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The Hit List [Hardcover]

Chris Ryan
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

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Book Description

6 July 2000
The latest thriller from the author of The One That Got Away and Tenth Man Down features ex-SAS Corporal Neil Slater, who is trying to make a new life as a teacher. Caught up in the attempted kidnap of a pupil, he goes undercover.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Century; First Edition edition (6 July 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0712684115
  • ISBN-13: 978-0712684118
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 15.8 x 3.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 286,568 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

When I found myself as part of the Bravo Two Zero patrol trapped behind enemy lines in Iraq, I found that everything was as I'd been told it would be. I followed all the Standard Operation Procedures, the orientation, survival, evasion and fighting techniques I had been taught in the SAS and I am certain that is what made the difference, that it why I managed to get away.

But as soon as I got I home my suspicions were aroused. We few surviving members of the operation were given a thousand pounds each and told to go off on holiday. This was the authorities telling us to keep quiet. A truckload of medals were handed out too - another sure sign a cock up is being covered up.

The more I looked into it, the more I realized that the Bravo Two Zero mission had been doomed from the start. Our political masters had not thought it through and as a result we weren't prepared to get involved in that operation. We have a saying - the 5 ps - prior planning prevents piss-poor performance - and no matter how high the calibre of the men doing the fighting, many of them will get captured or die if the prior planning is not good enough. That is what happened in Iraq.

Cock ups are one thing, but what makes me really angry is when soldiers are not told the truth about what we they are being asked to do - when things are not as they seem. The SAS are asked to do some terrible things. In fact all the shady things you might imagine the SAS gets up to, we have done in real life. The men of the SAS are regularly asked to do things which would be illegal for any private citizen. Some of these things will scar you for life, physically and mentally. You do them because that is your duty. But time and time again the men on the ground are betrayed because they are not told the truth and then when things go wrong they are abandoned and left to their own devices. That is what I write about in my books.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Though The Hit List addresses the old chestnut of the military professional who cannot escape his true calling, it's got a solid backbone derived in no small part from ex-SAS author Ryan's explicit knowledge of death-laden situations. Armed with the vivid technical detail that raw experience provides, danger leaps off the page, evaded only by finely tuned intuition and training, rather than by some well-worn cliché. This is marvellously evident in Neil Slater, the ex-SAS serviceman whose chances at a peaceful life are shattered when he is approached by elite assassination squad "The Cadre", who have use for his anti-social skills in dispatching "enemies of the State". Slater is under no illusion of what he is, comfortable in the "Darklands", despite the psychological difficulties it causes him. More than a emotionally-barren, pain-thriving superman--Slater bleeds, he suffers, but all the time he is the battle-honed professional. As such, he is a perfect vessel for Ryan's hardened brand of realism, thrust into situations where each act of violence is measured to provoke an exact response:
Slater shot Pasquale through the top of the arch of his right foot. The pain, he knew, would be extreme...and the shock would be sufficient to break any resistance immediately.
Such realism is accentuated by Ryan's use of real-life figures, with the late Robert Maxwell's plot-pivotal appearance being chillingly appealing as well as being an excellent hook, given his conspiracy strewn legacy. Another hugely enjoyable offering from Ryan, whose fluid translation of his adventurous past to gritty bullet-paced fiction offers a feast for the reader who craves a glimpse into an underworld of intrigue and extreme violence. --Danny Graydon


Praise for Chris Ryan's fiction: "Remarkable--gripping." - "Express "Slick, polished and gut-wrenching stuff." - "Irish Times

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars closer to the truth than people know 10 Aug 2000
By A Customer
Format:Audio Cassette
A good read even though it gets of to a slow start but when it gets going its a roller coaster of a book,"Chris Ryan"can tell a good story and get close to the truth without actually oversteping the mark. I hope he continuies to write books like this,Andy eat your heart out, "Chris"has done his homework on places that he describes in the story(check it out)as in his previous books,I feel many serving troops and those who have done their time will get a feel for this book,but bring back past "heroes",dont let them fade away. the story invovles black ops,and how to improvise when things go wrong,as per usual,read it and make your own decisions,I think its a good read and would highly recomend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolute adrenaline 5 Oct 2000
What a book! I am a big fan of Ryan's writing, and this is no exception. It is a gripping, roller coaster ride through the world of covert ops, and the attention to the detail is anal retentive to say the least...Ryan always comes up with the goods with the technical nitty gritty, and he writes a damn good story too. Be warned however, this is in parts, a truly gruesome book, but it will keep you absolutely gripped. I finished it in two days, and it is quite a volume!
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3.0 out of 5 stars The Devil's in the details 21 July 2009
By MattS
Overall it was an interesting story, but it was let down by a few things.

In my view the story arc needs refinement. The book doesn't really know what it was meant to be; the first half was about body guarding and then the second about assassinations. The ending, whilst an interesting twist, was very abrupt. At the end I was left thinking `is that it?', not a great way to end. It was full on action, then two short chapters and a very abrupt end.

I also found some of the details lacking. There were continuity and typographical errors. For example at one point the `Chris' character became `Christ', briefly I wondered if Ryan was writing about the 2nd coming! The protagonist was given a belt by a team mate, only later in the book the person who gave him it seemed to change. There were numerous instances of "its" rather than "it's". From a military perspective a Glock pistol was referred to as being `ceramic', something I thought only happened in Die Hard films! Radio conversations appeared to end in `over and out' rather than `out', a detail I was surprised to see from an ex-Regiment soldier.

I'm new to Chris Ryan's books, having read all of McNab's books I thought I would give Ryan a go. I read Watchman first and was so impressed that I bought this book. After the standard set in the Watchman, I couldn't help feel let down by the writing and plot arc in this one. I'll think twice before ordering Ryan again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OUTSTANDING 5 July 2000
After reading the other books from Chris Ryan, this one was a little slow and heavy going at the beginning, but soon picked up in the middle. As normal with his books, it gives a good account of the life of a ex SAS man trying to make sence of life on civie street and finding that the only thing he knows how to do well is fight. Mixed with the normal blood and guts, high paced action and a bit of bedroom activity it turned out to be a stunning read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By ratscat13 VINE VOICE
I like Ryan's books - they don't take much effort to read and tend to be fun stories of blowing things up and shooting everyone in sight! This wasn't his best - by far.

This was a real slow start and in some ways hard to follow - why do we start with Maxwell and then he isn't mentioned again til almost the last chapter...

...and the nazis? talk about a confusing backstory for one of the key characters!

The book didn't seem to know what it wanted to be - a book about a crack assassination squad or bodyguarding. The two halves didn't seem to have much to link them and most of the first half of the book could have been scrapped and the story would probably have rated a 4*!

All in all I wouldn't get excited about this book it is a jumble of themes and the plot is almost nonsensical. There are discrepancies in the story which whilst not huge (such as who supplied the belt changes half way through!) do detract from following the tale. The ending is rushed - the book plods along and then we have a mass of action and then it just ends!
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
By C. Read
I have just finished reading this after the excellent Watchman. This guy's previous special forces experience lends an authenticity to his fiction that keeps you stimulated. McNab being of a similar background shares the attention to accurate detail but does not write as well.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not Ryan at his best. 27 Jan 2007
After reading many of Chris Ryan's other books (and finding them all fantastic), I was thoroughly looking forward to reading this. However, I found it very slow and tiresome to start, and it was sometime before the main part of the story came up. The main let down I feel was the storyline. I found it complicated with so many different people's names coming up and, to be honest, I never truly understood what was going on. However, as usual from Chris Ryan, the action scenes kept you reading and the twist at the end certainly helped the story. Overall: a good read but not up to Chris Ryan's usual standard.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A cracker, the best Ryan yet 1 Aug 2000
By A Customer
Chris Ryan really moves into top gear with this one. The atmosphere is dark, the characters are believable and at long last some complex and ballsy female characters to get to grips with (or into a firefight with, if you're looking for real trouble). I wont spoil it for other readers but the pig scene is the best and grossest thing currently in print. The big revelation is that as well as all the guns 'n ammo stuff Ryan also writes brilliant sex scenes. Did he learn all that stuff in Hereford? If so, I'm moving there!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Hit list by Andy Mcnab
enjoyed the book, I enjoy reading books wrote by Andy Mcnab.
Published 1 month ago by pat franklin
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good book
Published 1 month ago by casey
2.0 out of 5 stars Not so brilliant!
Book started off as any of Chris' stories which is gripping and full on action. However the ending dragged on a bit; I was quite pleased to get to the end so that I could get on to... Read more
Published 4 months ago by D J Bradshaw
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
lots of wee twists
chris does it again. might just read it from start all over again.
shame it wasn't longer
Published 7 months ago by Nick Tokely
5.0 out of 5 stars And another one ....
Another excellent read ! Is there no end to the fast paced action and true to life detail ? Bravo !
Published 11 months ago by jason richardson
4.0 out of 5 stars good read
Well written story with good plots and twists one of chris,s better books with a good plot, middle and end
Published 13 months ago by rd
4.0 out of 5 stars Another "hit" from Chris Ryan
I've yet to meet a Chris Ryan novel I haven't enjoyed, and The Hit List is no exception. The twists and turns are unexpected. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mark Tier
5.0 out of 5 stars outstanding
Great a typical chris ryan book action suspense drama. The only disappointment to the book was that it ended! Top author
Published 19 months ago by Pen Name
5.0 out of 5 stars HIT LIST CHRIS RYAN
I'm hooked, Another GOOD read from Chris Ryan, my wife got me The Kill Zone for xmass 2010, I started this book about may 2011, this is the book that got me hooked, I am now... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Dirk 412
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Ryan's best novel
In "Hit List", Chris Ryan introduces a new character, Neil Slater. Neil is ex-SAS and struggling with civilian life - then he is recruited by the Cadre. Read more
Published on 11 Jan 2010 by A. de Vroom
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