Elmore Leonard meets Denis Johnson in this explosive first novel set on the seedy side of Southern California.
Ex-marine Jimmy Boone-former bodyguard to Los Angeles's rich and famous-is fresh out of Corcoran, on parole, and trying to keep his nose clean until he figures out his next move. He has a job tending bar on Hollywood Boulevard, serving drinks to tourists, and is determined to put the past behind him.
But trying to do the right thing has always been Boone's downfall. When he backs up a buddy on a hero-for-hire gig-looking into the mysterious death of a kid on a downtown bus-he once again finds himself in a world of trouble.
As Boone learns more about the boy, an innocent who got involved with the wrong people, his investigation becomes a mission. Along the dangerous margins of Los Angeles, he encounters down-on-their-luck drug dealers, a vengeful stripper, a dog-fighting ring, a beautiful ex-cop, a vicious crime boss and his crew, and a fortune in counterfeit bills. Before long, Boone realizes that his quest to get at the truth about a ruthless murder may also turn out to be his last chance at redemption.
This Wicked World is a knock-out blend of superb writing and breakneck storytelling that grabs you by the collar and makes it impossible to stop reading.
Richard Lange is the author of the highly acclaimed story collection, Dead Boys, which received the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His fiction has appeared in StoryQuarterly, The Sun, The Iowa Review, and Best American Mystery Stories 2004. He lives in Los Angeles. This is his first novel.
This Wicked World 4.7 out of 5based on
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What a wicked world. Richard Lange's first novel is a firecracker of human interest as Jimmy Boone, fresh out of prison, tries to live life on the upside despite numerous bad guys trying to change his path. Boone meets Amy, an ex-cop with a story of her own, and its his interest in her that propels him to deal with the bad guys, yet in his own way. We travel to the desert to meet dog fighters and their pals, and Boone eventually goes head to head to with them in a violent confrontation. As likable as the story is, as much as we root for Boone, the fact remains that this is indeed a wicked world, and Lange takes you right into it, game or not.
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