John's Reviews > The Kings of Cool

The Kings of Cool by Don Winslow
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's review
Oct 12, 2012

really liked it
Read in October, 2012

This is the Prequel to Savages, a blockbuster blood and guts epic from Oliver Stone, starring Taylor Kitsch (Tim Riggins from Friday Night Lights .. hopefully "Rig" will get out of his rut with this movie after the horrendous bombs, John Carter and Battleship).
Kings of Cool looks at Life Behind the Orange Curtain - Orange County, California - specifically the glitzy corridor between San Diego and Seal Beach. The bullseye is Laguna Beach. It's kind of like a less funny California style Blues Brothers set against a backdrop of surfing, screwing, drugs, facelifts and 60s hippies trapped in the throes of midlife crisis. Winslow is several cuts above your typical suspense thriller author. He knows his stuff, makes astute comments about culture, intersperses bits of popular songs, history and politics to set the scene. He has a very user-friendly style where a chapter consists of a single word or a few sentences. It uses up a lot of paper but it reads quick. He is economic with his verse ... no protracted raps, indulgent descriptions and boring dialogue.
After reading the book (in less than a day), I noted in the acknowledgements that Winslow cites two nonfiction accounts about the development of the drug subculture in Laguna Beach ... Orange Sunshine by Nich Schou and The Brotherhood of Eternal Love by Stewart Tendler. The desecriptions in Good Reads of these books looked quite interesting.
I am not sure if the Stone violencefest pic will do justice to the book but after reading the prequel and a short description of Savages, I need to how how it all ends.
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