Gangland

William P. Wood, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (358p) ISBN 978-0-312-01764-4
Hector Molina, a federal prisoner-informant, is the darling of a government task force dedicated to the eradication of the racist Aryan Brotherhood and the Hispanic Nuestra Familia, another California prison gang. Unbeknownst to his federal protectors, Hector is running a sideline of murder, blackmail and theft of government rehabilitation money. Meanwhile, he's the target of a dogged pursuit by Mike Swanson, a deputy attorney in the Santa Maria, Calif., D.A.'s office, who wants to convict him for the murder of a boy in a grocery-store holdup. Molina's solution to his legal problems is to kill all the witnesses, including his wife, deputy Swanson and his family (this last in retribution for Swanson's persistence in resolving the grocery-store killing). Former California prosecuting attorney Wood (Rampage) knows how to rattle off the legalese, lending verisimilitude to the tale. But his cynicism and view of a world teeming with violence and savagery, completely devoid of humanizing qualities or humor, becomes somewhat claustrophobic. Moreover, the central thesisthat a jailed street punk is able to confound and subjugate the various federal and state law authoritiesis not persuasive. Yet the nonstop action and relentless pace will satisfy fans of the hard-boiled thriller genre. (July)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-312-91575-9
Mass Market Paperbound - 382 pages - 978-0-8439-5705-1
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