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A Simple Plan

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Two brothers and their friend stumble upon the wreckage of a plane–the pilot is dead and his duffle bag contains four million dollars in cash. In order to hide, keep, and share the fortune, these ordinary men all agree to a simple plan.

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Two brothers and their friend stumble upon the wreckage of a plane–the pilot is dead and his duffle bag contains four million dollars in cash. In order to hide, keep, and share the fortune, these ordinary men all agree to a simple plan.

30 review for A Simple Plan

  1. 5 out of 5

    Arah-Lynda

    If a poll were taken, I wonder how many of us could confirm that they had passed tests of honesty.  You know those little tests.  A twenty dollar bill found laying about somewhere and you know who left it there,  A found wallet, fat with cash or a purse left sitting on a display table while you were shopping.   I remember finding a twenty dollar bill laying in the ditch, when I was just a kid.  Of course I gave it to my parents, not even fully aware yet of the real value of my find.  I’m sure the If a poll were taken, I wonder how many of us could confirm that they had passed tests of honesty.  You know those little tests.  A twenty dollar bill found laying about somewhere and you know who left it there,  A found wallet, fat with cash or a purse left sitting on a display table while you were shopping.   I remember finding a twenty dollar bill laying in the ditch, when I was just a kid.  Of course I gave it to my parents, not even fully aware yet of the real value of my find.  I’m sure they kept it, but much later in life an interoffice envelope ( remember those) was left in my mail slot, mine being the last name added.  When I opened it I knew immediately that someone had inadvertently sent me the cash collected from a hockey pool.  Hell I wasn’t even in it.  There must have been somewhere over a hundred dollars in there.  I wasn’t really sure who was collecting that week, but a couple of questions later and the die hard hockey fans steered me in the right direction and the envelope made its way back into the right hands. But as I said these are little tests, how I wonder would I respond if the payoff was a lot bigger? Well Hank Mitchell, his brother Jacob and Jacob’s friend Lou are given just that opportunity when they accidently come across a small aircraft that has crashed in the woods on the outskirts of their Ohio community.  On further inspection they find a dead pilot and a duffle bag containing 4.4 million dollars.  Snow is expected to fall over the next few hours effectively covering their tracks.  They could take the money and no-one would be the wiser.  As an added precaution they agree that they won’t spend any of it right away but instead wait and come spring, once the plane is discovered and after all the hullaballoo dies down they can split  it equally and take off for parts unknown.  If at any point they feel that they are at risk of being discovered they will simply burn the money.  No harm no foul.   A simple plan right.  What could possibly go wrong?   Scott Smith is here to answer that question and he does so brilliantly.  The story is told through the perspective of Hank, the keeper of the cash.  Can he trust Jacob and Lou who both drink too much and are out of work, to stick to the plan and keep the secret?   Through Hank’s narration the reader is privy not only to what happens next but also Hank’s mind set as time passes and doubts and anxieties increase among the principal party of three who by this time number five as Hank has told his wife and Lou his girlfriend.  Watching what plays out over the course of the next few weeks from the comfort of my armchair is like watching a train wreck.  You simply cannot look away.   I’ll not say anymore.  Trust me let Scott Smith tell you this story.  He does so very well.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Dan Schwent

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Hank and Jacob Mitchell and Jacob's friend Lloyd find a crashed plane in the woods. The pilot is dead but he has a duffel bag with 4.4 million dollars in it. The three men agree to sit on the money until they're sure no one is looking for it. But can they keep their mouthes shut? And what will happen when someone talks? A Simple Plan is the story of three men in a difficult situation that quickly escalates into violence. The underlying theme seems to be how one lie inevitably leads to one more. Th Hank and Jacob Mitchell and Jacob's friend Lloyd find a crashed plane in the woods. The pilot is dead but he has a duffel bag with 4.4 million dollars in it. The three men agree to sit on the money until they're sure no one is looking for it. But can they keep their mouthes shut? And what will happen when someone talks? A Simple Plan is the story of three men in a difficult situation that quickly escalates into violence. The underlying theme seems to be how one lie inevitably leads to one more. The main characters are fairly complex. Hank wants to protect his brother but also wants the money. Jacob wants to buy back his parents' farm with the money but he also wants to please his brother. Lloyd needs the money to pay back some gambling debts and can't wait six months. See where this is going? Once things start going off the rails, they continue going off the rails for the rest of the book. The first murder is just the tip of the bloody iceberg. How much killing does it take to cover up one murder? Quite a few, it turns out. Scott Smith's writing packs quite a punch. It's a cut above most thrillers and really makes me wish he wrote more than just this and The Ruins. Much like the Ruins, I wasn't sure how any of the characters would live much longer at the 50% mark. The series of revelations near the end spell out the book's message: Crime doesn't pay. If I ever find a bag of money in the woods and I have people with me, we're turning it in to the cops. Alone, I could probably handle it... Four out of five stars. Where's the next book, Smith?

  3. 5 out of 5

    Joe Valdez

    I love bookmarks. My favorites are color postcards, or airline boarding passes I hold onto. I have no problem using these to mark my place in a book and pick up with it the next day or the days after. The exception to this are books like A Simple Plan, the debut novel by Scott B. Smith that I stayed up until 3:05 a.m. on a Saturday night/ Sunday morning to finish. I had to. Published in 1993, its premise is not new and one that many have asked ourselves: If you found millions of dollars in cash, I love bookmarks. My favorites are color postcards, or airline boarding passes I hold onto. I have no problem using these to mark my place in a book and pick up with it the next day or the days after. The exception to this are books like A Simple Plan, the debut novel by Scott B. Smith that I stayed up until 3:05 a.m. on a Saturday night/ Sunday morning to finish. I had to. Published in 1993, its premise is not new and one that many have asked ourselves: If you found millions of dollars in cash, would you keep the money, or turn it in? And if you kept it, what complications might arise? Maybe none, if you were smart, right? Wrong. The novel is the first person account of Hank Mitchell, a thirty-year-old college graduate who married his college girlfriend Sarah. They returned to northwestern Ohio and Hank's hometown of Ashenville to put his degree in business administration to use as an accountant in a feedstore. Hank recalls events that began New Year's Eve 1987, when he waits for his older brother Jacob to pick him up and visit their parents, killed two years ago in a vehicle collision. Though their father specified that his sons visit his gravesite together each year on his birthday, Hank has little contact with Jacob, an unemployed construction worker who lives alone in an apartment over a hardware store. Jacob arrives with two friends in tow: Lou is an unemployed construction worker with thinly veiled contempt for Hank, and Mary Beth is Jacob's dog. En route to the cemetery, a fox darts in front of the pickup and Mary Beth chases it into a nature preserve. Hardly dressed for a hike through the snow, Hank is sensitive to being teased and joins Jacob and Lou as they follow the tracks. Buried at the bottom of a crevice, the men discover a small plane, which Hank is elected to crawl inside. He finds the pilot, whose eyes have been gouged out by crows, and a duffel bag, which he manages to drag out of the wreckage after a crow flies smack into Hank's forehead. Inside the bag are packets of hundred dollar bills. Hank calculates there might be three million dollars here. Jacob was still crouched there, the money in his hand. "Put it back, Jacob," I said. He didn't move. "It's different for you," Lou said. "You've got your job at the feedstore. Jacob and I don't have that. This money'd matter to us." His voice had edged itself toward a whine, and hearing it, I felt a revelatory flash of power. The dynamic of the relationship had shifted, I realized. I was in control now; I was the spoiler, the one who would decide what happened to the money. I smiled at Lou. "I'd still get in trouble if you took it. You'd fuck up, and I'd be considered an accomplice." Jacob started to stand up, then crouched back down again. "Why not take all of it?" he asked, looking from Lou to me. "All of it?" I said. The idea seemed preposterous, and I started to laugh, but it made my forehead ache. I winced, probing at the bump with my fingers. It was still bleeding a little. "Just take the bag," he said, "leave the dead guy in there, pretend we were never here." Lou nodded eagerly, pouncing on the idea. "Split it three ways." "We'd get caught as soon as you started spending it," I said. "Imagine the three of us suddenly throwing hundred dollar bills around at the stores in town." Jacob shook his head. "We could wait a while, then leave town, start up new lives." "A million apiece," Lou said. "Think about it." "You don't just get away with something like that," I sighed. "You end up doing something stupid, and you get caught." "Don't you see, Hank?" Jacob asked, his voice rising with impatience. "It's like this money doesn't even exist. No one knows about it but us." "It's three million dollars, Jacob. It's missing from somewhere. You can't tell me no one's searching for it." "If people were searching for it, we would've heard by now. There would've been something on the news." "It's drug money," Lou said. "It's all under the table. The government doesn't know about any of it." "You don't--" I started, but Lou cut me off. "Jesus, Hank. All this money staring you right in the face. It's the American dream, and you just want to walk away from it." "You work for the American dream, Lou. You don't steal it." "Then this is even better than the American dream." Hank quickly works out a plan. He insists on holding the stash for six months, until the plane is discovered in the thaw. If no one comes for the money, Hank agrees to split it then, provided they each leave town. Counting it, they find they have $4.4 million. Hank makes Jacob and Lou promise not to speak a word to anyone, and he agrees not to tell Sarah. Returning home, Hank dumps the cash at his wife's feet. Sarah, eight months pregnant with their first child, is skeptical they need the money and believes the risks are too great. Hank promises to burn it at the first sign of trouble and she agrees if he returns $500,000 to the plane to discourage authorities from searching for the money. On New Years' Day, Hank awakens to find Sarah counting the money. She suggests Hank take Jacob with him when he returns to the plane, in case he or Lou spot Hank's stationwagon out there and gets suspicious, but not to tell them about returning part of the money. Drunk and tired, Jacob is unwilling to walk back to the plane and Hank goes alone. He almost makes it back when he hears a snowmobile. He finds a farmer talking to his brother and watches in horror as Jacob strikes the old timer and kicks him to death. To protect his brother, Hank decides to drive the body into the creek on the snowmobile. When Hank discovers the farmer is still alive, he smothers the man to death. Hank is relieved when Sarah considers the murder an accident, something that her husband had no control over. The couple begin to worry about Lou, who's told his girlfriend Nancy about the money. In debt, Lou pays Hank a visit late at night and asks for a packet. He reveals that he knows about the murdered farmer. No longer holding leverage over Lou, Hank tells him that he's stashed the money upstate and will divide it up after Sarah's delivery. Meanwhile, Jacob has decided that he wants to use his share to rebuild the family farm. Incredulous, Hank agrees to this if Jacob picks a side and helps him trick Lou into confessing to the farmer's murder on tape, giving Hank some leverage in case Lou tries to turn them in. "What do you think will happen to him?" Sarah asked. "To Jacob?" I sensed her nod in the darkness. We were both on our backs. All the lights were out, and the baby was asleep in her crib. Sarah had forgiven me for lecturing her. "Maybe he'll buy a farm," I said. I felt her body go tense beside me. "He can't buy the farm, Hank. If he stays--" "Not my father's farm. Just any farm. Someplace out west maybe, in Kansas, or Missouri. We could help him set it up." Even as I spoke, I realized it would never happen. It had been the wine that had allowed me to hope for earlier that evening, but now I was sobering up, seeing things as they actually were rather than as I wished them to be. Jacob knew nothing about agriculture: he'd have just as much of a chance succeeding as a farmer as he would becoming a rock star or an astronaut. It was simply childishness on his part to keep on dreaming of it, a willful sort of naïveté, a denial of who he was. "Maybe he'll travel," I tried, but I couldn't picture that either--my brother, climbing on and off planes, dragging suitcases through airports, checking into expensive hotels. None of it seemed possible. "Whatever he does," I said, "things'll be better for him than they are now, don't you think?" I rolled over onto my side, draping one of my legs across Sarah's body. "Of course," she said. "He'll have one point three million dollars. How could things not be better?" As compulsively readable as this novel is, what's remarkable about A Simple Plan is how that instead of leaping from one ridiculous plot point to another, it remains grounded. Scott B. Smith, who followed this novel with only one other (The Ruins in 2006) is more interested in the dynamic between two brothers who barely relate to each other but are bound to each other, as well as the bind between husband and wife, and even two drinking buddies, and how the introduction of a cash windfall poisons them. It's a tightly constructed story but one that uses its premise to explore its characters and ask compelling questions about what constitutes happiness for the middle class. Sarah had received a B.S. in petroleum engineering from the University of Toledo. When I first met her, she was planning on moving down to Texas and landing a high-paying job in the oil industry. She wanted to save up her money and buy a ranch someday, a "spread" she called it, with horses and a head of cattle and her own special brand, an S embedded with a heart. Instead, we got married. I was hired by the feedstore in Ashenville in the spring of my senior year, and suddenly, without really choosing it, she found herself in Delphia. There weren't many openings in northwestern Ohio for someone with an undergraduate degree in petroleum engineering, so she ended up working part-time at the local library. She was a trouper; she always made the best of things, yet there had to be some regret in all this; she had to look back every now and then and mourn the distance that separated her present existence from the one she'd dreamed of as a student. She'd sacrificed something of herself for our relationship, but she'd never attracted attention to it, and so it had seemed natural to me, even inevitable. It wasn't until tonight that I saw it for the tragedy it was. Now the money had arrived, and she could begin to dream again. She could draw up her wish lists, page through her magazines, plan her new life. It was a nice way to envision her--full of hope and yearning, making promises to herself that she felt certain she could fulfill--but there was also something terribly sad about it. We were trapped, I realized; we'd crossed a boundary, and we couldn't go back. The money, by giving us the chance to dream, had also allowed us to begin despising our present lives. My job at the feedstore, our aluminum-siding house, the town around us--we were already looking upon all that as part of our past. It was what we were before we became millionaires; it was stunted, gray, unlivable. And so if, somehow, we were forced to relinquish the money now, we wouldn't merely be returning to our old lives, starting back up as if nothing of import had happened; we'd be returning having seen them from a distance, having judged them and deemed them unworthy. The damage would be irreparable. I love Pandora's boxes and A Simple Plan, while having a terrific box, is about the things that can't be put back once they're taken out. The question of where the money comes from and who might come looking for it pays off marvelously and I identified with these characters, lower middle class Americans in a so-called flyover state. A rural winter proves atmospheric and was proven to be in a great film adaptation directed by Sam Raimi in 1998. The screenplay was adapted by Smith and I was surprised by how significantly he departed from his source material at the halfway mark while delivering a gut punch in both.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Kemper

    When it comes to Scott B. Smith it’s a good thing we got the quality because the quantity is on the low side with only The Ruins released since this one came out in 1993. Hank Mitchell is a regular guy living in rural Ohio with his pregnant wife Sarah and a steady job as an accountant at a feed store. He isn’t close to his brother Jacob who is a high school dropout that spends most of his time drunk when not scrounging out a living. One of the few times they interact is their regular New Year’s When it comes to Scott B. Smith it’s a good thing we got the quality because the quantity is on the low side with only The Ruins released since this one came out in 1993. Hank Mitchell is a regular guy living in rural Ohio with his pregnant wife Sarah and a steady job as an accountant at a feed store. He isn’t close to his brother Jacob who is a high school dropout that spends most of his time drunk when not scrounging out a living. One of the few times they interact is their regular New Year’s Eve visit to the graves of their parents. While taking care of this annual obligation they’re going to drop off Jacob’s drinking buddy Lou before heading to the cemetery when a freak accident leads the three men to the discovery of a small plane that has crashed in the snowy woods. Along with a dead pilot they find a bag with over four million dollars in it. Hank’s first instinct is to turn in the money to the cops, but Lou and Jacob want to keep it. Tempted but worried that the two men will do something stupid to draw attention to them, Hank will only agree if he holds the cash until the plane is eventually discovered once the snow melts. If no one is looking for the money after the plane is found, they’ll split it up and go their separate ways. Anybody think this is going to end well? This is one of my favorite crime novels and a prime example of what I consider to be noir. What starts as the kind of decision that many (Most?) people would make is the first step towards suspicion and betrayal that finds Hank constantly reevaluating his relationship with his estranged brother. That’s about all I want to reveal to anyone who hasn’t read it, but if you like dark stories about the lengths seemingly ordinary people will go to when they see a chance to change their lives, give this one a try. It was also turned into a very good movie adaptation with Bill Paxton and Billy Bob Thornton that has significant plot differences that make it a surprising watch even if you’ve read the book. A few more thoughts for those who have read it. (view spoiler)[ • This and No Country For Old Men make the point that if you find a bag of money and want to keep it that you should never never never go back to the place where you found it. • I’ve always thought it was effectively creepy how the pregnant Sarah becomes Hank’s Lady Macbeth, but they make the amateur criminal mistake of being just a little too cute with their crimes. Sarah’s idea of returning some money to the plane is clever, but returning to it causes the first murder. Killing Sonny as part of the stage setting for the murders of Lou and Nancy was completely unnecessary. The cops would have no trouble believing that a guy like Lou could shotgun his girlfriend in a drunken rage for any trivial reason. Trying to make it look like Sonny and Nancy were having an affair was an unnecessary risk that could have easily backfired. • Speaking of that shotgun murder spree, I’ve read this three or four times, but I just realized that Smith made some critical errors with Hank's actions that should have got him caught. First, Hank called Sarah after Lou and Nancy were dead, and she comes up with the plan about involving Sonny. The story is that they dropped off Lou and were leaving when they heard the shooting. If the cops pulled the phone records (Which seems likely at the house of a quadruple murder.) they’d see that call to Sarah and have a good idea that Hank was lying. Also, gunshot residue tests that would be routinely administered in a situation like that would show that Lou hadn’t fired a gun but that Hank had been emptying a shotgun. • I’d forgotten the part about Jacob’s dog. Hank really shows that he’s kind of an uncaring son-of-a-bitch under this regular fella persona when he leaves the poor animal alone in a garage nights and ties it to a tree during the day where it has nothing to do but sit in the cold and mud. He never considers that it’s not Jacob’s death but his own treatment that makes the dog mean, or of trying to find another home for it. The way he botched the shooting of it is also the most painful scene in the book for me. Yeah, I’m one of those people who can read about or watch a thousand people getting brutally murdered without batting an eye, but even fictional cruelty to animals makes me sick. (hide spoiler)]

  5. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    I find it hilarious whenever I see negative reviews for this book and almost all the time, the reason for the negativity is that the reviewer thought that the main characters were stupid and made dumb decisions. If characters always made the right decisions or the smartest ones, there would be absolutely no drama and why the hell would anyone want to read about people who do all the right things?! I think this was a wonderful story about how all of us are capable of terrible things if circumstanc I find it hilarious whenever I see negative reviews for this book and almost all the time, the reason for the negativity is that the reviewer thought that the main characters were stupid and made dumb decisions. If characters always made the right decisions or the smartest ones, there would be absolutely no drama and why the hell would anyone want to read about people who do all the right things?! I think this was a wonderful story about how all of us are capable of terrible things if circumstances were there, such as greed, fear, the need to survive, or simply by just making BAD DECISIONS. These elements are all parts of the essence of noir, and that's why I consider this book one of the best examples of modern noir. Three friends stumble upon millions of dollars and decide to keep it and not tell the authorities. That one decision begins a terrible domino effect that leads to dire consequences. It's like a classic tragedy where the end is inevitable. Great book! Tightly written with great pacing!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jeff

    If you found four million dollars, what choices would you make? Keep it?, Return it? What if there were two others with you when you found it and you were always the odd man out in your little group, yet were suddenly handed over the controls? How would it change you? Are you up to the responsibility? One of the other two people is your brother, but he’s weak and unreliable and the other is a gambler and a drunk. Can you trust them? If you keep the money, how far would you go not to give it up? Wou If you found four million dollars, what choices would you make? Keep it?, Return it? What if there were two others with you when you found it and you were always the odd man out in your little group, yet were suddenly handed over the controls? How would it change you? Are you up to the responsibility? One of the other two people is your brother, but he’s weak and unreliable and the other is a gambler and a drunk. Can you trust them? If you keep the money, how far would you go not to give it up? Would you lie, cheat, possibly kill? What makes this an effective thriller is that all of these questions are addressed at one time or another by the narrator and choices are made based on the given circumstances. The narrator tries to deal with the fallout from his decisions - rationalize his actions and bury the guilt. Coping and trying to move on, making excuses, but always with the memory of heinous acts just below the surface. What pulls you in is that this is an average Joe taking a route that you might take if confronted with the same challenges.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I heard a story once about a Holocaust survivor who attended the trial at Nuremburg of the Nazi who commanded the camp in which he was a prisoner. When the defendant was brought in, the Jewish man became hysterical and had to be dragged out of the courtroom. People assumed that seeing the Nazi's face again had simply brought back memories too horrific for the man to bear. He later explained that he'd lost his composure because he saw, for the first time, that this Nazi was not some fire-breathin I heard a story once about a Holocaust survivor who attended the trial at Nuremburg of the Nazi who commanded the camp in which he was a prisoner. When the defendant was brought in, the Jewish man became hysterical and had to be dragged out of the courtroom. People assumed that seeing the Nazi's face again had simply brought back memories too horrific for the man to bear. He later explained that he'd lost his composure because he saw, for the first time, that this Nazi was not some fire-breathing monster, but just a man, like anyone else. Without the SS uniform, his humanity was laid bare. The Nazi could've been him; the Nazi could've been anyone. This incident illustrates why Scott Smith's novel "A Simple Plan" is unquestionably the scariest book I've ever read. By far more frightening than anything written by Stephen King, Dean Koontz or even Thomas Harris, "A Simple Plan" touches on an uncomfortable but real truth in life: we're all basically bad, posessing an almost infinite capacity for evil. All we need to find out how bad we can be is the right motivation: anger, lust, greed, jealousy, etc. For Hank, the novel's main protagonist, the motivation is greed, then fear. Hank is a midwestern accountant with a wife and a baby on the way, a real swell fella, anyone would agree. One Winter day, Hank takes a ride with his no-account brother, Jacob, and Jacob's pal, Lou. An accident sends the three trudging off into the woods, where they happen upon a small airplane that has crashed and been covered over with snow. Inside, they find a dead pilot and a gym bag, which happens to contain around $4 million. The men figure the money is from a drug deal or a robbery. Hank, the upstanding citizen of the group, insists on calling the authorities immediately. Jacob and Lou, however, want to hang onto the cash. Eventually, Hank agrees, but on one condition: they sit on the money for six months - if nothing is heard of it by Summer, they'll split the loot and go their separate ways. It seems painfully simple, but Hank doesn't take into account his brother's impulsive stupidity, or Lou's desperate need to have his share RIGHT NOW. The failings of his partners in crime, as well as his own fear of being caught, send Hank into a downward spiral as the situation gets bad, then worse, then really super-deluxe worse. Toward the end, when Hank is driven to extremes by his own wife's carelessness, the money becomes almost irrelevant. In a real stroke of genius, Smith tells the entire story from Hank's point of view, giving the reader unencumbered access to Hank's tortured psyche. You find yourself almost relating and understanding when Hank tells himself that the theft is justifiable, then when he graduates to blackmail and murder. A movie version of this story was made in 1998; it's absorbing, suspenseful and at times unforgettable. All the same, it's inferior to the novel, particularly in the second half. The ending in the film, while tragic and horrifying in its own right, doesn't even come close to the ending in the book, which may stay with me for the rest of my life. I found "A Simple Plan" at the discount table at the mall in 1995. The dust jacket preview seemed vaguely interesting, so I plucked down my $3.99 and took it home, expecting to read it over the Summer. I finished it two days later, at about 3:00 in the morning. It's that engrossing, and thought-provoking. At one point, Hank's wife, who turns out to be more ruthless than anyone else, says to him: "No one would ever think you'd be capable of doing what you've done." That brilliant line is the entire book in a nutshell.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Maciek

    Reading this novel is like watching a trainwreck taking place: you know it's terrible, you know you shouldn't do it, but somehow you can't look away from it taking place; its as if your eyes have been glued to the train and carriages, losing touch with the track, falling out, being squashed and destroyed, all with the incredibly loud and draining sound of screeching and bending metal. You look at the solid, rectangular shapes being transformed into crushed masses of steel, thrown around like the Reading this novel is like watching a trainwreck taking place: you know it's terrible, you know you shouldn't do it, but somehow you can't look away from it taking place; its as if your eyes have been glued to the train and carriages, losing touch with the track, falling out, being squashed and destroyed, all with the incredibly loud and draining sound of screeching and bending metal. You look at the solid, rectangular shapes being transformed into crushed masses of steel, thrown around like they were miniature toys, as if some invisible God took to them in a moment of incredible and hopeless fury. The title of the book accurately describes its premise: In winter, three men stumble upon a wreckage of a small plane in the woods outside their city. Curious, they decide to investigate: one of the men peers inside, and sees that the pilot is dead. He notices a small duffle bag near the body, and takes it out. Of course, they open it and peer inside: what they find is 4,4 million dollars in packets of hundred dollar bills. They make a decision to keep the money; all agree on a simple plan to do nothing and just wait for six months and see if anyone would be looking for the money when the plane is discovered in spring. If not, then they will split it adequately and quietly leave town; if yes, the money will be burned to keep them out of trouble. Nothing to lose, but a lot to gain. A Simple Plan is narrated in the first person by Hank Mitchell, an accountant, husband, and soon to be father. His partners in crime are Jacob, his brother, and Lou, their mutual acquaintance. The setting is a small town of Ashenville, Northern Ohio. As one involved with money on a daily basis, Hank takes charge and takes the bag, intending to keep it. He'll either split it after six months, if there's no mention of missing money anywhere, or burn it immediately if there is. Only it's never this easy, is it? Another allegory with which the novel can be described is a domino sequence, one which goes through a spiral, lower and lower. The decision to keep the money is knocking over the first piece of the domino; the rest will soon follow. There is an incredible feeling of bleak hopelesness in this novel, right from the first sentence, where Hank describes the dreadful death of his parents in a car accident. Although he is married and lives comfortably well with an attractive wife, with whom he is expecting their first child, there is a general aura of unhappiness about him and the whole town of Ashfield. The greyness and mundanity of the region, where seemingly nothing happens, at least nothing of importance. Everything irrevocable changes for the three men when they decide to take the bag; they are now on something together, are a part of a scheme, even if it involves doing nothing at all. However, they have set something in motion; The butterfly has flapped its wings, the wind has been stirred. The first person narration allows the reader almost unlimited access to Hank's mind. We're both able and limited to seeing things the way he sees them. We see how he makes decision after decision, how he tries to find a best way out of the situations he find himself in, and how he tries to rationalize and justify his actions. It becomes obvious that A Simple Plan is not a simple thriller, as it might suggest, but a quite complex moral tale; where each decision has multiple consequences, each complicating the events further. An Amazon reviewer called the novel "macbeth in Midwest", and the comparison is very apt. It also reminded me of one of my favorite old movies, "The Treasure of Sierra Madre", which is notable for having Humphrey Bogart in his only role as an unlikable character. The plot of the novel is simple enough, but what makes it unique is that it gives us a chance to see inside the mind of a person whose life has been completely turned upside down in one moment, and see how far he is going to go as the situation develops. These characters are people who could be you or me; they just happened to be in one place at a certain time. It could happen to any of us; Scott Smith doesn't build a complex mystery, or center his book around action scenes. Its plot is simple - three guys find a bag full of money. Its tension almost entirely inside the mind. It's the mind that is most fascinating in this novel, the mind of Hank, his wife, his brother and Lou. What will they do with the bag? What would you do? A Simple Plan is a stylish debut in the vein of Dennis Lehane, unique, complex and memorable. I could barely put it down as I was reading it, and it will stay with me for a long time. It is simply so relatable; it is impossible not to relate to the characters and their discovery, not to put yourself in their place, wondering what would you do in their situation. This is what makes it terrifying. As Hank says: "'It all makes sense. It all happened one thing after the other."

  9. 5 out of 5

    Char

    I liked this book a lot! It was very easy to identify with Hank, the protagonist of this story. Imagine that you and your two siblings find a bag full of money in a plane that crashed that no one has yet discovered. Would you keep it or not? That is the gist of this story. Just think about how one simple lie in your life could spiral out of control...into more lies and things MUCH worse than that, even. That's exactly what happened here, It was very easy to take the next step with Hank, and then t I liked this book a lot! It was very easy to identify with Hank, the protagonist of this story. Imagine that you and your two siblings find a bag full of money in a plane that crashed that no one has yet discovered. Would you keep it or not? That is the gist of this story. Just think about how one simple lie in your life could spiral out of control...into more lies and things MUCH worse than that, even. That's exactly what happened here, It was very easy to take the next step with Hank, and then the next, and so on. At first, the reader feels sorry for him, but not for long as he tangles himself up further and further by the minute. The last quarter of this book turned into a nightmare from which I could not pull myself away. I did feel that the last scenes slightly stepped over the line of believability and for that I deducted one star. Overall, I enjoyed this story quite a bit and would recommend it to anyone that enjoys a fast paced thriller with some blood and gore. Good times, good times.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Menia

    2.5-3/5* how to get away with murder ...or commit even more unnecessary murders ;p ένα απλό σχέδιο που έμπαζε από παντού νερά ή αλλιώς το άκρων άωτον της χαζομάρας

  11. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    9/10 Shit balls! Was this a good read or what?! This is one of those books where you genuinely can't stop reading and need to find out what is going on and how things are going to end. The best part about this book and the questions it poses are that its happening to regular folk who aren't all that dissimilar to yourself/people you know. How would you/they react in that situation. If someone said to me, "you can find $4m with some friends but all you have to do is wait to spend it" I'd sign up st 9/10 Shit balls! Was this a good read or what?! This is one of those books where you genuinely can't stop reading and need to find out what is going on and how things are going to end. The best part about this book and the questions it poses are that its happening to regular folk who aren't all that dissimilar to yourself/people you know. How would you/they react in that situation. If someone said to me, "you can find $4m with some friends but all you have to do is wait to spend it" I'd sign up straightaway. If they then added a bit of pressure to that saying that some of you started acting strange or whisper together and make you feel paranoid how would you react? It's $4m! I can handle a bit of backstabbing and bitching for that amount. Could you go a step further, live with lies and try to keep up with them. Get everyone else on board with the lies and keep covering things up with more lies. Is that a policeman staring at me a little too long, does he know I've got some ill gotten gains? Damn, I'm starting to sweat. Maybe folks like me aren't meant for this life of deceit! This is both a well written story with complex characters. Hank, the main character, seems like an ordinary Joe but you soon see there are more layers to him than first thought (view spoiler)[just seeing his whole attitude to the dog and the botched disposal made me see a different side to him (hide spoiler)] . Sarah, Hank's wife, is also a flawed character who ends up in a very different light to what you first see. In fact, everyone who is in this story has more than one side to them and this is one of the key reasons why I liked this so much. I revise my original statement, this is a seriously well written novel. One of the best I've read this year and in a long while.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I am selling this piece back to the used bookstore I got it from--pronto. *SPOILERS* I will cut right to it. This is a book with an interesting idea, fascinating plot, but is ruined by characters who are loathesome, less sympathetic than any I have read in my life, and who do absolutely nothing believable. And not only that but I don't believe that any of these crimes could be played out and go over without a hitch the way we are supposed to believe they did, so even from a technical standpoint I I am selling this piece back to the used bookstore I got it from--pronto. *SPOILERS* I will cut right to it. This is a book with an interesting idea, fascinating plot, but is ruined by characters who are loathesome, less sympathetic than any I have read in my life, and who do absolutely nothing believable. And not only that but I don't believe that any of these crimes could be played out and go over without a hitch the way we are supposed to believe they did, so even from a technical standpoint I don't know how anyone could possibly buy into this garbage. I keep seeing reviewers stating things about a "slipperly slope" and this is a look at our dark side. No, this does not depict anyone on a slippery slope, or someone who is shocked by their own actions when put in a bad situation. It's not even about a nice, regular guy who gets forced into doing heinous things and is tortured with guilt or emotion. It depicts someone who is supposedly normal and average who leaps head first into being completely inhuman with zero remorse, zero emotion, zero conscience, zero regret. There is no subtle build up, no progression into evil, it's just simply a normal guy who finds money and immediately turns into a serial murderer at the drop of the hat and then is like "huh, I am a killer now. Oh well." I realize money does weird things to people but this guy and his wife's reactions and actions are not believable on any level--while sure, maybe there are some people who might--MIGHT--do some of the things these two do, I do not believe for one moment that there would ever be two "normal" people on earth who would do what these two did over this money. I get that there have been many deadly duos in real life, don't get me wrong, but not like this. It's as though two sociopaths were simply waiting to be unleashed when the right circumstances came along. And the way the guy talks about his pregnant wife and even the baby before and after it's born...it was enough to make my stomach turn. But not too much because the wife is even crazier than he is. Then there is the whole segment where he describes in great detail how he could kill his infant and then his wife (oookay, as if the book weren't already atrocious enough we get to read that). And then there is the other segment in which he brutally and slowly kills a dog and buries in like one inch deep--oh, after having kept it tied to a tree for weeks with rotting sores all over its body out in the snow. YAY for even more beyond inhumane actions. And then the wife cooing "Bye bye, doggie! Bye bye..." to the baby when the husband takes it out to kill it. WTF, really? I have never read a book and felt SO unattached to the characters nor have I read a book and felt the characters were so utterly absurdly written that I couldn't believe a thing they did and could not have cared less about their fate--well, that's not true...I wanted them to die. There is no one to root for in the book. Only after Jacob and Lou are killed do we even realize that THEY were the most likable people in the story...which ain't sayin' much. Speaking of sociopaths, I think the author might be one! As to the hundreds of glowing reviews...I don't know what to say except how sad it is that there are so many people in the world who feel this is quality reading on any level. And how incredibly lucky the author is that so many people found this to be "amazing." Birdcage liner...right here.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

    Scott Smith's books are, above all, methodical. For all their chaos and violence, everything seems inevitable, everyone acts logically, and yet, without fail, things go terribly, terribly wrong. It's impossible not to imagine yourself in his characters' places, wondering if you would have made similar decisions, acted in a similar way, and still come to the same calamitous end. His wildly entertaining second novel, The Ruins, placed its characters in an impossible situation that was articificial Scott Smith's books are, above all, methodical. For all their chaos and violence, everything seems inevitable, everyone acts logically, and yet, without fail, things go terribly, terribly wrong. It's impossible not to imagine yourself in his characters' places, wondering if you would have made similar decisions, acted in a similar way, and still come to the same calamitous end. His wildly entertaining second novel, The Ruins, placed its characters in an impossible situation that was articificial and supernatural, but his debut, A Simple Plan, is more powerful and frightening because the impossible situation is the characters' own damn fault entirely. He begins with a simple moral dilemma: if you stumbled upon a pile of cash, would you take it? What if there was little chance of you being caught? Hank, our narrator, discovers four million dollars in a downed plane buried in the snow. He's accompanied by his brother, Jacob, and Jacob's deadbeat friend, Lou. Together they decide on a "simple plan"; that is, take the money, but don't spend it until the plane is discovered and no one reports it missing. If anything goes wrong, they plan to burn the money instantly. Of course, everything goes horribly wrong. Despite Hank's best efforts to act logically and cover his tracks, the allure and power of the money proves to be too much to handle. Smith writes in (call me redundant) simple, declarative sentences, which suit his "play-by-play" style very well. It's agonizing to watch the characters make what seems to be a sound decision, only to see it backfire in the next scene. And Smith never flinches, so we are trapped in this downward spiral right along with them. Even when there's no imminent threat, when it seems, for a moment, that everything might be okay, when Hank is playing with his newborn baby, for example, or Jacob is thinking about buying back their family's barn, there is a sustained and suffocating sense of foreboding, which makes the characters' brief hope that much more heartbreaking. "'I'm not crazy,' I said, trying to make my voice come out rational, calm. 'It all makes sense. It all happened one thing after the other.'"

  14. 5 out of 5

    Trudy

    This book was probably THE most painful reading experience I have ever had. I actually finished it - more because of my own stubbornness than anything. I guess I would have to liken it to the first few weeks of American Idol where the whole point is to show you the people that are really bad. I am just too sensitive for that - I feel the pain and embarrasment they should be feeling but in some cases don't. In the case of this book the pure idiocy that these characters go through after finding th This book was probably THE most painful reading experience I have ever had. I actually finished it - more because of my own stubbornness than anything. I guess I would have to liken it to the first few weeks of American Idol where the whole point is to show you the people that are really bad. I am just too sensitive for that - I feel the pain and embarrasment they should be feeling but in some cases don't. In the case of this book the pure idiocy that these characters go through after finding this money pains me in the same way. The fact that this was made into a movie (and not a comedy) baffles me. I read this book several years ago and it still haunts me as the worst book I have ever read. That coming from someone that can generally find entertainment value in most stories/forms of media.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Steven Godin

    Three golden rules when discovering a large amount of money in the wilderness, Keep your mouth shut Keep your mouth shut Keep your mouth shut. When will we ever learn? Two brothers stumble upon $4.4 million in the smouldering wreck of a crashed plane. But make one doomed mistake. telling a wife of the discovery, this sets off a chain of events leading in only one direction, bad. A Simple Plan is a novel that slowly but surely grips, it unfolds with an inevitable and doomed spiral of events, through m Three golden rules when discovering a large amount of money in the wilderness, Keep your mouth shut Keep your mouth shut Keep your mouth shut. When will we ever learn? Two brothers stumble upon $4.4 million in the smouldering wreck of a crashed plane. But make one doomed mistake. telling a wife of the discovery, this sets off a chain of events leading in only one direction, bad. A Simple Plan is a novel that slowly but surely grips, it unfolds with an inevitable and doomed spiral of events, through murder, betrayal and mass killing. From its deceptively simple beginning, to its horrific and surprising conclusion, it made for a decent read with pretty good descriptive skills, but all too predictable in the end. Sam Raimi's film is also a solid adaptation, just not as good as the book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    Scott Smith really know how to propel a plot, while never losing sight of the human frailties at the heart of his story. This is really really well-done.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Aaron Nash

    Well that was bleak. Hank, his brother and his brothers friend are walking in the woods when they come across a downed plane. Inside is a corpse and 4 million dollars. Now what would you do? Take the money or report it to the police? Tough decision. This novel is all about greed, tough decisions and how making one bad one can set the ball rolling, until complete chaos ensues, which is exactly what happens. The novel is a slow burn up until a certain point and then it escalates and never looks back Well that was bleak. Hank, his brother and his brothers friend are walking in the woods when they come across a downed plane. Inside is a corpse and 4 million dollars. Now what would you do? Take the money or report it to the police? Tough decision. This novel is all about greed, tough decisions and how making one bad one can set the ball rolling, until complete chaos ensues, which is exactly what happens. The novel is a slow burn up until a certain point and then it escalates and never looks back. Its bold and brutal and i loved it.

  18. 5 out of 5

    George K.

    Ο Σκοτ Σμιθ όλα κι όλα δυο βιβλία έχει γράψει, αυτό και το Τα Ερείπια, το οποίο επίσης διαβάστηκε μέσα στη χρονιά. Τα ερείπια ήταν το κλασικό βιβλίο τρόμου με μια παρέα νέων να ανακαλύπτουν κάτι το τρομερό σε μια ζούγκλα στο Μεξικό, καλό σε γενικές γραμμές αλλά με αρκετές ατέλειες, αλλά το Ένα απλό σχέδιο είναι άλλη υπόθεση. Μιλάμε για ένα τρομερό θρίλερ που δείχνει με γλαφυρό τρόπο τι μπορεί να κάνουν τα λεφτά και ότι μπορεί να οδηγήσουν απλούς ανθρώπους σε τραγικές αποφάσεις ή να βγάλουν από μ Ο Σκοτ Σμιθ όλα κι όλα δυο βιβλία έχει γράψει, αυτό και το Τα Ερείπια, το οποίο επίσης διαβάστηκε μέσα στη χρονιά. Τα ερείπια ήταν το κλασικό βιβλίο τρόμου με μια παρέα νέων να ανακαλύπτουν κάτι το τρομερό σε μια ζούγκλα στο Μεξικό, καλό σε γενικές γραμμές αλλά με αρκετές ατέλειες, αλλά το Ένα απλό σχέδιο είναι άλλη υπόθεση. Μιλάμε για ένα τρομερό θρίλερ που δείχνει με γλαφυρό τρόπο τι μπορεί να κάνουν τα λεφτά και ότι μπορεί να οδηγήσουν απλούς ανθρώπους σε τραγικές αποφάσεις ή να βγάλουν από μέσα τους τον σκοτεινό εαυτό τους. Παραμονή πρωτοχρονιάς τρεις άντρες, ο αφηγητής της ιστορίας Χανκ Μίτσελ, ο αδερφός του Τζέικομπ και ο φίλος του αδερφού του, Λου, προσπαθώντας να αποφύγουν μια αλεπού που βρέθηκε μπροστά στο αυτοκίνητο όπου επέβαιναν, χτυπάνε σ'ένα δέντρο. Τίποτα το σοβαρό, αλλά ο σκύλος του Τζέικομπ βγαίνει από το αυτοκίνητο για να κυνηγήσει την αλεπού και οι τρεις άντρες πάνε να βρούνε τον σκύλο. Ε, κάπου μες στο δάσος βλέπουν ένα μικρό αεροπλάνο, βουλιαγμένο στο χιόνι. Με τα πολλά βρίσκουν νεκρό τον πιλότο και σ'έναν σάκο δεκάδες δεσμίδες των εκατό δολαρίων. Το ποσό; 4,4 εκατομμύρια δολάρια! Το απλό σχέδιο είναι, φυσικά, να κρατήσουν τα λεφτά. Αμερικάνικο όνειρο, φίλε! Αλλά όλα τα πράγματα πάνε κατά διαόλου, όταν η απληστία, η έλλειψη εμπιστοσύνης και ο φόβος της αποκάλυψης, τους οδηγούν σε λάθος αποφάσεις με αποτέλεσμα προδοσίες και φόνους. Ιδιαίτερα ο Χανκ θα δει την ήσυχη και προγραμματισμένη ζωή του με την γυναίκα του και την κόρη του που μόλις γεννήθηκε, να ανατρέπεται πλήρως. Η εξέλιξη της πλοκής είναι εξαιρετική, γενικά απρόβλεπτη και πραγματικά σ'ένα σημείο αγχώνεσαι για το που θα καταλήξει όλο το δράμα. Οι αιματηρές σκηνές είναι αρκετές και πολύ καλά δοσμένες. Η γραφή είναι πάρα πολύ καλή και ευκολοδιάβαστη, με ωραίες περιγραφές και πιστευτούς διαλόγους. Οι χαρακτήρες καλά σκιαγραφημένοι, καθημερινοί άνθρωποι και όχι σούπερ ήρωες ή τα τέλεια μυαλά, κάνουν τα λάθη τους. Η ατμόσφαιρα σίγουρα πολύ καλή, κάπως γκρίζα, λόγω και του καιρού. Το βιβλίο μεταφέρθηκε και στον κινηματογράφο το 1998 με σκηνοθέτη τον Sam Raimi και πρωταγωνιστές τους Bill Paxton, Bridget Fonda και Billy Bob Thornton και βλέπω στο IMDb ότι πρόκειται για μια ταινία εξίσου καλή με το βιβλίο. Θα την δω κάποια στιγμή, σίγουρα. Διαβάστε οπωσδήποτε αυτό το θρίλερ.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Strömquist

    The best thriller I know! Scott Smith managed to create a nail-bitingly tense thriller against a backdrop that feels totally ordinary and believable and at the same time bring in and describe moral dilemmas, actions and consequences in a way that that equals Joseph Heller. Make sure to watch the very good film after reading the brilliant book! This is for the translated book that I read the first time around, the text is really good and I would whole-heartedly recommend this edition.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Bill

    Excellent escapism! A man, his brother, and his friend discover a downed single-engine plane in the woods outside of town. The lone pilot is dead and in the back seat is 4 million dollars in cash. A roller coaster tale ensues as the three try to decide what to do with the money and events just snowball out of control. Written in the 1st person, I felt like a co-conspiritor with them. I wish I could find more novels like this one. It was so good I almost ate it.

  21. 4 out of 5

    debra

    Actually I saw the movie. I can see the movie after I've read the book but not vice-versa.Actually I should have never clicked read-but once again I don't know how to get rid of it now. Sorry -embarassed emoticon

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ben

    Half a damn masterpiece. Bleak and mournful, it plays more like a tragedy than a thriller. What makes the first half of the novel is so devastatingly good is its simplicity. Smith comes across as a natural, plainspoken storyteller and the 'simple plan' of the title makes for a tale of suspense grounded in character in which the tension mounts, relentlessly, to an almost unbearable level. That same simplicity allows the story to achieve an almost mythic resonance, deepening into a timeless tale o Half a damn masterpiece. Bleak and mournful, it plays more like a tragedy than a thriller. What makes the first half of the novel is so devastatingly good is its simplicity. Smith comes across as a natural, plainspoken storyteller and the 'simple plan' of the title makes for a tale of suspense grounded in character in which the tension mounts, relentlessly, to an almost unbearable level. That same simplicity allows the story to achieve an almost mythic resonance, deepening into a timeless tale of human folly and moral erosion. It's all so good that the flawed nature of the second half of the book is that much more disappointing. Additional complications are introduced, rather heavy-handedly, and the story becomes more implausible and less gripping at the same time. The final act is particularly ill-conceived, bordering on nonsensical. Smith does close the novel on a grace note- the final few pages are quietly haunting. Intriguingly, in the twenty-plus years since the publication of this, his first novel, Smith has published only one more novel, The Ruins.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kirstin

    Hank, his brother Jacob, and Jacob's best friend find the wreck of a small plane in the woods. The pilot is dead. Inside they find a bag of money. 4.3 million dollars. They devise a plan- stash the money away for 6 months, if no one comes looking for it they'll split it up. Simple. Right away things start to go wrong. Jacob and his friend Lou are not the brightest tools in the shed. Hank starts off as the level headed one and tries to keep his accomplices in check but this gets harder and harder Hank, his brother Jacob, and Jacob's best friend find the wreck of a small plane in the woods. The pilot is dead. Inside they find a bag of money. 4.3 million dollars. They devise a plan- stash the money away for 6 months, if no one comes looking for it they'll split it up. Simple. Right away things start to go wrong. Jacob and his friend Lou are not the brightest tools in the shed. Hank starts off as the level headed one and tries to keep his accomplices in check but this gets harder and harder to do. Hank's wife, Sarah is incredibly ruthless and now the cops are asking questions. Will they be able to keep the money and get away with the crime? The best part of the book is following Hank. He's the car crash you can't look away from. Overall a great story but I didn't get the suspenseful page-turner I expected until the end. The ending is amazing. 3.5 stars

  24. 4 out of 5

    Gary

    A simple plan is a simple story in which things go terribly wrong. A good read and makes you wonder how normal people can be capable of committing serious crimes through greed, fear and in order to survive. Bad decisions are made that cause life changing consequences.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Asghar Abbas

    Hauntingly beautiful, a true tale of horror about being human. Extremely well written and just excellent.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Vanessa

    4.5 Wow. Ripped through this audiobook in less than five days because the writing was high quality, the story was spectacular and the twists and turns kept me guessing. Oh and the ending was just as perfect as the sum of its parts. I am sure part of the reason I loved this so much is because I read it in the wake of a truly disappointing read (also a thriller) approved by the masses (i.e. NY Times Best Seller List). The writing was bad, the plot was far-fetched and contrived and the characters we 4.5 Wow. Ripped through this audiobook in less than five days because the writing was high quality, the story was spectacular and the twists and turns kept me guessing. Oh and the ending was just as perfect as the sum of its parts. I am sure part of the reason I loved this so much is because I read it in the wake of a truly disappointing read (also a thriller) approved by the masses (i.e. NY Times Best Seller List). The writing was bad, the plot was far-fetched and contrived and the characters were depthless. Here, it was the complete opposite. The writing was truly excellent (for being a thriller at least... this isn't Whitman or anything), the themes addressed objective and subjective morality in a philosophical yet simple way, and the characters were multi-faceted, recognizable and (scarily) relatable. This book is a stark reminder of the common man's tendency and compulsion to endlessly justify his contemptible actions in furtherance of his own self-interest at the expense of others. Recommending this perfect thriller to everyone I can. It's GREAT on audio.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Veeral

    A too simple story of crime and murder. That’s what I thought once I finished this book. I predicted each and every move of our anti-hero beforehand and was waiting for Scott Smith to catch-up. I don’t generally try to anticipate anything consciously whenever I am reading fiction as it would suck the joy out of it. But as it happened, I always knew precisely what was going to happen next. The story was that predictable. It seemed to me that Scott Smith had only one solution for the plight of his A too simple story of crime and murder. That’s what I thought once I finished this book. I predicted each and every move of our anti-hero beforehand and was waiting for Scott Smith to catch-up. I don’t generally try to anticipate anything consciously whenever I am reading fiction as it would suck the joy out of it. But as it happened, I always knew precisely what was going to happen next. The story was that predictable. It seemed to me that Scott Smith had only one solution for the plight of his anti-hero. I wouldn’t say outright what the solution was as I don’t want to spoil anything for someone who might want to read this in future, but once you have read this, you would know what I am talking about. Also, I thought that the book was way too lengthy. It’s not the taut crime-thriller one might expect by reading the blurb. Chopping off 100 pages might have done justice to the storyline. This was by no means bad, but it fell short on my expectations. I would recommend reading The Ax by Donald E. Westlake instead. It’s unpredictable and not needlessly lengthy, just how an ideal crime fiction book should be. 3 stars

  28. 5 out of 5

    Παναγιώτης Δεληγιάννης

    Το βιβλίο έπεσε τυχαία στα χέρια μου και νιώθω τυχερός που έγινε αυτό. Ξεκινάει δυναμικά και από σελίδα σε σελίδα γίνεται όλο και πιο πολύπλοκο, όλο και πιο αγχωτικό. Άραγε θα έρθει η λύτρωση για τον ήρωα? Θα καταπιαστώ με την ηθική πλευρά του ζητήματος? Εσείς τι θα κάνατε αν έπεφταν στα χέρια σας 4.800.000 ευρώ, τα οποία είναι προιόν εγκλήματος? Μέχρι που θα φτάνατε για να τα κρατήσετε? Θα είχατε ηθικούς φραγμούς ή θα κάνατε τα πάντα, θα γινόσασταν ανεξέλεγκτοι? Θα σχεδιάζατε την μελλοντική σας ζωή π Το βιβλίο έπεσε τυχαία στα χέρια μου και νιώθω τυχερός που έγινε αυτό. Ξεκινάει δυναμικά και από σελίδα σε σελίδα γίνεται όλο και πιο πολύπλοκο, όλο και πιο αγχωτικό. Άραγε θα έρθει η λύτρωση για τον ήρωα? Θα καταπιαστώ με την ηθική πλευρά του ζητήματος? Εσείς τι θα κάνατε αν έπεφταν στα χέρια σας 4.800.000 ευρώ, τα οποία είναι προιόν εγκλήματος? Μέχρι που θα φτάνατε για να τα κρατήσετε? Θα είχατε ηθικούς φραγμούς ή θα κάνατε τα πάντα, θα γινόσασταν ανεξέλεγκτοι? Θα σχεδιάζατε την μελλοντική σας ζωή πάνω σε προδοσίες και πτώματα ανθρώπων? Μία συγκλονιστική ιστορία, μία ιστορία που ξεκινάει γλυκά με την εμφάνιση των χρημάτων και την ουτοπική υπόσχεση για ένα ευκολότερο μέλλον και σε ταξιδεύει. Μέχρι την στιγμή που πεθαίνει ο πρώτος άνθρωπος και αρχίζει η κατρακύλα. Να το διαβάσετε. Ύστερα από αυτό το βιβλίο, πιστεύω πως όλοι μας πρέπει να ξανασκεφτούμε τα πράγματα που πραγματικά αξίζουν στην ζωή. Την αγάπη,την φιλία, την οικογένεια, την ανθρωπιά.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Brittany

    This book gets 5 stars from me because it was thought provoking and also extremely gripping. This was one of those books I stayed up until the early hours reading. The basic plot is fascinating and I had a good time posing the question to some friends and family members what they would do in a similar situation. My opinion of what I would do changed drastically by the end of the book and actually had an impact in my life about the relationship between money and happiness Did I agree with all of This book gets 5 stars from me because it was thought provoking and also extremely gripping. This was one of those books I stayed up until the early hours reading. The basic plot is fascinating and I had a good time posing the question to some friends and family members what they would do in a similar situation. My opinion of what I would do changed drastically by the end of the book and actually had an impact in my life about the relationship between money and happiness Did I agree with all of the choices made by the main characters? NO - but I just went with it and had fun along the journey. It was a little dark but nothing too disturbing (I am sensitive to books that are too graphic/dark in tone)

  30. 4 out of 5

    Thomas Todd

    I seen this movie several years ago when it originally released. Like all movies a person likes if there was a book that the movie was based off of it is generally much better than the movie. This book was no different. It was full of moral decisions that one must live with upon making your choice one way or the other. I found myself knowing where we were heading in the plot, and not just from remembering the movie. You seemed to expect what was going to happen next, yet the book had that suspen I seen this movie several years ago when it originally released. Like all movies a person likes if there was a book that the movie was based off of it is generally much better than the movie. This book was no different. It was full of moral decisions that one must live with upon making your choice one way or the other. I found myself knowing where we were heading in the plot, and not just from remembering the movie. You seemed to expect what was going to happen next, yet the book had that suspenseful aspect that you wanted to keep reading to see what would happen next. Crime, money and murder. I enjoyed this book and would recommend to others.

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