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Diamond Dogs

3.41  ·  Rating Details  ·  243 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
Star quarterback Neil Garvin is as cruel to his fellow students at his Nevada high school as his abusive father is to him. When a random act of violence takes a life, Neil's father, the local sheriff, takes control and covers up the crime. Wrestling with the mysterious disappearance of his mother years before, Neil must find his way of out of his prison of fear.
Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 1st 2001 by Grand Central Publishing (first published September 1st 2000)
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2001 Alex Award Winners
10th out of 10 books — 2 voters
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Authors With Only One Novel
52nd out of 120 books — 214 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 413)
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Sep 27, 2008 Shanna rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction, mystery, life
I honestly don't know where to start off with this book. For starters the whole plot of the book is over all very weak and seems to go into so many different directions that it hardly seems to be part of the same book anymore. The main character is Neil a football star who is the son of the town's sheriff. The character of Neil is ver unlikable from start to finish. He is a bully and to tell you the truth the book does an awful job trying to get you to feel any sympathy fo him. ~SPOILER~ So the ...more
Cole Van
Oct 20, 2015 Cole Van rated it really liked it
The book Diamond Dogs is a brilliant book written by Alan Watt, who is both a writer and an actor. The book he created has many important themes and relatable topics within it. The book goes over the problem of family issues which is an important topic to go over with a high school audience reading the book. The book is in the view of a high school boy telling his story and sharing his struggles with the reader.
The story opens up with our main character, Neil Garvin being shown as a very popula
Joel Roberts
Mar 09, 2012 Joel Roberts rated it it was ok
mediocre, but a painless mediocre. if a phone call hadn't interrupted me, i might have finished the book in 20 minutes.
Scott Moon
Feb 10, 2014 Scott Moon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A few months ago, I purchased a copy of the 90 day novel by Alan Watt and gave it a go. But that's a different book review, and must wait until I've completed the day-by-day writing exercises.

After spending a large amount of time following Watt's advice on writing, which seemed solid or I wouldn't have bought the 90 day novel, I decided I needed to read Diamond Dogs. Yes, I can be a bit backward. A normal person would purchase a book on writing after developing admiration for an author's work.

Oct 20, 2009 Elizabeth rated it liked it
I was surprised to realize how interesting this book was. A football player, Neil, makes a bad decision and ends up with his hands covered in a mess he isn't sure how to handle. The relationship he holds with his dad is based on how much he pleases his dad with his accomplishments. Throughout the story, his dad and him bond in a twisted way when they try to cover up a crime. Many kids in today's society are always trying to please someone. In the book, you see Neil trying to get out of the hold ...more
Oct 29, 2008 Jessica rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2008, fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 17, 2013 Hulltyl16 rated it it was amazing
Did you know that Diamond dogs is now a major motion picture. This book written by Alan watt contains everything from your mid- night romance too your favorite mysteries. In this book Neil, a 17 year old pro star football player with a partying problem finds himself in his father’s shoes even though he wont know it till the end of the book. Even though this book only spans over a four day period, it still is a “all night book”. This book is a great read, for all reading levels but not all readin ...more
Jun 05, 2013 A.j. rated it liked it
This Book was a decent book. The book isn’t all that long so I expected it to be a little more exciting though it had good content it isn't all that exciting after the beginning and then towards the end it starts to get better. The book is about a guy named Neil that has everything at school he is popular and he in the quarterback of the football team. His home life isn't so amazing though his dad is a drunk that occasionally beats him, and his mom stepped out on them. I would recommend this boo ...more
Larry Buhl
Feb 14, 2011 Larry Buhl rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 25, 2015 F.L. rated it really liked it
I like the coming of age story found within.There is a lot of precision in the wrting. An easy read with a universal message that most readers will ferret out. I larned a lot about writing here.
Feb 03, 2016 Jessica rated it did not like it
Disgusting and irrelevant. About a perverted father obsessed with Neil diamond and his son.
Dec 24, 2015 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Diamond Dogs by Alan Watt

Neil Garvin appears to have it all; good looks, popularity, a girlfriend and the starting quarterback position on the high school football team. However he also has to live with his abusive father, the memory of his mother who left when he was three and a secret that will haunt him forever.

I enjoyed this suspenseful novel even though I didn’t like the main character or his father, but I think that was part of the idea of the book. Neil’s past doesn’t excuse who he is or
Flavio Braga
Dec 25, 2013 Flavio Braga rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fabs
I read this book because I am reading other book from Alan Watt, The 90 Day Novel. I found this book very interesting. First it doesn't have the common form of other books. Neil narrates the story in the first person. The plot is psychological. We follow Neil's mind as he tolds us his personal problems, mostly because his father. His world changes after he hits and kills a school mate after leaving a party loaded. His father covered him hidden the body. Nice development and construction. The con ...more
Itasca Community Library
Jeff says,
Neil Garvin appears to have it all; good looks, popularity, a girlfriend and the starting quarterback position on the high school football team. However he also has to live with his abusive father, the memory of his mother who left when he was three and a secret that will haunt him forever. I enjoyed this suspenseful novel even though I didn’t like the main character or his father, but I think that was part of the idea of the book. Neil’s past doesn’t excuse who he is or what he has do
Aug 06, 2015 Marybeth rated it really liked it
Loved this book, very reminiscent of a Stephen King novella.
Aug 31, 2012 Cat. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, children-ya
Another cheerful book about teens killing teens...this one from the perspective of a star athlete who drinks too much at a party and, while driving home, kills another kid. He panics, but is shocked when his dad actually covers for him, even hides the body. His father is amazingly brutal, not to mention an alcoholic. In the end, he nearly kills the kid, who (very pat) suddenly remembers where his mother is & why she hasn't ever come home for him. You end up feeling like this horrible kid may ...more
Jennifer Louden
Dec 31, 2011 Jennifer Louden rated it liked it
Hard to put down thriller; dark but some redeeming ending; I wanted to keep reading but I didn't care enough about the characters; and I found myself peeved that so many (all?) the main character's insights are preceded by the word "realized." It felt like cheating to me. Yes there was action that brought the realization to the forefront but still, I was bugged. Read this because the writer also wrote 90 Days to the Novel which I am working through... I did find the way he unpacked this novel in ...more
David F.
Mar 19, 2015 David F. rated it it was amazing
great book
Jul 07, 2012 Abbie rated it liked it
Wow... angst now has a whole new standard to live up to, doesn't it? I mean, God...

This book wasn't even sad or depressing. It was just ANGSTY. I struggled through the beginning a bit, mostly because I had trouble caring for Neil. In fact, I don't think I really cared for Neil until the end, when he found out the truth about his mother.

This was an odd duck of a book, and I can't say I would read it again. It wasn't bad exactly, just... strange.
Jun 19, 2013 Brian rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle
I read this short debut novel because I had recently picked up Watts' book on 90-day novel writing and he, naturally, mentioned this one quite a bit. Bad thing happen, then dumb things happen, and then this one thing happens, and that's about it. I felt nothing for the main characters, even when all the secrets come to light. So so ...
Jun 28, 2013 Kat rated it really liked it
What really got me in this book is Al Watt's ability to pack so much information into one paragraph.
It's not the kind of book I normally read, and the two main characters were both despicable in their own ways. But not all protagonists need to be likeable for it to be a good and compelling story. The end makes this novel.
Krista Stevens
Feb 22, 2012 Krista Stevens rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult, boys
Disturbing. Almost in a good way, but then Watts crosses the line with graphic and extremely disturbing sex scenes. I liked the suspense and the way he portrayed human nature' desire to cover up sin/big mistakes - but at the end I think he lost his focus. For only very mature upper high school kids.
Peter Schuyler
Dec 09, 2010 Peter Schuyler rated it it was amazing
Diamond Dogs had such a clear narrative line. It made me care for the protagonist even though there were so many reasons not to like him. The characters were hewn out of different woods and each resonated with his own personality.
It was a quick read that left me wanting more.
May 28, 2009 Eden rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: teens
i read this book when i was in 8th grade and really liked it, i think it partly had to do with the fact that i had gotten it from goodwill for 25 cents and it was good. I think that i was shocked me that the book that cost me so will could be entertaining.
Jul 30, 2011 Molly rated it liked it
Pretty depressing story, but written with amazing pacing that gets you through it. Main character is not really likable, so much so that he doesn't really like himself either. Set outside Las Vegas, which makes for an interesting setting.
Erin Nudi
Apr 09, 2012 Erin Nudi rated it it was amazing
Reminds me of Crime and Punishment, except a much easier, lighter read than that. I enjoyed this a lot, and also got to read about the making of this book in Watt's other (AMAZING) book, The 90 Day Novel.
Jan 16, 2013 Emma rated it it was amazing
I loved the narration of this novel. Neil is a heartbreaking character who I was rooting for all the way.

I read this book in one day. I couldn't put it down. It was fast paced, tense, and wonderful.
Jun 21, 2012 Keri rated it really liked it
I picked this up at the library b/c it was recommended by staff, who wrote "father son bonding at its very worst". Yep. Compellling quick read, but very dark. It would make a great Cohen Brothers movie.
Marcus Lynn
Nov 23, 2011 Marcus Lynn rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Dark novel about an unusual father-son bond that is disturbing and odd. The last 30 pages of the book made it one to remember.
Nov 02, 2014 Tracey rated it really liked it
Recommended to Tracey by: Kathy
Book Club Book 11 - Chosen by Kathy!

It's a great book with mystery and a little sex - two of my favorite things!
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Alan Watt is a novelist, screenwriter and playwright. His bestselling novel Diamond Dogs (Little, Brown), won numerous awards including France’s 2004 Prix Printemps (best foreign novel). He recently adapted the book for French film company, Quad, and it is soon to be a feature film. His book, The 90-Day Novel, is one of the top-selling books on writing. He's also the author of The 90-Day Rewrite a ...more
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