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The Kind One

3.58  ·  Rating Details  ·  107 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews

In the kill-or-be-killed criminal underworld of 1930s Los Angeles, "Two Gun Danny" Landon has a distinct disadvantage. According to the fellas, he used to pull all kinds of shoot-ups and shenanigans...but damned if he can't remember a thing from before last year, when he got hit over the head with a lead pipe. Sadistic mobster Bud Seitz known to friends and enemies alike

Hardcover, 377 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Five Star (ME)
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(showing 1-30 of 254)
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Feb 24, 2010 Jennifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes noir
Recommended to Jennifer by: One False Move (the movie)
Shelves: read-2010
I picked this novel up from a bargain table at Border's because the author, Tom Epperson, had co-written the script for One False Move, a movie that still haunts me to this day. According to the back of the book, this novel is "soon to be a major motion picture" but it's already quite cinematic . . . in a good way, not in a film script-y kind of way (where you hear the plot creaking).

The setting is 1930's Los Angeles and the narrator is Danny "Two Gun" Landon, a former enforcer for a mob boss, B
Apr 19, 2012 Trilby rated it really liked it
Shelves: noir, crime, lowlifes
Recently I've been having trouble sticking with a book. I get to page 26 and fall asleep, or decide I'd rather be doing laundry or watching reruns of "The X-Files."

This book, however, broke the evil spell. I got right into it, immediately involved in the problems facing the narrator, Danny Landon. The plot is pretty predictable: I figured out the mystery in the first sixty pages.
What's fascinating are the setting (1930 L.A.) and the characters gangsters, gun molls, torch singers, and the sta
Scott Bagley
May 30, 2012 Scott Bagley rated it it was ok
I've been in a book rut lately. I tried this one on audio, and although it was narrated by Scott Brick - the best in the biz - this book fell short for me.

Nice writing, but darned if anything was really going on. It's not a book that grabs you from the start, that's for sure. And while I'm a sucker for books where a character has amnesia, to the point where I stopped listening, I couldn't tell you what the main story line way. Sure, Danny was trying to piece together his life, sure there were ot
Apr 27, 2008 Ron rated it it was amazing
Shelves: pulp-fiction
David Goodis meets Nathanael West in this story about an amnesiac in the employ of a Los Angeles crime boss who's trying to figure out if what everybody's telling him about his past is true-- and it's not all that certain that he's going to have much of a future, either.
Stacy Boyles
May 09, 2016 Stacy Boyles rated it liked it
This was a slow but good listen. I don't know if I would have stuck with the book but it was worth listening to, for sure. I loved the voice of the narrator. His gangster lingo and Brooklyn accent made it a fun listen.
Kathleen Hagen
The Kind One, by Tom Epperson, b-plus, narrated byScott Brick, produced by Blackstone Audio, downloaded from

Here we meet Danny Landon in 1930’s Los Angeles. He had some kind of accident, he doesn’t know what, and it has caused him to lose his memory of the past, including his name. He is taken in by Bud Seitz, a vicious and sadistic mobster who for some reason has taken a liking to Danny. Danny thinks that what Bud tells him about who he is can’t be true because the other boys around
Mar 07, 2009 Michael rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 12, 2013 Al rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

In the kill-or-be-killed criminal underworld of 1930s Los Angeles, "Two Gun Danny" Landon has a distinct disadvantage. According to the fellas, he used to pull all kinds of shoot-ups and shenanigans...but damned if he can't remember a thing from before last year, when he got hit over the head with a lead pipe. Sadistic mobster Bud Seitz -- known to friends and enemies alike as "The Kind One" -- seems to have big plans for him, but truthfully, Danny can't stomach the dirty work. His aim is off,

Feb 23, 2013 Katia rated it liked it
L'histoire se déroule durant l'abrogation de la prohibition, autant dire que c'est le bordel dans "le milieu". Le narrateur, Danny, semble paradoxalement un personnage mineur. Il est l'un des hommes de main de Bud Seitz, un mafieux. L'intérêt ne réside donc pas dans les faits mais dans la façon dont les perçoit Danny. Etant amnésique suite à des coups sur la tête, il se retrouve immergé dans la mafia, parmi des hommes peu fréquentables, et ne sait plus quelle est sa place. Lorsqu'il essaye d'obt ...more
Jun 04, 2009 Dorie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical, favorites
Terrific read set in 1930's Los Angeles. Danny Landon (known in the criminal underworld as "Two Gun Danny") has been recovering for the past year from an attack that has left him without any of his former memories. He's returned to work for mobster Bud Seitz, known ironically as "The Kind One". But Danny no longer seems to have the stomach for the violence and fear that the others seem to revel in. Bud assigns Danny to bodyguard his newest girlfriend Darla, but things get complicated when Danny ...more
OK. I loved this book. I loved all the characters. A lot of things were very predictable (Darla at the end for one thing) but it still was good. Even if you knew what was going to happen next, you kinda hoped for it.

I love Sophie, she's a tough little girl and my Fave character, of course, had to be the neighbor Mr. Dulwick.

I usually don't read books like this but to be honest, it sounded OKAY but I also needed a K book for my ABC title challenge so I went out and brought it.

I hear it is going
Mar 31, 2014 Liz rated it it was ok
A "film noir" type book about a bunch of jewish gangsters in CA. The main character is a 20 something guy with a head injury and amnesia before 10 months earlier. The story is loosely about him remembering/finding out who he is. Very few likable characters and I found the story was a bit slow.
Mar 09, 2013 Melanie rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
This was a raw, stark read set in Hollywood of the 1930s amidst gangsters run by "the kind one". The main character, Danny, lost his memory but knows he had been one of the best shooters in the gang with the nickname"two gun Danny". He is an obvious favorite of the boss. For Danny, things don't measure up as he is horrified by the brutal lifestyle he is a part of. This book had great characters, a sad undertone and frequent bursts of violence. I found it a captivating but often difficult read.
Dec 16, 2010 Al rated it really liked it
Entertaining Los Angeles noir circa 1930. Danny Landon works for a brutal mob boss, who treats him with uncharacteristic respect. Danny struggles to remember his life before he was beaten into amnesia with a lead pipe. As the story unfolds, it becomes clear that Danny isn't cut out for a life of crime. Great 30s ambiance, exciting action, but one weakness is a somewhat labored and unconvincing climax.
Jun 13, 2010 Amy rated it really liked it
This book is set in Los Angeles in the 1930s, and has the feel of the movie Chinatown, with gangs of mobsters who would kill you as soon as look at you. The hero is a bit of a different character, though.
The reader is good, and the book holds you till the last.
Tom Epperson's book is well-written and interesting, but unrelentingly bleak. I found myself permanently stalled about half-way through it, unwilling to read about the pain and disaster that were obviously ahead for most - if not all - of the characters.
Jul 11, 2009 Heather marked it as to-read
A potentially good book club read, I think! Here's what People says: "A dark thriller set in the criminal underworld of 1930s Los Angeles. Casey Affleck is set to star in the upcoming film." - plus it just went to paperback.
Jun 26, 2008 Melodie rated it really liked it
Read like a Raymond Chandler book (and that's a good thing). I love Thirties noir mysteries.
Laura Paradowski
Jun 09, 2014 Laura Paradowski rated it really liked it
Good Audio book. A film noir style which reads like a movie. Set in LA in the 30s. Great characters. Not the type of book I would generally pick up but really recommend the audio version.
Jennifer Taw
Jun 23, 2014 Jennifer Taw rated it really liked it
Now THIS is noir...and it's wonderful LA noir, beautifully written, shiny-edged and harsh with a warm, molten center. This is great writing and a wonderful read.
Jun 30, 2010 Swanbender2001 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved 'Danny', Dulwich and Sophie. The writing was nice to settle into and was believable; the characters were great to get to know.
Oct 09, 2013 Marc rated it really liked it
Classique dans sa construction et son style, L.A. Noir n'a ni l'ambition ni la maîtrise d'un Ellroy mais se lit très agréablement.
Kathy Adamson
May 11, 2009 Kathy Adamson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2009
This is a perfect noir novel about gangsters in the 1930's. Murder, mayhem, love, mystery and a surprise ending. It has it all.
Jul 24, 2009 Kristin rated it really liked it
This will remind you of L.A. Confidential in many ways but more from the gangster angle. It is a good story that has a good pace.
Oct 04, 2013 Margie rated it really liked it
Listen to audio. Good narrator Scott Brick. Interesting 1930-40 gangster story in LA. Twists and turns.
Patrick Gowdy
Apr 18, 2010 Patrick Gowdy rated it it was amazing
A good history of a 1930's Los Angeles. The story is fast-paced, and an easy read.
Tom O'Connor
Apr 11, 2010 Tom O'Connor rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 100-books
Liked this book, although it wasn't as "noir" as the blurbs implied.
Sep 11, 2010 Michelle rated it did not like it
Shelves: noir, fiction
I like my noir more hard boiled, and frankly, better written.
Sep 30, 2011 Debi rated it really liked it
3.5 stars- great dialogue and atmosphere ala "L. A. Confidential"
Sep 12, 2009 Andrea marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Casey Affleck to star in the upcoming film.
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