Learn more Download now Shop now Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle The Grand Tour Prize Draw Learn more Shop Women's Shop Men's

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Rum Punch
Format: Paperback|Change
Price:£8.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 19 May 2017
Razor sharp dialogue. Gritty realism about criminal life. Full of characters who are very credible. Fast-paced plotting with enough people at crossed purposes to keep you on your toes. An easy read, not long, but it fizzes along. Jackie Burke (Brown for the Tarantino film) and Max Cherry make a fine pair of protagonists.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 3 February 2010
Love him or loath him, Quentin Tarantino has made some decent films which he mostly wrote himself. One exception is `Jackie Brown' based on `Rum Punch' by Elmore Leonard. This is a typical Leonard novel that has various levels of low life going up against one another. The police and other legal professionals are not above doing some amoral stuff is they can gain an advantage. What makes `Rum Punch' one of the better works by the author is that he is able to create his usual well rounded characters and actually put them in a compelling story. Having read a few of the author's books I find that he often forgets to create an interesting narrative in which to place his characters.

`Rum Punch' is a deceptively simple book, but it takes skill to write about various characters and how they plan to double cross one another. Jackie and Max are the `heroes' of the piece and they work because bad guys like Ordell are so unlikable. Once again Leonard has been able to create a real feeling world full of deeply flawed characters; you do not who to trust. The fact that there is a compelling ending just adds to an already enjoyable crime romp.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 17 November 2010
Ordell Robbie is a slick operator, or so he thinks, procuring guns to order and at healthy prices. One recorded brush with the law a long time ago sets him apart from the recidivist throng; now a wealthy man he can afford to employ others to run the risks and take the falls, and if they foul up he simply gets rid of them. Enter Jackie Burke, air stewardess and one of those Ordell employs, in this case to ferry Ordell's money stash piecemeal from its hiding place in Florida to where Ordell can get at it. America's federal laws make it difficult to move unaccountable amounts of money around and Jackie is his tame smuggler.

Max Cherry is a bail bondsman, he underwrites the bail money put up for any type of remanded individual, taking a slice off the top as his fee and the risk of said individual making a run for it as his loss. Max has been in this game for many years and is as cute a cookie as Ordell will ever be.

Their paths cross, with Jackie Burke as the common factor when she is hauled over by the cops for ferrying money and drugs and Ordell wants her bailed. Throw in the police interest in sticking Ordell for gun running and wanting to get to him via Jackie, plus a smattering of fun, none-too-bright characters that Ordell uses for nefarious purposes, and we have the makings of a roller-coaster ride that Elmore Leonard exploits to the full.

Sharp, no-nonsense dialogue coupled with a tight story line and great characterisation produces a ripping yarn true to the genre. If you are stuck in an airport, riding a long train journey or just lounging in front of the fire, you will skip through this tale of bluff and double-cross in short order. EL at his best and for you to enjoy.
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 29 October 1998
If you've never read an Elmore Leonard book, you better get your ass up and get reading! For a man in his seventies it would be suffice to say that he isn't an out of touch old man, but quite the opposite. He's so observeant of peoples traits that his casts personas never miss a beat. The plot in this novel comes secondary to the sharp dialogue and the querky characters- as in all Elmores stories. He captures beautifully, the walk and talk of every character. A slow ex-con, a disenchanted bail bondsman, a cowboy ATF agent, a street smart gun dealer, a hopped up beach babe and last but not least-Jackie Burke; an air stewardess with brains, balls and panache to help get her through her problems with the ATF and the hip-cat killer Ordell Robie. So trust me on this, Elmore's one of the master writers out there today that deserves every word of praise he can get. And oh yeah if you're thinking of getting 'Jackie Brown' I'd advise you to get 'The Switch' first as it is the first story about Melanie, Ordell and Louis Gara.
0Comment| 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
This is a crime thriller set in Florida. Two of the main characters are: a gangster called Ordell Robbie, whose business is illegally acquiring and shipping guns to the Bahamas; and an air hostess called Jackie Burke, who smuggles Ordell's money from the sales into America. Problems start when Ordell gets greedy and persuades Jackie to bring in larger amounts of cash than usual, which results in her being caught by the Florida state police and a federal ATF agent. They use the threat of a long jail sentence to enlist her help in trapping Ordell. The third main character is a bail bondsman called Max Cherry, who meets Jackie when Ordell asks Max to arrange for her to be bailed.

The rest of the novel is about how the agents set about trapping Ordell and how Max and Jackie, who are attracted to each other, enact plans of their own. It is a clever plot with quite of lot of violence, particularly in the closing sections. At the end not everything is resolved. There remains an ambiguity about whether Max and Jackie really do have a future together, or whether they go their separate ways, with Max continuing as a bondsman.

Once again, Elmore Leonard has created an exciting, fast-moving story with several sub-plots and many interesting characters, most prepared to kill without too much thought. Even the `heroes' have ambiguous ethical behaviour. There are no unbelievable coincidences and the like, just a clear story line told in a straightforward style with excellent crisp dialogue. It is a thoroughly enjoyable read.
11 Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 28 May 2010
Thirteen years after publishing "The Switch", EL reunites the crime pair of Ordell Robbie (OR) and Louis Gara (LG) as well as Mr. Walker, once a poor fisherman in Grand Bahama turned criminal and shifty Melanie, now 34 and one of OR's three home-bound girlfriends. LG has just been released from a four-year sentence for eight bank robberies. They meet again, not in Detroit or Grand Bahama, where the pair's earlier kidnapping of a shady millionaire's wife, described in "The Switch" took place, but in Palm Beach, Florida.
It was already LG's third stint in prison against OR's single one, twenty years ago. Both are now 47 or so. Over time OR has prospered in the illegal arms business thanks to a handpicked team incl. poor pensioners, violent crack addicts, a half-smart Jamaican and Mr. Walker. He has also become more determined and ruthless and prods LG to put more focus into his life, not to stop until targets set have been fully met, be more purposeful. He has plans for them both, a new scam. So, wake up, set your priorities right...
Aging, seizing the opportunity to break with the past and grasping a chance to start a new life is one of the book's main themes: enters Jackie Brown, a beautiful 44-year old stewardess, who supplements her low salary by secretly carrying cash from Mr. Walker to OR. She is arrested on her ninth run. The authorities want her to testify against OR, want him behind bars. She wonders why she was arrested at all. Who talked? Enters bail bondsman Max Cherry (56), hired by OR to spring her from detention before she tells all. Max yearns for change too. In some ways he is as indecisive as LG, but his first meeting with stewardess Jackie after he has bailed her out, gives him the energy to explore new alternatives in life. With her.
What follows is opera, drama, romance and comedy, a book that is one of many masterpieces of the best crime writer alive. In 1997 Quentin Tarantino turned the book into the movie "Jackie Brown" with Robert de Niro and Samuel L. Jackson acting as Louis and Ordell and Pam Grier as Jackie.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 18 September 2013
Elmore Leonard's writing is fast paced, full of detail and swings the plot along like Usain Bolt running down the freeway. This book is what the film Jackie Brown was based on and having missed it at the cinemas I'm going to catch up with it as soon as I can. The dialogue is what carries you along, that along with the undertow of humour, despite the violence and criminality, you are swept away and intrigued with both character and story line. More twists and turns than a garden hose!
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
VINE VOICEon 14 March 2016
As many reviewers have already stated, this is the novel upon which the film 'Jackie Brown' is based, and the reader can immediately see similarities to Tarantino films in the dialogue. The plot is deceptively simple, although complicated by the machinations of the characters as they try to deceive and out manoeuvre each other. Elmore Leonard sketches an amusing series of characters who spring to life off the page with vivid and incisive dialogue. The author is very effective at changing perspective and producing convincing internal voices for the assortment of characters, but the reader has to pay attention to follow the action and the dialogue. The book has a very American feel to it, which might be way Leonard hasn't received as much popularity and attention in the UK that he deserves. I am definitely tempted to reach for further thrillers by Elmore Leonard.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 October 1999
Rum Punch is a wonderfully written novel, which follows the story of Ordell a low life self centered crook who is involved in a story line which throws the reader off into many different fellings and thoughts. A must for all Elmore Leonard fans and those who have watched the film "Jackie Brown" by Quentin Tarantino.
0Comment| 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 10 June 2009
Fantastic book! From page one it's entertaining and engaging. In Ordell Robbie, Leonard has created one of the great anti-heroes in literature, a character who was memorably brought to life in Tarantino's Jackie Brown by Samuel L.Jackson. The support characters are likewise very well written and just so interesting.
Leaonard lends an intricacy to the plot but never loses the reader's thrall or allows detail to complicate the plot. Part of the genius of the book is that we never really know with whom our sympathies lie, there is blurring between heroes and villains. It manages to be lighthearted and dark at the same time. Little wonder then that the visionary Tarantino saw the scope for a fabulous film in this story.

Straight out of the top drawer!
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

Customers also viewed these items

Get Shorty
Out of Sight
The Switch

Need customer service? Click here