Savages

( 83 )

Overview


A breakthrough novel that pits young kingpins against a Mexican drug cartel, Savages is a provocative, sexy, and sharply funny thrill ride through the dark side of the war on drugs and beyond.

Part-time environmentalist and philanthropist Ben and his ex-mercenary buddy Chon run a Laguna Beach?based marijuana operation, reaping significant profits from their loyal clientele. In the past when their turf was challenged, Chon took care of eliminating the threat. But now they may ...

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Savages: A Novel

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Overview


A breakthrough novel that pits young kingpins against a Mexican drug cartel, Savages is a provocative, sexy, and sharply funny thrill ride through the dark side of the war on drugs and beyond.

Part-time environmentalist and philanthropist Ben and his ex-mercenary buddy Chon run a Laguna Beach–based marijuana operation, reaping significant profits from their loyal clientele. In the past when their turf was challenged, Chon took care of eliminating the threat. But now they may have come up against something that they can’t handle—the Mexican Baja Cartel wants in, and sends them the message that a "no" is unacceptable. When they refuse to back down, the cartel escalates its threat, kidnapping Ophelia, the boys’ playmate and confidante. O’s abduction sets off a dizzying array of ingenious negotiations and gripping plot twists that will captivate readers eager to learn the costs of freedom and the price of one amazing high.

Following "the best summertime crime novel ever" (San Francisco Chronicle on The Dawn Patrol), bestselling author Winslow offers up a smash hit in the making. Savages is an ingenious combination of adrenaline-fueled suspense and true-crime reportage by a master thriller writer at the very top of his game.

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Editorial Reviews

Janet Maslin
Savages will jolt Mr. Winslow into a different league….[his]most boisterously stylish crime book, his gutsiest and most startling bid for attention….full of wild-card moves….its wisecracks are so sharp, its characters so mega-cool and its storytelling so ferocious that the risks pay off, thanks especially to Mr. Winslow's no-prisoners sense of humor….The Winslow effect is to fuse the grave and the playful, the body blow and the joke, the nightmare and the pipe dream.
—The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
Interpreting Winslow's two Southern California beach-bum marijuana dealers--thoughtful philanthropist-environmentalist Ben and his ex-navy SEAL pal Chon--narrator Michael Kramer develops a laid-back, unruffled persona for the former and a harder-edge, restless attitude for the latter. He even manages an acceptably feminine, spacey voice for their mutual girlfriend, Ophelia. Kramer focuses on keeping a moderately fast pace for the trio's witty dialogue, but when the Baja Mexico drug cartel led by its beautiful but vulnerable leader, Elena, demands a piece of their action, things speed up. And when the cartel kidnaps Ophelia and demands a million-dollar ransom, Kramer barely breathes in following the twists and turns devised by Winslow's antiheroes, and matches the novel's mood as it turns from wittily hip to dark and disturbingly violent. A Simon & Schuster hardcover (Reviews, May 31). (July)
From the Publisher
"Savages is full of wild-card moves.... Its wisecracks are so sharp, its characters so mega-cool and its storytelling so ferocious...thanks especially to Mr. Winslow's no-prisoners sense of humor." —-Janet Maslin, The New York Times
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781451667158
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • Publication date: 5/29/2012
  • Edition description: Media Tie-In
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 399,207
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author


Don Winslow is the acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen novels. He lives in Southern California.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 83 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(33)

4 Star

(22)

3 Star

(12)

2 Star

(8)

1 Star

(8)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 83 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 22, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Raw, close-up view of an underground industry

    Written by T. Wenger

    Don Winslow's "Savages" opens in the living room of a Laguna Beach house, headquarters of Ben and Chon's marijuana operation. The partners grow the best hydro money can buy. Business is brisk - and so profitable that Mexico's Baja Cartel is demanding a piece of the action. Ben and Chon resist the cartel's pressure until their best friend and playmate, Ophelia, is abducted and becomes a pawn in the BC's vicious quest. Propelled by anger, they launch a violent, serpentine plan to keep the BC off balance and begin no-holes-barred negotiations for O's release.

    The author of more than a dozen novels, including Shamus-winner California Fire and Life, Winslow offers a raw, close-up view of an underground industry in which brutality and bloodshed are inherent, and loyalty to a cartel equals enslavement. With brilliance and humor, he tells the story from both sides of the border through the eyes and ears of each character, masterfully employing technology and current political, ethnic and social themes.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    You can't make peace with savages....

    This violent state of mind,
    This violent state of mine!

    I can sum up your decision to read or not to read this novel in six words: YOU NEED TO READ THIS NOVEL!

    As a avid reader and collector of books, I know Don Winslow is near the top for crime fiction. I own a few of his other popular novels "The Power of the Dog", "Dawn Patrol", but I just haven't found the urge to read them yet. "Savages" beckoned to me from the new release rack last week when I saw it and I knew it was going to be special.

    From the outstanding first chapter, to the WOW ending, I was very, very impressed with this novel. It felt like Winslow was strutting as he wrote each chapter, knowing just how far he could push it and then taking it up one more notch. I think Don Winslow just put himself in the upper, upper echelon of crime writers with this novel. The writing is witty, the topics very current and interesting.

    The film rights to this novel have already been picked up by Oliver Stone and the book is gaining excellent praise every day by reviewers.

    Ben and Chon are two laid back Southern California boys that also just happen to run a very successful marijuana business. They've got everything they could ever want. Ben is the college educated brains of the operation and Chon is the Navy Seal trained muscle, the enforcer that has killed men and will kill more. Their female friend O (short for Ophelia) is possibly one of the best female characters I've come across in a crime novel in a long, long time. She is of course, a completely unrealistic everyman's fantasy, but she's so much fun to read about! A few quick O facts, her friends call her Multiple O for obvious reasons, she is a nympho, she has numerous tattoos and a slacker attitude to match. Ben and Chon's business is going great until the Mexican Baja Cartel wants a piece of the action, not a piece, all of the action. They want Ben and Chon to keep doing the work, while the Cartel reaps the benefits. Bad decisions are made, lines are crossed and pretty soon, Ben and Chon have much, much more then they every bargained for. O is kidnapped by the Cartel. The MBC wants two million dollars or three years servitude from Ben & Chon for O's release. Throw in a crazed Mexican hitman named Lado, think "No Country for Old Men" type crazy and dangerous, covert ops, IED's, a Barrett .50 cal sniper rifle, sex, drugs and you've just begun to stratch the surface of "Savages"!

    Any reader will tell you how most books end, the good guys win or the bad guys win / get away. Alot of authors continue to follow that same path, even though its been done over and over. Don Winslow steps it up a notch and takes it in a whole new direction with his ending!

    "Savages" is a literary bloodbath! READ THIS NOVEL!

    Enjoy~

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 16, 2012

    Choppy, disjointed writing style I liked the content of this boo

    Choppy, disjointed writing style
    I liked the content of this book but hated the choppy, weird way Winslow writes. It is not even, flowing text, but choppy, disjointed little blurbs. Will see the movie but this is not a fun and easy read. Reader beware.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 1, 2011

    Recommend

    Overall, I really liked this book. The writing style is pretty unconventional, you will either really like it or find it to be ultra frustrating. The story is a good one. My only complaint is that I found myself wanting to learn more about the characters.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 9, 2011

    Amazing

    This book os like crack. Impossible to put down twisted and hilarious.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 2, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Real Deal

    I caught on to Don Winslow's writing brilliance 7 novels ago. His writing, his characters and his style are pure genius. Savages is Don Winslow at his best. Adding Savages, or any Winslow novel going forward, to your reading list is in any readers best interest. My only regret is that he doesn't write as liberally as James Patterson, you know, one book a month.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 25, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Put on your seat belt: this ride turns corners faster than a Corvette.

    Don Winslow has reinvented himself yet again.
    I see the old Don in there yet he's developed an even sharper edge, one that cuts deep and splatters blood midst wafts of cannabis.
    The pace is outrages, yet so is the story, one that is true to these times. Living high in the drug business has an ultimate cost that may not be worth it.
    Read it. Winslow's seeded the novel with lots of philosphy and no-nonsense descriptions of Life in These United States, California Deparment.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    savages the American war on drugs

    In affluent Laguna Beach, California, Ben and Chon manage a profitable marijuana business. However, the Baja Cartel wants to expand into the Laguna Beach theater of operations and two punk Americans will not prevent them.

    Ben agrees with the Mexicans' assessment as he wants no trouble. However, former SEAL Chon, as Ophelia describes, has a "baditude" who does not mind a fight though he would also prefer a peaceful solution. The partners reject the foreign demands, but ignore the cartel until the Baja banditos go too far when they snatch O. They plan to take the war to the cartel as late night second half buffs Letterman and Leno in order to rescue O.

    Don Winslow savages the American war on drugs (and immigration) with this wild bloody thriller. In between the flowing of red and profanity, celebrities and politicians are lampooned as capitalism at its oligopoly best. Mr. Winslow makes a case for more of the trade insanity of Second Amendment selling of weapons to the Mexican Cartels who sell drugs to the Americans and buy more weapons. Don't read on a full stomach, Savages takes no prisoners.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 7, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Savages is a triumph of voice and attitude, an all-out assault o

    Savages is a triumph of voice and attitude, an all-out assault on everything. Like Aniruddha Bahal's Bunker 13, it's a box full of crazy set in a world where everyone is bent or debauched or sociopathic or some combination of the above. Unapologetically explicit in every way you can imagine (drugs, sex, violence, language, attitude, you name it), it's a book that will either drag you along chained to its rear bumper or will so repel you that you'll flee to something at the more cozy end of crime fiction, such as James Ellroy.

    Don't expect to find a hero or heroine in this book; there's nobody in here you'd want to hang out with in the real world, but like reality TV, it's fun to watch the train wreck in progress. Also, Winslow doesn't confine himself to linear prose. Some of the bite-sized chapters are free verse, excerpts from screenplays, stoned riffs on whatever, quotes from email and so on. This can work really well or grate like chalk screeching on a chalkboard depending on your tastes and the situation, but it's always interesting. If Laguna Heat was your last exposure to California's Laguna Beach, well, this is the same territory but not the same place. Winslow clearly doesn't have the same warm feelings for Southern California as does Jeff Parker.

    Shorn of its postmodern trappings, the plot is pretty straight-ahead; there's no mystery to be solved and the ultimate end of the joyride becomes fairly clear about 3/4 of the way through. Nobody gets reformed, lots of people die (that's not a spoiler), hardly anyone learns anything, and since most of the characters start corrupt, there's little room for the corruption of innocence. Savages is a story about crime and death. But boy, what a ride.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2014

    Excellent

    Excellent

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2013

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  • Posted May 10, 2013

    Excellent

    Winslow is an excellent writer. This is a can't-put-down book -- altho the ending is sad, sad.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2013

    Superb!

    This is a page turning marvel. Raw as it gets. Great, just great.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2013

    Not good but not bad

    This book was okay at best, it jumped around to much and didnt stick to one topic. I wouldnt recomend this to anyone. Its a shame to, I thought that since the movie was bad the book had to be good, How wrong i was.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2013

    Don't buy it

    When I tried to access the book, I was forced to sign up for emails from the publisher. After doing this, I was still unable to access the book. Don't waste your money, just go rent the movie. Very disappointed!!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2012

    Great

    Great fast pace and exciting!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2012

    Not ver Weak

    Not very good

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2012

    Savages

    This book takes you into the sick world of drug trade who live their lives in a completely different way than what would be considered "normal." They are not likable people yet I still found myself cheering for some of them.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2012

    Not Impressed

    The writing wasn't great and the story wasn't great. The movie was better and I didn't really like the movie.

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  • Posted September 3, 2012

    AMAZINGLY GRITTY!! LOVED IT!

    AMAZINGLY GRITTY!! LOVED IT!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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