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The Death and Life of Bobby Z | [Don Winslow]

The Death and Life of Bobby Z

When Tim Kearney draws a license plate across the throat of a Hell's Angel, he's pretty much a dead man. It's his third crime and, according to California law, that gives him "life without the possibility of parole". Killing a Hell's Angel also makes him a dead man on any prison yard in California. That's when the DEA makes Kearney an offer: impersonate the late, legendary dope smuggler Bobby Z so that the agency can trade him to Don Huertero, northern Mexico's drug kingpin, for a captured DEA agent.
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Publisher's Summary

When Tim Kearney draws a license plate across the throat of a Hell's Angel, he's pretty much a dead man. It's his third crime and, according to California law, that gives him "life without the possibility of parole". Killing a Hell's Angel also makes him a dead man on any prison yard in California. That's when the DEA makes Kearney an offer: impersonate the late, legendary dope smuggler Bobby Z so that the agency can trade him to Don Huertero, northern Mexico's drug kingpin, for a captured DEA agent. Tim Kearney bears an uncanny resemblance to Bobby Z, and, with some training, he might be able to pass.

Or not. But, really, what choice does he have?

So, he's off to a compound in the middle of a desert that's been designed by Huertero's number-two man to look like the Arabian fort in his favorite movie, Beau Jeste. ("The Santa Fe thing had been done to death.") Kearney's surprised when he meets Bobby Z's old flame, Elizabeth, who was never mentioned in his training, and the son she claims belongs to him. It's a short vacation by the pool before Kearney's on the run from drug lords, bikers, Indians, and cops...and the kid's along for the ride. Some of the pursuers want Bobby Z, and some want the considerably less legendary Tim K. Whether he pulls it off, whether he can keep the kid and the girl and his life, makes for a hilarious, fast-paced, and truly touching novel.

©1997 Don Winslow; (P)1997 Random House Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Winslow juggles black humor, excellent dialog, and numerous plot twists with the ease of an accomplished veteran." (Library Journal)
"Darrell Larson is absolutely terrific....Larson's portrayal of drug world characters is full of sarcasm, wit and clever humor." (AudioFile)
"For all the nasty stuff that Mr. Winslow throws at Bobby/Tim, he maintains the virtue of a comic-book superhero...playing an exciting game of adventure that is good, clean, mindless fun." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

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    Mick Beaumaris, Australia 11-19-12
    Mick Beaumaris, Australia 11-19-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Abridged Too Far"

    This was potentially an excellent read. The story is interesting, the author has form. Unfortunately, the book has been abridged so far that it reads like a screenplay and jumps all over the place.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Jon College Place, WA, United States 06-15-07
    Jon College Place, WA, United States 06-15-07

    I listen to two audiobooks a month. My main interest is in a well-told story, so I enjoy a lot of fiction. But I like history as well

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    "Disappointing"

    The story is as painfully predictable as a tv movie. The style is what I call present tense pitch; the sort of thing you would expect a producer to narrate to a tv movie executive. The characters are unbelievable and stereotypical. The main character is a three time loser who also happens to be a US Marine hero. Those skills learned in the Corps sure help him subdue the bad guys, who are also predictable and stereotypical. The narration is good, though. And it is brief. The problem is that this book attempts to be so hip that it forgets it has a story, some characters, and an atmosphere to provide.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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