Robert Lloyd Fish was born on the 12th of August, 1912, in Cleveland, Ohio, United States of America. Fish was a prominent American writer of crime fiction novels.
Fish was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. He went to the Case School of Applied Science, studying engineering. He graduated in the year of 1933. After graduating, Fish had a very successful career in consultancy and engineering management. He worked in a number of different countries – these same countries would one day become the settings for his short stories and novels.
In 1962, Robert L. Fish was awarded the Edgar Allan Poe Award for best first novel – The Fugitive – by the Mystery Writers of America. Subsequently, in 1972, he was awarded another Edgar Allan Poe Award, this time for the best short story – Moonlight Gardener. A number of his short stories were nominated for other Edgar Allan Poe Awards, but they didn’t make the cut.
In 1960, during his time in Rio de Janeiro, Fish felt confident and published his first short story.
It was a sad day in February of 1981, when Fish was found dead at his home in Trumbull, Connecticut.
With all that said, we would like to now see what the best Robert L. Fish books are.
The story follows Helmut von Schraeder. Helmut used to be the most infamous war criminal, serving as a Nazi SS colonel. He was the man in charge of murdering Jewish mechanics at Maidonek.
However, the time hasn’t been very kind to Helmut, or should we say Benjamin Grossman? Benjamin Grossman is one of the greatest Israeli heroes, someone that survived the damnable concentration camps, and became one of the most prominent military leaders for Israel. There is a bit of a problem, here, though. Grossman and Schraeder are the one and the same man.
Schraeder actually succeeded in going from being a fiendish Nazi war criminal to becoming a Jew.
In 1944, sensing the impending downfall of Germany, Schraeder made the choice to change his identity by having plastic surgery. He easily acquired sufficient papers to be filed as a Jewish inmate at Neunengame concentration camp, soon to be liberated by the Allies.
In a number of off-shore or Swiss bank accounts, he had stored a lot of money, wanting to, upon liberation, to flee to wherever he might want. However, things soon go awry and he finds himself in Palestine, of all places.
The story is a thrilling one, complex, but extremely enjoyable to read. Schraeder bleeds through the pages. Definitely one of the best Robert L. Fish books.
Infamous gangster kingpin named Johnny Rossi is the main character. Johnny is called to testify against the associates he has in the crime syndicate. It has become the case that Johnny is the number one witness for the government. Lieutenant Clancy is the one tasked with keeping him safe.
The District Attorney, Chalmers, doesn’t think that divulging important information such as why Rossi came back from California to New York just to testify, and why his testimony is of such paramount significance, so Clancy is in the blue concerning all these things. However, soon things start going awry, and Clancy does all that he can to keep Rossi safe. As he does so, the secrets begin to see the light of day, and they are singularly insidious.
Clancy is a rough, manly, jaded, and worn-out detective trying to do his job. The men that fall under his command in the district are almost always incapable of doing their job in a proper manner. Coupled with the fact that Chalmers keeps precious information from him, we can see why Clancy is so tough a man.
As things go on, Clancy, it is slowly revealed to us, isn’t really a special man, but just knows how to do his job the right way. And someone that knows how to do his job is just what Rossi needs to stay alive.
The Bagel Street Book Series
Fish’s Bagel Street Series is only comprised of two books, but their weight is a marked one. The two books are without a doubt some of the best books by Robert L. Fish. The duology is comprised of the following books:
- The Incredible Schlock Homes, published in 1965.
- The Memoirs of Schlock Homes, published in 1974.
The collections feature wonderful parodies of the Sherlock Holmes stories. The first book, The Incredible Schlock Homes, features twelve parody stories, starring main character Schlock Homes. Schlock’s friends are doctor Watney, Mrs. Essex, Criscroft Homes – the brother of Schlock. The more that one is familiar with the Arthur Conan Doyle novels and stories of Sherlock Holmes, the more that one will enjoy these stories.
Schlock and Doctor Watney go through the odd yellow fog present in London so as to find where the most dangerous, dastardly, fiendish villain of England is located – Professor Marty. Homes does battle with his infamous nemesis, Colonel Moron, too. Everyone’s favorite Holmes characters and villains are portrayed in the trademark parodic manner that only Fish could make seem so fluid.
Even if you ignore the fact that they’re parodies, the merits of the stories are great, too! They are, in their own ways, masterpieces of storytelling.
The Gold of Troy, The Murder League, and The Hochmann Miniatures, are books from Robert L. Fish that are sure to amaze readers. They are great in their own ways, but the three that were reviewed above are our own definitive picks for the best Robert L. Fish books.
Books and Authors From the Same Genre
Barry Eisler was born in the year of 1964, in New Jersey, United States of America. While the date of Barry’s birth isn’t exactly a known fact, we do know that he is, at the moment of writing, aged fifty-four. Barry is a best-selling American author. He is most well-known for his John Rain series, but his Ben Treven series is also a prominent one in the thriller genre.
Barry was born in New Jersey. His mother was an environmental activist, while his father was a wholesale office supplier. In the year of 1989, Eisler graduated from the Cornell Law School. Upon graduating from law school, Barry was recruited for the CIA. He trained for a period of three years, after which he held a high position with the Directorate of Operations. However, in 1992, Barry took it to himself to resign from his CIA career. Instead, he joined the law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges.
In 1994, Barry relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area so as to work for the technology license division of the same law firm. It has become clear that what we will be concerning ourselves with today will be seeing what the best Barry Eisler books are. Let us commence.
The John Rain Series
- A Clean Kill in Tokyo, published in 2002, under the title Rain Fall.
- A Lonely Resurrection, published in 2003.
- Winner Takes All, published in 2004.
- Redemption Games, published in 2005.
- Extremis, published in 2006.
- The Killer Ascendant, published in 2007.
- The Detachment, published in 2011.
- Graveyard of Memories, published in 2014.
- Zero Sum, published in 2017.
- The Killer Collective, published in 2019.
The first book, A Clean Kill in Tokyo, is where we meet the ever-charismatic, dashing, yet silent assassin John Rain. Even if one isn’t too fond of assassins as main characters, we encourage them to just take the time to try out a John Rain book, preferably this one. It really is that good.
Throughout all of the books, there is a certain permeating sense of loneliness that is nearly tangible. John embodied what a true cold-hearted assassin ought to be. In tandem, the Tokyo landscapes are also just superb. The noir setting along the brightness of the nightlife makes for an invigorating juxtaposition.
If one is through with the ‘goody-goody two-shoes’ kind of protagonists, then John is the one to follow. He’s barely even a hero. He isn’t a bad man, per se, but rarely does an anti-hero dance around that line quite as much as John does. The series has some of the best thriller books, let alone some of the best Barry Eisler books.
The Livia Lone Series
- Livia Lone, which was published in 2016.
- The Night Trade, published in 2018.
- The Killer Collective, published in 2019.
- All the Devils, published in 2019.
Livia Lone, the first of the series, is a genuinely tenebrous – in terms of content – and harrowing book. What keeps the reader going even after one has reconciled with the fact that this is no lightweight or frivolous story, is the main character, Livia, and the exceptional storytelling that Eisler employs.
Livia is a truly intriguing character, and the fact that the reader is given this knowledge in barely a few minutes after starting the book, is what makes her stick with the reader even months after setting the book down. The raw passion adopted and expressed by Livia make her a character that stands out, not just a character that ought to stand out. Future installments see Livia grow even more as the brave, intelligent character that she is.
The manner in which Eisler writes the action scenes, the suspense that enshrouds the story prior to the revelations, the subtle intricacies of all the characters, in all of the books, make these one of best Barry Eisler books.
The Ben Treven Series
- Fault Line, published in 2009.
- Inside Out, published in 2010.
- The Detachment, published in 2011.
- The Killer Collective, published in 2019.
Fault Line sees attorney Alex Treven living a rather simple life. He wakes up in the house where he grew up, goes to work as a singularly ambitious attorney, comes back to his home, sleeps, and repeat. However, a certain case comes up and it might just be Alex’s opportunity to sit among the big dogs in his law firm. His client, however, is killed and Alex’s life is threatened – as lives are wont to be threatened when such high stakes are under place. He calls upon Ben. Ben doesn’t live the simple life of Alex. He’s a contract killer, in fact. He wakes up in an arbitrary city, kills an arbitrary person he’s been paid for, and goes on to the next arbitrary city, kills, and repeat. Even though the two haven’t had contact with each other for about six years, Ben is there for his brother.
The main characters of the book aren’t perfect. They’re flawed, but that’s what allows for the realism of the story. They’re all a bit stuck-up, self-righteous, but that’s what enables the story to have a driving force, albeit an irritable one. Now, to address the elephant in the room. We’ve mentioned The Detachment and The Killer Collective on more than one occasion.
In truth, The Detachment sees the worlds of John Rain and Ben Treven, amongst other irregular characters, collide. It is one of the most intense action-heavy stories that Eisler has written. The Killer Collective, however, sees the whole cast come together. Even the irregular characters like Delilah and Dox are incorporated. As such, the books are some of Barry Eisler’s best books.
The God’s Eye View
One of Eisler’s stand-alone novels, The God’s Eye View was published in 2016. The book sees Eisler taking a breather from the long-running, heavy-hitting series that he is famous for, and writing a superb one-off.
We have Evelyn Gallagher as the protagonist in this story. She is an NSA Analyst, divorced. She has a son, Dash, who is, unfortunately, deaf and she’s left caring for him every waking minute that she gets. Her work involves the creation of face-recognition and camera-recognition programs, but a mistake is liable to happen even to the best of us. She informs the Director of the program that she has her own suspicions regarding the ‘mistake’. Sure enough, she’s stumbled onto something that she wasn’t supposed to.
The director has her fears quiet her fears, but he has her watched. We learn that some other investigators have come up dead, all with connections to the program. After we learn of what the God’s Eye is actually about, we see the director trying to keep it under wraps, determined to stop anyone from in his path. One of the most significant books that Eisler has written. Thought-provoking and thrilling stories that the author has penned. Truly one of Barry Eisler’s best books.
London Twist by Eisler was published in 2013. Another stand-alone novel by Eisler, but a familiar face is here with us. Delilah is a Mossad agent, but instead of going for straight murder in the manner that Rain does, Delilah opts to seduce her hits. In the John Rain series, she was his lover.
In this story, however, she is being contracted by the MI6. Her objective, at hand, is to infiltrate a network of terror. This particular one is operating out of the world’s greatest cities – London. If she doesn’t succeed in her mission, many lives will be lost at the hands of poison gas attacks on the civilian population.
There is, however, a small catch. Her current target isn’t the male target she’s used to, but a woman. This woman, named Fatima, is just as intelligent, cunning, attractive and determined as Delilah is. Being that her expectations and customary activities have been, in more senses than one, subverted, Delilah is left completely out of her element. There comes even a point of mutual attraction and tension between the two femmes; it culminates with their respective first sexual encounter with a person of the same sex as them.
No other book explores quite as much what it takes to be what Delilah is, how she is, and, to quote a popular movie, why she is. The expert quill of Eisler has written many books, all of which are sure to slake the thrilling thirst of readers. Ones of best Barry Eisler’s books are: The Khmer Kill and The Lost Coast.