Top critical review
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OK, but not gripping
on 2 March 2004
I bought this after reading Killing Pablo (an awesome tale, and a superbly-written book). To say that this is about the British equivalent of Pablo Escobar would be quite an exaggeration.
It's clear that Curtis Warren was a nasty individual, and clearly someone I wouldn't wish to cross. It's equally clear, however, that the gentlemen who wrote this book did very little to research their subject fully. They mention at the beginning of the book that several of the key players in the story are still subject to legal proceedings, and cannot, therefore, be named in this book. I'd suggest that it might have been better to wait until a full account could have been made, because all I got out of this book was a collection of facts that I'd have got if I'd been reading the tabloids in 1995 and 1996.
Their writing style is firmly in the tabloid journalist mould, too. Consequently, the book is very easy to read, but I found myself wincing sometimes at the amateurish way that some situations were described in the book.
As a factual account of Warren's dealings, this is quite poorly written. As an explanation of how Toxteth came to be a breeding ground for all sorts of criminals, it's more interesting, but that's only about the first 40 pages of the book.
If you have an interest in Warren, or drug barons in general, this book is a relatively interesting read. But if you've read any other books on the subject, you probably won't get anything new out of this one.