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The Gangster

(Isaac Bell #9)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  4,899 ratings  ·  360 reviews
Isaac Bell is back in this thrilling new novel from the #1 New York Times–bestselling grand master of adventure Clive Cussler.
It is 1906, and in New York City, the Italian crime group known as the Black Hand is on a spree: kidnapping, extortion, arson. Detective Isaac Bell of the Van Dorn Agency is hired to form a special “Black Hand Squad,” but the gangsters appear to
Hardcover, 387 pages
Published March 1st 2016 by G.P. Putnam's Sons
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Average rating 3.97  · 
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 ·  4,899 ratings  ·  360 reviews

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Jim Clinton Slusher
Aug 10, 2016 rated it liked it
I see a historical suspense book like this as a sort of palate cleanser between more substantial courses of reading, and in that role The Gangster serves very nicely. It's historically accurate to the extent it needs to be, the plot moves along briskly, the characters are believable if somewhat one-dimensional and it builds suspense nicely even if it's not exactly filled with surprising twists and turns. I'm no expert on Cussler - this is the first book of his I've ever picked up - so I can make ...more
Feb 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved it, there just something about Clive Cussler's books that once I start to read them inforget everything else, they just pull me into them. ...more
May 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
A really enjoyable, fun and fast-paced read set in the early part of the 20th century. Train travel and steamers are the main form of transport, manual labour (with dynamite asistance) is the only form of labour and where (with seemingly limitless resources), Isaac Bell and the Joseph Van Dorn Detective Agency never give up, never!
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Clive Cussler hits it out of the park once again! A thrilling plot, crisp writing, likable heroes, and despicable villains!
Jun 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2016
One of the better books in the Isaac Bell series, this time Isaac battles the black hand, trying to keep it from becoming a national crime syndicate, while at the same time protecting President Theodore Roosevelt from an assassination attempt.

Gerald Kubicki
Jan 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
I like the Isaac Bell series. Things were different then, well except murder that is.
Emma-Jane Goode
Nov 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Typical Clive Cussler novel. This one was a little less flowery than normal so was happy to give it the extra star!
May 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Isaac Bell and the Van Dorn Detective Agency are hired to arrest the Black Hand, an Italian crime organization. Antonio Branco is a grocer in public and a gangster in private. Antonio and J. B. Culp team together to kill an important presidential figure. Will they succeed in their plot, or will Isaac Bell and the Van Dorn Agency save the day? Who is behind the Black Hand organization and will they be caught before they strike again?

This is my first Clive Cussler historical, suspense novel. I mus
Eli Hornyak
Dec 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great Isaac Bell story. I always love the history involved and definitely learn a lot about turn of the century life.
Edmond Gagnon
Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'd lost interest in author Clive Cussler's work some time ago, and can't remember why, maybe it's because he's another of those successful authors who has underlings writing for him, using his name to sell books.
Regardless, I truly enjoyed The Gangster, an Isaac Bell Adventure. The plot was fresh, although the story is set just after the turn of the century, in and around New York City. Irish and Italian gangs were responsible for much of the city's crime, but also for building its infrastructu
Jeff Jeffcoat
Feb 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My favorite cussler series. Some historical events along with good fiction. Really like the early 1900s setting.
Wenzel Roessler
Jul 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Best series in the Cussler universe. Historically accurate (or so it seems, I am far from an expert) and well written, hurray for the Van Dorn Agency. (That is until they add Summer and Isaac Jr.)
Monique Snyman
Jul 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
By now everyone who knows me is aware that I'm rather fond of Clive Cussler's work, because his books are fun to read, full of action and adventure and all things delightful, and usually the books are worth the price you pay. With The Gangster, the ninth installment in the Isaac Bell Adventures, it's no surprise that I enjoyed the hell out of the book. I love the imagination that went into writing The Gangster, over-the-top characters, and all the research that must have occurred even before the ...more
Jan 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Great fun! This is an historical adventure that is entertaining, instructive and an all around great read. The characters are larger than life. Isaac Bell (with his bright golden hair) is everywhere - an exuberant, superman of a character managing to save the day regardless of the dastardly doings of the Black Hand. Even Teddy Roosevelt is a participant in the adventure!

The portrayal of the early 1900's particularly in New York was especially fascinating. Love books that have been well researche
Tom Tischler
Jun 23, 2016 rated it liked it
It's 1906 and an Italian crime group known as The Black Hand is on a
menacing crime spree of kidnapping, extortion, and arson. Detective Isaac Bell
of the Van Dorn Agency is hired to combat them but they are everywhere. Bell
wonders if other mobs are merging and then using the Black Hand name to terrorize
the city. Then the murders begin, each man more powerful than the last. Bell knows
that he's facing a lethal organization and the ultimate target maybe the most
powerful of all. This is the ninth b
Jan 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Another fabulous adventure with Isaac Bell and the Van Dorn Detective agency set in New York in the 1900's with the Black Hand Society, a group of organized thugs that were reeking havoc threatening Italian businessmen, blowing up the water aqueducts and involved in a plot to assassinate President Teddy Roosevelt. Isaac must follow the links to find who is behind all this mayhem.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book!!!
Mar 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well rats, now I have to get hold of the other 8-9 books in this series and read them . It will be such a sacrifice ... :)
Lisa Brown
Another fun Issac Bell adventure. This one takes place chronologically after the first book, I believe, even though it is ninth in the series. Isaac is in New York City and trying to stop an Italian gang, known as the Black Hand, from creating terror and causing chaos in the city. They send threatening notes and ask for money, and when they aren't paid, bad things begin to happen. The problem is, the roots of this gang go even deeper than Isaac imagined, and he must stop them before it is too la ...more
Pamela Mclaren
Oct 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
New York is still a bit of the wild west at the turn of the century, even as skyscrapers and motorized vehicles become more commonplace. And in this history-laden adventure, we see the development of the investigator Isaac Bell and the gangster Antonio Branco. They meet - briefly - when Bell is a college student and Branco is a Immigrant Sicilian 'pick and shovel man.'

But 11 years later, many things have changed. Bell know works for the Van Doran Detective Agency and Branco is a wealthy grocer.
karen wescott
Jul 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Clive Cussler always weaves historical landmarks in with greedy murderers. This time the Catskill Aqueduct. New York City in early 1900's rough stuff but Cussler team always wins! ...more
May 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Not in a million years would I have read this book of my own volition but here I was staying in a foreign country and this being the only English language book available.........and I loved it! On reflection, not a shock because it deals with historical fiction and that I like. Its a easy to read piece of escapism where the good guy gets the bad guy and everything goes their way.
May 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, mystery
Once you figure out the cast of thousands, thus novel is on a quick roll, better than an action movie. Of course, with Isaac Bell, you always have trains. But this time you add ice gliders. You have the Irish, Italians, Sicilians all fighting to control not only New York, but control of major economic ventures. Even if you haven't read Cussler before, you'll enjoy this ride. ...more
Apr 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The beginning of this book is hard to read but take patience and it does get better. You will find out if Terry is assassinated, Teddy who, you say. Wait and find out.
Mark Boyd
Dec 01, 2017 rated it liked it
An Issac Bell novel, I give-a 3 stars. I'm really a Cussler fan but sometimes his co-writers slow the story down. Although, as a historical shoot em up, it was okay. I was a little disappointed in the ability to move the story forward at a pace I've become accustomed to from Clive. I finished the book so it gets at least 3 stars. I need another kick ass Dirk Pitt novel or Fargos to get me going again.
Donald Nitti
Least favorite of all the Cussler books I've read. ...more
Feb 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
The Black Hand is running an extortion ring in Little Sicily. The business men form The White Hand to protect themselves. And someone is sabotaging the Catskill Aqueduct tunnels: a project designed to provide fresh water for seven million people in NYC.

So the Van Dorn’s create a group to stop the Black Hand and discover the saboteur. Meanwhile one of the Wall Street titans is mad that President Roosevelt is messing up his accumulating wealth and puts a hit on him, adding to the Van Dorn's worry'
Corey Nelson
Jan 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: challenge-2018
Got into these books because a loved one adored the Dirk Pitt series and we are listening to the Sam and Remi Fargo series which I enjoy. Okay, so it was also the description I read that of Isaac Bell being “the Sherlock Holmes of 1900s”. Sherlock? I’m in! Of this series, this was one of my favorites. The characters are realistic. Cussler’s writing is already well established and his co-author practiced in the style. Each character was rich which is why I enjoyed this book so much. I felt like I ...more
Mark Stockford
Mar 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good flowing book with character development showing throughout. Gave an interesting view of how workers and immigrants where treated at the beginning of the 20 Century in America.
Definitely encouraged me to look out more in this series.
Feb 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
this was a great read full of twists and turns in a time period that I like full of historical and fictional characters good and bad. this is a novel that I can recommend highly .
Aug 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: completed
The Isaac Bell series of stories are an old-fashioned type of story. Set in 1906 or so, the series features a detective who works for a prominent (i.e. Pinkerton type) detective agency. The story is written in a pulp style reminiscent of the old pulp magazine heroes- sort of a Doc Savage/Shadow vibe. Bell is almost perfect in his integrity and thorough in his methods, Once the reader comes to understand the melodrama is intentional for the purpose of fun he can better appreciate the style and al ...more
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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

Other books in the series

Isaac Bell (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • The Chase (Isaac Bell, #1)
  • The Wrecker (Isaac Bell, #2)
  • The Spy (Isaac Bell, #3)
  • The Race (Isaac Bell, #4)
  • The Thief (Isaac Bell, #5)
  • The Striker (Isaac Bell, #6)
  • The Bootlegger (Isaac Bell, #7)
  • The Assassin (Isaac Bell, #8)
  • The Cutthroat (Isaac Bell, #10)
  • The Titanic Secret (Isaac Bell, #11)

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