Customer Reviews


 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars To weed or not to weed
A young philanthropist called Ben who got his fortune from growing and selling a rare type of marijuana with his less philanthropic, more aggressive partner called Chon, decides to leave the drug game behind and pursue a life of peace and goodwill. Unfortunately getting out is not going to be straightforward. And when their friend/mutual girlfriend Ophelia is kidnapped by...
Published on 14 Dec. 2010 by Sam Quixote

versus
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars More like Averages....haven't we read/seen all this before only better?
What's with the hype? This book was a snooze. A hatchet job. A pastiche of Tarantino, Roger Avary, Ritchie, Brett Easton Ellis etc. My advice...stick to those guys because chances are you've seen it & read it all before only much, much better.

Savages, Schmavages.

A totally played out story line (which was unbelievable BTW), with recycled...
Published on 7 Aug. 2012 by LMM


Most Helpful First | Newest First

5.0 out of 5 stars A Change of Pace and Style, 29 Oct. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
Don Winslow has a varied body of work behind him, a unique voice that manages to communicate complex ideas and exposition in a smooth, clear voice one moment then deliver hard and emotional setpieces the next. He can be meditative and thoughtful about the criminals and damaged protagonists that populate the worlds he create.

Savages is a distillation of all that and all the better for it.

With younger protagonists and terse pacing, Winslow makes Savages into a smooth and intense read, laced with a laconic humour and a slightly ironic, campy pace that makes the inevitable scenes of violence all the more visceral. It also follows the basic premise of all great writing - no one is an idiot, or to be precise, no one is an idiot for the purposes of narrative.

The nihilism is followed through to the logical conclusion that surprised me with it's tenderness and poetry. I have long believed that crime fiction contains some of the most insightful and beautiful writing beneath it's gruff exterior and Don Winslow is clearly an exponent of that.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Pretty intense read !, 29 Aug. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
At first I saw the movie from Oliver Stone and I loved it. But I knew that in order to deeper understand the characters I need to read this book. We get to know what made Chon (John) the Chon he is now-the wolf and what made Ben a Ben-dog you may say. This book is a perfect example of suppressed human nature and what happens when you push a man too far - the savage side awakens - basically we are chimpanzees with machine guns as Chon says although with a great potential to finally become "humans". The book is quite like modern Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid - very intense, very entertaining to read (great quotes by the characters), It's honest, funny at the times, very well written and I recommend this book to everyone that can appreciate a good thriller or wants to learn more about human nature.
What are you willing to sacrifice, how far will you go for the people that you love ?
Buy this book & find out !
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth a read, 16 Oct. 2013
By 
Robin Webster "Robin" (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
Life-long buddies, war veteran Chon and hippy environmentalist Ben produce the best marijuana in California in a series of grow houses and have a readymade market for their product. Along with their intimate female friend Ophelia, known as `O' for short, they live exactly the life they wish to lead. All goes well until the Mexican Baja Cartel wants to have control over their business. When the boys try to walk away, O is kidnapped and will be killed, unless they play to the rules of the Baja Cartel. Both Chon and Ben will do anything to get O released. There then follows an action packed fast moving on the edge of your seat story that is hard to put down. What more can I say, if you like gritty thrillers, written by gifted crime writers, this book is well worth a read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2.0 out of 5 stars Read half on your flight out., 16 May 2014
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
This is airport lit. Nothing more. Read half of it on your outward journey. It won't take you long as there is more space than substance on each page.

Purporting to be about the real tough world out there, this is a fantasy involving some hip dope dealers who take on the big boys and girls.

There is sex, gunplay, sadism, racism, stuff about Afghanistan, money talk and Mexican drug cartel talk.

We are also expected to swallow that one of the characters is a sort of part-time angel bringing succour to the third world poor.

You are left with the feeling that our heroes are criminals, admittedly, but good types underneath it all.

Read the second half on your return flight. Then stick it in the nearest airport bin.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Drop. The. Literary. Pretention., 4 Feb. 2012
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
"Winslow's stripped down prose is a revelation", says Stephen King on the dust jacket blurb of this book. True. The revelation is that Winslow shouldn't have bothered. God save us from crime writers who have visions of writing some sort of literature. James Ellroy take note. In the same way that I thought I'd never read another noir thriller that came close to Ellroy's "Black Dahlia", I finished Winslow's "The Power of the Dog" thinking I'd never have to read another novel about the Mexican drug cartels because nothing would surpass it. Too true, unfortunately, in both cases.
Still, I've returned to Winslow in the hope that he can find his muse, like I did with this novel. It's not a bad attempt, and the pace of the story just manages to override the annoyance with the "stripped-down prose", but only just. I found the broken sentences, the staccato prose, the one word dialogue breaks and the two line chapters not much more than an affectation I had to try and ignore. Get on with the story Don, and stop trying to impress us with your new direction. It's not even that I didn't like it, it all just seemed so unnecessary. Why bother the literary tricks, when you've got a good plot line, some (almost) believable characters and an undertone of veracity that lends the book a kind of credibility? You don't see Elmore Leonard attempting to write some sort of prose poetry, do you?
In the end, the good outweighed the clunky and I quite enjoyed this novel. But I don't come to Winslow expecting to "quite enjoy" his work. I expect it to deliver the goods, in spades, and this missed the mark. Maybe if he'd written it in a more mainstream way I'd have been more satisfied. It's not put me off him as an author - unlike James Ellroy, who I can hardly read any more - but I hope he returns to the more black and white world of Californian crime writing in terms of style. Keep it simple. As one of. His characters. Might. Say.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Experimental (Winslow meets Copeland!), 4 April 2011
By 
R Smith (Birmingham, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
A massive departure in style from Winslow's previous and excellent novels - A much more 'cutting edge' approach (not in a good way) with odd phrases, gimmicks, (lots of words in brackets), mock movie script dialogue and lots of whitespace between text. Not for me I'm afraid, the bizarre approach took away from what was shaping up to be another great, high speed thriller. Very peculiar considering all his previous and highly recommended novels are so well crafted

The story itself has all the right ingredients but it seemed that Winslow spent most of his time on the 'modern' text and perhaps not enough fleshing out the story and the characters. Still worth reading although not as good as it could have been IMO. Oliver Stone has the movie rights and is credited in the acknowledgements - maybe Winslow adapted this from the movie script?

For best effect, don't read the blurb on the back of the which summarises the story to about two-thirds of the way through
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Winslow's best, 8 Nov. 2010
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
Don Winslow is still a relatively well kept secret,at least in the UK, though with this book signed up by Oliver Stone, and a previous title The Winter of Frankie Machine apparently in production by Robert De Niro this status is now under considerable threat.

I love his books. They are fast paced, the storylines keep you involved from the first page, and once started they are difficult to put down. Having said all of that, I don't think that this is his best book by far. The Winter of Frankie Machine, The Power of the Dog and The Death of Bobby Z are all five stars and put Savages into the shade I'm afraid.

The plot is typical Winslow, centering on Laguna Beach the dope making business of two old friends is threatened when the Mexican Baja cartel decide to take over their franchise.
The boys don't like being rolled over and decide that they can employ good old fashioned cunning and wit to outsmart their rather violent and very well resourced adversaries. There is plenty of action and Winslow's narrative style is punctuated with liberal doses of humour, suspence and stomach churning violence.
There are plenty of twists and turns, and just when you think that you know what is going to happen the opposite occurs.

The main problem for me is that I just didn't like or empathise with either of the two central characters enough to really care whether they ended up outsmarting the cartel or having their heads removed by cigar chomping Mexicans with chainsaws (the fate which most of the enemies of this particular cartel met) . So as the book neared the final 50 pages I didn't feel the excitement that one normally does when a thriller is within a few page turns of all being revealed.

If you are a fan of Don Winslow, then this book is still for you. If you are new to his work then read The Winter of Frankie Machine, and imagine Robert De Niro as Frank. Do it before the film comes out!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars A thrilling read, 17 Nov. 2012
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
I am a Don Winslow fan. Some of his books are some of the best crime fiction going. Savages does not rank with the best but that is unfair, not the best for Don Winslow still knocks the spots of most otehr crime writers. This is a fast paced book, with twists and turns. Funny and at times fantastical. Written at times like a film script with a lot of puns and word games. I read it in two days because I was enjoying it so much. And the ending is certainly not what I expected.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed with this, 3 Dec. 2014
By 
Mr. R. Wheeler (Whitstable, Kent, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Savages (Kindle Edition)
Disappointed with this, I'm afraid. Having liked several DW books, and admired and recommended Power Of The Dog, this pales into insignificance. Street tough, down with the kids language and attitude strains to breaking point and beyond, two dimensional characters, and frankly ridiculous scenarios, stretch credibility too far and I never managed to suspend disbelief. And I'm a Don Winslow fan. This has been knocked out in a weekend. Pity!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Deadly entertaining, 11 May 2013
This review is from: Savages (Paperback)
I was in hospital with pneumonia and this was one of a few books brought by well wishers to help me pass the loooong days and nights. I tried it. I got to the third page and down it went. I couldn't read this, it'd kill me! It made me laugh so hard I needed oxygen and my blood pressure went through the roof. True! I'm home now and can breathe again so it's read, loved and heartily recommended - unless you're in a respiratory ward! Enjoy!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Savages
Savages by Don Winslow (Paperback - 13 Sept. 2012)
£3.85
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews