The Washington Post
The Renegades (Charlie Hood Series #2)by T. Jefferson Parker
"Some say that outlaws no longer exist, that the true spirit of the American West died with the legendary bandits of pulp novels and bedtime stories. Charlie Hood knows that nothing could be further from the truth. These days he patrols vast stretches of the new American West, not on horseback but in his cruiser. The outlaws may not carry six-shooters, but they're… See more details below
"Some say that outlaws no longer exist, that the true spirit of the American West died with the legendary bandits of pulp novels and bedtime stories. Charlie Hood knows that nothing could be further from the truth. These days he patrols vast stretches of the new American West, not on horseback but in his cruiser. The outlaws may not carry six-shooters, but they're strapped all the same." "Along the desolate and dusty roads of this new frontier, Hood prefers to ride alone, and he prefers to ride at night. At night, his headlights illuminate only the patch of pavement ahead of him; all the better to hide from the demons - and the dead outlaws - receding in his rearview mirror." But he doesn't always get what he wants - certainly not when he's assigned a partner named Terry Laws, a County veteran who everyone calls Mr. Wonderful. And not when Laws is shot dead in the passenger seat and Hood is left to bear witness by someone who knew that Mr. Wonderful didn't always live up to his nickname. As he sets out to find the gunman, Hood knows one thing for sure: The West is a state of mind, one where the bad guys sometimes wear white hats - and the good guys seek justice in whatever shade of gray they find it.
The Washington Post
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.
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
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