Ranger Games: A Story of Soldiers, Family and an Inexplicable Crime

Ranger Games: A Story of Soldiers, Family and an Inexplicable Crime

by Ben Blum


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Ranger Games: A Story of Soldiers, Family and an Inexplicable Crime by Ben Blum

Alex Blum was a good kid with one goal in life: become a U.S. Army Ranger. Then, on the day before deployment to Iraq, Alex got into his car with two fellow soldiers and two strangers, drove to a local bank in Tacoma, and committed armed robbery. The question that haunted the entire Blum family was, Why? Why would Alex ruin his life in such a spectacularly foolish way?
In the midst of his own personal crisis, and in the hopes of helping both Alex and his splintering family cope, Ben Blum, Alex’s first cousin, delved into these mysteries, growing closer to Alex in the process. But as he investigated further, Ben began to question not only Alex, but the influence of his superior, Luke Elliot Sommer, the man who planned the robbery. A charismatic combat veteran, Sommer’s manipulative tendencies and magnetic personality lure Ben into a relationship that puts his loyalties to the test.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780804169691
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/31/2018
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 281,564
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Ben Blum was born and raised in Denver, Colorado. He holds a PhD in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley, where he was a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, and an MFA in fiction from New York University, where he was awarded the New York Times Foundation Fellowship. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and stepdaughter.

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Excerpted from "Ranger Games"
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Copyright © 2018 Ben Blum.
Excerpted by permission of Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.
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Table of Contents

Prologue 1

Book 1 The Golem of Tacoma

Chapter 1 Sort of a Happy/Sad Deal 7

Chapter 2 Basic 34

Chapter 3 Amurican Bank Robber 54

Chapter 4 One Fine Day at Battalion 63

Chapter 5 Yes, Specialist Sommer 74

Chapter 6 Those Who Are Versed in the Sciences 90

Chapter 7 Something You Would See Out of a Movie 103

Chapter 8 Federal Vacation 111

Book 2 The Prodigy Of Peachland

Chapter 9 Soldier 125

Chapter 10 Interrogation 135

Chapter 11 Freedom Fighter 143

Chapter 12 The Fourth Man 153

Book 3 The Good Person

Chapter 13 The B-Word 171

Chapter 14 Just an Inexplicable Event 189

Chapter 15 The Complexities 201

Chapter 16 The Phabulous Phils 218

Chapter 17 Getting Real 228

Chapter 18 Real Real 248

Book 4 The Dungeon Master

Chapter 19 When Bad People Do Good Things 259

Chapter 20 Space Station Sommer 273

Chapter 21 Total Data 290

Chapter 22 The Sommer Factor 302

Chapter 23 Force of Personality 316

Chapter 24 The Lady in the Striped Shirt 322

Chapter 25 The P-Word 334

Chapter 26 Probably Something I'll Never Understand 356

Book 5 Freedom

Chapter 27 Matrix of Lies 367

Chapter 28 Birth of a Bank Robber 384

Chapter 29 The Rest of Us 393

Author's Note 409

Acknowledgments 411

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