Hell's Angels: ""Three Can Keep a Secret If Two Are Dead""

Yves LaVigne, Author
Yves LaVigne, Author Carol Publishing Corporation $15.95 (344p) ISBN 978-0-8184-0514-3
Reviewed on: 07/31/2000
Release date: 08/01/2000
A reporter for the Toronto Globe and Mail here examines the history and status quo of various groups of bikers (Hell's Angels are the best known) currently active in the U.S. and Canada. Lavigne describes--in overtly sensationalistic fashion--the media sensationalism that surrounds (and for a time succored) outlaw bikers, alleging that present-day gangs (Hell's Angels, Outlaws, Pagans, Bandidos) rival, and even surpass, traditional organized crime mobs in terms of revenues, organization and ruthlessness. While certain sections of the book (deep history, inter-gang feuding, an in-depth portrayal of the multiple execution of five Montreal Hell's Angels in 1985) do illuminate a relatively inaccessible subculture, the bulk of the volume is an amalgam of turgid prose, luridly violent anecdote and speculative, hyperbolic hypothesis. An assessment of bikers' attitudes toward women is couched in grossly offensive language, while a litany of security systems and weapons arsenals of gang-chapter clubhouses is merely boring. (Sept.)
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