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Out of Sight Paperback – April 14, 2009

4 out of 5 stars 96 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

When Jack Foley, a career bank robber, surfaces after tunneling out of a medium-security penitentiary in Florida, he comes face to face with Karen Sisco, a beautiful federal marshal. Though the barrel of her shotgun is pointed right at his face, she doesn't shoot, and Foley's accomplice, Buddy, overpowers her and puts her in the trunk of a car. Foley gets in with her and the car takes off, the escapee seemingly home free. In the cramped darkness of the trunk, the criminal and marshal find they have much in common and by the time the car reaches its destination, the two have become infatuated with each other. After Karen manages to escape, she and Foley try to reconnect outside the confining roles of kidnapper and victim. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Meanwhile, three other Leonard books, Last Stand at Saber River, Touch and Pronto, are in film or TV production.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (April 14, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061740314
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061740312
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (96 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,195,316 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Elmore Leonard wrote forty-five novels and nearly as many western and crime short stories across his highly successful career that spanned more than six decades. Some of his bestsellers include Road Dogs, Up in Honey's Room, The Hot Kid, Mr. Paradise, Tishomingo Blues, and the critically acclaimed collection of short stories Fire in the Hole. Many of his books have been made into movies, including Get Shorty, Out of Sight, and Rum Punch, which became Quentin Tarantino's Jackie Brown. Justified, the hit series from FX, is based on Leonard's character Raylan Givens, who appears in Riding the Rap, Pronto, Raylan and the short story "Fire in the Hole". He was a recipient of the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, the Lifetime Achievement Award from PEN USA, and the Grand Master Award of the Mystery Writers of America. He was known to many as the 'Dickens of Detroit' and was a long-time resident of the Detroit area.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you have never read Elmore Leonard, this is a good place to start. A bank robber named Jack Foley escapes from prison with the help of his longtime partner Buddy. Federal marshall Karen Sisco attempts to stop the escape, but Buddy thwarts her attempt and forces her into the trunk of the getaway car with Foley. In the trunk, Foley and Sisco make a connection talking about things like robbing banks and movies. Soon, Sisco gets away, and the remaining story centers on Foley attempting one last job and Sisco trying to catch him (all the while dealing with the romantic and emotional connection that she shares with Foley).

The story is pretty darn good. And there is a wide range of characters with well drawn criminals ranging from silly, all talk screw-ups like a stoner named Glenn to a real violent, psychotic bad guy named Maurice. The dialogue is funny, and the very quick, clever twists of story/plot make the story a pretty good, engaging read.

This novel was later made into a movie by Steven Soderbergh. Even though the book is good, the movie is much better. While the tone and story are pretty similar, Soderbergh makes some welcome changes. First of all, the Leonard novel is told pretty straightforward. Soderbergh, however, mixes up the narrative using flashbacks that allow Soderbergh to develop the characters. Also, Soderbergh enhances certain scenes by adding suspense and humor (such as the climax that is really suspenseful and hilarious in the movie but by-the-numbers in the book). Finally, the film is shot well and features one great performance after another (George Clooney, Jennifer Lopez, Don Cheadle, Steve Zahn, Ving Rhames, Dennis Farina, Albert Brooks, Catherine Keener, Luis Guzman).
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Format: Hardcover
Starting in a Florida prison, the opening few chapters of OUT OF SIGHT are set as a frenetic pace as bank robber extraordinaire, Jack Foley plans and executes a daring escape. Helping him in his bid for freedom is his former partner in crime, Buddy who is waiting with a car in the prison car park. Also waiting in the car park happens to be US Marshall Karen Sisco who is sitting in her car, preparing to enter the facility when Foley makes his unexpected appearance. Quickly overpowering her, they stuff her in the trunk of her car with Foley climbing in behind her and Buddy slipping behind the wheel to affect the getaway.
Unbelievably cool in the crisis involved in the jail break, Foley attempts to engage Karen in conversation, even wondering aloud whether it might be possible, if circumstances were different, for the two of them to become attracted to one another. Karen of course is incredulous and wants nothing to do with the escaped prisoner, apart from capturing him and delivering him back to prison. Thinking on the events later, after escaping from Buddy and Foley, she does find herself impressed with Foley's cool head under pressure.
There is a brief lull in the action as we recover from the excitement of the opening scenes and the thought of the next score is placed in Foley's head. This takes the form of a robbery target in Detroit, supposedly a low-risk venture made easier by some local help. After narrowly escaping capture from the US Marshalls that includes another run-in with Karen Sisco, he decides that it's time for a change of scenery and he and Buddy heads north.
By this time, it becomes obvious that there's some sort of weird fascination between Jack Foley and Karen Sisco taking place.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I've read about half of Elmore Leonard's novels and still think this is his best. Get Shorty may be his most entertaining and funny, but Out of Sight combines all of Leonard's best features in one novel. His dialog, one of his strongest points, crackles at his best. His cast of characters includes the usual misfits and freaks, but here they range from pathetically funny to unusually scary. Jack and Karen, his lead characters, are well developed and believable, and you root for them both from their first appearance. The plot moves at a steady pace; not breakneck, but it builds to a perfect crescendo. And Leonard's toolkit to fold in backstory to develop his characters is never more effective. If you've never read Leonard, this is the one to try first. If you like Leonard and haven't read this one, do yourself a favor and buy it.
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Format: Audible Audio Edition
OUT OF SIGHT by Elmore Leonard.

Jack has robbed hundreds of banks. He's smooth, charming, and likeable when talking to the tellers he's robbing. Karen is a Deputy U.S. Marshall. She arrived at the prison to deliver something and is getting out of her car when she sees Jack crawl out of a tunnel. He has just escaped and his getaway driver Buddy is parked next to Karen. They take Karen with them so she can't help authorities catch them. Jack gets into the trunk with Karen while Buddy drives. They have a nice conversation for about a half an hour in the trunk. Certain events happen, Karen gets free, and Jack misses her. He wants to spend time with her. He keeps thinking about what it would be like if they had met in a bar, what they would have said, what would have happened, etc. Karen gets herself assigned to the task force trying to catch Jack.

I was smiling many times during this book. I kept shaking my head with Jack's thinking and actions. He wanted to date her! He actually had contact with Karen more than once while she was trying to catch him. I've never read anything like this before. It was great because it was different, and unexpected things happened. I really liked both of these characters, Jack and Karen.

Because I was smiling so much, I wanted to give this 5 stars. But I didn't because 5 stars for me needs a wonderful feeling at the end of the book. But that kind of ending could not be. He is a career criminal. At one point he said talk about an honest job to a criminal and he'll jump out the window. She has integrity, and her job is important to her. They cannot have a happy ending together. But they care about each other.
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