2021 popular The 2021 Force: online sale A Novel online

2021 popular The 2021 Force: online sale A Novel online

2021 popular The 2021 Force: online sale A Novel online
2021 popular The 2021 Force: online sale A Novel online_top

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Instant New York Times Bestseller

Best of 2017 - included on best-of lists by the New York Times, NPR, Barnes & Noble, Publisher''s Weekly, LitHub, BookPage, Booklist, TheRealBookSpy.com, the Financial Times (UK) and the Daily Mail (UK)

The Force is mesmerizing, a triumph. Think The Godfather, only with cops. It’s that good.”
   — Stephen King

The acclaimed, award-winning, bestselling author of The Cartel—voted one of the Best Books of the Year by more than sixty publications, including the New York Times—returns with a cinematic epic as explosive, powerful, and unforgettable as Mystic River and The Wire.

Our ends know our beginnings, but the reverse isn’t true . . .

All Denny Malone wants is to be a good cop.

He is “the King of Manhattan North,” a, highly decorated NYPD detective sergeant and the real leader of “Da Force.” Malone and his crew are the smartest, the toughest, the quickest, the bravest, and the baddest, an elite special unit given unrestricted authority to wage war on gangs, drugs and guns. Every day and every night for the eighteen years he’s spent on the Job, Malone has served on the front lines, witnessing the hurt, the dead, the victims, the perps. He’s done whatever it takes to serve and protect in a city built by ambition and corruption, where no one is clean—including Malone himself.

What only a few know is that Denny Malone is dirty: he and his partners have stolen millions of dollars in drugs and cash in the wake of the biggest heroin bust in the city’s history. Now Malone is caught in a trap and being squeezed by the Feds, and he must walk the thin line between betraying his brothers and partners, the Job, his family, and the woman he loves, trying to survive, body and soul, while the city teeters on the brink of a racial conflagration that could destroy them all.

Based on years of research inside the NYPD, this is the great cop novel of our time and a book only Don Winslow could write: a haunting and heartbreaking story of greed and violence, inequality and race, crime and injustice, retribution and redemption that reveals the seemingly insurmountable tensions between the police and the diverse citizens they serve. A searing portrait of a city and a courageous, heroic, and deeply flawed man who stands at the edge of its abyss, The Force is a masterpiece of urban living full of shocking and surprising twists, leavened by flashes of dark humor, a morally complex and utterly riveting dissection of modern American society and the controversial issues confronting and dividing us today.

 

Review

“Mesmerizing, a triumph. Think The Godfather, only with cops. It’s that good.” -- Stephen King

“Intensely human in its tragic details, positively Shakespearean in its epic sweep probably the best cop novel ever written.” -- Lee Child

“A scorcher.” -- New York Times Book Review

“Shocking authenticity is the lifeblood of Don Winslow’s The Force.  I stopped everything I was doing to read it straight through. Detective Sergeant Denny Malone takes us on a searing journey through the corruption that lies at the heart of our justice system. I wish I’d written it!” -- Greg Iles, author of Mississippi Blood

“Don Winslow’s New York copy novel The Force is a scorcher, and if his sources are on the level it’s time for another Knapp Commission.” -- Marilyn Stasio, New York Times Book Review

“Don Winslow’s novel The Force isn’t just one of the great New York City cop novels ever written. It is one of the great New York City novels ever written.” -- Mike Lupica, New York Daily News

“Don Winslow’s summer blockbuster, The Force, is ready-made for Hollywood… A big, fat book of fast-moving fiction… Riveting and scary — in a lot of ways.” -- Neely Tucker, Washington Post

 “(A) shattering New York cop epic… The pace is kept up by the Winslow way with words, which almost entirely defies being quoted here, either because of the slang (Elmore Leonard league) or because of the everyday obscenities that lace every funny line.” -- Janet Maslin, New York Times

“Winslow brings incisively-researched details, gut-wrenching plotlines, and infinite heart to his all-too-real, highly compassionate tale.” -- Daneet Steffens, Boston Globe

“There won’t be a better cop novel this year than The Force by Don Winslow. Not next year, or the year after that, either.”   -- Linwood Barclay

“It’s one of the most daring and explosive books of summer, grabbing readers by the front of the shirt and dragging them into a world where honor and wrongdoing are mismatched partners… (It has) a sardonic, streetwise voice — like a pissed off conscience, telling a cautionary tale.” -- Anthony Breznican , Entertainment Weekly

“The pressure on Malone becomes so intense it makes Henry Hill’s paranoia in “Good Fellas” look like a mild case of OCD… What makes The Force unique among police procedurals is that it’s not the story of a rogue cop with a code… but a sneakily subversive post-Ferguson thriller.” -- Jim Ruland, Los Angeles Times

“A brilliant novel, rich in language, conflict, setting, and character. It resonates deeply with realism, honesty, and sheer magnetism. Fans of “The Godfather,” “Mystic River,” “The Wire,” and “The Departed” will absolutely love this book.” -- Mark Rubinstein, Huffington Post

“The immersion into the world of the NYPD is so brutal and honest that it’s difficult to imagine that Winslow was never a policeman.” -- Jeff Ayers, Washington Post

“Part The Godfather, part The Wire, The Force is a Molotov cocktail of cops and corruption, where good guys are also bad guys, and police malfeasance isn’t just about skimming money off drug busts—it’s about ... the corruption that comes when trying to do the right thing.” -- Abigail Jones, Newsweek

“Winslow peers into the soul of modern America through the eyes of a supremely skilled and corrupt police officer, in this epic novel of devastating moral complexity.” -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Don Winslow’s The Force is the best book of 2017 so far, period. Did you ever read a book you had a sense was going to become a classic? That’s what Don Winslow’s had me thinking well before I flipped the last page.” -- Jon Land, Providence Journal

“A page-turner that also manages to dive into deeper issues… Yet what truly sets Winslow apart, aside from his gut-punch prose and deep understanding of the criminal worlds he inhabits, is his ability to perceive the greater truth behind the guns and drugs and death.” -- Stayton Bonner, Rolling Stone

“Don Winslow’s intoxicating new crime thriller, The Force is a riveting ride-along with the Manhattan North Special Task Force, an elite NYPD unit… As in The Cartel, a poignant non-fiction baseline threads through this novel, leaving readers to wonder how much of it is tragically true.” -- Don Oldenburg, USA Today

“Just  fantastic. Like can’t-put-it-down, can’t-get-the-voices-out-of-your-head fantastic. An instant classic, an epic, a goddamn Wagner opera… basically Game of Thrones without the dragons. The Wars of the Roses played out with New York City cops and robbers.” -- Jason Sheehan, NPR

“It’s rare for a writer to produce two career-defining masterpieces back-to-back, but that’s exactly what Winslow has done.… Winslow has created what will likely become our quintessential cop novel, looking both at what cops do right and wrong with clear-eyed realism and passionate humanity.” -- Booklist (starred review)

“Once every few years, a book comes along that stands head and shoulders above its genre. Dennis Lehane’s Mystic River was one; Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy... was another. Don Winslow’s The Force... is such a book.” -- Bruce Tierney, BookPage

“Supercop and Everycop, Malone symbolizes the conflicts that corrode — and, Mr. Winslow suggests, often define — today’s policing. This book is about the intersection of greed and need… The Force is gripping… magisterial and raw.” -- Carlo Wolff, Pittsburg Post-Gazette

“Magnificent… muscular and lyrical, free-flowing and complex, it delivers punch-in-the-guts plot twists.” -- Marcel Berlines, The Times (UK)

 “Sprawling and visceral.” -- Financial Times (UK)

“[Winslow’s] prose moves with the power of a locomotive and the precision of a Porsche, making hairpin turns designed to keep adrenaline junkies turning the pages.” -- Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News

“If you read only one crime novel this summer, it is going to have to be “The Force” by award-winning veteran writer Don Winslow.” -- C.F. Foster, Florida Times-Union

“Incendiary…. Winslow is a master at exposing how corruption and bureaucracy strangle well-intentioned law enforcement, and he doesn’t shy away from issues of race, culture, poverty and the dark economics on which a city thrives.” -- Connie Ogle, Miami Herald

“The plot... shines with looks deep inside New York City, inside racial strains, inside institutional turf wars - and inside a cop’s conscience.... The best damned crime book so far this year.” -- Harry Levins, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“A mashup of a hundred-dirty cop movies and true-crime exposes, reimagined and repurposed into one indelible storyline. Winslow takes these well-worn themes, bends them to his considerable will and comes up with something fresh… Heartbreakingly beautiful and unforgiving.” -- Robert Anglen, Arizona Republic

“The author brings an intoxicating combination of passion, authenticity and grandeur to the crime thriller, expanding the very limits of the form… Riveting, infuriating, and ultimately deeply moving.” -- Bilge Ebiri, Village Voice

“Winslow spent years researching this novel, and it shows....A superb crime novel.... Exciting, entertaining and enlightening.” -- Paul Davis, Washington Times

“A gut punch of a new cop thriller. . . . Once the author, a former investigator, starts tightening the screws of this by stunning drama, it has you unrelentingly in its grip.” -- Lloyd Sachs, Chicago Tribune

“A piercing, profane, morally complex epic.” -- John Wilkens, San Diego Union-Tribune

“Breathtaking... Packed with detail and told with majestic prose... This is without question among the finest ever police novels.” -- Geoffrey Wansell, Daily Mail (UK)

“A superlative cop thriller.... The Force can be seen as a meticulously researched nonfiction book in fictional disguise: every scene adds another detail to its panoramic picture of a criminal justice system permeated by corruption, cronyism and lies.” -- John Dugdale, Sunday Times (London)

“A compelling, profane, powerful saga… I can’t wait for the movie. It’s got Scorsese written all over it.” -- Richard Littlejohn, Daily Mail (UK)

“Riding high on the acclaim from his 2015 novel, The Cartel ... Winslow turns to the streets of New York in this dark novel about an NYPD special task force led by Denny Malone, whose brother died as a first responder on 9/11.” -- Tom Beer, Newsday best summer books

 “So smoking hot that this reviewer kept imagining that the pages were blistering and that there was steam rising up from the cover… If you read just one book this summer, make it The Force.” -- Vick Mickunas, Dayton Daily News

The Force is intoxicating....Winslow keeps the surprises coming and the narrative churning.... A literary coup de force.” -- Tom Mayer, Mountain Times

“Caught between the desperation of the poor and the cynicism of the rich the lead character of Don Winslow’s The Force embodies the searing conflicts that define 21st century New York. The boom shrewdly suggest damnation can be a form of salvation for a man and even a city.” -- Nelson George

“Nobody understands the disaster of corruption better than Don Winslow.  The Force exposes the dawning horror of how it eats into the best intentions.”   -- Val McDermid, #1 Bestselling Author of Out of Bounds

The Shield meets The Departed in Don Winslow’s The Force, one of the best cop dramas ever written, and the first novel we’ve ever scored a perfect 10/10 on our rating scale.” -- Ryan Steck, TheRealBookSpy.com

“Winslow’s writing, with its torrents of profane, single-sentence paragraphs, is as potent as ever.” -- Michael Pucci, Library Journal

“Nobody exposes the underbelly of American society like Don Winslow – a modern master who holds up a mirror to New York policing, showing the bravery, loyalty, honour and corruption.” -- Michael Robotham, Bestselling Author of Life or Death

“The Force is a Seventies-style Sydney-Lumet-directed cop story, dropped into the streets of today, that prove not to be that different, and given an epic sweep.” -- MysteryPeople Pick of the Month

“Secures Winslow’s place beside the likes of Richard Price, Dennis Lehane, Daniel Woodrell, George Pelecanos, Thomas H. Cook, and James Ellroy – writers who have turned the American crime novel into major works of literature.” -- Bruce DeSilva’s Rogue Island on The Force

Praise for Don Winslow: “Winslow’s drug war version of The Godfather...a big, sprawling, ultimately stunning crime tableau. . . . A magnum opus. . . . Don Winslow is to the Mexican drug wars what James Ellroy is to L.A. Noir.” -- Janet Maslin, New York Times

“Winslow’s drug war version of The Godfather...a big, sprawling, ultimately stunning crime tableau...A magnum opus...Don Winslow is to the Mexican drug wars what James Ellroy is to L.A. Noir.” -- Janet Maslin, New York Times on The Cartel

“A Game of Thrones of the Mexican drug wars, a multipart, intricately plotted, blood-soaked epic that tells the story of how America’s unquenchable appetite for illegal drugs has brought chaos to our southern neighbors and darkened our own political and criminal culture.” -- Will Dana, Rolling Stone on The Cartel

“Clearly one of the most ambitious and most accomplished crime novels to appear in the last 15 years, THE CARTEL will likely retain that distinction even as the twenty-first century grinds on.” -- Bill Ott, Booklist on The Cartel

“Hugely hypnotic new thriller...the pace and feel of an exploded documentary...a brilliant and informative work of fiction about a nightmare world that flourishes in the bright light of day.” -- Alan Cheuse, NPR Books on The Cartel

“Don Winslow is one of the most durable and important voices in American crime fiction. His examinations of character and corruption turn the narco wars into a relentless, bloody opera.” -- Nic Pizzolatto, Creator, Writer and Executive Producer of HBO’s True Detective on The Cartel

“Don Winslow delivers his longest and finest novel yet in THE CARTEL. This is the War and Peace of dopewar books. Tense, brutal, wildly atmospheric, stunningly plotted, deeply etched.” -- James Ellroy on The Cartel

The Power of the Dog and THE CARTEL, by Don Winslow: I’m totally swept up. You can’t ask more for emotionally moving entertainment.” -- Stephen King on The Cartel

“Don Winslow’s THE CARTEL is the most important crime saga of the millennium...This is reporting and expose built around an intricate plot, finely etched characters and whip-crack dialogue. Storytelling that matters.” -- Robert Anglen, Arizona Republic on The Cartel

“Sensationally good, even after the near-perfection of The Power of the Dog. Less of a sequel than an integral part of a solid-gold whole.” -- Lee Child on The Cartel

“Winslow is the most fearless chronicler of the chaos and violence along the U.S.-Mexico border...who has written what could be the War and Peace of the War on Drugs.” -- Erik Hedegaard, Men’s Journal on The Cartel

THE CARTEL is a gut-punch of a novel. Big, ambitious, violent and widely entertaining, Don Winslow’s latest is an absolute must-read.” -- Harlan Coben on The Cartel

“Winslow has delivered two of the most emotionally resonant novels in the past decade, The Power of the Dog and its epic conclusion, THE CARTEL...his rapid-fire story hits you like bullets from an AK-47.” -- Ivy Pochoda, Los Angeles Times on The Cartel

“High-octane...The righteous indignation that fuels Winslow’s tale of cops, cartels, and the near-apocalyptic havoc they can create is addictive.” -- Clark Collis, Entertainment Weekly on The Cartel

From the Back Cover

All Denny Malone wants is to be a good cop. He’s the king of Manhattan North, a highly decorated NYPD detective sergeant and the real leader of “Da Force.” Malone and his crew are the smartest, the toughest and the baddest. What only a few know is that Denny Malone is dirty: he and his partners have stolen millions of dollars in drugs and cash. Now Malone is being squeezed by the feds, and he must walk the thin line between betraying his brothers and partners, the Job, his family and the woman he loves, and trying to survive while the city teeters on the brink of a racial conflagration that could destroy them all.

The Force is a story of greed and violence, retribution and redemption, that reveals the tensions between the police and the citizens they serve. A portrait of a courageous, heroic and deeply flawed man, it is a masterpiece of urban realism and the great cop novel of our time that only Don Winslow could write.

 

About the Author

Don Winslow is the author of twenty-two acclaimed, award-winning international bestsellers, including the New York Times bestsellers The Force and The Border, the #1 international bestseller The Cartel, The Power of the Dog, Savages, and The Winter of Frankie Machine. Savages was made into a feature film by three-time Oscar-winning writer-director Oliver Stone. The Power of the Dog, The Cartel, and The Border sold to FX to air as a major television series, and The Force is soon to be a major motion picture from 20th Century Studios. A former investigator, antiterrorist trainer, and trial consultant, Winslow lives in California and Rhode Island.

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4.3 out of 54.3 out of 5
2,230 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Michael Berkow
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
... am completely puzzled as to why this book received good editorial comments
Reviewed in the United States on October 4, 2017
I am completely puzzled as to why this book received good editorial comments. This is a book filled with, at best, dated ideas/myths/stories about policing. Every cliche in the world shows up, from the troubled corrupt white cop with the black girlfriend who happens to be... See more
I am completely puzzled as to why this book received good editorial comments. This is a book filled with, at best, dated ideas/myths/stories about policing. Every cliche in the world shows up, from the troubled corrupt white cop with the black girlfriend who happens to be a junkie. To the "prince of the city" idea where corrupt cops are somehow, somewhere deep in their tortured soul benevolt and care about the community.

This book is, just simply, crap. I am 40 year police professional who ran IA in a major US police department. I have investigated, arrested, fired, jailed corrupt cops for years. There are good books, fiction and non, on this topic. This is not one.
189 people found this helpful
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Scott HedegardTop Contributor: Rock Music
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Absolutely jaw dropping brilliant novel about the NYPD, corruption and the powder keg waiting to blow
Reviewed in the United States on October 31, 2017
I''ve read cop novels, from the patently ass kissing to vigilante but always on the right side types, and organized crime novels that reveal a dirty vulgar and equally criminal underside to the institution society created to protect themselves, only to be victimized by law... See more
I''ve read cop novels, from the patently ass kissing to vigilante but always on the right side types, and organized crime novels that reveal a dirty vulgar and equally criminal underside to the institution society created to protect themselves, only to be victimized by law enforcement types from Feds, including DEA, FBI, Border Patrol, all levels of metro and rural, etc. However, Don Winslow''s "The Force" is so in depth, so revealing that you know it rings of truth even though it''s a novel. I am so impressed by his brilliant writing, as I was with "Power of the Dog" and "The Cartel", that I couldn''t help but wonder if he may attract some serious flak from those too close to the real thing. Books like this, and a huge seller at that, are projects of bravery in themselves. I genuinely believe Winslow could have been at some personal risk although it would look horrible for anybody in "Da Force" to do anything. It''s that believable, terrifying and thorough.
The story basically is about Denny Malone, a good/bad cop who fights fire and crime with the same. He and his loyal crew are sincere in their outrage at drug dealers, gang bangers and other low lives who rob, rape and murder innocent people. They are equally pissed off about the drug situation, guns on the streets, affiliation with the Mafia and other organized crime units. However, to get anything done in a force and an NYPD that''s corrupted right down to the toilets in the holding cells, with anybody who''s anybody seemingly wetting their proverbial beak somewhere, including Internal Affairs, the Police Commissioner, city government, lawyers and feds alike, methods are not exactly by the book to attain their objectives.
Collusion with a Mafia capo, protecting one major league heroin dealer while trying to destroy the other, and two separate squads taking sides in that issue, accepting bribes, paying bribes, dealing themselves - all in a day''s work until an incident where things get carried away and start dominos tumbling that can fall on damn near everybody even remotely close to the NYPD, its informants, or criminals who are tied in as tight to the cops as the real ones are.
The ride is fast, very rough, extremely violent at times, and heartbreaking. In an amazing world of screwing everybody over for personal gain, nobody is hated more than a rat, because it''s those types who push that first domino down. The contradictions, the dangers, personal tragedies are all here, and it''s a jaw dropping expose.
Winslow''s writing is first rate - he may be the finest author of his style in the nation. He leaves you at books'' end pondering the story, asking questions, and wanting to read more of his stuff. I am totally enamored with his work, and I consider him and Ace Atkins to be the best crime/thriller authors out there. For those who want books that mirror the real deal, sometimes too close for comfort, you can''t beat "The Force" and I''ll wager all his other books are just as great, which I am in the process of finding out.
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Doyle W. Sinclair
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A good book. The Force is a good cop story
Reviewed in the United States on July 2, 2017
A good book. The Force is a good cop story, and by that I do not mean a ''good'' cop, because the protagonist is a corrupt cop, but it is a good story as far as plot goes, HOWEVER, that ''good'' rating comes with a caveat. For those of us who watched The Shield, and... See more
A good book. The Force is a good cop story, and by that I do not mean a ''good'' cop, because the protagonist is a corrupt cop, but it is a good story as far as plot goes, HOWEVER, that ''good'' rating comes with a caveat.

For those of us who watched The Shield, and followed the exploits of Vic Mackey and his crew for several seasons, we see that The Force just seems like the same story in book form.

The main plot involves a rip off of a huge amount of drugs from a local drug lord . . . with Vic Mackey and his crew in The Shield it was the strike team taking down the Armenian Money Train.

As a matter of fact, about halfway through the novel, I began wondering why the author didn''t just name his characters Vic Mackey and the Strike Team and call the book Fan Fiction. In my mind I was already picturing Vic Mackey (instead of Malone) anyway, and the entire plot seemed to be the same thing as what Vic Mackey went through. . .trying to stay one step ahead of the criminals and the IAB guys and finally his own crew began breaking apart.

The ending to The Shield was one of the best endings to any TV series I''ve ever seen. The Feds finally get Vic Mackey off the streets, and instead of putting him in prison, they put him behind a desk and don''t even allow him to own or carry a weapon. He is not allowed to do anything out of line, and his restrictions are so severe that he cannot even backtalk anyone. He is a man of the streets, but he is taken off the streets, and allowed to SEE the streets from his office, yet his hands are tied behind his back and he is unable to do anything. It is THE most perfect hell for a wild-ass cop like Vic Mackey that can be imagined, worse than prison, where he would have clawed his way to the top of a prison hierarchy.

So, as I was reading the Force, because it is written exactly like The Shield played out, I was visualizing Vic Mackey and his crew instead of the guys the author put in their places, and the plot followed along almost exactly like the plot of The Shield, BUT, when it came to the ending, I found myself thinking that what the author did with Sgt Malone, was unbelievable and as such, it was very much a let down.

I won''t spoil the ending, but I will say that if you watched The Shield, and you decide to read The Force, you''ll be treading over familiar ground.
A good book, but it could have been better, less derivative, and the ending was not believable at all.
If you haven''t seen The Shield, then you''ll like The Force very much if you''re a fan of cop books.
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readsalot
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
sordid
Reviewed in the United States on May 20, 2019
Well, if 60 publications voted "The Force" one of the best books of the year, surely I will enjoy it, right? I like police stories, criminal novels, private eyes. So I began reading expecting to enjoy the ride. At first I thought of the writing and dialogue as "gritty" and... See more
Well, if 60 publications voted "The Force" one of the best books of the year, surely I will enjoy it, right? I like police stories, criminal novels, private eyes. So I began reading expecting to enjoy the ride. At first I thought of the writing and dialogue as "gritty" and "realistic" but it quickly wore me down. The coarse, language and gross vignettes didn''t aspire to any higher artistic purpose or advance the narrative in any particularly interesting way. So I quit. The book is quite squalid in tone and Gadarene in destination. Do yourself a favor and read something more elevated in tone and purpose. This one is not fun.
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Bryn C. Dunham
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Excellent book ripped from the heading
Reviewed in the United States on June 29, 2017
Disclaimer: I''m a Conservative and the narrator takes positions I disagree with....But, it made me consider the other side of the arguments in an entertaining and thoughtful way. Incredibly well written and completely engrossing. Winslow tackles the difficulties of policing... See more
Disclaimer: I''m a Conservative and the narrator takes positions I disagree with....But, it made me consider the other side of the arguments in an entertaining and thoughtful way. Incredibly well written and completely engrossing. Winslow tackles the difficulties of policing and the slippery slopes that lead good cops to the "dark side". The hero of the book is a tragic antihero whose means justifiy the ends and the reader is hoping for some kind of redemption throughout. Loved it. Read it. You won''t regret it.
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Lions Brood
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Tackles the role of police and corruption in society head on
Reviewed in the United States on August 16, 2017
While The Force is not quite as epic in its scope as Winslow''s previous books about the war on drugs, The Cartel and the Power of the Dog, this book pulls no punches in depicting police culture and institutional corruption. This action packed thriller depicts the story of... See more
While The Force is not quite as epic in its scope as Winslow''s previous books about the war on drugs, The Cartel and the Power of the Dog, this book pulls no punches in depicting police culture and institutional corruption. This action packed thriller depicts the story of New York cop Danny Malone, who heads an elite task force dubbed "Da Force" who happens to be a dirty cop involved in ripping off drug dealers. Throughout the book Winslow tries to portray police officers as humans just like everyone else on who society has placed unfair expectations. Expecting cops to uphold the law to the fullest while fighting criminals who have no laws or morals. Invietably cops in this story cross the line to try to do the right thing, misplacing evidence, pressuring witnesses, and taking payoffs to look the other way for non violent crimes. As Winslow notes in the novel, once you cross the line it''s hard to come back. Central to this story is the public backlash over controversial police killings of unarmed citizens, and the Black Lives Matter movement. The novel represents the police side of the story with the feeling that cops have of having a target on their back. While cops are certainly not portrayed in the most flattering light, you get the sense that the cops in the story aren''t bad people but simply products of being in a tough situation and in a city government institution where corruption is institutionalized. The politicians, lawyers, and business men are just as responsible for the corruption as the police force that attempts to enforce the law. Beyond the social and political commentary that the book provides, the book is just a great thriller. Winslow has a great ability to develop characters and dialogue that feel as authentic as possible and that is a great testament to his writing skills and extensive research that he does for all of his books. I highly recommend this book for anyone who loves great thriller and crime novels. The social and political commentary that explores the role of the police and corruption in American society is also there for those readers who wish to delve deeper.
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Chuck Klein
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Dirty Cops
Reviewed in the United States on April 4, 2019
The writing is 5-star, but because I, personally, couldn’t get into dirty cops – only a 3-star. Though only a novel, it is historically and technically correct. I realize there are dirty cops out there, but glorifying them is not entertaining reading for me. I’m not naïve... See more
The writing is 5-star, but because I, personally, couldn’t get into dirty cops – only a 3-star. Though only a novel, it is historically and technically correct. I realize there are dirty cops out there, but glorifying them is not entertaining reading for me. I’m not naïve inasmuch as I’m well aware of the reality that there are LEOs who are, as suggested in this book, crooked. When I was a police officer, I was involved in putting away a cop-turned-criminal. This is not to say that police don’t lie, sting, scam criminals, but only for the purpose of protecting society – never for personal gain.
A few years ago, when cops were underpaid, undereducated and selected more for brawn than mental capacity, a certain amount of "discretion" was expected. Not today. Patrol officers routinely earn a decent living wage, have excellent health care packages and retirement plans that customarily exceeds the general population. The substantial amount of on-going training, education and certification police officers receive has elevated their status from that of tradesmen to the level of professional. All professionals have a code of ethics. A doctor will not treat the patient of another physician unless referred and an attorney won''t have direct contact with clients of other lawyers.

POLICE OFFICERS ARE IN THE BUSINESS OF BRAVERY, HONESTY AND INTEGRITY. THIS IS THEIR STOCK-IN-TRADE, FORTE'', SIGNATURE, PERSONA, IDENTIFICATION AND WHAT DIFFERENTIATES THEM FROM OTHER PROFESSIONS.

When one police officer violates this trust, this code of morality, all are tarnished. Adherence to or practice of any form of "blue code of silence" is counter to the code of honesty that is part of each officer''s sworn duty – an existence for being. The trust each LEO has in fellow officers must be based on the proposition that truth, not cover-up or silence, will save their career. For a police officer or anyone with sworn obligations, justice trumps injustice.

I won’t spoil the story by telling whether the bad-guy-cops got their comeuppance or not.

Chuck Klein, author: THE BADGE, Stories and Tales from Both Sides of the Law. https://www.amazon.com/Badge-Stories-Tales-Both-Sides/dp/159630071X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1308867056&sr=1-1
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Josh Mauthe
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A sweeping morality tale that uses a familiar premise to study modern police tensions
Reviewed in the United States on November 27, 2019
I’ve been hearing for a while now about the crime novels of Don Winslow, but for whatever reason, I’ve never actually read one until picking up The Force. And you know, it turns out that pretty much everyone who told me how great he was? They were all right. The Force is a... See more
I’ve been hearing for a while now about the crime novels of Don Winslow, but for whatever reason, I’ve never actually read one until picking up The Force. And you know, it turns out that pretty much everyone who told me how great he was? They were all right. The Force is a knockout - a sweeping neo-noir about crooked cops, shady investigations, and what it takes to cross a moral line that you can’t take back.

In broad strokes, The Force feels familiar, telling the story of Denny Malone, who was once one of the most powerful cops in New York City. The de facto head of the Manhattan North Task Force (a squad known colloquially as “Da Force”) of the NYPD, Malone was both a force for justice and deeply crooked - and genuinely never saw the disconnect between those two sides of himself. Instead, Malone and Da Force feel that they’re the line between chaos and order, doing the jobs that everyone knows need to be done but no one wants to okay.

Malone is a fascinating figure, one who feels like he could have come from a James Ellroy book - he’s a ruthless, dangerous man, but also one who’s utterly convinced of his own righteousness. But while Ellroy gives us amoral sociopaths, Malone is a stew of contradictions. He’s a man who tosses out ethnic slurs for criminals in a second, but also a man who is willing to commit violence to defend those same populations from what he perceives as threats. He has nothing but scorn for cops who take bribes from some of the drug dealers, and yet remains on the take with mobsters and attorneys. He’s horrified by the acts of violence he sees on the streets, and yet commits worse all the time in the name of “justice.” And Winslow explores those contradictions for much of the length of The Force, using it not only to flesh out Denny, but also to explore the different forces that shape the modern police force, from increased focus on police brutality to community outreach, from racial tensions to media-driven police campaigns.

All of this is only part of The Force, whose plot is largely comprised of Malone’s complicated fall from grace, as his corruption is exposed to the light and he finds himself torn between a desire to stay true to his partners and his own self-preservation. How it forces a moral reckoning - or to what degree it even happens - is part of the book’s subject matter, but more than that, The Force is about modern policing and what it truly means to live the life of a police officer.

And it’s not just about the corruption and the graft; that would be too simple, too reductive. Instead, Winslow never loses focus of the good that Da Force actually does in the world - the way it defends the defenseless, the way that they build bridges into the community, and the way so many of their illicit actions are funneled back into the community. Simultaneously, Winslow constantly reminds us of the hypocrisy of those actions, showing the distance between intentions and reality all too often.

By the end, The Force has become something more than you ever would have expected, using the familiar trope of a corrupt cop and running with it to something bigger - a portrait of modern policing with all of its contradictions and flaws, a portrait of the things that pulls the force in different directions, and a reminder of the countless contradictions that make up so much of the justice system. It shows us both the cruelty of police and the events that made them that way, both the corruption of the police and their anger at how much other corruption is hand waved away, both the violence they commit and what drives them to it. It’s a sprawling, complex saga, both in terms of its plot and its characters, and that complexity is what makes it so riveting - and so unpredictable.
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CAVE
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
''Corruption isn’t just in the city’s air, it’s in its DNA. . . yours too.''
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 13, 2017
If you haven''t read Winslow before, I envy the reading treasure you''ve just stumbled on. And THE FORCE, a stand alone, is a perfect way to introduce yourself. Power of the Dog and it''s sequel The Cartel are masterful, epic pieces. They pull us through the deep, dark, blood...See more
If you haven''t read Winslow before, I envy the reading treasure you''ve just stumbled on. And THE FORCE, a stand alone, is a perfect way to introduce yourself. Power of the Dog and it''s sequel The Cartel are masterful, epic pieces. They pull us through the deep, dark, blood filled trenches of the dope wars, of which Winslow is very knowledgeable of. With The Force, Winslow pulls us again through the deep, dark, blood filled trenches of New York City where the corruption flows down from the highest corridors of power. Winslow writes Winslow novels, much like Ellroy writes his own. His prose is snarky, stylish, creative, experimental with cinematic visualisation. He''s also adept at condensing complicated plots that most authors would have stretched over a series into a 500 page beast. It also brought to mind throughout outstanding movies such as Prince of the City, French Connection and Serpico and the documentary Precinct Seven Five. Apparently the script is in the hands of the legendary David Mamet and to be directed by James Mangold who recently made the fantastic Logan movie. Exciting stuff! I finished the book with the high relief of a perfect fix. Like the Catholics wait for Jesus I''ve been hoping and praying for a corrupt-cop novel version of the TV show The Shield for a loooong time. Are the main characters lovable nice guys? No, but I couldn''t wait to get back to them whenever I put the book down. They are very complicated, realistically drawn out characters where Winslow doesn''t justify or vilify their behaviours, he just lets them live and breathe on the page. Treats us readers like the adults we either are or should be without spoon feeding. I rarely use the term Shakespearean, but it really is in terms of story, character and tragedy. We are shown the police culture, the faults in the systems, their interaction with the communities good and tragic, the corruption that plagues them. You become invested in those who populate his writing, you want them to get through the various trials and tribulations. Whether they do or not is for you to find out. Winslow, like he did with his other novels, has interviewed and made connections to many real individuals who operate on both sides of the law to better season his works with authenticity. And it tells. It''s powerful stuff. The first few page are densely filled with the names of police officers who have lost their lives on these dangerous streets. It opens up the doors to a world we otherwise have no access to. The lingo, cop-speak, insider information is juicy and extremely moreish, leaving me wanting to know more of their experiences such as testilying, how 9/11 saved the mob, the upside of the EMT not taking a Hippocratic oath, rules for note-taking on the job, planning crimes so they cross as many precinct boundaries as possible to increase the likelihood of a snafu, tribes within the police force, how to handle CIs... on and on it goes and it''s all fascinating. If you are like myself and have had a career in law enforcement, prisons, armed forces, then you''ll know how story telling in all of its forms from various experiences throughout careers is non stop and always colourful. It''s the same here with The Force where you feel Winslow, in his almost conversational style of writing, has bumped elbows with you at the bar and he''s got a doozy of a story for you. The humour is dark and laugh out loud at times. The violence is not gratuitous, but strongly stated and well written. The city itself is a living breathing entity within this book. I''ve never been to New York, but the interesting locations and stores and bars etc. I couldn''t get enough, evoking powerful images in my mind. If you''re not used to reading gritty, hard-boiled, noir crime novels then consider these before entering. I sincerely hope you do though, you''d be missing out on a stone cold classic in crime writing and an exceptional novel by any standard.
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Average Reader
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 13, 2018
To suggest that this is a powerful novel that will become a classic is a massive understatement. It is a classic novel and it’s such a powerful read that the words burn off the page. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read. It is superb. It really is. If only there were a...See more
To suggest that this is a powerful novel that will become a classic is a massive understatement. It is a classic novel and it’s such a powerful read that the words burn off the page. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read. It is superb. It really is. If only there were a ten star rating. This book deserves them all. This is a work of fiction and I appreciated it as such. The protagonist is Detective First Grade Dennis John Malone. Known to his friends as ‘Denny’. A veteran sergeant in the NYPD’s most elite unit. Son of a cop. Of Irish descent and is known as ‘The King of The Task Force’ or ‘Da Force’ as the Manhattan North Special Task Force is known colloquially. Malone considers himself to be a good cop. It’s all he ever wanted to be. He loves The Job and the people he has sworn to protect and serve. A cop who is loyal to the fellow members of his team. His brother cops. Closer than family. Loyal to each other. They have each other’s backs. Would die for each other. They’re known as the ‘Hero cops’, that’s the title applied to them each time in the media if they have a successful drug busts or weapons hauls. It’s post 9/11 and Denny lost his young firefighter brother in the terrorist attack that destroyed the lives of so many and changed New York, America and the rest of the world forever. Denny Malone is a kind Robin Hood of the Hero Cops in a den of very nasty thieves. He hands out turkeys at Christmas time in the poorer areas known as The Projects. People fear and respect him. His area is the Kingdom Of Malone. The Hero Cops have standards. They want to take the guns of their streets. Guns kill too many good citizens. Guns kill cops. They hate them. They hate drugs too and spend far too much time on duty dealing with the effects of drugs in one way or another. The Job and the brotherhood of fellow cops is their life and as members of Da Force are treated like royalty. They eat in the best establishments and are on nodding terms with wise guy members of The Mob. Recognised admired and respected wherever they go. They are the untouchables. Or are they? Denny Malone is a dirty cop and so are his fellow officers, the other ‘brothers’ in the team. They’re not the only ones though. Corruption is rampant throughout the justice system, lawyers, judges, city officials. Everyone has a price and can be bought it seems. The intentions of Malone and his fellow Task Force team members are honourable. They need money to put by for their kid’s college fees. Insurance that if one of them is killed on the job, their wives and families will be taken care of by the others in their elite corps. There is no going back once they start. They’ve seen too much. Been through too much. They’re damaged by the job. The story starts off with Malone in an FBI correctional centre and this book is about his journey to that fate and if indeed it is the end of his career. It’s not an easy story. It’s often sad and heartbreaking. I could hardly read the last part because of the tears in my eyes. There is good and there is evil. There are different levels of good and evil. Who is good and who is evil? Now that’s all you’ll get from me. I can’t reveal any more of this story without giving away spoilers. You can’t make me tell. I’ll plead the fifth. I don’t know anything about anything. Read the book to find out the whole story. You’ll be very glad that you did.
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Domino Woodstock
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
War & Police
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 15, 2018
If you don''t want to read this review, take it from me, buy the book, you won''t be disappointed. It''s awesome. If you do read this review, you''re probably undecided after seeing a few ''it''s ok'' written. I hesitated, not wanting to be let down after the epic, brutal...See more
If you don''t want to read this review, take it from me, buy the book, you won''t be disappointed. It''s awesome. If you do read this review, you''re probably undecided after seeing a few ''it''s ok'' written. I hesitated, not wanting to be let down after the epic, brutal education of Power of the Dog and The Cartel, and I wasn''t. It''s different, but no less forensic. Mr Winslow is a written method actor. And once again, the scope of the book is huge and feels alive. The story does not go where you think it will. And if you like playing detective, there are some cute hints and clues that make you feel like a detective when / if you spot them. If you need a final reason to read the book, do it just to find out how the character ''Oh No Henry'' got his name. Believe me, you''ll want to know.
8 people found this helpful
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Restless Natives
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
... and all his novels have been fast paced with great characterisation and fantastic stories
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 24, 2017
I''m a big fan of Winslow''s and all his novels have been fast paced with great characterisation and fantastic stories. He has a knowledge of the drug trade and policing that adds a bit of realism. With his last novel, The Cartel, I think he blurred the line between writing a...See more
I''m a big fan of Winslow''s and all his novels have been fast paced with great characterisation and fantastic stories. He has a knowledge of the drug trade and policing that adds a bit of realism. With his last novel, The Cartel, I think he blurred the line between writing a novel and writing a documentary with social commentary and I feel he has done the same with The Force. The first quarter of the book has very little happening other than building the cliche of the corrupt Irish New York Cop who is only bent to get the job done. It''s as if he''s interviewed a number of policemen and printed their tales and changed the names without adding much to the overall story. At times the dialogue is incredibly cliched, this may be intentional to show it is what ''real cops'' and their families say but it jars a bit. It does pick up pace and goes down the well trodden path of corrupt cops and even more corrupt politicians. I''m sure Winslow thinks his in depth research adds an extra layer of realism but all it does is slow the story down. As with The Cartel, I believe there is a good story in there but author intrusion and his insistence on social commentary spoils it. I think he needs to make a decision on whether he wants to write fiction or non fiction. He could be great at both but not when he tries to combine the two. Worth a read but not the masterpiece it is made out to be.
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Siltone
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Welcome to Da Force!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 17, 2019
Well this one certainly pulls no punches. Essentially, it''s a story that revolves around a team of NYPD cops. The key character is Detective First Grade Dennis John Malone - known to one and all as Denny. He is head of the Manhattan North Special Task force. Many people...See more
Well this one certainly pulls no punches. Essentially, it''s a story that revolves around a team of NYPD cops. The key character is Detective First Grade Dennis John Malone - known to one and all as Denny. He is head of the Manhattan North Special Task force. Many people know Denny as someone who is an hero because he once ''took one for the team'' when he got shot in the leg and received his Medal of Valor (for what he considers to be stupidity on his behalf). He''s a 6ft 2in guy with attitude, proudly sports sleeves of tattoos up both arms and has an encyclopaedic knowledge of hip-hop lyrics. Many folk are aware that Denny''s father was also a hero cop. What many don''t know is that Denny often plays by his own rules - and in doing so is open to corruption..... Don Winslow really gets beneath the skin of Denny. I particularly liked the way the author has Denny saying things to the other characters in the story but then informs us, the readers, what he is really thinking. Detective Malone is one bad apple in a barrel almost full of them - which may be why I still couldn’t help but find myself rooting for him throughout this sometimes shocking portrayal of the New York criminal justice system. Please don’t get the impression that this novel is all doom and gloom though. Despite the nastiness and brutality contained within, this is a tale that does have within it a fair degree of humour. For instance, there are some cracking one-liners delivered between Denny and his partners on the task force and they do have some fun together when off duty. One stand-out moment for me was when Denny, Russo, Monty and Levin have a night out on the town. At the end of the evening they are all drunk and sitting in Russo''s car, cruising along the NYC streets, with the stereo blasting and the windows down, singing along at the tops of their voices to a N.W.A. rap song and chanting: "F*** tha police, F*** tha police, F*** tha police" - and totally startling all the folk strolling along on the sidewalk. Priceless! If you like reading edgy, meaty, macho American cop thrillers then this might be just up your street. With storylines and scenarios that brought to my mind dramas like The Departed, The Wire, The Shield and The Sopranos, this was a super read and one I can highly recommend.
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