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The Disposables  By  cover art

The Disposables

By: David Putnam
Narrated by: Branden Mckenzie
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Publisher's summary

Bruno Johnson, a tough street cop, member of the elite violent-crime task force, feared by the bad guys, admired by the good, finds his life derailed when a personal tragedy forces him to break the law. Now he's an ex-con, and his life on parole is not going well. He is hassled by the police at every opportunity, and, to make matters even more difficult, his former partner, Robby Wicks, now a high-ranking detective, bullies him into helping solve a high profile crime...unofficially, of course.

Meanwhile Bruno's girlfriend, Marie, brings out the good, real Bruno, and even though they veer totally outside the law, he and Marie dedicate themselves to saving abused children and creating a type of underground railroad for neglected kids at risk - disposable kids.

What they must do is perilous as they take matters into their own hands, battling a warped justice system and Bruno's former partner, who has his own evil agenda.

©2014 David Putnam (P)2015 David Putnam

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Trust No One

Fans of street justice novels, or the sometimes referenced "revenge porn" will find a new hero in Bruno Johnson. He's a tough former cop who was sent to prison for murder. Now on parole, he's just trying to live his best new life. But trouble seems to stalk Bruno, and he won't back down.

I found Bruno to be very engaging. He's just got that genuine style to him--the "live and let live" deal. As long as you're not taking advantage of others, especially women or children. He doesn't necessarily walk around looking to knock heads and take on the world. With Bruno, it just comes at him. But like the good guy he genuinely is inside, he won't tolerate any abuse of those who cannot protect themselves. He tried to do things the legal way. But when the system let down abused children and sent them right back to their toxic and often deadly environments, Bruno couldn't sit back and pretend it would be okay.

Bruno's passionate mission is fueled and aided by the woman he loves beyond all others: Marie. She's a Puerto Rican firecracker who works as a nurse at the nearby hospital and sees these victims first-hand. Together, they'll risk it all to make a difference for those that come into their circle of influence.

I loved the duality of this novel. Bruno's world is gritty, raw, stark, cruel, horrible, and terrifying. It's not for the weak or timid. Bruno's strength, his moral compass, and his street smarts highlight a man who wants to live a legal life in a civilized society, but he has no issue stepping outside the law to mete out moral justice. He's sort of a hard-charging Robin Hood with a ghetto attitude. He's basically good, although his world is pretty bleak; shades of very dark gray. But Marie is his light, and his love for her is incredible. She is his compass, his lighthouse, his source of strength. The entire feel of the story changes whenever Bruno considers Marie, and it's beautiful.

Fans of street justice have something in common with romance fans, believe it or not. We both want realism, but are able to suspend our disbelief for the sake of a good storyline. We recognize that it ruins a decent novel of these sorts to pick them apart if something seems unrealistic. Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone, and Arnold Schwartzenegger wouldn't have had the careers they did if their fans weren't able to suspend disbelief long enough to enjoy a great story. So it is, here. Bruno Johnson is incredible, remarkable, and satisfying.

The author has created a wealth of diverse characters. They're all here: the good and bad, the haves and have-nots, the cops and criminals, the victims and avengers. The storyline grips the reader on page one and doesn't let go. The pacing is superb, and the dialog is crisp, smart, and witty. Everything fans want in a read of this nature is here, and very well done. Lovers of audiobooks will discover a listen very reminiscent of the old black-and-white film noir movies. The combination of the author's talent and that of the narrator gives the audiobook a feel similar to Humphrey Bogart's films such as "The Maltese Falcon." I loved it.

I know I'm late to the party on this one, but I'm glad I finally got on board with Bruno Johnson and his mission. I'm all in.

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