The Wrecker (Isaac Bell, #2)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Wrecker (Isaac Bell #2)

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  4,494 ratings  ·  341 reviews
It is 1907. Train wrecks, fires and explosions sabotage the Southern Pacific Railroad's Cascades express line. Desperate, the railroad hires the fabled Van Dorn Detective Agency. Van Dorn sends in its top investigator, Isaac Bell, who quickly discovers that a mysterious saboteur is responsible for the railroad attacks.
519 pages
Published by Michael Joseph (first published 2009)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
It took me a whole month to finish this book and I usually finish about a book on average a week so I was frustrated reading this book but I tried not to let that influence my rating. My first impression of the book was, "Wow, these guys know a lot about 1907 America." I always have more respect for the historical fiction writers because of how much work they have to put into research to be historically correct. I knew about the San Francisco earthquake and some about the railroad but these guys...more
The second of the Isaac Bell novels, and the first where Cussler has a co-author for this series. Isaac Bell and the Van Dorn Detective Agency are back, this time chasing after someone who is deliberating sabotaging the Southern Pacific Railroad's expansion efforts into Oregon. Yes, this book is set in 1906, in the age of railroads and when the West was still a bit wild, and it's an ideal period for Cussler's imaginative storytelling. There's a lot more lawlessness to play with, and a lot more h...more
The famed Van Dorn agent, Isaac Bell, is up against a new rival, the Wrecker. In the thrilling second book of the series, Bell is back with more excitement and adventure, traveling across the United States to hunt down the Wrecker. In The Wrecker, just like the other Isaac Bell books, the point of view switches between the criminal and the detective throughout the novel.
There has been a chain of sabotages on the Southern Pacific Railroad Company. Winter is approaching fast and Osgood Hennessy, t...more
Bhakta Jim
Clive Cussler is writing books with collaborators these days, but it hasn't affected the quality of the stories. As much as I like the Dirk Pitt books, this series is in some ways even better. Cussler and his writing partners really bring the early 1900's to life on the page in a way that is totally convincing. Isaac Bell is a millionaire's son who has decided that he would rather be a private detective with the Van Dorn agency than take over the family business. This agency takes on cases that...more
Andreea Daia
This was such a bad book that half of the time I didn't quite get what was going on and the other half I didn't care. The characters are not bidimensional... they are unidimensional. Enough to say that by the end of the book the Wrecker's motivation is at the very best "fuzzy." Accomplices are thrown in with even less rhyme and reason, and sometimes we are told about them at the very end in this fashion: this is an accomplice, no questions asked, just deal with it.

I think the main fault of this...more
If you like Clive Cussler you will enjoy this book. While he may not be the greatest author in the world, he is one of the best story tellers. His books are always lively, fun, full of history, and action packed. He creates main characters like Issac Bell that we all can look up to and yet relate to. A main character with passion and strength, balanced by humility and honor. In this book he is chasing a man who seeks power through control of America's railroads back when the railroads were just...more
What can I say? I love my Cussler's. They are one of my secret pleasures in life. As much as loved NUMA, Dirk Pitt, and friends, I now find my self attached to his new train series and Van Dorn detective, Issac Bell. The Wrecker is an excellent follow-up to The Chase. We follow Issac and fellow detectives as they try to locate and twart "the Wrecker" who was causing train wrecks. What did the Wrecker have to gain, and why was he so intent on destroying one particular train company following the...more
I enjoyed the story. Interesting to try to figure out how anything was done back then having to use trains, telegraphs, etc...liked the main character alot...Isaac Bell is written to be very vivid and easily imaginable...a real man! Easy going read but not a page turner...the action was suited for the storyline and enjoyed reading it.
A ripping yarn. Full disclosure - Co-author Justin Scott is a dear friend, and both Bruce and I appear in this book! What's not to like?

The tale is a classic adventure thriller, set in 1907, with an unscrupulous and devious villain, The Wrecker, out to destroy the burgeoning railroads connecting the American West. Our dashing hero, Isaac Bell of the Van Dorn Investigative Agency, races from San Francisco to New York and back through the railyards and tent cities of the rail-building network, in...more
A Cussler that had nothing to do with the sea, no DIrk Pit or Steve Austin in sight. No lost treasures either. No this one is set in primarily the northwest US in the early 1900s and involves a Railroad baron who is trying to complete a stretch of track that will cut time and distance from one of his lines. He is being plagued by accidents or maybe sabotage and hires a big national detective agency to find the truth and protect against future damage. He is running against the clock in getting th...more
I thought it was somewhat predictable. I read it all, but was a little disappointed.

In The Chase, Clive Cussler introduced an electrifying new hero, the tall, lean, no-nonsense detective Isaac Bell, who, driven by his sense of justice, travels early-twentieth-century America pursuing thieves and killers . . . and sometimes criminals much worse.

It is 1907, a year of financial panic and labor unrest. Train wrecks, fires, and explosions sabotage the Southern Pacific Railroad's Cascades express line...more
This book (which my husband and I listened to in the car, via the audiobook edition) is the second in the series of thrillers starring Isaac Bell, chief detective of the Van Dorn Detective Agency in the early years of the 2oth century. We are listening to the books out of order, but they stand alone very well, and we have enjoyed each book, including this one.

It is 1907, and the Southern Pacific Railroad is putting through a new cutoff route through the Cascade Mountains of Oregon. The construct...more
John Thorpe
The reason I read Clive C is the same reason I read John Grisholm, except for that my expectations are much less. The guy creates popcorn for the eyes not too salty and not too filling. The Wrecker is just like the fluff offered in every other Cussler novel and tolerable provided you don't normally expect any literary artistry or innovation to get in the way of the words on the page. The characters are formulaic, their actions are predictable, and Clive manipulates the plotline so that it all li...more
Isaac Bell has certainly met his match in a villain known as, "The Wrecker!" A sophisticated and cunning individual that can inflict maximum damage on the Pacific Railroad without leaving a trace and killing anyone that stands in his way. It is up to Isaac and the other Van Dorn agents to unravel The Wrecker's methods and thwart his attacks before he destroys Osgood Hennessy's railroad empire!
If you are into turn-of-the century history, the Isaac Bell series is for you! I especially enjoy this...more
This is an samazing book by Clive cussler and Jastin Scott. This book may possibly be a new favorite. It is in the 1700's when the railroads are pushing there way across the nation. This book is a meager 470 pages but what it lacks in length it more than makes up for in plot and intensity. This fast paced book is for Adults because it is to amazing for the youth of this day and age.Super-fantabulous!

This book starts with a man named Isaac Bell. He is a Van Dorn agent. He hunts down criminals an...more
Chris Lytle
Isaac Bell's 2nd adventure builds nicely on where the first story left off. With a wider range of characters both helping Bell and working against him, the stakes are high as a crazed yet intelligent villain, the Wrecker, manages to thwart Bell by staying a step or two ahead of him at every turn.

The plot seems to chug along at a more laboured pace early on but definitely picks up steam towards the climatic end. Cussler again pushes the details to the limit to the level where you feel the muscle...more
Ashley Arthur
This is the second book in the Isaac Bell series, and it is set in the early 1900s. I enjoyed the period detail, and I think Cussler writes great dialogue. The plot of this book centers around a saboteur known as “The Wrecker” who is doing his best to destroy the Southern Pacific Railroad Company. The Van Dorn Detective Agency, with Isaac Bell at the head, is hired to stop the destruction on a tight deadline. Explosions, assassination attempts, and high-speed chases are sprinkled liberally throu...more
John Darling
A friend of mine told me about Clive Cussler so when I spotted this book for sale at a discount, I thought I would see why he liked the guy so much. This one was written with someone named Justin Scott so, I assume, it was not "pure Cussler" and that may be why it was small disappointment to me.

I can't say the book was bad because it was a real page turner, but I knew who the Wrecker was long before the "vaunted" Van Dorn agency knew and it seemed like it took forever for them to catch on. Also...more
Mr. Custler, in concert with his usual co-writer - in this case, Justin Scott, has done what he should have long ago and that is to write historical fiction. As any Custler fan should know, he is responsible for more underwater archaeology than probably any other private citizen alive. His knowledge of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century is legendary to many. It is excellent then, to read a novel from that time period which is written in his inimical style.

There is the usual buff ma...more
This is the second in a new series of books by "Clive Cussler" co-authored by Justin Scott, who has written quite a few books on his own (both under his name and the pen name Paul Garrison). If this is an example of his writing give me more. This is one of those books that is hard to put down. The action just keeps on a-comin. I was riding the rails back and forth across the US with Cussler's protagonist, Isaac Bell. I loved the fact that a lot of the action took place in Northern California and...more
Trevor Gray
A fun romp through the early 1900's as Van Dorn Detective Isaac Bell tries to stop a terrorist of epic proportions hell bent on destroying the railroad infrastructure of America. This book is up to it's eyeballs in adventure featuring gun fights, fisticuffs, fencing, trains, early versions of the automobile, and yes even romance. Although the plot is pretty straightforward Clive Cussler at it's best; there is little doubt that you will be tearing through the pages at a fast pace. If you enjoy Cl...more
Rick Brindle
The first Clive Cussler I've read, and pretty good it was too. In 1907 an evil terrorist is wrecking trains and tracks, killing lots of people, and only Issac Bell, famous detective, can stop him. Cue lots of dramas on and around the railroads, and plenty of personal dramas as our her's girlfriend gets caught up in the danger. Plenty of gun slinging varmints along the way make up for a very entertaining read.
Picked this up from my parents house to kill time until my library holds showed up. A typical Clive Cussler book with an evil bad guy, a hero, politics, money, a pretty girl and dramatic scenery. It was a diverting quick read, though not something I'll likely read again. It was an extremely clean read without any violent graphic content or sex of any type.
So-so. Felt way too predictable. Without even knowing the "bad guy" (which we do), I kept wondering why it took as long as it did for the "good guys" to figure it out.

You don't read Cussler books for thought provoking stories, but this mystery/adventure really didn't seem to keep me interested. Had to power through the last half just to get it done.
This really got me hooked on Clive Cussler's new series. Issaac Bell is a definative Cussler character. The Van Dorn Agency he works for has a motto: "We never give up, Never." The story starts in Germany with Issaac coming upon a castle in the middle of a blizzard in 1934. Then it jumps to 1907 and catches steam from there. The story goes from Oregon to Ogden, Utah. Then to New Jersey and back to Oregon, then to New York and all the way back to Oregon. Clive takes you across the country by the...more
Another exercise in absurdity, but one that was a little more palatable in the second book (and with the knowledge you just need to embrace the ludicrous). Still LOTS of technical and historical information, but the relationships are better managed as existing relationships, compared to the pretty poor introduction in the first book. Not a bad audiobook to listen to because you only really need to pay attention to one word in five or so, so you don't miss vital clues.

Also, appreciated that the i...more
Another really enjoyable Isaac Bell detective story! Really love how these are written where you know who the villain is from the get go and you get to watch the Super Star detective figure it out. I also really enjoy the historical fiction aspect of this series. On to the next one!
This was a great book. I've never read Clive Cussler, but am planning on reading more of his books about Isaac Bell. The historical setting was great, with good detail and information. The "mystery" is given away half way through but still gives you twists that you don't see coming. It's good when a book makes you want to keep reading even though you know who the bad guy is.
Jim Blinkhorn
This book was a lot of fun. I felt that it was written much better then the first installment in this series. Maybe Justin Scott helped this book, maybe he didn't, but the pacing seems really well done and the story was wound together well. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Jun 24, 2012 Donna rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
This was a great book! I got really sick while reading it but couldn't stop thinking about it. As soon as I was able I was reading until I finished. All of the details are great and the words painted a moving picture in my mind that kept me riveted till the end. This book is better than the first book, The Chase, and I can't wait to read the next book!

This is another book built around the railroad system and set in 1907. The Wrecker is sabotaging the railroad, blowing up tunnels, derailing trai...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
The elusive Wrecker 13 54 Sep 30, 2013 01:45AM  
Brown Bag Book Club: Have You Finished It Yet? 1 3 Apr 01, 2013 06:40PM  
Clive Cussler 2 13 Aug 29, 2012 08:24AM  
  • Deep Fire Rising (Philip Mercer, #6)
  • Covert Warriors (Presidential Agent, #7)
  • Rough Justice
  • The Red Horseman (Jake Grafton, #5)
Cussler began writing novels in 1965 and published his first work featuring his continuous series hero, Dirk Pitt, in 1973. His first non-fiction, The Sea Hunters, was released in 1996. The Board of Governors of the Maritime College, State University of New York, considered The Sea Hunters in lieu of a Ph.D. thesis and awarded Cussler a Doctor of Letters degree in May, 1997. It was the first time...more
More about Clive Cussler...
Sahara (Dirk Pitt, #11) Inca Gold (Dirk Pitt, #12) Atlantis Found (Dirk Pitt, #15) Raise the Titanic! (Dirk Pitt, #4) Valhalla Rising (Dirk Pitt, #16)

Share This Book