Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Dodgers” as Want to Read:
Dodgers
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Dodgers

by
3.88  ·  Rating details ·  4,121 Ratings  ·  688 Reviews
Dodgers is a dark, unforgettable coming-of-age journey that recalls the very best of Richard Price, Denis Johnson, and J.D. Salinger. It is the story of a young LA gang member named East, who is sent by his uncle along with some other teenage boys—including East's hothead younger brother—to kill a key witness hiding out in Wisconsin. The journey takes East out of a city he ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published April 5th 2016 by Crown (first published March 30th 2016)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Dodgers, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
karen
Feb 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: grgiveaways
In his mind he was boiling it down: Drive the roads. Meet up for guns. The job. He tried to follow it in his mind, see where the problems were. But there was nothing to see. Only these boys. Kill a man? More like keep them from killing each other, these three boys, for two thousand miles in this ugly van. That was what they'd brought him in for. That was what he had to do to get back home.


this is crime fiction where crime takes a backseat to character development, a coming-of-age novel whose pro
...more
Annet
This is a great book. Really good. Thanks to karen who brought me to this book with her review! And a great debut novel by Bill Beverly. One of my reading highlights of 2016.
I would say, ... it's a sort of modern Oliver Twist story. Only more grim. Yes, it's a rather bleak, sad crime story, but more than that it is a coming of age story. It's a story about a road trip. And this trip is not for fun. The cover of the book is sort of symbolic: a deserted gas station, bleak, deserted.
It's the story
...more
Es Summer
Feb 10, 2016 rated it really liked it

Gritty, brutally wicked, yet poetic and tender, Dodgers is one of the best written literary crime novels I have read. From the first page, I was hooked into the world of edgy delinquents and LA's street gangs.

I do not read a lot of crime novels, due to the fact that they do not make me feel much.
I don't care about a murder investigation if the story is plot driven and not character driven. If there is not much character development, I am not interested to explore the story and analyze the eve
...more
James Thane
May 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime-fiction
This is a haunting, beautifully written book about a young Los Angeles gang banger named East. As the book opens, East is the head of a crew of sentries who are guarding the approach to a drug den. But when the police suddenly raid the place, something goes wrong, and the boys East has placed on the perimeter to sound the first alarm fail to do so. The house gets hit with only East's last-second panicked warning to those inside.

East's uncle, Fin, who runs this and other drug houses, is naturally
...more
Julie
Dec 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Dodgers by Bill Beverly is a 2016 Crown publication.

Good, but not what I was expecting.

An L.A. Gang member called ‘East’, finds himself in a bind when the house he is supposed to ‘watch’ is popped, causing him to lose his position. But, his uncle, Fin, offers him another 'opportunity' by sending him off on a road trip with his younger half -brother and two other guys to kill a judge before he can testify against him.

So, begins a long road trip style journey for East, who is only fifteen, some
...more
Beverly
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Gritty, urban saga, Dodgers, kept me guessing and worrying about what would happen to its 15 year old protagonist, East, a boy with many problems., not least of which is his violent 13 year old brother, Ty. Easy works as a yard boy, keeping an eye on the crack house, which his mentor owns, but said house is lost, after a police bust and Easy must go on a dangerous road trip across the country to seek revenge for its dissolution. A quick read, with some surprises at the end which I didn't see com ...more
Liz
Jan 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Isn't it wild how a book can grab you immediately? Just a few pages and you're hooked. Dodgers is like that. Beverly starts off describing The Boxes, the slums, and you're there. First we are in East’s world and then Beverly flips the page and East enters ours. A boy that's probably never left the Boxes, let alone LA, is driving towards Wisconsin. Unfortunately what starts out so hot cools off and slows down as they travel. I know it would be hard to maintain that intensity but a little somethin ...more
☮Karen
Jan 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars. Gorgeous writing about such an ugly topic:  Four teen boys in an L.A. street gang take a cross-country road trip to kill a Wisconsin judge.  Boys sent to do what most men won't do. Their risk taking and stupidity made me very nervous, a feeling I did not at first  appreciate.  A book about gang members  is definitely  not my usual preference; but I think the author did a great job formulating the characters and helping us understand why they were the way they were, without having to a ...more
Snotchocheez
Sep 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
4 stars

As the 2016 baseball season dwindles down to the Fall Classic with the Los Angeles Dodgers having sewn up the National League West division, I thought I'd slip in a curveball (as Bill Beverly has done with his remarkable debut, Dodgers.)

Despite the title, this dark, gritty, (and, dare I say it without turning off everyone) coming of age novel has zero to do with baseball (and despite the black-and-white Four-Level cover photo, not a whole heck of a lot to do with Los Angeles, either.) I
...more
Faith
Dec 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book about the coming of age of 15 year old East, who works as lookout for a Los Angeles drug dealer. When his job blows up, East, his estranged, 13 year old brother Ty and two older boys, Michael and Walter, are sent by the drug dealer on a cross country mission to Wisconsin. East is preternaturally calm and mature, but it is the sociopathic Ty who drives much of the action in this story which takes place over the course of about one month.

The author respected his character
...more
Ron
Apr 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Dodgers is the story of a boy named East, a seasoned gang member at only 15 years old already in charge of a “yard”. The initial setting takes place in what’s been termed The Boxes, the run-down blocks of houses in Los Angeles that East calls home. But this is more than a story about gangs running drugs in the poor section of a city. After the house he guards is taken down by police, East is asked to do another job. Murder a man in Wisconsin. What comes in a form of a question is not always a qu ...more
Emma
Dec 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: realreaders
This is not the kind of book that I would ordinarily have picked for myself and I went into it with little expectation that I would enjoy it. Yet, from the outset, I was gripped by the voice of East, a young LA gang member. If this is a crime novel, it is crime in the way of DeLillo or Hunter S. Thomson. It is powerful extrapolation of character, the immediate immersion in a lifestyle so different from your own, the uncertainty of what the hell is going to happen next, the destruction of what yo ...more
Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life.

I liked this book but I didn't love it as I had hoped that I would. The focus of this book was really on the characters with the plot taking a lesser role. I thought the book was really slow at times and was fairly easy to set aside. However, the writing had a nice flow which I really enjoyed. Overall, I found this book to be a good read.

This book was very character driven. I think one of my main problems with the story is that I never connec
...more
Paul
Jan 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Dodgers – A Brilliant Debut Novel

Dodgers is my standout debut thriller of the year that will take your breath away, this is the literary world’s The Wire. Usually when I see the words literary crime thriller I tend to shudder, as the story is neither one nor the other but falls between the two. Dodgers has made me question my understanding of literary crime as it delivers on so many levels, it is as addictive as crack cocaine!

Dodgers follows the story of East, a drug gangs house lookout at a cra
...more
Trudie
Dec 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a very accomplished debut crime novel by Bill Beverly, author of a previous non-fictional work on criminal fugitives.

I love a good crime novel but prefer them to have solid, dare one say, "literary writing" as well as page-turning plotting.
Dodgers came as close to anything I have read this year to hitting that mark.

This is a road trip story, but a road trip with a dark mission. A clandestine journey eastwards with an odd sort of criminal fellowship. An enigmatic sibling rivalry, plans
...more
Paul O'Neill
Jan 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
Here’s how it went, for me.

Interesting setup > Unique premise > Good mix of characters on a journey > Interesting group dynamic leads to fractious event > Group carries out interesting task with good plot twist > ABSOLUTE BOREDOM FOR FAAAR TOO LONG IN OHIO > Semi-interesting ending.

This started off as a four star book and ended on two stars. I’ve seen lots of positive reviews regarding Dodgers but in the end, the poor character building and absolutely mind numbingly boring thir
...more
George K.
Nov 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime-mystery
Βαθμολογία: 9/10

Το βιβλίο κυκλοφόρησε μέσα στους πρώτους μήνες του 2016 στις Ηνωμένες Πολιτείες και τράβηξε αμέσως την προσοχή των αναγνωστών και των κριτικών, όντας υποψήφιο για πολλά βραβεία και κερδίζοντας κάμποσα από δαύτα. Τόσο η περίληψη της ιστορίας όσο και οι ως επί το πλείστον θετικές κριτικές μου κίνησαν το ενδιαφέρον και ήλπιζα να το δούμε μια μέρα στα ελληνικά, χωρίς όμως να το πιστεύω και πολύ. Τόσα ωραία βιβλία δεν έχουν μεταφραστεί, γιατί αυτό; Και όμως! Οι εκδόσεις Στερέωμα το έφ
...more
Eric
Apr 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was a fine book and highly recommended.

Some are calling this a "coming of age" story, but I dispute that sort of description. It's not really about growing up, more so than growing "out." It's also more like a sort of teenage road story, rather than a nostalgic look at growing up.

The story deals with four, inner city teenagers involved in the gang life, instructed to drive cross country to complete a violent task at the orders of their street gang boss.

Along the way, revelations are made
...more
Trish
Apr 26, 2017 marked it as put-aside
For some reason this didn't work for me. I was listening to the audio and the narrator, J.D. Jackson, is African American. Nothing wrong with that, except that the author is white, and this is about gangland boys looking for a key witness outside of South Central L.A., where they live.

Far be it from me to say who can explain what is a valid experience, but the first time I started listening to it I felt a distance from the material. It just didn't seem authentic--the boys were noticing and disc
...more
Mike W
May 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
When author Adam Sternbergh recently tweeted that readers looking for a great thriller would do well to check out Bill Beverly's new novel "Dodgers" it got my attention. When he described the plot as "... if kid-characters from The Wire went on a mythic road trip" I was all in. I have to say, that description is something close to perfect and if that sounds appealing then you're very likely to enjoy this novel.

East is a 15 year old in South Central L.A. who has worked the past two years supervis
...more
Ann Marie (Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine)
Read more reviews at www.litwitwineanddine.com

Dodgers is not what I would call a mystery/thriller or even a crime novel in the strictest sense. It's definitely more of a coming-of-age story. East is a young L.A. gang member who has recently failed to protect a house he was in charge of from a police raid. His Uncle, the leader, sends him to Wisconsin along with 3 other gang members, including his younger half brother, to execute a judge who is to be a key witness. He gives them new identities, a
...more
Raven
May 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Widely billed as The Wire crossed with road trip movie, I think that this book actually defies the simplicity of this description. In the character of gang member East, who was the absolute stand out for me, Beverly has created something really quite special. This is a bildungsroman for the modern age, with East in particular embracing the possibilities of life outside of the tough LA neighbourhood he inhabits, and the lawless life he leads. As the book progresses and his cohorts fall by the way ...more
Makis Dionis
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: road-trip, bourbon
L.A. -> Wisconsin -> Ohaio.. Όλα είναι δρόμος... Κ λίγο gangsta για το ρου της ιστορίας... Χωρίς ηθικά πλεονεκτήματα κ επαναστάτες...με το βλέμμα της ψυχής ενός εφήβου Niger, επιτομή στο road trip
royaevereads
Mar 20, 2016 rated it liked it
I don't read many crime novels. For the most part I did enjoy this one.

The writing style was great. One part that was especially effective was when the author stopped using personal pronouns during one particularly harrowing scene. It somehow magnified the horror of it all.

I liked how distinct the characters were, all with their very obvious strengths and flaws.

The main thing that was a let down for me was the ending. I began to feel that the book should end a long while before it did, and I
...more
Richard
Sep 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My blurb: Dodgers is a wickedly good amalgamation of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Clockers that stands firmly on its own as a remarkable debut. A Harrowing road trip into the heart of America that will shock you, move you, and leave you marveling at its desolate poetry. A real accomplishment: a book that makes you see the familiar through new eyes. It will stick with me for a long, long time.
Steph Post
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Dodgers was not what I expected, but actually turned out to more of the type of crime fiction that I enjoy. More a Coming of Age story, with a strong focus on characters over action, than your typical crime novel. I think the term "literary crime/thriller" is definitely appropriate here, as the writing is gorgeous and the characters thought-provoking and deftly drawn. Dodgers spans the genres and I would recommend this novel for both crime fiction and literary fiction fans.
Bonnie
‘Every road had a number and joined up a hundred times with other roads. He saw how they would go. This was like the mazes they use to do in school while the teacher slept. What they said in school was: Don’t worry. Keep looking at it. You can always get there.’

At only fifteen-years-old, East has been working as a lookout for two years at a Los Angeles drug house in a place known as the Boxes. He’s a tough young man and does his job well but when the established system fails and the house fall
...more
Tucker
Dec 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
“Dodgers” is a book that combines several different genres - crime noir, coming of age, and road trip - into a totally unforgettable novel with characters and events that linger long after the last page is read. Fifteen year old East is a gang member and the head of a lookout crew that keeps watch on a drug house. When the police raid the house, East and several other gang members are sent on a road trip to Wisconsin to kill a key witness in an upcoming trial. Most of theses boys have never been ...more
Annie ~ The Misstery
Read the review here >> It’s hard to believe that Dodgers, by Bill Beverly, is actually a debut novel. It was so unexpected and great. Dodgers is gritty and beautiful at the same time, a mix between a crime novel and a coming-of-age story. I could easily picture the film being directed by Clint Eastwood or Ben Affleck. It’d probably win many Oscars.

The book revolves around East (Easton, sometimes E, sometimes Easy), a young gang member living in LA. East is only fifteen years old but is
...more
Mark
Jan 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
East is a sixteen year old, gang-banger, in South LA. He guards a drug house and has all ready become a seasoned street veteran. His uncle has a special job for him. Along, with three other gang members, he is given the task, to travel to Wisconsin and kill a key witness, who also happens to be a judge. They will travel by car, pay in cash and leave no paper trail.
Sounds easy enough, right? Well, no...Tagging along is East's younger brother, who at the tender age of thirteen, is a gunman and bur
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Unsure about the ending (spoilers!) 3 24 Jun 15, 2018 11:04PM  
**Spoiler question** Why did East call? **Spoiler question** 3 40 Oct 10, 2016 07:20PM  
Free Books, .99 &...: Win Dodgers by Bill Beverly! 1 5 Apr 20, 2016 09:38AM  
Book Haven: Win Dodgers by Bill Beverly! 1 2 Apr 20, 2016 09:37AM  
  • Deviant
  • Student Bodies (Poltergeeks, #2)
  • Charcoal Joe (Easy Rawlins #14)
  • Domino Falls (Devil's Wake, #2)
  • King Maybe (Junior Bender, #5)
  • Seek 'N Find
  • Weapon of Choice
  • Yesterday's Echo (Rick Cahill, #1)
  • Mr. Samuel's Penny: An Elizabeth Parrot Mystery
  • Thanksgiving
  • Hunters in the Dark
  • Strays
  • Deadly Diamonds (Knight and Devlin #4)
  • Where They Bury You
  • Paradise
  • She Returns From War
  • Shaker
  • Rogue (The Beloved, #2)

Fiction Deals

  • Mercy Among the Children
    $14.99 $1.99
  • West of the Tularosa
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Love and Ruin
    $12.99 $3.99
  • Siddhartha
    $10.95 $2.99
  • The Orphan Daughter
    $4.99 $1.99
  • When We Were Worthy
    $5.99 $2.99
  • Somebody's Daughter
    $5.99 $2.99
  • A Night Divided
    $10.99 $1.99
  • The Book of Disquiet: The Complete Edition
    $24.95 $2.99
  • The Cherished Quilt
    $8.99 $2.99
  • To Find a Mountain
    $3.99 $1.99
  • I'll Be Your Blue Sky
    $12.99 $1.99
  • The Lotterys Plus One
    $10.99 $1.99
  • Buddha
    $13.99 $1.99
  • The Falls (P.S.)
    $8.74 $1.99
  • Broken Pieces
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Love Held Captive (A Lone Star Hero's Love Story)
    $8.99 $2.99
  • The Girl Who Came Home
    $11.99 $1.99
  • When Jesus Wept (The Jerusalem Chronicles, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • In the Name of the Family
    $13.99 $1.99
  • The Man He Never Was: A Modern Reimagining of Jekyll and Hyde
    $8.99 $1.99
  • The Hired Man
    $14.99 $1.99
  • Crimes Against a Book Club
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Girls of the Great War
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Map of Love: A Novel
    $14.99 $2.99
  • Wish Me Home
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell
    $5.99 $2.99
  • Every Tongue Got to Confess
    $10.24 $1.99
  • A Golden Age
    $9.24 $1.99
  • Serena
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Dreamland
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Holy Fools
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Tampa
    $11.49 $1.99
  • The Beloved Hope Chest
    $8.99 $1.99
  • Leave Myself Behind
    $15.99 $1.99
  • The Fifth Avenue Artists Society
    $11.99 $1.99
  • All That's Left of Me
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Palm Trees in the Snow
    $3.99 $1.99
  • A Map of the World
    $14.99 $2.99
  • Chemistry Lessons
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Journey's End (Gilded Promises)
    $3.99 $1.99
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“Flight, they called it. One part fear, one part the blindest excitement you’d ever known. It freed you from time, from who you were or the matter of what you’d done.” 0 likes
“But stronger than their feelings for Hosea or telling the truth was a principle: Know when you’re fucking with someone. Know who you’re fucking with. Know that things have their cost.” 0 likes
More quotes…