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Without Remorse (John Clark, #1)
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Without Remorse (John Clark #1)

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  36,513 ratings  ·  679 reviews
This harrowing #1 bestseller is an unforgettable journey into the heart of darkness. Without mercy. Without guilt. Without remorse.
Paperback, 750 pages
Published August 1994 by Berkley Books (first published August 11th 1993)
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This book was...well, ok. It wasn't terrible, but it certainly wasn't as good as I'd hoped, given Clancy's success.

First gripe: There were FAR too many side plots, which I know where there in some attempt to round out the narrative, to show how things happen, but it just got distracting. Stupidly so at times.

Second gripe: What the hell was Clancy thinking when he started calling people by different names? Sometimes a character is referred to by his first name, sometimes by his last, sometimes
5.0 Stars. Absolutely superb novel focusing on the enigmatic John Clark who is one of best, if not the best, spy novel characters ever. This is one of my favorite Tom Clancy novels despite being a much "smaller" scale story. Highly Recommended!!!!
Tim Greaton
So bad yet so good...

Tom Clancy has long been a hit and miss author for me. I should say that a lot of it has to do with his incredibly detailed and dense descriptions of everything military. He earns a lot of kudos for his intense knowledge of his subject matter and his ability to base his fiction in frighteningly realistic circumstances, but there are times when I just want to get on with the story and not learn about a firing pin and its historical significance to military maneuvers in the ea
Henri Moreaux
What a fantastic book. Having seen Hunt For Red October/Patriot Games/Sum of all Fears at the movies and finding them to be good movies I thought I'd try out the actual books. Hating to start in the middle of a series I decided if I'm going to read a Tom Clancy book I might as well start at the beginning and enjoy them all (assuming they're any good) and boy am I glad I did!

This book isn't what I expected - I thought it'ld be more action, shooting and explosions with little substance, but no the
Mike (the Paladin)
This is our first meeting with John Clark...if you follow Clansy's novels that tells you the back ground on this one.

This novel is quite a bit more violent than some of Clancy's other works (that's saying something I know) but that will hold true for the Clark centered novels in the series.

You get fast moving adventure with slightly less of the political twists you get when the books are about "Jack". This is an intense read.
One of the worst Clancy's books I've ever read. Boring, too much description, too many unnecessary drama... Yes, I know it's about the "making" of the legendary John Clark, but I still cannot enjoy it.
Justin Poe
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Matthew Esham
Kelly is a Navy Seal back in the states as Vietnam rages half way across the globe. He's done his service, and well, and is now working as an underwater demolitions expert.

Of course, that all changes when his pregnant wife is accidentally killed. Several months pass. Then on a wimhe picks up a female hitch hiker while he is on the way to his boat. (he lives on an island somewhere off the coast of MD that used to be a military site).

The hitch hiker has a horrendous past, she's running from some
Jake C.
All I need to say Is John Kelly is a BAD ASS! This was my first Tom Clancy book and won't be the last, I read this book because my friends have talked about how great of a writer Tom Clancy is. So I took a look at some of his books. And to be honest at first I did judge his books by their covers, because there was always some sort of gun or weapon on the cover. So I figured he would be the Michael Bay of literature, all explosions, a weak plot, and characters without any depth. But I was pleasan ...more
Dec 11, 2007 Andy rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cool People
This one gets 4 stars (even though its from Tom Clancy) because the main character //ISNT// Jack Ryan (shudder), kills a dude in a deep sead diving pressure chamber. Also because John Kelly (main character) becomes John Clark, who was the mission briefer in all the Rainbow Six games I used to play as a kid. (Wooo Ding Chavez!!) -- yeah he's in the other books, but so is Jack Ryan ='()
Kevin Murphy
Ah, yes. Now I remember. I remember why I so enjoyed Tom Clancy in high school/college. This book has motivated me to re-read the entire Ryanverse set of novels (save for "Red Rabbit," which I just finished and was less than impressed with). I tried 4 or 5 times over the last 15 years to read this book, but never got into it. The reasons elude me. Perhaps it was a matter of maturity, but it's hard to say. Either way, a top notch thriller. Had a hard time going to sleep at reasonable times during ...more
4 Stars ~ My 90's reading contained many of Clancy's Jack Ryan stories including this one, which is John Kelly's (Mr. Clark) story. Jack's father Emmett is a detective that plays an integral role throughout this story. There's a brief scene with a very young Jack who is about to enlist in the Marines.

I had forgotten how intricate the plots are in Tom Clancy's books. This book opens with several sub-plots; Kelly's wife's death; the capture of an airline Colonel in Vietnam; the rapidly growing dru
Unbelievably my first Tom Clancy book, but will not be my last! This is the story of John Kelly a man who lost his wife, found a new love, and had her taken away from him by the drug lords who enslaved her and tortured her. John has a mission: to rid the streets of the drug dealers who take young girls off the streets,turn them into prostitutes, addict them to drugs, then throw them away. John's other mission: working with the government to rescue 20 prisoners of war from a North Vietnamese pris ...more
Bill Varon
Really good book, but the part that will stick with me forever is the torture episode that takes place on a very small unmapped military island on the Chesapeake Bay. Don't gang rape and murder someone's girlfriend if you're not able to defend yourself against her angry, psycho, highly trained military boyfriend, John Clark. Especially gruesome because the torturee was kept alive for days after being placed in a decompression chamber turned up and up and up and up, until one by one his ear drums ...more
Ian Sandusky
In what is easily the best book I've ever read, Tom Clancy creates a cast of characters that trancend the series of Jack Ryan.

John Kelly, the main character of the novel, is easily the most astounding person I've ever read about. From his times in Vietnam as part of the Third Special Operation Group, to the harrowing tale embodying the main plot of Without Remorse, you just can't help but be taken away with the perfect machismo and badass-ness of the character.

The storyline in itself is excelle
This book is the best of Clancy's. It is also a must read for anyone who has read or is planning on reading any of Clancy's other books (at least up through Rainbow-Six, which is as far as I have gotten). Definitely adds a lot of background information that seeps into other characters and storylines in the series.
Jayseth Guberman
An exciting story of a serial killer vigilante as American superhero in a black and white world of myopic tunnel vision. If you don't mind troglydyte heroes who are predominantly white, and unidimensional villains who are predominantly ethnic or racial minorities than this book is for you.
This would make one hell of a movie - can't understand why no one has made it yet...
Gary Sedivy
I am confused. A "Jack Ryan" book, without Jack in it, except for an occasional sentence. This book is about John Kelly - a "revenge" book - a man with considerable skills using those skills to make evil people pay for their sins now. Sort of a 'kill them all, and leave the results to God' approach.
This story reminds me of the movies "Unforgiven", "Open Range", or "Taken". He has lost purpose in life and is going through the motions. A chance meeting, something clicks, and he has a new lease on
Thom Swennes
Another international masterpiece, Without Remorse by Tom Clancy, is solidly in the winner’s circle. Clancy has created a culinary smorgasbord to please any taste. First you take sex, drugs and murder; add a pinch of love and mix it all slowly together. To this you add war and espionage, making an unforgettable meal of words. Love, sex, drugs and war… what more can you ask? John Kelly, a semi-retired Navy Seal, finds himself in a world he didn’t know; the world of drugs and dealers. His special ...more
Without Remorse is a basic action/revenge novel. It is set in the low tech drug world. It relies much more on character and emotions. Some interest, dimension, and character development is given to the hero by evolving him into a revenge machine without remorse. But, that is the only interesting aspect of the hero and Clancy ends up cheapening it by later glorifying it in this book and Executive Orders. The other characters in the book aren't very interesting. Clancy is very awkard with the love ...more
Without Remorse is a action/thriller during the Vietnam War. The book is filled with twists and turns at every corner. You'll find yourself flying across oceans, on ships, underwater, or in the big city. It will keep your attention and you will not want to put it down.

The takes place in America and Vietnam. The book follows the life of John Clark, a Vietnam War veteran whose wife just died in a deadly automotive accident. He will meet new people from around the world and do things many people w
Apr 19, 2008 Chaz rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Espionage fans, Clancy fans
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
It's easy enough to allow yourself to slip into a mindless passive approval as John Clark--the main character in this book--methodically murders his way up the chain of command of a drug syndicate. As a reader, you sense that while Clancy never comes right out and says it, that you should feel these bad guys are getting what they deserve. But if you're a thinking human, it's awfully difficult to put the book down and not have it occur to you that Clark's enterprise is completely morally bankrupt ...more
Michael Barnett
This is by far, my favorite Tom Clancy book. Clancy departs from Jack Ryan being the center of attention, and focuses on a minor character--but a good one--from his other books, which we have never known well, but would like to. In this book, we get to know John Kelly (alias Mr. Clark), better than at times, we would like. Clancy takes us on a raw and powerful journey through Mr. Clark's life, with every dramatic twist and turn, showing us what it takes to create such a cold-blooded and effectiv ...more
Delicious Strawberry
What makes this book a treat is all the technical information that goes into it. I'm not a soldier, weapons expert, or engineer, so I found the plethora of information a bit overwhelming, but I did come away having learned a few new things. The fact that this book is so well-researched gives a solidity to the novel that utilizes this information to tell us what is going on and what is being used. This was my first Tom Clancy book, and I was not disappointed at all. This tale of revenge and the m ...more
Lynn Hallbrooks
I have to admit that when first reading Without Remorse, I wasn't sure that I was going to like it. I thought there was way too much going on in the first chapter and I had a hard time following it. Eventually my perseverance paid off. I found the book to be a roller-coaster ride full of twists and turns as the plot unfolded. Thus, I concluded that the first chapter was like the long chain beginning the climb on the roller-coaster very necessary to the overall ride.

I do plan on continuing readi
I mostly enjoyed this Clancy book, but it is nowhere near as good as his books featuring Jack Ryan. And there are other non-Ryan books that I also enjoyed more.

But this was a good book...perhaps a little long, but not too much. I was glad when it was over. The main character, John Clark, is a complex figure who is changed, not only by his military training as a seal, but by the tragedies in his life concerning women he either loves or cares about. But that leads to his recruitment into the CIA.

I read this back when it was first published. As a Clancy fan I was up to date until Rainbow Six,then the novels started going off in all directions with collaborations and I lost track and although I've bought more of Tom's books I can't stand reading a series out of order. But if you're a fan and you know where I'm up to you'll understand when I say nigh twenty years after reading it is the most memorable of all his novels. For its unswerving violence in the name of revenge. I'd recommend this ...more
Nick Joyce-houghton
The beginnings of John Clark is a perfect example of Clancy's storytelling ability. He begins to get much more technical later on in his career, but this is mostly just pure Clancy storytelling.
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Who has read this? 25 81 Jul 12, 2014 09:01AM  
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Tom Clancy was an English major at Baltimore’s Loyola College. As a Maryland insurance broker with a passion for naval history, his dream of writing a novel came true with his first effort, The Hunt for Red October (1984).

He since wrote more than a dozen novels, which have a blend of realism and authenticity, intricate plotting, and razor-sharp suspense. Ten of the novels, including The Teeth of
More about Tom Clancy...
The Hunt for Red October (Jack Ryan, #3) Patriot Games (Jack Ryan, #1) Clear and Present Danger (Jack Ryan, #5) Red Storm Rising The Sum of All Fears (Jack Ryan, #6)

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“Christ, how did you ever get this screwed up! his mind demanded of
him. He knew the answer, but even that was not a full explanation.
Different segments of the organism called John Terrance Kelly knew
different parts of the whole story,
but somehow they'd never all come together, leaving the separate
fragments of what had ...once been a tough, smart, decisive and to blunder
about in confusion - and despair! There was a happy thought.”
“The nice thing about enemies is you know where they stand. This is not always true of friends."

--General Sergey Voloshin”
More quotes…