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Bad Citizen Corporation

(Greg Salem #1)

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  57 ratings  ·  23 reviews
An East Los Angeles police officer by day and a beach cities punk rock legend by night, Salem is forced into action when his two worlds violently collide. The search for his friend’s murderer takes him on a treacherous journey through the murky waters of his hometown, forcing him to explore the dark corners of his sun-soaked world.

Without a badge to hide behind any longer,
Paperback, 288 pages
Published November 3rd 2015 by Rare Bird Books (first published September 23rd 2015)
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4.26  · 
Rating details
 ·  57 ratings  ·  23 reviews

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Michelle Turlock isler
Oct 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
WOW! S.W.Lauden has given us one dark, cool, kickass novel. What makes a truly kickass book? Think to yourself..Give me a heart-pounding murder mystery with a cool, L.A. police officer that surfs in the morning and plays in a punk band at night. Throw in some colorful characters that we cannot help but love, even the ones we hate. Add some dark, heated love triangles. Make sure it has an intense storyline, with so many twists and turns that you do not know who to trust. Be sure and take us to th ...more
Benoit Lelièvre
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was quite a trip, but it felt as fulfilling as binge-watching five seasons of a great television show. There are a lot of palpable influences on BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, but on top of my mind think Ross MacDonald meets Gerald Petievich written with the understated touch that made Hemingway such a deceptively complex writer. It's more of a cerebral pleasure than an adrenaline rush and an emotional experience, but it's a novel that tirelessly works you up. The pacing of BAD CITIZEN CORPORATIO ...more
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Lauden pulls of something that you’d think would be borderline impossible. Actually two something’s. 1. He gives you a look at LA through a new set of eyes. Describing and rambling through the town in a way you have not see before. Considering how LA has been blanketed over the years with movies, TV and fiction of all genres, this is no small chore (not to mention, I lived in LA for almost a decade.) 2. He gives you a new LA cop story. A different slant on the grizzled LA anti-hero—a cop with a ...more
Dec 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Police officer by day, punk rocker by night, surfer whenever he can get the time in. Set in a version of Southern Cal that feels like a few small surfing towns strung together. Filled with police shootings, wannabe gangbangers, real estate investors, recovering alcoholics, and a bar where everyone seems to know each other. Well-paced and a quick read. Characters with complex pasts. Thanks to Rare Bird Books for providing a copy.
Nov 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
If I were in trouble, I'd want Greg Salem by my side. S.W. Lauden's protagonist gets under your skin that much, as does his coterie of damaged, addicted, warily optimistic friends, in this debut novel that grows on you like a song you don't want to get out of your head.

Salem, seen from the outside, is a walking paradox: a minor punk-rock legend who, years after his band flamed out, has became a cop in East LA. He's an ex-drinker, a beach rat and still, occasionally, a singer, even if he can't re
Nov 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
This gritty debut took me on an adrenaline-fueled journey through the dark alleys of East Los Angeles to the dive bars of the South Bay. Greg Salem is a Virgil Heights cop who is still recognized by punk rock fans as Fred Despair, the lead singer of Bad Citizen Corporation. He still plays the occasional gig but his punk rock days are far behind him. At least that’s what he thought. After his guitarist/best friend is murdered, Salem vows to bring the killer to justice despite his recent suspensio ...more
Elizabeth A.
Oct 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
“I’ve lived through every second of my life and I still don’t know how I got to exactly this moment.” — Greg Salem

Greg Salem can be forgiven for being a bit confused about the state of his life. After all, he’s traveled a bit of an unusual path. Currently an East Los Angeles police officer, once upon a time Greg was known as Fred Despair, punk legend/lead singer of the band Bad Citizen Corporation (BCC).

Though he’s pretty much kicked the excesses of his former punk lifestyle, Salem’s still a bit
Jeff Fulton
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Lauden has crafted a modern noir novel for any reader who loves a good mystery, wonderfully drawn characters, and a gift of prose that slips easily off the page and into the reader's imagination. The only problem...I want more.
Bravo! From the sun drenched "South and North Bay" to the gritty streets of East LA, follow Greg, the Punk rock cop, as his worlds collided into one hell of a ride. Strap on your seat belt and get ready, these pages turn themselves!
Oct 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Bad Citizen Corporation is S.W. Lauden’s debut novel. This murder mystery features a surfing, punk rocking, cop! Greg doesn’t have his badge at the moment but that isn’t stopping him from turning the town upside down looking for his friend’s murderer. He enlists the help of his drummer friend Marco. Their adventures will keep you flipping pages wondering what they will get into next.
Christopher Irvin
Oct 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
A tight mystery and a great cast of characters make this crime novel sing. I've read quite a few books that take place in LA recently and this stands out both in place and tone. Looking forward to more from Lauden and Greg Salem.
Josh Stallings
Oct 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Like the best punk song ever played, Bad Citizen Corporation is raw and unpolished , it rips and roars, screams and pounds. There is also something sadly sentimental, looking back on who and what we were and shall never be again. I look forward to seeing where the punk rock cop goes next.
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved it! I really couldn't put it down, I read slowly and really only on the subway commute but I tore through this book. I really liked the main character, the setting was perfect and the writing is crisp and fun and dark all at the same time.
Jeff Fulton
Oct 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Lauden has crafted a modern noir novel for any reader who loves a good mystery, wonderfully drawn characters, and a gift of prose that slips easily off the page and into the reader's imagination. The only problem...I want more.
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book!
It's an exciting mystery with colorful characters and a unique and interesteing sense of place.
The music that runs through this book is great and that adds to it's charms.
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
When I first read the premise for this book, I expected it to be a fun pulpy noir like something you would read in a comic book/graphic novel. While it is a very intriguing and tense novel, it is much more introspective than I expected it to be. It's a great book about love, loss, regret, grief, depression, and how unexpected life can be. And not once does it ring false or feel shoehorned in. But it still is a great mystery that is always at the center. All of the characters were distinct and La ...more
Ross Cumming
Greg Salem is a cop with the Virgil Heights P. D. in East L.A. but he was a former 'bad boy' surfer and his alter ego, 'Fred Despair', the lead singer with his punk band Bad Citizen Corporation. Greg gets suspended from his job for the apparent 'bad shooting' of a suspect but also on the night of a re-union gig with his band, his guitarist and best friend gets shot and murdered following some bad blood in the crowd.
Greg and his drummer, recovering addict Marco, decide to investigate the murdered
David Nemeth
Mar 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
If Greg Salem was rapper instead of a punk rocker/cop he might have written 99 Problems before Jay Z did. In Lauden’s Bad Citizen Corporation, Salem’s problems mount up page by page from the shooting an allegedly armed suspect, his brother’s death ruled a suicide (but it’s probably murder), one of his best friend’s gunned down while performing on stage, and another friend being forced to sell his bar. Salem is also a recovering addict and hated by his home town’s police. Conflict moves along plo ...more
Colin Conway
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
I'm a sucker for crime fiction that can hook me with an interesting character and SW Lauden did that with his protagonist, Greg Salem. You see, Salem is not only a police officer but he's also the lead singer for the punk band Bad Citizen Corporation. How did a punk end up a cop? How's an officer deal with that history? That's what made the mystery appealing to me.

Set in a Southern California locale, it was a great read on cold spring day.
Andrew Nette
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
Good solid crime novel, with an interesting setting and the only ex-punker rocker, surfer policeman I've ever encountered as a main character. I'll be seeking the other in this series out. Recommended.
May 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I just finished reading Bad Citizen Corporation for the second time, and have to say that it was even better than I remembered. Lauden has captured the persona of the flawed protagonist in Greg Salem, and created a cast of highly believable characters in a terrific storyline. Highly recommended!
Feb 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this book. Punk rock detective novel indeed.
The world-building was great, and I loved the idea of a punk rock singer turned cop.
The twist/reveal at the end sort of came out of left field, with no real setup.
Still enjoyed this a bunch, and look forward to the sequel.
Oct 27, 2015 rated it liked it
Good, but SO many dumb little errors. Is Greg carrying a Glock or a "service revolver"? The author seems to think they are interchangeable terms. Is Greg's sweet old landlady named Ruth or Judy? Depends on which sentence you're reading.
I know these are nit-picky complaints but it's little things like that (and a few typos) that tend to pull me right out of the story.
As for the story itself, it's OK, nothing special. A little too much is made about Greg being a "punk-rock cop" but other than a d
Travis Richardson
Oct 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Punk rock cop tries to figure out who shot his bandmate among many other issues. Packed full of angst, Gen X aging, gentrification, surfing and punk subcultures, sobriety and dozens of other issues, this is a unique piece of crime fiction. Don't miss this.
Chris Hansen
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Jan 04, 2016
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Oct 13, 2015
Arron Freeman
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May 23, 2018
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S.W. Lauden’s debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, is available from Rare Bird Books. The second Greg Salem novel, GRIZZLY SEASON, was published on October 11, 2016. His standalone novella, CROSSWISE, is available from Down & Out Books.

His short story, “Itchy Feet,” was recently published in UNLOADED: CRIME WRITERS WRITING WITHOUT GUNS (Down & Out Books). His short story, “Big Shots,” is

Other books in the series

Greg Salem (2 books)
  • Grizzly Season (Greg Salem #2)
“I don’t think the universe has any grand plan for us. It comes down to the decisions we make, and maybe a little luck. We’re not damaged, we’re just human.” 1 likes
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