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Angel Baby

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  792 ratings  ·  149 reviews
**Winner of the International Association of Crime Writers' Dashiell Hammett Award**

A woman goes on the run in this intense and cinematic thriller by an award-winning writer.
To escape the awful life she has descended into, Luz plans carefully. She takes only the clothes on her back, a Colt .45, and all the money in her husband's safe. The corpses in the hallway weren't p
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published May 14th 2013 by Mulholland Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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3.67  · 
Rating details
 ·  792 ratings  ·  149 reviews

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I was initially drawn to this book because of the cover -- woman with gun, noirish Western, right in my wheelhouse. I finished reading it tonight being pleasantly surprised by how good it was. I carried this book to the kitchen, to the bathroom, in my purse to a dinner date with friends in the vain hope that I could cram 15 minutes of reading in if I was the first person to arrive at the restaurant. (I was not.)

The whole book is a pursuit. Nearly every character is out for him or herself, which
May 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: noir, thriller
The setting Tijuana, in this story its a place were people minded their own business if they valued their life.

There is one character Malone a driver of sorts that would get you across the border in the boot of his motor vehicle for a good price and he is about to handle goods that needs more than anyone else to be reunited with her estranged young daughter, she is on the run from some trouble aka Angel baby.
Malone turns out to be a likeable character even though he is a bit of a shady one, you
Angel Baby is a Mulhollard/Little Brown and Company publication. This book was released in May 2013.
First of all I would like to thank the publisher and Library Thing for this TSPB edition from the early review program.

Luz is living a nightmare with her abusive husband. She needs to leave him and get back to her young daughter, Isabel. She must cross the border into the United States and find her aunt that has been keeping Isobel for her. But, first she has to get away from her husband. Luz will
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-borrowed
Angel Baby is a masterpiece of gritty crime fiction, professionally plotted from cover to cover, with richly drawn characters. Like Winslow's The Cartel, Lange here vividly portrays the horrors of the Narco cartels who have viciously carved out a bloody path through much of Mexico, turning what used to be a lazy beer-soaked desert into a scene of corruption, terror, and horror where people desperate for survival will do just about anything. Those horrors all too frequently poor over the Northern ...more
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)
You may also read my review here:

Luz is married to Rolando. Rolando is a narco who has kept Luz drugged and under his thumb for 3 years. It doesn’t end with the drugs either. There’s humiliation and beatings too, punctuated with rare moments of tenderness. Rolando is about to have a big problem on his hands, though. Luz has had enough and has spent quite some time getting clean. She’s also developed a game plan for escaping Rolando, and she only has eyes
Jul 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
It's a good thing this is a short book because everyone in it makes terrible life decisions and I was starting to get mad at them.
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
When Luz escapes from her drug kingpin husband in Tijuana with a backpack full of cash and a pistol in a desperate attempt to reunite with her child in the U.S., it sets off a chase with enough twists to keep you turning the pages until the very end.

A wonderful tale of redemption with a satisfying conclusion.
Let me just say WOW! This book was phenomenal. I won this book in a first reads giveaway, but it was one that I gladly would have paid for by description alone.

Angel Baby is based around a woman named Luz who is married to a Tijuana drug cartel key player, but runs away to try to get back to her daughter in the US. Many men for varying selfish reasons stand in her way between her frantic run for a life with her daughter.

This book read like a movie. I was drawn into the story, there for every e
Jun 11, 2013 rated it it was ok
ANGEL BABY. (2013). Richard Lange. **.
I recently read this author’s first novel, “This Wicked World,” and felt that he had a great deal of talent and was worth watching. This book, his second novel, was very disappointing. It’s a ho-hum chase novel where the wife of a drug king in Mexico finally escapes from the ranch/fortress after killing the two servants, who were really her guards. In the process, she raids her husband’s safe and takes all the money inside and a .45 pistol. She intends getti
Jul 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Noir and crime novels used to mean something. It used to mean damaged people with their souls and lives in tatters trying desperately for one last desperate bid for redemption. A landscape devoid of heroes filled with dive bars, luxury as a malevolent trap, gutters filled with blood, a world of desperate self-involved people hoping for love, a bit of the pie, and or safety in a world rule by greed and violence. Somehow crime novels have become boring collections of sexy lab staff, quirky detect ...more
May 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
What a pleasure to start a book that jumps into high gear from the very first page, keeps up the pace throughout the book, and is very well-written. Yes, it's been done before: the beautiful, courageous, abused wife, named Luz, of a Mexican drug lord, plots to make her escape. Lots of bad decisions in her past, but now she wants to get back to the little girl she left behind and start her life all over again. Now, of course the drug lord is not going to be happy about this, especially as she has ...more
May 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
Luz is a battered narcoficante's wife who seizes the moment to escape her imprisonment in Tijuana-she has to employ her husband's violent tactics too. Her vengeful husband gets one of his soldiers out of prison to hunt her down and bring her back so he can personally torture her to death. The chase leads to Los Angeles. There is an unusual alliance between a corrupt Border Patrol agent and the drug foot soldier along the way. Lots of interesting twists in the plot as Luz flees and encounters one ...more
Desiree Streib
May 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
I received this book when one of my book club members received ten free copies for our book club to read and discuss. Angel Baby starts with a bang and continues that way until the last page. Luz is a woman who left her daughter four years ago to marry a man who just happened to be head of a drug cartel. Now she is trapped in her own home, trying to escape Mexico and live with the daughter she left behind. From a corrupt border patrol agent, to a driver battling his own demons, to the man chasin ...more
Benjamin Percy
Feb 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This novel should come with a warning. Because if you read so much as a single sentence, you will be gripped by its unstoppable force, addicted to the book as if it were a brick of black tar heroin. Happily, perilously plan to lose the next twelve hours of your life. The sentences flash like switchblades, the chapters rattle off like gunfire. Make all the comparisons you like—Cormac McCarthy, Dennis Lehane, Martin Scorsese—but Richard Lange is a force of his own, the high standard for crime fict ...more
Scott Cumming
Aug 06, 2014 rated it liked it
It took me a while to get into this one and once I did I was hooked. However, it was all a little neat and anti climactic in the end.

I did enjoy the characters though. They all had a rich back story and the book constantly takes you back into their histories every so often. At times I enjoyed these more than the main plot of the novel.

I enjoyed this enough to seek out Lange's other books as there was plenty of potential here, it just didn't pan out as excitingly as I hoped here.
Jun 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Let me start by saying that I won this book in a Goodreads first reads giveawayand I am so happy that I did. Richard Lange slapped me in the face with intense action from page one and never stopped. He masterfully crafted this story with just enough action and description to keep me moving smoothly through the pages. A great book and a must read.
Christopher Irvin
Mar 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Easily one of my favorite reads. It's rare that an author makes me sympathize and empathize with such complex -gray- characters, wanting their opposing desires to come to fruition, even if it's near impossible. This will be one of a handful of books I suggest to people, regardless of their taste in fiction, for a long time to come.
Andrew Kaplan
Nov 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Terrific read. Starts fast and keeps you interested all the way through.
Jun 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: og-book-club
Intense. My heart was beating so fast the first 1/2 of the book. Finished it in 2 days.
Aug 23, 2017 rated it liked it
Angel Baby by Richard Lange, is the story of a woman who goes on the run. To escape her awful life, Luz plans carefully. She quits drugs and pretends all is normal. All she takes are the clothes on her back, a gun, and the money from her husband’s safe.

Her plan is to find her daughter who she left behind years earlier on the other side of the U.S.-Mexico border. What she doesn’t count on are two dead corpses left in the hallway before she has even stepped outside.

Her husband, El Principe, is a k
Ervin Vice
May 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
In the paperback edition I have, there’s an interesting discussion at the end between George Pelecanos and the author, Richard Lange, in which Pelecanos cites Chapter 6 as being “self-contained”, almost as if it could have been one of the short stories for which Lange has become so well known. He doesn’t come right out and say it, but I sensed that this was Pelecanos’s favorite chapter. It was certainly my favorite. That’s the one that presents Jeronimo in La Mesa prison. It remains vivid in my ...more
Nov 04, 2017 rated it did not like it
I have no problem with the author of this book. He can write very well. My problem with this book is that it is a dismal read. At the end, I did not care what happened to anybody. There was nobody to like and a lot of characters to hate. I will try another book by this author because he writes well. Hopefully the next book will be a bit on the happier side with some characters the reader can identify with.
Jim Kerr
Sep 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Four damaged characters, all in crises, on a non-stop chase in a bleak and startingly cruel world. All need redemption, but can find it only at the expense of the others. And, although only some merit it - redemption - I found myself rooting for each of the characters at times. Wonderfully paced. Great literate pulp.
E.R. Yatscoff
Sep 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Top notch. Imaging, characters, suspense. People caught up in very bad circumstances. The bad people in here are not all bad except for Ronaldo. I fell right into this one and tore through it as it took me into a hard world I have only touched the edge of. Maybe Mr. Lange cou;ld read my crime novels and give me a review. This book was a clearance pile gem.
Apr 19, 2018 rated it liked it
OK read
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a must book to read .... It gets right to the point! Exciting from beginning to end.
Miles Kierson
Aug 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An unusual plot, unusual circumstances, great characters (good and bad), sparkling dialogue and exciting moments, great writing -- what's not to love?
Kathi Johnson
Jul 02, 2018 rated it liked it
Too violent for me!
Oct 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Well crafted thriller. Beyond the characters and plot, I really enjoyed the vivid imagery conjured up by the author's descriptions of even the most basic elements of scenery and emotion.
Sep 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Suspenseful, but too many seedy characters for me.
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Author of The Smack, Sweet Nothing, Angel Baby, This Wicked World, and Dead Boys.
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