton of wit. The last one especially is true; this book is built around wit.

It's written in the first person and is one of those books that you pick up, begin reading, and are just totally drawn in by it because it flows so well, and because the main character just resonates. Thomas Lang, the protagonist, has a style that is truly likable.
I wanted to dislike this book. Really I did. I don't think it fair that Hugh Laurie should be a fantastic actor, play the piano so lovely and be a good writer as well. But he is a good writer & I did like this book. I read it because I was having House withdrawal after the show ended & thus I heard House's voice as the main character of this story which wasn't at all surprising as they do share the same sarcastic & blunt sense of humor. This was a fun, entertaining read. There was lo ...more
Rodrigo Conde
Jun 02, 2013 Rodrigo Conde rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everybody
Recommended to Rodrigo by: My dad
When I got this book I thought: " A mystery book by Hugh Laurie? It won´t be a good book, It'll just make me laugh a bit", but I read It and now I'm regretted about what I´ve said.

The Gun Seller is a very entertaining book. It isn´t the masterpiece of this era, but It will entertain you a lot. It has suspense and humour in every page.

This book has a lot of good things but It also has some bad ones.
I think there´s like a change in the middle of the book and from there the writing changes.The char
Years ago, a colleague recommended this title to me, so when I came across an audio version, I tried it out. I like Hugh Laurie, or at least, I have nothing against him. This was clever, much like the man himself, but frankly, I was unsure if I was supposed to be laughing at the situation, the characters, or myself, for reading it.

Perhaps he meant to skewer everyone in this. Although he deals with important issues--international weapon sales with little or no accountability, meant to enrich the
Da ist der Name Programm :-/
Patricia Burroughs
There is no justice in the world. What is it about certain British actors that means they not only act, but sing, dance, play various musical instruments and are effing good writers?

Seriously? This book, by Dr House himself, is hysterically funny with rapid-fire dialogue and a fair amount of action. I have recommended it to several like-minded people and they've all loved it, too.

Give it a shot.

And I guess it's okay that there is no justice in the world, if it means I get to read books like this
Plot/secondary characters/setting - 2.5-3 Stars
Writing/overall enjoyment reading/House fangirl - 5 Stars

So, I went ahead and gave THE GUN SELLER 4 Stars, but I don’t know if I would have given it 4 if it hadn’t been written by Hugh Laurie. While I did enjoy his writing a lot, and it’s pretty much what saved this book to me, because I’m such a fan of the TV show House, I pretty much insta-upped my rating for the author being Dr. House. Bias, I know, but there you have it.

I thought that the plot
This was just one of those nice laid back cruisy books. Not super exciting or thrilling, but enjoyable in it's kind of pulp fiction 'Dame walks into the bar. I'd been having a bad day. Robbed, beaten, tossed in the clink, but now it was about to get better' sort of way.
I liked it and think it is a shame Hugh laurie doesn't write more books.
Glad it was recommended to me.
Jacqueline Carey
There are a gazillion smart-mouthed badass heroes out there, and a lot of them just aren't that funny or tough, but Hugh Laurie makes it work by relying on shrewd observational humor in addition to the obligatory wisecracks. The first half is tighter than the second, but overall, it's a fun ride. Well played, House!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Recommend a book with a funny anti-hero 3 35 Jun 29, 2014 08:27AM  
this is just a translation 1 15 May 14, 2014 03:51AM  
Backseat Book Club: Episode 12: The Gunseller 1 6 Sep 12, 2013 11:35AM  
  • The Hippopotamus
  • The Devil in Amber (Lucifer Box, #2)
  • King Blood: The Armchair Detective Library
  • Deep as the Marrow
  • Valdez Is Coming
  • The Honor of Spies (Honor Bound, #5)
  • Homes and Other Black Holes
  • Nebezpečná láska (Bavettovi, #1)
  • Jackdaws
  • Jeeves and the Tie That Binds (Jeeves, #14)
  • Judgment Day
British comedian Hugh Laurie, OBE could have easily taken another career track rather than that of well-known performer. As a secondary and college student, he was also a world-class oarsman. He wasn't the only one in the family to have a passion for the sport, however. His father won a gold medal at the 1948 London Olympics as part of the British national team. The youngest of four children, Laur ...more
More about Hugh Laurie...
Let Them Talk Hugh Laurie: Didn't It Rain Paper Soldiers A Bit of Fry & Laurie House, M.D.: The Official Guide to the Hit Medical Drama

Share This Book

“Death and disaster are at our shoulders every second of our lives, trying to get at us. Missing, a lot of the time. A lot of miles on the motorway without a front wheel blow-out. A lot of viruses that slither through our bodies without snagging. A lot of pianos that fall a minute after we've passed. Or a month, it makes no difference. So unless were going to get down on our knees and give thanks every time disaster misses, it makes no sense to moan when it strikes.” 142 likes
“This was the tricky bit. The really tricky bit, trickiness cubed.” 80 likes
More quotes…