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Publisher's Summary

John Rain has disappeared to Brazil to escape the killing business and the enemies encircling him in Japan. But the CIA isn't willing to lose its premier "natural causes" contract killer, and they force Rain to take on a high-risk assignment: eliminate a ruthless arms dealer operating in Southeast Asia. The upside? Financial, of course, along with the ongoing chimera of moral redemption. But first, Rain will have to survive the downside: a second assassin zeroing in on the target; the target's consort, an alluring and dangerous woman with an agenda of her own; the possibility that the entire mission is nothing but an elaborate setup. From the gorgeous beaches of Rio to the glitzy casinos of Macau to the gritty back streets of Hong Kong and Kowloon, Rain becomes a reluctant player in an international game far deadlier and more insidious than any he has encountered before.

©2004, 2013 Barry Eisler (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved. Originally published as Rain Storm in 2004

What listeners say about Winner Take All

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mark
  • 2014-03-03

Good stuff

Barry Eisler does a good job narrating his own books, I prefer his versions over the others. Rain is a fun hero character, and the stories are always exciting. It's easy to get tired of a series if you keep listening to the same one book after book, so I take breaks and go elsewhere, then return. This series is as entertaining as Mike Connelly, Vince Flynn or Brad Thor material, great authors but I can also tire of them. It's like anything else I guess. This idea targets a review that said Eisler's series was same old, same old. They all are after a while. Anyway, glad I found John Rain! If you like thrillers, give this a whirl, you won't be disappointed!

9 people found this helpful

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  • Wayne
  • 2016-05-07

What a difference great narration makes!

Winner Take All was originally published as Rain Storm with Brian Nishi narrating. I listened to Rain Storm three years ago and rated it 4 stars, but did nor write a review. With Barry Eisler, the author, doing the narration (and also retitling the novel) it is a much better listening experience. Winner Take All is a solid 5 star John Rain novel with Eisler doing the narration. Eisler now narrates all of his own books.

12 people found this helpful

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  • R. C. Turner
  • 2019-02-11

If you like Jack Reacher

If you like Jack Reacher you will love these characters. Well researched, fast paced. hopefully Doc will have his own series soon.

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  • Christopher Toombs
  • 2020-06-23

I like the John Rain books, but...

...this book, 3rd in the series, never really gets up a decent head of steam. The plot meanders, and the mostly imaginative descriptions that characterize Eilser/Rain books seem distracting in this instance. Try a different one. My fave has been "The Killer Collective". These early John Rain books have been just ok.

2 people found this helpful

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  • JC
  • 2017-11-24

John Rain, Who Else?

I chose a 5-Star rating because this book truly deserves it. I would recommend it to fans of the John Rain series. I liked that this book successfully built upon what had happened to John Rain (previously) and showed character development laced with intrigue and plots within plots within subplots. The introduction of two new wonderful characters (a woman and a man) was a complete joy, as they helped to really elevate the story even more. Heck, you could write a book just on the woman alone. The different locations that are featured in the book were just great. I definitely enjoyed when folks “cornered” John Rain and he gave taste after taste of his fury. Sinfully good! I highly recommend this book.

2 people found this helpful

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  • T. McCloskey
  • 2020-02-28

wandering story lacks consistent plot lines.

I like the series but this story just barely kept my interest. it failed to offer a clear plot and was very scattered throughout.

1 person found this helpful

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  • K R D
  • 2017-12-20

A very good listen

These books are getting better and better.. to the extent that I have now started the next in the series.. I love the new chapters he introduces..

Overall.. a very good listen.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2016-02-14

Author reading is brilliant

Barry is talented at writing and equally good at reading his works. I love that the Japanese culture and language are brought forth clearly, rather than being obliterated by a narrator with less knowledge of the subject.

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  • Phx17
  • 2022-04-23

Awed and intimidated

“A good interrogation is more like seduction than torture.”
Complex, engaging plot, characters and culture. Book three is where the series really won me over. A big reason is the expansion to a larger cast of regulars, each lethal and fascinating in their own right. Here’s where the assassins’ meet-cutes take place.

“Bureaucrats are to killing as Victorians were to sex- they just can’t bring themselves to call it by name.”
The other reason why I love this (and the related) series is the author himself. I confess that I am quite intimidated by his knowledge and refinement. I love not being able to predict twists, not knowing for sure who the “good” guys are, and not being safe in the assumption that the major characters (outside of the series star) will make it out alive. Quirks like the detailed martial arts techniques, that normally would cause my mind to wander, are interesting (albeit at 1.5x). His thing about blending sex and violence in quotes, euphemisms, similes and metaphors has become something I look forward to as an
audible la petite mort. And, his narration is sublime!

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  • Reading Fanatic
  • 2022-04-15

Great characters, details, writing

Love this new series. I’m a Greaney die hard. Gray Man was the first action/spy/assassin type book I read. Since then, expanded to others - Nowhere Man/Horwitz; Mitch Rapp/Flynn; Dewey Andreas. I’ve read a couple of others that haven’t stuck with me. I’m planning to read Jack Reacher/Lee Childs. I think that I would enjoy his.
Anyway - excellent reading by the author. This is my 3rd Rain novel. And I’m sure that I’ll be reading more - all of them!
He has great character development and details and interesting points of view. I love a smart and gifted writer that gets a good balance of action and details.
Highly recommend if you’re into action novels.