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Publisher's Summary

The city of Salinas, California, is the birthplace of John Steinbeck and the setting for his epic masterpiece East of Eden, but it is also the home of Nuestra Familia, one of the most violent gangs in the United States. Born in the prisons of California in the late 1960s, Nuestra Familia expanded to control drug trafficking and extortion operations throughout the northern half of the state and left a trail of bodies in its wake. Award-winning journalist Julia Reynolds tells the gang's story from the inside out, following young men and women as they search for a new kind of family, quests that usually lead to murder and betrayal. Blood in the Fields also documents the history of Operation Black Widow, the FBI's questionable decade-long effort to dismantle the Nuestra Familia, along with its compromised informants and the turf wars it created with local law enforcement agencies. Reynolds uses her unprecedented access to gang members, both in and out of prison, as well as undercover wiretaps, depositions, and court documents to weave a gripping, comprehensive history of this brutal criminal organization and the lives it destroyed.

©2014 Julia Reynolds (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Horrible narration

To start with the woman narrating the story was horrible it ruined the whole story. Listening to the narrator read it sounded as if she was reading a bed time story to children.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Informative, but neither gripping or compelling.

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

I grew bored and lost interest - although detailed in some aspects, most of the material is from court documents/transcripts and not from what the "Ten Years Inside..." subtitle might suggest. As a result, it reads like an Academic paper with the occassional flash of artistry.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

The material could be condensed into half or 2/3 volume while not losing thrust. A heavy reliance on transcripts/interviews/etc comes across.

Would you listen to another book narrated by Cassandra Campbell?

Yes, her efforts to inflect a Chicano/a accent into the characters dialogue should be noted. 1 thing though; "Tule" is not prounounced "tool", it's "Two-Lee". Gracias

Could you see Blood in the Fields being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Yes - more artistic license might actually breath some compelling life into the featured characters.

Any additional comments?

Not a bad book, but I'd skip it unless you are pursuing a career in Law Enforcement, Legal, and/or Social Services.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderfully written and disturbing book about Salinas, California gangs

First, I live in Salinas. I was in high school for most of the time period that this book covers. I am now an attorney and know many of the legal professionals named in this book. So I’m a bit biased. I had to laugh about the part in the epilogue where she says “who knows what Robert Mueller will do, but he’s not likely to be heading to Florida with white shoes and a white belt.” Nevertheless, if you have ever wanted to hear a true story about how gangs operate and how they are investigated, this is definitely a book for you. It was well written and gripping. I didn’t want to stop listening.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • IAMRiZ
  • Northern California
  • 05-26-18

Didn't care for the narrator

Narrator could've been better. cheesy accents and mispronunciation took away from the authenticity. As A Salinas native, this story was captivating! Especially because a few of the people in this book are friends and family.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

my review..

started out slow by overall enjoyed it..wonder how lil mando is doing. good listen though.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great read into the opposite side of laEME

at first I was not really into the book it sounded like one of those books where they just tell you the history of what it's going on. And then you started reading about the characters and what was really going on in the streets in the prisons I love the way the narrator try to make her voice sound like a gangster or a chola I thought I was pretty entertaining very very very good book

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

It's ok

Good Story it would have been better if someone who spoke Spanish read the book.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Kind of boring.

I gave up 2/3rds way through the book. It was really dull and jumped around too much for my liking. Also, hearing the female narrator do a Hispanic gangster voice is like dragging nails across a chalkboard.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful