I pride myself on reading a book prior to watching a movie based upon upon a book, but I have to admit that The Big Bounce by Elmore Leonard threw me. In this case, I watched the remake of the movie prior to reading the novel. Usually I’m not a fan of a movie based upon a great book. This time, I enjoyed them both and look forward to watching the original movie. But first thing first. The sixth novel by Leonard, I’m reading this one first since I’m not a fan of Westerns (although I’m sure those first five books were pretty good). In this book, we have the classic mystery novel built upon the typical scheme to rob someone of a large sum of money. But Leonard pulls it off — both with the plot and the characters. Long before Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan was saving the world, this Jack Ryan was a former minor league baseball player turned drifter who is helped by a local magistrate named Mr. Majestyk. (I actually saw the movie Mr. Majestyk when I was a kid and the movie character played by Charles Bronson doesn’t really jibe with the book character Mr. Majestyk. The novel Mr. Majestyk is four books later and I’m curious how Leonard portrays him in print.) Not much can be said about the plot without giving things away, other than there’s good reason not one but two movies have been made from the book (and a total of 22 movies or TV shows are based upon Leonard’s novels). Majestyk makes another appearance but will we see Ryan again? Regardless, I can’t wait to read the next book in the series.