Reader Reviews

Rave Reviews for “The Knucklehead of Silicon Valley” from Amazon, Goodreads, and More…

“Gibsen is an oddly compelling protagonist: Not quite an Everyman, he nevertheless frequently finds himself in over his head. The author delivers a complex, meandering plot with frequent hops between years and continents and a wryly conspiratorial worldview that feels more akin to Thomas Pynchon than Tom Clancy.”– excerpt. To access the full review, click here

“Fact and fiction… Quirky, human, insightful international romp. Can’t wait to see the movie.”—Mikes, Amazon reader review

“A great read! If you are a traveler, an IT person, or just someone who enjoys good writing, this is the book for you! Ralph, the main character, can’t figure out if he’s a spy. He travels the world trying to make it a better place and finds adventure, wonderful humor and amazing characters. Who doesn’t love a guy whose wife and mother are his heroes? I couldn’t put it down!”—Barbara Barnett, Amazon reader review

“Absolutely devoured the book. The plot is fresh and smart. It pulled me in right away… a thoroughly entertaining, fast-paced spy thriller that will hook you, leave you breathless with the happenings, and then amaze you with spurts of humor. A total PAGE-TURNER!!! Can’t wait to read his upcoming books.”–Abantika,  / To read the full review, click here.

“More fact than fiction than perhaps the author even knows. I received this as a gift and found ‘myself’ appearing in the book. Because he has always been a good friend, I will pretend I didn’t read it. In fairness however, it was entertaining and fictionalized enough to spare us all any malfunctions to our brake lines or other unfortunate ‘wet ops’ experiences. I look forward to another installment of what I am sure will be an ongoing series.”–The man that might be McKenna

“Loved this book. An easy, funny, joyous read that feels so true and possible it’s scary! The storyline is highly credible… a great antidote to the usual “perfect” heroes in spy thrillers. Congratulations Craig!”–Charlotte Newman-West / To read the full review, click here.

“Absolutely loved it! Full of twists and turns and a shocking and thrilling set of events at the end left me wanting the sequel now. Great read to get away from your hectic life and laugh at someone else’s ridiculous set of ironic and unexpected circumstances. Also a bit eye-opening, of the possibilities that are, or could be, happening in your own battle for personal privacy. Can’t wait for the next one from Vachon!”–Scott Salter,  

“The Knucklehead of Silicon Valley was entertaining, and a welcome distraction during our lockdown here on the East coast! The main character, entrepreneur Ralph, is smart and endearing. And his adventures were fun to follow. I passed along to my son, who is starting his career in the technology field… thumbs up from him so far also!”—mminn, Amazon reader review

“Reads like an ‘077’ thriller… but without all the fancy gadgets. Or socks.”—Baida Otro, Amazon reader review

“Crazy like a bumbling fox… The Knucklehead of Silicon Valley is a fun romp that follows Ralph Gibson on a worldwide jaunt throughout his possible work as a master spy, or is he? Ralph doesn’t remember ever signing up to be a spy and suspects someone else might have done it for him. Well-paced, interesting and stupid funny, this is a great read and one that is hard to put down.”—Spider Graham, Amazon reader review

“Fun. Fascinating. Technologically intriguing. In these days of confusion, misinformation, and obfuscation, this book leaves you asking but knowing.”–Brian Lewandowski,

Cannot say enough about how much I enjoyed this book… What a great read. Couldn’t put it down. Highly recommend.”–Arlene

“Funny and fast technothriller that doesn’t take itself too seriously… Great books have unforgettable characters and there are several here in Knucklehead. Here are the adventures of Ralph; venture capitalist, seasoned traveler and possible spy.–Dondray Mauz, Amazon reader review

“The account is told in a ‘3rd person limited’ POV and does not hold to a true linear timeline, which makes for intrigue, and tension and all the good hallmarks of a thriller. What spiced this up for me was the equally observant/self-deprecating personal assessment of the MC which keeps you turning the page, as The Knucklehead of Silicon Valley  tries to extrapolate himself out of one embarrassing and laughingly tense situation after another. Your mission, if you choose to accept it: To read this little gem for yourself and make up your own mind.”—L T, To read the full review, click here.

“Nothing makes a good book like a good plot twist… It will take you to the edge, reel you back and leave you second-guessing. Craig Vachon is an exemplary writer… His writing is simple yet elegantly rich in narration… I would highly recommend this book to anyone who needs a breath of fresh air. This would be a great read for anyone interested in technology or [who] would like to know what goes on in the tech world. Get this book and to make it even sweeter, get the audiobook too!—P. Waigumo Wanjiru, For the full review, click here.

“This book. I can’t get over how awful and yet how perfect a spy Ralph is. I also loved the descriptions of the interpersonal dynamics of Silicon Valley. This book was entertaining all the way through. Favorite side character was easily Tommy the barber. Where the author came up with him, I don’t know. He was a hoot.–Kindle review, from Spiffytech

“So. I’m grumpy, all I wanted was to read a few pages to start this book before going to bed, next thing I know I finished the book and it’s 4:30 in the morning, and I have a workday and a party coming up. I blame you for this whole day 🙂 Also, you promised me a spy thriller, but gave me a great love story instead. Seriously though, awesome. Just don’t start it in the evening, unless you don’t value your sleep.”–Amazon reader review

“If you like high tech, spy thrillers and some comedy, this is the book for you. The adventures of Ralph—a clumsy, international man of mystery—will not disappoint. And, you might learn a little bit about venture capital along the way.”–Tim Martin

“A humorous and wild ride through the complex life of a seemingly ordinary guy… With a storyline that seems both beyond comprehension and absolutely possible, and characters that are as relatable as they are deceptive, Vachon’s debut novel is sure to capture the attention of an intellectually curious audience. The writing is quick and humorous and immediately pulls you into Ralph’s complicated world.”–Tracy Burns 

“Really enjoyable read. Funny and thrilling all in one. Ralph is a believable character who bumbles along from one calamity to another. Looking forward to more capers.”–Stella Ofarrell,

“… had some great passages, e.g. one section where he discusses the protocols to be employed in Business Class seating and whether to talk to the person in the next seat (or not)… I really enjoyed it, and am looking forward to the next set of exploits from Ralph Gibsen and his unlikely band of cohorts, including the lovely and ever hopeful Eva.”–Alan Snow,

“Not your typical novel, for sure! Ralph is fun and very different from most spy thriller-type character leads.  I liked the realistic nature of the content, and the wild imagination of Ralph. A good read that’s hard to put down.–MC, Amazon reader review / To read the full review, click here.

“I had a great time getting to know the protagonist and learning about some of the inner working of Silicon Valley. Altogether a fun read. I await the next installment.–Amazon reader review / To read the full review, click here.

“Ralph Gibsen is not as hapless as the book makes him seem, but he is unaware of the secretive actions of those around him as he stumbles through situation after situation trying to figure out what is really going on… I had a great time getting to know the protagonist and learning about some of the inner working of Silicon Valley… I await the next installment.–Amazon reader review / To read the full review, click here.

“Fiction, yes… but could some of Ralph’s story be real? Had me thinking hard, worrying a bit and giggling out loud within each chapter. Makes me want to learn more about what is going on down in the Silicon Valley, VC’s, and within the Intelligence Community… Looking forward to travelling with Ralph on wherever his next adventure takes us!–Brenda Rose / To read the full review , click here.

“Ralph is a great character. I have spent 29 years in Silicon Valley and thought the plot was real, captivating and full of surprises. Great read on a plane or at night. Very entertaining.”–Phillipe

“Captivating and thoroughly entertaining.”–Harvey Boulter, Privacy Advocate and Chairman of Cellcrypt Inc.

“Thoroughly enjoyable high tech global hijinx. I didn’t want to put this book down. The writer has an obvious deep understanding of the tech, the business, the art and the craft. It’s so possible that is hard to believe it isn’t real.”–Michael Henson

“Read and laugh! … Great read—humor and insight combined!” —Amazon reader review

“… an interesting book that enlightens readers of the current situation of the world, a cyberpolitical storm… The choice of characters of this book is fascinating, with fictional aspects that leave the reader questioning if events in The Knucklehead of Silicon Valley are actually happening in the real world.–Peruser

Unlike James Bond, Ralph is a funny and relatable character that makes mistakes and commits many blunders in his attempt to save the world… Although this book is centered around the use of technology, it is not full of confusing jargon or arcane concepts. It is easy for anyone to understand and it might even help you learn a few things in the process. Jokes aside, the author is an experienced venture capitalist with years of experience building his companies, financing tech startups, and traveling the world. His background and insights about Silicon Valley and venture capital shine throughout the text… In short, this book is a must-have for anyone looking for a fun romp through Silicon Valley, the IT industry, and across the world.–RG Jones / To read the full review, click here.

“Ralph is a character that is believable, and likeable; one that could be the guy sitting next to you on the plane… I recommend this book for those in the computer world, as well as those who love a good story about espionage and true crimes. Get ready for an adventure.–Valerie / To read the full review, click here.

“This is a laugh out loud techno thriller! You will fall in love with the characters and find yourself learning about the life of a Silicon Valley spy… I mean, investor. Ralph may just be the new spy character you have been looking for all your life!”–Carrie Drazewski-Keller,

“Fun reading and hard to put down… Loved this book, finished it, and wish I could read more. Fun, fun, fun. It is a must-read. I hope to see more from this knucklehead, very entertaining, I could not put it down.–Amazon review from Raw

“Fun book… Many of the vignettes come across as events that actually happened to the author, which is unbelievable and makes me want to ask him questions while flipping through my dog-eared pages. Another cool thing was learning something of the Silicon Valley ethos. I recommend this for anyone who enjoys “every-man hero in over his head” stories and wants to learn more about venture capital, business intrigue, or cavity searches in airports.–Remo

“This a great adventure in what some would consider a mundane world of VC lending. If you like Walter Mitty or Tintin you will love Ralph! Hold on as this page turn(er) is a quick reading journey of espionage, foreign relations and some business ideas… Or is it ?!? Enjoy!”–Raymond Novicelli

“Fun, funny, page-turner!… Thoroughly enjoyed reading The Knucklehead of Silicon Valley! It’s a fast-moving, fun spy/tech novel (and scary at times because there seems to be more truth than fiction here!) following “Ralph” through his travels and adventures with all kinds of sordid and wacky characters. Looking forward to Ralph’s next adventure! Put me on a pre-order list if there is one!”–Celinda

“Get Smart for the Big Tech Era… The shoe phone gets a reboot in the world of big data, big egos, and Silicon Valley jet-setting. A fun, zany romp.”–Nina Simon

“Vachon weaves a fun tale of international intrigue and gives a glimpse into the reality of the Venture Capital and entrepreneurial world that most outside of the Bay Area are not allowed to enter… The Knucklehead is a self-deprecating hero who would likely shoot himself in the foot if given a gun to protect himself. Good thing he is protected by others. I look forward to the next adventure.”–JeffPA / To read the full review, click here.

“… a fun and enthralling read. The book gives readers an eye-opening behind-the-scenes look into the investment world of Silicon Valley. Vachon’s in-depth knowledge of situations and locations almost has me convinced this book is more of a memoir than it is fiction. It even reads like a memoir… Despite how frighteningly real the tale gets, especially concerning the perils of technology, the laugh-out-loud moments were endless… The character development was solid, and the characters were unforgettable. Ralph was a complex and fascinating individual… a must-read if you are into spy novels or merely interested in technology and how it can impact our lives. There are also several useful tips for startups, small businesses, and anyone interested in finance. Overall, this is a fun, fascinating, thought-provoking, and insightful book.”Adedayo+23, / To read the full review, click here.

“This book reads like it is a true crime novel. Things in the story are scarily possible in our world today… When you get into the heart of the story, which teases you right from the beginning, you realize how plausible this could be, and are sucked in to find out what happens next. I recommend this book for those in the computer world, as well as those who love a good story about espionage and true crimes. Get ready for an adventure.”–V. Penninton / To read the full review, click here.

“Ralph may know a lot, but he certainly isn’t sure what’s going on. Traveling the world with Ralph you get to meet his friends, partners, past loves, and allies as he tries to prevent some dangerous tech from getting out… oh, and to sort out whether he’s a spy or not.”–Brett Dewey / To read the full review, click here.

“It got going quickly and didn’t let up. I loved the characters, story and the high-tech angle.”–Jordy

The sun isn’t setting on praise for “The Kucklehead of Silicon Valley.” Keep checking in, for the latest reader reviews–and news about the sequel, set to publish later this year.







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