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Review: Lives Laid Away by Stephen Mack Jones

Title: Lives Laid Away
Author: Stephen Mack Jones
Year Published: 2019

Genre: Adult fiction
Pages: 296
Rating: 4 out of 5

Location (my 2019 Google Reading map)USA (MI)

FTC Disclosure: I bought this book with my own money

Summary (from the inside flap of the book): Detroit ex-cop August Snow takes up vigilante justice when his beloved neighborhood of Mexicantown is caught in the crosshairs of a human trafficking scheme.

When the body of an unidentified young Hispanic woman dressed as Queen Marie Antoinette is dredged from the Detroit River, the Detroit Police Department wants the case closed fast. Wayne County Coroner Bobby Falconi gives the woman's photo to his old pal ex-police detective August Snow, insisting that August show it around his native Mexicantown to see if anyone recognizes her. August's good friend Elena, a prominent advocate for undocumented immigrants, recognizes the woman immediately as a local teenager, Isadore del Torres.

Izzy's story is one the authorities don't want getting around--and she's not the only young woman to have disappeared during an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raid, only to turn up dead a few weeks later. Preyed upon by the law itself, the people of Mexicantown have no one to turn to. August Snow, the son of an African-American cop and a Mexican-American painter, will not sit by and watch his neighbors suffer in silence. In a guns-blazing wild ride across Detroit, from its neo-Nazi biker hole-ups to its hip-hop recording studios, it's swanky social clubs to its seedy nightclubs, August puts his own life on the line to protect the community he loves.

Review: This is what I would call a "guy book" because it is violent and a bit raunchy. And I realize that I shouldn't label a book that way. I liked this book and I am not normally into violent books.

I liked the character of August Snow, the Detroit ex-cop, who cares deeply about family and his neighborhood, helping neighbors to do more than survive, but to thrive. He is smart, brash, cunning, and gets stuff done.

The story is a good one with a mixture of humorous and serious moments. It's got cops, the FBI, biker (Nazi) gangs, and sex trafficking. So, it's not light, but it is good. But honestly, this book is full of gory violence and crude talk. It's not offensive though.

Challenges for which this counts: 

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