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The Two Minute Rule

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  8,168 Ratings  ·  488 Reviews
In his latest New York Times bestseller, the author of The Last Detective and L.A. Requiem unleashes his most powerful novel to date--a brilliantly plotted tale about justice, love, and the sins of a father and son.
Mass Market Paperback, 464 pages
Published January 23rd 2007 by Pocket Star (first published February 21st 2006)
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Dennis Yeager It was ok. Not my favorite Crais book, but I did get through it.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Dan Schwent
Just days before his release from prison, career bank robber Max Holman's life is turned upside down when his son, now a police officer, is gunned down with three other cops under strange circumstances. Max tries to figure out what happened but gets nowhere on his own. The only person he can turn to: the woman who put him away!

Sounds pretty good when I say it like that. Too bad it wasn't. I love Robert Crais. I did not love this book. In fact, I tossed it less than halfway through.

On the surface
James Thane
Mar 24, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime-fiction
Robert Crais is best known for his series featuring L.A. private-eye Elvis Cole and Cole's partner, the inscrutable Joe Pike. But while I like those books, this stand-alone, originally published in 2006, remains my favorite of Crais's novels.

Two thugs named Marchenko and Parsons are stricly amateur, if brutal, bank robbers. They do not know the Two Minute Rule, which holds that a robber only has a two minute window to be in and out of a bank before the law is almost certainly going to be on the
Aug 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Max Holman used to rob banks, but he was nice about it.

In fact, Max was too nice because he got arrested when he played Good Samaritan during a robbery and violated the rule of getting in and out in less than two minutes. Ten years in federal prison have reformed Max and he’s worked through the release process which involves living in halfway houses and working a regular job. Max hopes that he can make amends to his son Richie that he hasn’t seen since he was a kid, but he’s proud that Richie we
Dec 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This was first Robert Crais book I've read. From the first pages on, I was very much gripped by the story and drawn to the very empathic character of Max Holman. Actually, both Max Holman and Katherine Pollard are magnificent "anti-hero" personas. The combination of a well written and fast-paced mystery and compelling profoundly human characters is very appealing and something rarely found. This is a story of a friendship, of loss, of father's love for his son, and most importantly a story of re ...more
Jeff Dickison
Apr 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
A good stand alone by Crais. Bank robber is released from prison and finds that his policeman son has been murdered. Well plotted and exciting, this book has only one flaw. The romance between bank robber and former FBI agent is never believable. Recommend for everyone, but especially for Crais fans.
Apr 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
Written in 2006 author Robert Crais' "The Two Minute Rule", is a heart pounding suspense thriller that is very difficult to put down. At times while reading the book I kept thinking I'd read it some time ago. That weird feeling it just sounds so familiar ? I kept thinking it must have been some type of TV movie at one time or another. However, the plot was so good I just wanted to keep going to find out the surprising and electrifying conclusion. Career criminal and serial bank robber Max Holman ...more
THE TWO MINUTE RULE (Suspense-Los Angeles-Cont) – G+/VG
Crais, Robert – Standalone
Simon & Schuster, 2006 - Hardcover
Max Holman has served his time for bank robbery. How released, he hopes to reconcile with his son, Richie, who is a cop. But Richie, along with three other cops, was shot to death the night before Max’s release. Although the police say Richie was a dirty cop, Max doesn’t believe it and is determine to clear his name. For help, he turns to retired FBI agent Katherine Pollard, who
Aug 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
After a rather drawn out and slightly confusing beginning, this novel picks up the pace and gets very interesting. Its too bad the ending didn’t fully match this pace by ending too abruptly and leaving some unadressed issues. Nevertheless, 8 of 10 stars
Jim Thomas
Jun 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2017
Crais may be my favorite living author. I prefer his Elvis Cole detective books but anything by Crais is worth reading. Fast moving and intense.
Jane Stewart
At best it was ok. Kept my interest.

I was angry at the author for one part. He had good characters do something bad that did not fit their motivations. It was unreasonable and illogical for those “good” characters to do what they did. Some good guys attacked someone, tied him, and took him to a remote location. He believed they were going to kill him. The guy escaped - barely. Later he learned they just wanted to talk to him. Well, why did they tie him? It felt like a trick by the author to mis
Tim Warner
Jan 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Loved it. I am a sucker for bad guys who become really good guys. (redemption!) And then when they win against all odds, it is very satisfying. This also has a tense plot- impossible to figure out, and a real nail-biter palm-sweater towards the end. This is a stand-alone and every bit as good as the best of Robert Crais. I would love to see more of Holman, The Hero. Crais continues to push through and come up with excellence in writing.
When robbing a bank, you only have two-minutes to escape from the time an alarm button is pushed until the cops arrive. Unfortunately, Max Holman wasn't lucky his last time out. Fast forward 10 years to when Max is released from prison. He discovers his ex-wife is deceased and his son, a 23-year old rookie with the L.A.P.D. was recently killed "in the line of duty". Suspicious of the events surrounding his son's death, he begins to investigate with assistance from Katherine Pollard, the FBI agen ...more
Jan 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
This novel was paced wonderfully, contained characters that are very different from me but whom I could feel a bond of empathy, and was carefully plotted. The novel’s title comes from the basic criminal rule that a bank robber must get in and out of the bank in two minutes or risk getting caught. Naturally, with such a title, the book begins with an armed bank robbery that “proves” the rule. This is appropriate because the protagonist is a bank robber. The twist is that this particular bank robb ...more
Cathy DuPont
Oct 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Crais Fans or Not. Stand alone character.
Great book, another one, so many thanks to Robert Crais for his great writing skills!

A new character, Max Holman, who just gets out of prison after 10 years to find out that his son, a police officer, was murdered with three other officers. To make matters worse, he has not been in his son's life almost ever and was hoping for a reconciliation.

Trying to stay straight and within the law, Holman has to walk a fine line in trying to identify his father's killer(s) and why the murder of four LAPD o
Debbi Mack
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Crais, who's best known for his Elvis Cole and Joe Pike novels, has created a compelling new protagonist in Max Holman, a convicted bank robber who's just been released from prison and wants to make up for the time he lost with his son, Richie, who joined the LAPD.

In trying to connect with Richie, Holman discovers he's been killed, along with three other police officers. The plot revolves around getting to the bottom of what actually went down that led the murders.

As always, Crais writes a compl
Nov 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This was a terrific book. I love Crais's Elvis Cole and Joe Pike books, but this stand-alone was so good that I almost didn't miss my favorite L.A. private detective and his few-words partner. Ex-con Holman and ex-FBI bank robberies specialist Pollard are flawed characters, but, in Crais's hands, we can't help but root for and even admire them for their steadfast pursuit of the truth about who killed Holman's L.A. cop son and why. The book builds to a great climax that isn't quite as explosive a ...more
Mar 31, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
I really enjoyed this departure from Robert Crais's Elvis Cole series, especially the relationship between Max and Katherine. When I told Bob how much I enjoyed this book and asked him if he would write about Max and Katherine again, he said he, too, had grown to love them and would most likely write another book featuring them. I can't wait!
Deb Mj
Dec 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Loved this standalone from Crais. Max is an engaging, sympathetic protagonist for whom you just want the best.
Charles Thibos
2 1/2 it had good moments but no where as good as his other books
Apr 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
More like 4.5 stars

Great story, fast-paced, entertaining with a very good, gripping finish. Yes, I liked it a lot. And perhaps I'll look into Crais' Cole/Pike series next.
Jul 06, 2016 rated it liked it
Max Holman is an ex-con who used to rob banks. When he finally gets out of prison the only thing he wants is to reconcile with his son who is actually a cop. But the day he is released he gets some devasting news: his son and 3 more police officers got killed the night before. He will do everything in his power to find out what actually happened that night and who killed his son. Ironically, he asks Katherine Pollard, the police officer who arrested him, to help him with the case.

When i first p

Jerry B
Apr 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We’ve read a handful of the author’s Cole/Pike series, and certainly enjoyed them enough to try “Rule”, a standalone mystery. The “rule” denotes the time limit for a successful bank robbery – after the book opens with two Ukrainian mopes that disregard and go down in a gunfight, we meet Max Holman, whose release day from ten years of prison has arrived after he broke the rule as well (though we find out way later why…).

Bitterly, Max learns his estranged son, a cop ironically, has been murdered d
Tiffany Young
Jan 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
"The Two Minute Rule" by Robert Crais was a very fun read.
It begins with a bank robbery in which the robbers are shot after trying to have a shootout with the police officers there to arrest them.
Then you meet Holman, a convicted bank robber about to be released from jail. But right before his release he is told his son, a police officer had been shot the night before.
Holman questions police about what happened, but not getting answers that add up leaves Holman to search for answers himself.
Dec 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Ex-con on the lookout for son's killer

I haven't read Crais' Elvis Cole books but I sure do like his standalone novels.

"The Two Minute Rule" is the fast moving, suspenseful tale of Max Holman, an ex-con, just out of federal prison after 10+ years behind bars on a bank robbery charge.

He gets out, a changed man, and wants to make amends to his son, only to find out that his son - a police officer - was just recently murdered, along with three other cops.

Great character development, a mystery, a thr
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Max, an honest bank robber, has served his sentence. His priority is to reestablish a relationship with his son, now a police officer. Minutes before Max's release, his son is murdered. Max wants answers and conventional ways of obtaining information aren't working.
Cynthia Anne McLeod
Oct 14, 2007 rated it did not like it
I so wanted to like this book. I enjoy Crais's Elvis Cole mysteries. And I am truly the most uncritical of mystery readers. So when I say there's a hole you could drive a truck through, well, there's probably a dozen in it you could run the Southern Crescent through. Rats.
Sara Berbigão
May 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This thriller feels like a writing experiment. It's not up to the standard of the author's best work in the Elvis Cole and Joe Pike series (L.A. Requiem) or the standalone gem that is Demolition Angel, but it's a solid answer to the question, "What would happen if an ex-con had to forge a tentative alliance with anyone in law enforcement for the sake of finding out who murdered his son?" You might also make the argument that Crais was spitballing about whether redemption is possible, or if there ...more
Terence M
Mar 25, 2018 rated it liked it
Audiobook - 9:25 hours - Narrator: Christopher Graybill
2.5 out of 5.0 stars ^
In her 2007 review of this book, my GR friend LJ said: Even a less-than-wow Crais is better than most authors. and I think this is exactly right.
"The Two Minute Rule" was an ok novel, with a little less than credible plot, some interesting characters and a somewhat abrupt finish. In my view this was a rather indifferent effort by Crais that didn't rate as well as any of the generally excellent "Elvis Cole" novels - I
Tiago Neves
Aug 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Too predictable...
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Robert Crais is the author of the best-selling Elvis Cole novels. A native of Louisiana, he grew up on the banks of the Mississippi River in a blue collar family of oil refinery workers and police officers. He purchased a secondhand paperback of Raymond Chandler’s The Little Sister when he was fifteen, which inspired his lifelong love of writing, Los Angeles, and the literature of crime fiction. ...more
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“Criminals did not have friends. They had associates, suppliers, fences, whores, sugar daddies, enablers, dealers, collaborators, co-conspirators, victims and bosses, any of whom they might rat out and none of whom could be trusted.” 6 likes
“Muthuhfuckin' muthuhfucker! I oughta come over there kick your ass myself, worryin'me like this? I got your back homes! I got your back!” 3 likes
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