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The Ultimate Rush Mass Market Paperback – October, 1999

4.4 out of 5 stars 80 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

If you thought Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock on a bus was thrilling, wait until you meet Chet Griffin, the hero of Joe Quirk's first novel, The Ultimate Rush. Chet makes his living as the only rollerblading courier in San Francisco, a job that entails screaming down steep hills at high speeds; dodging automobiles, pedestrians, and streetcars; and delivering, among other things, highly illegal stock information all around town. Enter the Chinese Mafia who, for reasons we won't get into here, consider Griffin a threat; suddenly our hero-on-wheels is in mortal danger from more than just a traffic accident. Targeted by a gang of Chinese killers, Griffin and his girlfriend, Ho, careen through a series of high-speed chases and narrow escapes before finally turning the tables on their tormentors in a bloody, but highly original, finale. What makes The Ultimate Rush such a hoot is the way Quirk piles one thriller-genre cliché after another onto his plot, then puts his own quirky twist on them. Hackers, skateboarders, crooked cops, and Chinese assassins keep Chet and Ho hopping and the reader happily going along for the wild ride from first page to last. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Check out Chet Griffin! He's a tattooed, snake-owning, San Francisco-dwelling, way attitudinous dude! He works as a Rollerblade messenger by day and surfs the Internet as an outlaw computer hacker by night until his courier job?combined with his relentless pursuit of the ultimate adrenaline high?gets him mixed up in an illegal investment scheme. Soon the Chinese and Italian mafias, the police and the FCIC (Federal Computer Investigations Committee) are chasing him and his punk-rock girlfriend through the streets, the sewers and the public transportation system of his native city. Chet may be little more than an amalgam of Generation X stereotypes, and the contrived plot leans a little heavily on previous cyberthrillers like Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash and extreme-sports action movies like Point Break, but Quirk knows how to keep an action plot twisting along, and his relentlessly bubbly, hip one-liners hit as often as they miss. Readers who don't mind MTV and ESPN2 cliches will enjoy the amusement park of a plot, a handful of engaging characters?particularly Chet's wheelchair-bound roommate?and some memorable wisecracks. Major ad/promo; author tour; audio rights to S&S.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (October 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312969023
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312969028
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,787,205 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
Oh my god, what a ride! The genius of what "Joe Quirk" has done is all the more amazing when you consider the fact that this book actually got published. I was beginning to think it was impossible to find a book by a contemporary author about characters other than the disillusioned middle and upper classes. As far as I know there has never been a book about this particular iteration of the nihilist fringe element in our society. The author doesn't let up on those of us who are unschooled in the jargon of "badass" bladers, skate boarders, etc. and I couldn't have been happier. READ it for its originality and for the love the author put into it even if you don't think you have anything in common with people with blue hair and pierced bodies. It has been a revelation. I could go on and on, this book excites me so, but I'll just try to chill and wait for Mr. Quirk's next book.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Okay, let's just accept the fact that, well, there are no facts in this book. Joe Quirk has admitted that he knows nothing about either inline skating or computer hacking and his writing backs him up on this. His mistakes are laughable, from his dearth of knowledge about the laws of physics to the fiberglass wheels he places on the bottoms of his character's skates (which would shatter under punishment of riding San Francisco's hills) to the impossible computer programs his characters write to his complete botch-up of the retail distribution methods of crack cocaine.
But you have to decide why you are reading this book. Is it to gain factual information regarding the underground life of messengers? I propose not. Is it to experience a realistic trip through cyberspace? I hope not. Or is it to take a breathtaking journey through the fictional San Francisco in Joe Quirk's mind? If that's your goal, then you will not be disappointed.
Upon reading the first three pages of "The Ultimate Rush", I was feeling likeI had been punched in the stomach. I was breathless, tense and shaking, as though I had shared Chet Griffin's ride to the Mission from on high. I have not read anything that gripping or funny since the first three pages of Neal Stephenson's "Snow Crash".
Sadly, or perhaps fortunately, Quirk cannot maintain the adrenaline rush of his opening chapter (I say fortunately, because I would not have survived the novel at that opening pace), but he does settle into a rather nice little thriller, one that is chilling, amusing and exciting and just plain fun. I kept reading deep into the night, hoping to regain that cherry high of the opening. I wasn't disappointed.
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By A Customer on September 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Haha...first lemme point out, I find my review title funny. Wow, I crack myself up. Anyhoo...this book, The Ultimate Rush, my friend Alicia and I read it and wow, did it give us something to gawk at or what. I'm still passing it around my circle of friends as well, who would all comment well on it. We find ourselves now using clever lines flourished from the author Joe Quirk's head, and refer to it even as the "Bible" on some occasions, considering we follow up on it for quirky lines and thanks to Ho, fashion statements. Not only has this book opened my eyes to more comedic and real-time thoughts, thanks to sarcastic lead character Chet Griffen, a hacker turned ex hacker turned blader boy hacker with some serious issues when it comes down to love life, making rent, and choosing television channels with his roommate and disabled buddy Denny. Not ONLY do things get worse when his lesbian friend Ho breaks up with her girl, and Chet realizes that he's got the hots for her, but also when this simple messenger guy becomes the hunted by the hunter, which not surprisingly turns out to be the Chinese mafia! I dunno about you, but this is simply one paragraph, and already I'm feeling the need to re-read the book for the hundredth time. Anyway, pick up the book...I got it for cheap because the boneheads that call themselves book critics can't tell the difference between shat and THE SHAT (I'll make it past tense so my review will be read), so spare a few bucks and give this excellent bundle of paper and ink a try, and trust me: You'll soon be left feeling the average Joe's ultimate rush.
Haha...I did it again. Go me. And go READERS and pick up the book already!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you are the type of person who doesn't like books that are not "realistic", then you shouldn't read this book, as the whole thing is really over the top. However, if you enjoy a ballistic plot, highly original characters and lots of fun and laughs along the way, then you should definitely read it. Chet is just an "ordinary" guy who gets accidentaly mixed up in a life and death struggle against the Cineese mafia, putting himself and his friends at risk. What follows is some fast and furious action that is fun but borders an the absurd at times. Eventually the battle moves to cyberspace, and another foe - MP Phred joins the mix. Somewhere along the line the plot gets muddled with too many bad guys and too much going on, but plows forward on sheer adrenalin. The characters are very original and there are lots of funny exchanges between them throughout. The writing style is very fresh and enthusiastic adding to the fun. So yes, it does have its flaws, many courtesy of its over-enthusiasum but it is also that same enthusiasum that makes for an exciting, fun, original experience.
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