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The Renegades (Charlie Hood Series #2)

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Overview

From the New York Times bestselling author of L.A. Outlaws

Deputy Sheriff Charlie Hood cruises the dusty backroads of the new American West. But when his partner is shot dead and Hood is drafted to find the killer, the investigation takes him to places he never wanted to go-where there's no clear line between good and evil.

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The Renegades: A Charlie Hood Novel

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Overview

From the New York Times bestselling author of L.A. Outlaws

Deputy Sheriff Charlie Hood cruises the dusty backroads of the new American West. But when his partner is shot dead and Hood is drafted to find the killer, the investigation takes him to places he never wanted to go-where there's no clear line between good and evil.

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Editorial Reviews

Patrick Anderson
[The Renegades is] not as flamboyant a novel as L.A. Outlaws, but it's a good one, in which Parker replaces his gossamer tale of a sexy thief with the ugly realities of police corruption and the multimillion-dollar Southern California drug trade…Parker is an interesting and inventive writer. There's a nice detachment in his portrait of Los Angeles: It's often hell on earth, but he views it with affection and a hint of humor. Because he's unwilling to be locked into a series, Parker glides from novel to novel, usually taking us in unexpected new directions. If you're interested in the best of today's crime fiction, he's someone you should read.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly

In this crackling follow-up to L.A. Outlaws(2008), bestseller Parker brings the Wild West to Southern California. After helping to bring down a corrupt lawman in L.A., sheriff's deputy Charlie Hood has transferred to the desert community of Antelope Valley, where his hopes for a quieter life are shattered one night during a routine call: someone guns down his partner, Terry Laws, in their patrol car. Nicknamed "Mr. Wonderful," Terry is an unlikely target for a hit, so Charlie joins forces with Internal Affairs to track down the killer. But Terry's squeaky-clean veneer starts to crack the deeper Charlie digs into his personal life. There are large influxes of cash, and Terry's old partner, a reserve deputy, has connections to the Mexican drug trade. Parker creates a desert no-man's-land unique in its corruption, but no less dangerous than the roughest of South Central street corners, and Charlie Hood is the perfect reluctant hero to patrol it. (Feb.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

Terry Laws was, by all accounts, a superb law enforcement officer. But on the night he happened to be riding with fellow LA Sheriff Deputy Charlie Hood, he was gunned down execution-style. It looks like a straightforward case of a gangbanger getting even with Laws, but Hood is assigned to Internal Affairs and finds the tidiness of this line of thinking disturbing. He gradually teases out anomalies indicating that Laws might have been a corrupt cop following a skewed renegade style of justice. Hood's strong moral compass steers the plot through a bleak morass of drug-saturated culture, stretching from the dreary high-desert suburbs above Los Angeles all the way south to no-man's-land between California and Mexico. Allison Murrieta's spirit (L.A. Outlaws) still haunts him and is personified by her teenage son, Bradley, a smart young soul who hasn't figured out which side of the law he most admires. It's quite a showdown, done the Edgar Award-winning Parker way, in this engrossing tale of justice and redemption. Highly recommended for all popular collections. [See Prepub Alert, LJ10/1/08.]
—Teresa L. Jacobsen

Kirkus Reviews
Further proof that nobody likes a cop who nails a cop. Deputy Charlie Hood, of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department, is doing a stint with Internal Affairs and hating it. "I signed up to throw the bad guys in jail," he complains to a sympathetic ADA. When she points out to him that some bad guys wear uniforms, it's a truth that does little to dispel his sense that things are out of kilter: Cops should never have to chase cops. On the other hand, his investigation into the murder of Terry Laws, Mr. Wonderful to his fellow officers in the LASD, seems a case of an entirely different color: Cop killers should never be allowed to breathe free air. But the case darkens dishearteningly when the victim, a champion bodybuilder and estimable citizen, turns up on the payroll of a fat cat Mexican drug lord. The partner who survives Mr. Not-So-Wonderful, slick Coleman Draper, is catnip to the ladies, a part-time peace officer who's also a full-time stone killer. Draper doesn't enjoy killing, but his approach to problem-solving is thoroughly lethal. All at once, Charlie realizes, he's about to become Draper's No. 1 problem. The pace is leisurely and the plot a bit obvious, but Parker (L.A. Outlaws, 2008, etc.) at three-quarters effectiveness still beats most others at their best.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451227546
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 2/2/2010
  • Series: Charlie Hood Series , #2
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 524,742
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 7.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

T. Jefferson Parker
T. Jefferson Parker is the bestselling and award-winning author of nineteen previous novels and a three-time winner of the Edgar Award. Formerly a journalist, Parker lives with his family in Southern California.

Biography

One of the best loved crime writers of our time, T. Jefferson Parker was born in Los Angeles and has lived all of his life in Southern California. The poster boy for Orange County, he enjoyed an almost idyllic childhood bodysurfing, playing in Little League, and enjoying family outings with his parents and siblings. He was educated in public schools in Orange County and received his bachelor's degree in English from the University of California, Irvine, in 1976. (He was honored in 1992 as the University's Distinguished Alumnus.)

His writing career began in 1978 as a cub reporter on the weekly newspaper, The Newport Ensign. After covering crime, city hall, and local culture for the Ensign, Parker moved on to the Daily Pilot newspaper, where he won three Orange County Press Club awards for his articles. During this time, he filed away information he would later use to develop characters and plot points for his novels.

Published in 1985, Parker's first book, Laguna Heat, was written in whatever spare time he could find during his stint as a reporter. The book received rave reviews and was made into an HBO movie starring Harry Hamlin, Jason Robards and Rip Torn.

Since that auspicious beginning, Parker has made a name for himself with smart, savvy bestsellers dealing with crime, life, and death in sunny Southern California. In 2001, he hit the jackpot with Silent Joe, a bittersweet thriller that won the Mystery Writers of America's coveted Edgar Award for Best Novel. In 2004, he repeated the feat with Califoria Girl, making him one of only two writers (the other is James Lee Burke) ever to have won two Best Novel Edgars. Among other honors and accolades, Parker has won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Best Mystery/Thriller and the Southern California Booksellers Award for Best Novel of the Year. His books continue to score big on the national bestseller lists.

Good To Know

The "T" in Parker's name doesn't really stand for anything. His mother once told him she thought it would look good on the presidential letterhead!

In an interview with hardluckstories.com, Parker explained how his definition of noir has altered: "It seems to me that since 9/11 our appetites for darkness have shrunk a little. Mine have. I know that as a writer I've tried to bring more breadth and humanity to my stories. I think when all is said and done, a noir attitude is fine, but it's still just an attitude, a pose.

Parker's first wife, Catherine, died of a brain tumor at a very young age. He has since remarried happily.

In an interview with Harlan Coben, Parker was asked about the state of crime writing, i.e., what's wrong and what's right with it. "I think the Achilles heel of mystery/crime writing is character," he responded. "You have to have good characters—and sometimes I think mystery writers rely to heavily on plot and velocity of plot at the expense of characters."

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    1. Hometown:
      Fallbrook, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      December 26, 1953
    2. Place of Birth:
      Los Angeles, California
    1. Education:
      B.A. in English, University of California-Irvine, 1976
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 12 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 25, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Fans will enjoy Hood¿s Old West mentality in modern day Southern California

    Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs Charlie Hood and Terry Laws are driving together when the former is executed. The brass insists gang initiation or perhaps getting even with Laws who has been a veteran of the streets. Hood is a bit shook up with his new partner¿s death especially since he prefers patrolling by himself with his demon (the spirit of Allison Murrieta ¿ see L.A. OUTLAWS) to accompany him, but understands why he should not investigate it.<BR/><BR/>However, Hood is a bit surprised when he is assigned to Internal Affairs, but this also gives him an opportunity to look into who murdered his partner starting with inquiries into the life of Terry, dubbed ¿Mr. Wonderful¿. He soon begins to find evidence that alleges Terry that was a crooked cop delivering a personal code of justice. This is something that Hood can understand as a good cop crosses the line to convey justice like in the old west as the system often protects nasty felons not because of fundamental rights that these same hoods tale away from others, but because of those working inside of it are disguised as upright citizens.<BR/><BR/>Hood is a beacon of morality in a desert of corruption in which drugs seem to own almost everyone's soul from Los Angeles to Mexico. The story line is fast-paced but driven by the throwback hero who obsesses with a need to know whether Mr. Wonderful was a bad or good cop; as defined by Hood and not some artificial law or a pompous judge with Allison inside his head as a reminder of what justice is. Fans will enjoy Hood¿s Old West mentality in modern day Southern California.<BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2011

    Amazing!!!!

    Best cop book ive read in my life

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  • Posted October 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    "A greedy mind is satisfied with no amount of gain." Proverb

    "The Renegades" is a follow up to Parker's "L. A. Outlaws." Charlie Hood returns after the shooting and internal affairs investigation of the earlier book. He asks for a more quiet assignment and receives the Antelope Valley Division.

    When he and Terry Laws are out on a call, Terry is killed by a man with an automatic weapon. Hood knows that there were rounds left in the gun and wonders if the gun jammed or did the shooter want to leave him alive for some reason.

    Internal affairs reassigns him to their unit so he can lead the investigation into Laws' killing. It doesn't take long before Charile finds that Laws was a crooked cop. He was living beyond his means, set up a bogus charity and deposited $7,200/weekly into his account.

    Laws and Coleman Draper arrested Shay Eichrodt, supposidly because he just killed two couriers. There was $340,000 in the man's trunk. Laws and Draper left a little for evidence and brought the rest over the border to Mexico to the head of the cartel. Then they began recieiving their payoff each week.

    This novel was an enjoyable read but not up to the standard of "L.A. Outlaws." In my opinion, the author assumed that the reader knew of Charlie's background so didn't spend a lot of time with character development. There were also confusing times when Charlie would be talking and the dialogue would go from first person to third person.

    Coleman Draper's portrayal was nicely done. At times, he seemed sincere and honorable but at other times he didn't hesitate to take a life or order someone killed. It seems that the author is telling us that as in real life, his antagonist can have good qualities as well as evil ones.

    The author is one of only three people to have won the Edgar Award for Best Mystery Novel more than once. The other two people on the list are James Lee Burke and Dick Francis, nice company.

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  • Posted April 27, 2009

    Worth reading!

    Main character was outstanding and original!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Big Step Down from "LA Outlaws"

    From his outstanding debut with "Laguna Heat", Parker's been one of my favorite authors. In my opinion as an LA County resident he has an uncanny ability to capture the moods, nuances and settings of Southern California that's matched by very few; Michael Connelly, James Elroy, Chandler, perhaps one or two others.<BR/><BR/>LA Outlaws was a terrific book, with vivid and captivating characters just oozing noir excitement.<BR/><BR/>Unfortunately, this follow-up featuring Charlie Hood from the previous book doesn't quite make the grade. The previous book was completely dominated by Allison Murrietta - a descendant of the famed outlaw Juoaquin Murrietta - who died at the end of that work. This book centers on her paramour LA Deputy Sheriff Charlie Hood, who is not nearly as interesting a character; bland and pretty two-dimensional. None of the other characters are as interesting, either. By comparison, this is a pretty blah offering.<BR/><BR/>Pretty standard fare regarding drug running and money laundering; little tension or excitement; few action scenes; scant psychological suspense.<BR/><BR/>I will give it props for exploiting the SoCal landscape, though a very promising setting in the Llano del Rio ruins in the Antelope Valley had a lot more potential than I think was really explored.<BR/><BR/>But again, the main problem here is that I simply don't think the character of Charlie Hood is very interesting or complex. Certainly not enough to center a continuing series on.<BR/><BR/>Three stars. Mildly entertaining, but far from being his best work. Ultimately pedestrian.

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    Posted April 13, 2009

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