The Dispatcher: A Novel

Paperback | December 27, 2011

byRyan David Jahn

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From the author of the award-winning debut crime novel Good Neighbors-a white-knuckle thriller about the lengths a man will go to for his daughter.

The phone rings. It's your daughter. She's been dead for four months.

So begins East Texas police dispatcher Ian Hunt's fight to get his daughter back. The call is cut off by the man who snatched her from her bedroom seven years ago, and a basic description of the kidnapper is all Ian has to go on. What follows is a bullet-strewn cross-country chase from Texas to California along Interstate 10- a wild ride in a 1965 Mustang that passes through the outlaw territory of No Country for Old Men and is shot through with moments of macabre violence that call to mind the novels of Thomas Harris.

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From the Publisher

From the author of the award-winning debut crime novel Good Neighbors-a white-knuckle thriller about the lengths a man will go to for his daughter. The phone rings. It's your daughter. She's been dead for four months. So begins East Texas police dispatcher Ian Hunt's fight to get his daughter back. The call is cut off by the man ...

Ryan David Jahn grew up in Arizona, Texas, and California. He left school at sixteen to work in a record store and subsequently joined the army. Since 2004 he has worked in television and film. His first novel, Good Neighbors, won the Crime Writers' Association John Creasy (New Blood) Dagger Award. Jahn lives in Los Angeles with his wi...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 7.76 × 5.09 × 0.66 inPublished:December 27, 2011Publisher:Penguin Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0143120700

ISBN - 13:9780143120704

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Customer Reviews of The Dispatcher: A Novel

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fast-Paced, Edge of Your Seat Read Reason for Reading: I love a good thriller and the publisher's summary pulled me into giving this one a go. When I sat down to start reading this book which has closer to 400 pages than 300, it was early in the morning and little did I know I would be in the same spot that evening tapping to the final pages of this addictive read. My back was sore, my thumb ached (from tapping pages on my Kindle Touch) but I had just been on the most thrilling ride of my recent reading life. I've read some pretty good books this year; 186 and counting so far with many 4 and 5 star rated reads but it has been quite some time since I read a thriller in one day and felt like I was on the edge of my seat the whole way through! The story only takes place over several days, four or five I'm guessing. Again this is a mystery where the reader knows the culprit and the thrill is first in watching the police discover who he is and then once he becomes known a wild cross country chase takes place which keeps the pulse rate high and the chest tight. The narrative switches points of view between the father, the daughter and the kidnapper; each starting at different points in time to get the background story told but they do quickly join up so that the narratives flow together in the present. I love this approach when we know who the culprit/killer is, as getting inside his head/mindset is very intriguing. Jahn has written one of those books that you pick up and just cannot put down until you finish. The pace is fast, the writing sparse, dialogue driven, the plot includes both violence and unexpected twists, no one is safe and the ending feels like it could only have been that way. This would make a good movie! And I am going to read Jahn's first book "Good Neighbours" as soon as I can, which has been compared to Hitchcock for it's suspense!
Date published: 2012-08-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WHAT A RIDE!! Wow. Just an absolutely great story by an author I'd never heard of before (was on display in the library) about a man who is down & out 7 years after his daughter was kidnapped but who will now stop at nothing to get her back when he finds out she is still alive... loved how his "lengths" matched off against his adversary's capacity for unlimited violence to keep his wife happy.
Date published: 2012-04-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Gritty read Okay, it was the tag line on the cover of The Dispatcher that grabbed me first.... "The phone rings. It's your daughter. She's been dead for four months." ....and the story held me gripped until the last page. Ian Hunt is a police dispatcher in a small town in Texas. That frantic, fateful call is from his daughter Maggie, who disappeared seven years ago and was finally declared dead. Maggie manages to get out a brief description of the man who has taken her, but not his name, before the call is cut off..... Ian has existed, but not lived for the last seven years. The call galvanizes him and while the county and town police forces are bickering about jurisdiction, sets off to find his daughter and bring her home. Right from the start, we are privy to all the information that Ian doesn't have. We know that the kidnapper is named Henry and where Maggie is being held. Jahn takes us inside the minds of each of the main characters. Henry's mindset is truly frightening. He's done all this because he loves his wife, not for himself. Maggie's terror is palpable and heartbreaking, she has survived for seven years locked in a basement except for that brief taste of freedom. She is sure her Daddy will come for her. Ian is now a single minded entity, bent on getting Maggie back at all costs. He has taken the law into his own hands. Quite literally. There was a scene in the book that quite reminded me of Reservoir Dogs. "There was a time, and not long ago, when he would not have been capable of doing what he plans on doing here tonight, if he has to, but that time has gone, a small moment in his past that gets smaller as he moves further from it and into the future." The bleakness and hardscrabble of the settings was used very effectively to mirror the emotions and thoughts of the players. Ryan David Jahn's book is a no holds barred ride barrelling down a gritty dirt road. The story line is not a new idea (young women being held captive for years is unfortunately true) but Jahn has put his own spin on it and crafted a page turner. (one you'll probably devour in a day). My one complaint - I hate open endings. Those looking for a thriller that will keep you turning pages will find it here. Reader be warned - there are some violent scenes. In fact, it almost has the feel of a Bruce Willis action film.
Date published: 2012-02-16

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Editorial Reviews

"Violent, vivid, and disturbing, The Dispatcher is a stomach churner. If you want a book that grabs you-almost chokes you-and won't let go, this is it. But it should come with a warning label: Caution, a serious writer at work." -Ridley Pearson, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Killer  Summer"The Dispatcher grabs the reader on page one and never lets go. It's a classic yet bracingly contemporary story of kidnapping, violence, and a father's ferocious courage." — Jonathan Santlofer, author of Anatomy of Fear"A well-written, fast-paced book . . . along the order of Quentin Tarantino and with a long and bloody trail to the end." — Charlaine Harris, bestselling author of the Sookie Stackhouse series"Reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy's tales of vengeance, The Dispatcher is an impressively accomplished performance that never strains for mythic power but nevertheless acquires it." — Sunday Times (London)"The breathless pace virtually demands a single-sitting read. . . . Over the past few years a new generation of crime writers has come perilously close to recreating the jaded mindset of the classic noir thrillers, but no one has succeeded quite like Jahn. . . . [He] leads the new noir pack with a series of palm-sweating situations that pay homage to the classics of the genre while feeling entirely fresh." — Financial Times"Reads at a cracking pace [and] is a one-sitting, fist-in-mouth read." — The Guardian"A cross between Richard Ford and James Patterson . . . I guarantee that if you pick this up, then everything else in your life will immediately be pushed to the margins. . . . If you only read one book tomorrow, make it this one." — Dylan Jones, editor of GQ, in The Mail on Sunday"A nerve-shredding thriller with plenty of energy and a tight plot." — Big Issue"Tense, thrilling. Jahn has written a real page-turner, well crafted with convincing characters and an involving plot." — We Love This Book"Near pitch perfect . . . An adrenaline-pumped storyline and one that will leave you with your lower jaw resting on your chest. I don't believe anyone else is offering Jahn's insight and style of writing today. . . . [His] clipped and economical prose is to the bone. . . . Make sure you allocate sufficient hours to read in one sitting." — Rhian Davies, It's a Crime!"Talk about page-turning . . . Jahn is the fastest rising star in the ever-competitive crime fiction world." — Daily Mirror, Book of the Week