Sunday, May 30, 2021

BROKEN by Don Winslow

Laws are made to broken, with rules that are made to be followed.
Don Winslow is mostly known for being a crime writer. Throughout his career though, his style and focus have evolved, starting with hard-boiled mystery of the Neal Carey series, transitioning to surfer noir with the Dawn Patrol, touching on espionage with Satori, injecting a bit more humor with the laid-back drug dealers in Savages, focusing on crooked New York City cops in The Force, and tackling the drug war in his epic Border Trilogy. This latest book is an amalgam of all the styles and topics touched on in all of his books and presented as six of some of the best crime novellas you'll read, combining to create one of Winslow’s very best books! These stories are all told in different styles, even being labelled as homages to various classic crime authors. So there's definitely something in here for everyone:

Broken is the darkest and most brutal story in the collection. A tale of violent revenge in New Orleans. ★★★★★

Crime 101 is a clever, well-plotted little cat-and-mouse story about a cop and a career thief chasing each other up and down the Pacific Coast Highway. ★★★★

The San Diego Zoo brings some much-needed comedy with this story of a young cop trying to arrest a gun-wielding chimp. It was genuinely funny and even sweet in parts, but still sported Winslow's cinematic style. ★★★★★

Sunset might be the most well-written story in the bunch and is a nostalgic story set in the California surf community about maturity and loyalty, featuring some of Winslow's oldest characters. ★★★★★

Paradise is a Ben, Chon, and O adventure, as they attempt to open up shop growing weed in Hawaii. And I actually liked it a lot better than Savages, and really showcased Winslow's knack for spinning great action. ★★★★

The Last Ride ends the collection and might be my favorite story of the bunch, matching more of the style that Winslow is popular for today, about a Border patrolman who has a crisis of conscience after seeing a little girl in a cage and sets about to free her. This dramatic and cinematic tale is a fantastic way to close out the book. ★★★★★

If you're at all a fan of Don Winslow, the book is a must-read. But then again, everyone should be a fan of Don Winslow, so it's a must-read for all of you!


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