The Warriors

Narrated by: Joel Richards
Length: 7 hrs and 19 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (25 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The basis for the cult-classic film The Warriors chronicles one New York City gang's nocturnal journey through the seedy, dangerous subways and city streets of the 1960s. Every gang in the city meets on a sweltering July 4 night in a Bronx park for a peace rally. The crowd of miscreants turns violent after a prominent gang leader is killed and chaos prevails over the attempt at order. The Warriors follows the Dominators trying to make their way back to their home territory without being killed. The police are prowling the city in search of anyone involved in the mayhem. 

An exhilarating novel that examines New York City teenagers left behind by society, who form identity and personal strength through their affiliation with their "family", The Warriors weaves together social commentary with ancient legends for a classic coming-of-age tale.

©1965 Sol Yurick; Afterword copyright 2003 by Sol Yurick (P)2019 Tantor

What listeners say about The Warriors

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved it

I really loved the movie, this was a great story told well. Interesting that the author had commentary at tbe end about the writing and the movie.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good story, well read. Not for the squeamish.

Several members of a Coney Island street gang find themselves stranded in the Bronx, and have to run, negotiate, bully, and fight their way back home, Along the way they have to deal with their own struggles, of leadership and followership, of egos and insecurities, the need to keep face and the need to stay loyal. It's a well told tale.

The reading is excellent. The accents are believable when he's rendering dialogue, but most of the action is descriptive or inside the boys' heads, and requires no accent.

If you enjoyed the movie--and you probably did if you're looking this book up--the stories are parallel but not the same. The movie's a good bit cleaner. If you're offended by protagonists guilty of murder, gang rape, vandalism, mayhem, and criminally bad nutrition, do not get this book. Otherwise, enjoy this tale for its own sake.

You may well know that the book and movie are based on Anabasis, Xenophon's tale of 10,000 Greek mercenaries who get stranded in the heart of the Persian empire, and have to march and fight their way back home. This story is but one of many reimaginings.

The last hour or so of the audio is Yurick's essay on how he came to write The Warriors. It's mostly intellectual autobiography. Personally, I found him a little off-putting, but he didn't spoil my enjoyment of the novel. He ends with a few reflections on the movie, which he did not like, but he isn't horribly snobbish about it. And he's honest enough to admit he took a lucrative Hollywood contract over an offer from an independent filmmaker who intended to stick closer to the original.

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BEWARE: NOTHING like the movie!

If you're reading this, you're probably like me and loved the 1979 movie "The Warriors". I've always wanted to read the Sol Yurick book over the years, but it was always out of print. I saw it on Audible and grabbed it.
Then I was bored to death.
How they got that great movie from this slow, dull, pointless book, I'll never know. Almost nothing from the movie is in this book: No being chased through "enemy" turf, no near-misses, no rumbles, nothing. 99% of this book was the members of the gang thinking to themselves: "Man, I got to look cool. He can't see I'm afraid or I'll lose power, I'll get it, like good." Definitely no showdown at the end with Luther and the Rogues. ("Come out to plaaaayyaaayy!") Just a slow, boring, endless tale where you keep waiting for something to happen, and then the book ends. And if you're feeling adventurous and happen to make it through the book, definitely skip the "Afterward" by Sol Yurick. Sol apparently thinks he's some sort of Greenwich Village Beat writer/academic, and goes on ad nauseam about his accomplishments. After about 10 minutes of his "I'm so much smarter than you, and here's why" speech, I just ended the playback. I already lost hours of my life on this book that I'll never get back. Save yourself the boredom and skip it, and go watch the movie again instead. You'll be much happier.

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I enjoyed it as much as the movie

I knew it would not be like exactly like the movie, but I enjoyed it just as much. I came into it considering it a unique story, enjoyed parts that matched the movie, and then realized how much more interesting the parts that didn't match were.

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Performance great, story not so

Like I'm sure many people who have read this story over the past 30 or 40 years, I was disappointed that this book does not follow the storyline of the movie. I was hoping for more in-depth details and further stories about how the warriors had to fight their way back to Coney Island. I wanted to see what new details would be told in the battles with the Baseball Furies, the Lizzies, the Rogues and the Turnbull ACs. But to my shock, there were almost no gang fights and the action was very sparse other than the Dominators running away from conflict after conflict. I found myself not even rooting for the Dominators to make it home, because there had to be some kind of major obstacles to keep them from getting home other than transit issues. The ending was the most anti-climactic I could ever imagine with the leader, Arnold, arriving hours before anyone else when he was the one who was attacked by Ishmael's gang with no explanation of how he survived? Well, time to find my Warriors DVD and watch a great story to wash away this one from my memory.