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Maximum Bob

3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  5,108 Ratings  ·  186 Reviews
“Hilarious….Strange and risky….A right-on, pitch perfect novel, with wide social scope, comic genius, page-burning storytelling magic, and juicy characters who wrench your heart and gut.” —Washington Post Book World


A character so outrageous he could only have come from the ingenious imagination of Elmore Leonard, lewd, lecherous, law-bending Florida jurist Judge Robert “M
Paperback, 352 pages
Published July 30th 2002 by HarperTorch (first published October 1991)
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Dan Schwent
Nov 10, 2012 Dan Schwent rated it liked it
When someone wants hardliner judge Bob Isom Gibbs, aka Maximum Bob, dead, how does he narrow down which of his enemies it is? Can probation officer Kathy Baker and cop Gary Hammond stop the would-be killer? And do they even want to? And what does Bob's flaky wife have to do with it?

After reading The Cut by George Pelecanos, with its obvious Elmore Leonard influence and multiple references to old Dutch, I decided to dust this one off and give it a shot. I was not disappointed.

Maximum Bob is a wom
Treasure of the Rubbermaids 15: See Ya Later, Alligator!

The on-going discoveries of priceless books and comics found in a stack of Rubbermaid containers previously stored and forgotten at my parent’s house and untouched for almost 20 years. Thanks to my father dumping them back on me, I now spend my spare time unearthing lost treasures from their plastic depths.

This is not the Elmore Leonard book I wanted to be reading. I thought I would be able to achieve a Raylan Givens nirvana because not onl
3 stars

Maximum Bob is the nickname given to Judge Bob Gibbs (although he is called “Big” throughout the book), who is well-known for handing out maximum sentences for even the most minor crimes. Dale Crowe Junior had the misfortune to draw Maximum Bob, and gets five years. He also appears to threaten the judge at the end of his sentencing. His probation officer, Kathy Baker, has her hands full, trying to fending off the amorous advances of Big, keeping Dale in line, and dealing with Dale’s uncle
Definitely gritty, full of quirky characters, & some real world issues that the system faces. Excellent heroine, too. As usual, I could really feel the area; Florida heat, gators, & dirty streets. Not Leonard's best work, but a fun read.
aPriL does feral sometimes
‘Maximum Bob’ is a Florida good ol’ boy. Unfortunately, he also is a judge. However, since he works in Palm Beach County, Florida, progressive or decent police officers cannot do much about his sense of justice or womanizing. For example, unless miscegenation is involved, sexual harassment and rape of women is perfectly understandable and a victimless crime in most of what is understood by the Florida legal establishment and particularly in Judge Bob Gibbs courtroom. Justice is practiced only ag ...more
Carl R.
Nov 29, 2013 Carl R. rated it really liked it
When does a fascination turn into an addiction? If it is an addiction, I guess it's harmless to me and other living things. So it's back to Elmore. He's always good for a few chuckles, but Maximum Bob kept me laughing pretty much the whole time. Bob is a judge, famous for handing out maximum sentences. Thus the nickname. He's also famous for what today we'd call sexual harassment, but when the book was written in 1991 it wasn't a disbarment offense to invite a court reporter into his chambers an ...more
Sep 22, 2014 Ruel rated it really liked it
I read at least one Elmore Leonard novel each year and I’m never disappointed. The pace, style, and characters of most of his books are similar: there are unsavory people doing unsavory things, often double-crossing each other as the quick pace of the plot builds to a crescendo. It’s no wonder why so many of Leonard’s books have become movies and TV shows; I liken his books to action movies (although not as dumb as the typical Hollywood blockbuster).

Maximum Bob sticks to Leonard’s formula, which
Sam Quixote
Jul 24, 2011 Sam Quixote rated it liked it
Judge Bob Gibbs gives out the maximum penalty in all of his cases earning him the nickname "Maximum Bob". Unfortunately, his zeal for hard time in all instances earns him a number of enemies. When a plan to rid his wife by having a trapper plant an alligator in his backyard goes wrong, Bob finds there's an ex-con out to shoot him, a drugged out former doctor now under house arrest putting out contracts on him, and the alligator trapper is blackmailing him. And all he wanted was a date with the C ...more
Mar 22, 2013 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I regret having not read an Elmore Leonard book in such a long time. The man can write. This is a well crafted book. Interesting characters, compelling plot, the very definition of a page turner. His sense of humor is there without being forced (like Carl Hiasson). His characters are well-rounded, especially the women (unlike Carl Hiasson).

I don’t mean to pick on Carl Hiasson, I have enjoyed the books of his I’ve read, it’s just that Leonard is the granddaddy, okay daddy, of this type of fictio
Jul 23, 2012 Jamie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-dirty-south
I’ve got a stack of these I’ve been using as palate cleansers between other books, and thank God Elmore is so prolific because it would break my heart to run out any time soon.

Kathy Baker is like Karen Sisco’s little sister, and Dewey Crowe and maybe Dale Jr. are by far the bright shining lights of the Crowe family, holy shit.
Harry Connolly
Oct 12, 2015 Harry Connolly rated it really liked it
Interesting characters with unique voices. A plot that is unpredictable but feels inevitable. A setting that has tone more than detail.

I'm a fan of Leonard's work, even though I haven't made a dedicated effort to read all of his books. This book, about a judge who wants to drive his wife away and blackmails a defendant into helping him--which naturally goes completely haywire, and stirs up a great deal of trouble--is a bit shaggy in the best way. I'm not sure what I'm going to read next, becaus
Mike Rider
Jan 03, 2016 Mike Rider rated it it was amazing
This is definitely one of my favorite Leonard novels. The story has lots of twists and surprises. It takes place in Florida, so naturally there are some dumb criminals named Crowe. The characters are believable. As to be expected, there are many humorous moments. Like many of Leonard's stories, this would make a great movie.
Oct 31, 2015 Jason rated it liked it
It's a breezy, pulpy crime novel with some of the best dialog around, and a pretty solid lead in Kathy Baker. Leonard cuts out a lot of description that litters a lot of fiction and it results in extremely clean and lean copy. It's journalistic in its treatment of prose. And his style elevates a story that just didn't do it for me. It seems more like a really good pilot episode with a lot of promise for a series, but as its own stand-alone story, it doesn't hit the high spots.

The main antagonist
Aug 18, 2015 Dan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short version: this is an Elmore Leonard book, and it does what it's supposed to do.

I picked this book up as a piece of brain candy after reading Gravity's Rainbow (the literary equivalent of running a Tough Mudder with a hangover and a sprained ankle), and to that end it does not disappoint. It has a cast of colorful, mostly stupid characters, as you'd expect, and they stumble and bumble their way through half-baked schemes, as you'd expect, until law enforcement and criminal underworld come fa
David Williams
Feb 18, 2012 David Williams rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime, elmore-leonard
Maximum Bob is the nickname given to Judge Bob Gibbs. Judge Gibbs is known for handing out hard sentences from the bench. Dale Crowe Junior has the misfortune to draw Maximum Bob. Dale gets five years and threatens the judge. His probation officer Kathy Baker has her hands full. She is trying to fend off the advances of Judge Gibbs, keep Dale in line, and deal with Dale's uncle Elvin. Things get complicated when an attempt is made on the Judge's life. Now the list of suspects long, and Kathy see ...more
Tim Niland
Sep 20, 2014 Tim Niland rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014-reads
Maximum Bob is Judge Bob Gibbs given the ironic nickname for his propensity of giving the criminals he convicts the toughest possible sentence possible. So when somebody sends a live alligator rampaging through the judge's home one morning there are any number suspects who could have committed the crime against him and his new age guru, multiple-personality wife (who he cheats on regularly and is desperate to be rid of.) There is Elmore Leonard's usual rogues-gallery of well drawn characters: Ka ...more
Oct 31, 2010 Percy rated it it was ok
Elmore Leonard shows how style alone can't carry an entire novel. Pretty disappointed in the broad character sketches and total lack of substance to the overall story. What the book does have is a dark sense of humor throughout, although not too dark. Looking for an easy rip through, light as fat free ranch dressing, pop read...Maximum Bob might do you poolside. I'll be turning to some of Leonard's earlier works next to try to get closer to his essential thoughts/writing. I suppose a good writer ...more
J.C. Phillipps
May 30, 2015 J.C. Phillipps rated it really liked it
I'd been wanting to read Elmore Leonard for the longest time - I finally started when I found a copy of Maximum Bob at a garage sale. I loved it. Being familiar with the TV (Justified) and movie (Out of Sight) world's of Mr. Leonard's really helped me visual the characters and the locales. I loved the plot and all the colorful characters. His dialog is fabulous. I already have three more Elmore Leonard books on my nightstand.
Mar 31, 2010 THOMAS rated it liked it
my dad was like, "you can read some of those leonards in a day." and he's right. they're the breeziest kind of crime confection you can get. i mean, violence happens...shit gets tuff...but in a completely relaxing way. nice antidote for matt scudder running round figuring out who chopped up a brooklyn housewife and left her in a trunk, you know? some liteness.
Bob Walenski
Sep 07, 2015 Bob Walenski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
just for fun and an easy 2 day read, it doesn't get too much better than a book by Elmore.
FYI Maximum Bob is a judge, known for his strict sentences.....hence the title. Full of surprises, laughs and entertainment.
Yong Lee
Oct 14, 2015 Yong Lee rated it really liked it
A good yarn for a long flight from a master storyteller. As usual it is full of characters on the margins of society, and Leonard reminds us that unless you're living on the edge you're taking too much space.
May 28, 2015 Tim rated it it was amazing
Maneuvering and manipulation, backstabbing and skulduggery...what's not to like? Did I mention the alligator creeping around the judges porch--and the gorgeous street-smart probation officer?
May 25, 2015 Dave rated it really liked it
Good book, funny characters.
Amanda Patterson
Jul 31, 2011 Amanda Patterson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this and learn how to write dialogue.
Feb 11, 2017 Nathália rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sergio GRANDE films
I love Elmore Leonard's writing, whether it'd be a book like this one or a screenplay ("Jackie Brown", "Get Shorty", "Out of Sight" or "3:10 to Yuma", yes the 1957 classic). The man is a master of combining suspense with oddball humour.
Jorn Barger
Jan 16, 2017 Jorn Barger rated it really liked it
Satisfying popcorn pulp, one shocking tragedy. Unusually small stage for EL.
Cat Eye55
Feb 06, 2017 Cat Eye55 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Elmore Leonard at his best
If you have seen the ORIGINAL version of Mel Brooks’ movie “Blazing Saddles,” then you have a fair idea of what to expect from “Maximum Bob.” The time frames are different but the basic attitudes are the same. This book was published in 1992, over two decades ago as I write this review, and it was written by one of the masters of social satire and parody. Therefore, before you start this book, take your entire sense of political correctness and put it on the shelf. It might also be a good idea t ...more
Jan 14, 2017 Carla rated it liked it
The three star rating is mainly for the Kindle version that is 23% "extras".
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Elmore John Leonard lived in Dallas, Oklahoma City and Memphis before settling in Detroit in 1935. After serving in the navy, he studied English literature at the University of Detroit where he entered a short story competition. His earliest published novels in the 1950s were westerns, but Leonard went on to specialize in crime fiction and suspense thrillers, many of which have been adapted into m ...more
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