Article first published as Book Review: Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber by Dane Batty on Blogcritics.
Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber: The True Story of Leslie Ibsen Rogge, One of the FBI’s Most Elusive Criminals by Dane Batty is a true-crime book about the criminal career of this elusive man.
- 218 pages
- Publisher: Nish Publishing Company
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0615268455
My Rating for Wanted — 3
Dane Batty (Facebook) wrote Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber when he heard the stories his uncle, Leslie Ibsen Rogge, told or being told about him. As a young man Mr. Batty admired his uncle’s daring dues and it seems he does so to this day even though it seems the man will die in prison.
This is a very entertaining and easy to read book, but with very little reflection, retrospect and analysis. There are stories of daring robberies and escape, but very little about the heavy price Mr. Rogge paid in personal freedom, family life and financial.
The stories themselves are interesting but, as it is with many books of this type, it seems they were written to keep them in the family rather for the general populace. What I mean that in order to get the full effect of the book, one would have to know Mr. Rogge personally; that is not a criticism – it’s just is and every time I read these type of books I am reminded that I must also put down my family’s history in writing before it’s too late.
For part of the book I felt that the author wanted me to have positive feelings towards Mr. Rogge, I have no doubt that he loves his uncle very much and even admires him at a certain level since his life seems more like a Hollywood movie than real, but I had a hard time doing so. I didn’t buy Mr. Rogge’s claim that if things turned violent he would walk away, nor his “gentlemanly” pseudonym seemed appropriate. I certainly got the idea that Mr. Rogge is a very charming fellow but in a “let me do you a favor and separate you from your money” type of way. A person you’d be happy to give your money to even though you should know better.
even though you should know better.
After finishing this book I had mixed feelings, it was entertaining but I did not want to like Mr. Rogge. I felt uneasy, much like reading about stock brokers making a killing in the stock market, getting tons of money from thin air or robbing (legally) pension funds – you admire the chutzpah, but despise the method. Mr. Rogge’s way of going through life simply rubbed this hard working person the wrong way – even though he claims robbing banks is a “victimless crime”, which it’s not.
Zohar — Man of la Book
Disclaimer: I got this book for free
*Amazon links point to an affiliate account
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