Book Review – Noble Man by William Miller

My first experience of William Miller’s writings was when I read and reviewed his excellent “Crafting Fiction Volume 1: Hard-Boiled Outlines.” During the course of the review, I stated “On a side note, I’ve just purchased “Noble Man,” Miller’s first Jake Noble thriller so I can see how the author puts theory into practice.” Well, I’ve read it, enjoyed it, and this is my review.

Here’s the Goodreads / Amazon blurb:

Jake Noble, Special Forces veteran and ex-CIA operative, is living on his boat, trying to scrape together enough money for his mother’s cancer treatments. When the Agency offers him 150k dollars to track down a missing girl, Noble has no choice but to delve back into the seedy underbelly of Manila’s sex trade.

With the clock ticking on the girl’s life, Noble will need all of his old skills to survive. Every move he makes unravels another deadly secret and what he finds goes deeper than a random kidnapping…

I try to balance the good and the bad where necessary when I write a review. I’m not afraid to complain about something I didn’t like when needed. That being said it’s confession time. I honestly didn’t think I was going to like the book. I found Miller’s short, staccato Hemingway-esque sentences to be a little off-putting at first, but once I got into the story and stopped reading like a writer, I hardly noticed them. In fact, as the action and tension mounted to a crescendo, they added to the drama and backed up everything Miller talked about in his hardboiled outlines book. Other than that I have nothing negative to offer.

“Noble Man” is a fast-paced, all-action page-turner. Combine that with Miller’s first-rate storytelling and smooth prose and you have a surefire winner. The story is so well written cinematically that I could see the action taking place on the projector screen of my imagination. I know from firsthand experience that fights, car crashes, and shootouts are not easy scenes to write effectively but Miller pulls them off with ease, and aplomb. If you’re a fan of Jack Reacher and Jason Bourne, you’ll love Jake Noble.

The chief protagonist, Jake Noble, is a flawed, hardboiled, rough-and-ready, but likable badass. My kind of character! He’s not just tough, he has a compassionate side as well. The rest of the characters are believable and well written. There’s not a dull chapter or evidence of a filler scene to be found, once again backing up Miller’s teachings in “Hard-Boiled Outlines.”
I applaud the author and tip my Fedora to him for writing about the true but tragic and disgusting subject of the kidnapping of children, and human sex trafficking. Miller covers these subjects with compassion but also highlights ever-increasing real-world problems.

Here’s the full Jake Noble book list:

• Noble Man (2015)
• Noble Vengeance (2017)
• Noble Intent (2018)
• Noble Sanction (2019)

I’m sure there will be some folks who’ll find fault in certain areas in this story. Have at it, that’s your choice. If you want everything to the letter and factually accurate, read a Special Ops manual at bedtime. I read books like “Noble Man” to be entertained and it ticked all the boxes, so much so that I’ve just bought “Noble Vengeance” for my Kindle to be one of my vacation reads. I would recommend it to anyone.

The Haunted Pen Rating:


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