Billy's Reviews > The Night Gardener

The Night Gardener by George Pelecanos
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M 50x66
's review
Feb 05, 2011

really liked it
Read from February 14 to 15, 2011

I was torn between giving this book 3 stars or 4, so I went with the higher of the two. This is a story about 3 cops; one "good", one "bad", and one "broken", and their common bond brought back together by a childs death. There are alot of reasons that I like this book, so I'll just give the highlights. First, this is a book where the "good" guys DONT WIN. Finally, some real world realistic results. They come oh so close to winning, but don't quite get there, although we are left to believe that one of them is going to finish things, but as it stands, they lost. I also think that GP is GREAT at using common everyday speech of inner city youths and people of various ethnicities. This is a guy whos conversations ring true, rather then a white guy doing a corny job of trying to sound hip. You believe this is real because you know the way the people talk in the book are real. Also, this author has NO problem with killing his darlings. People drop like flies in this book without a bunch of long winded speeches or improbable acts of heroics. They just DIE. The way people do in real life. I read this book because Sai King recommended it and said that the ending would "tear your heart out". And he was right, it does. The fact that we are dealing with a childs death, and how it relates to the death of 3 other young kids, but knowing there is nothing that we, the reader, can do about it. You want to scream at the characters in the book, YOU ARE SO CLOSE....DO IT!!! But alas, we can't, and they don't. It's like a kick in the nuts from reality. Bad guys win alot, good guys straddle the line between good and bad, and good guys lose as often as they win. Great read.

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