City of Angels ISBN: 9780692894286, an e-book written, Copyright and published by K. Patrick.
The author has provided a story set in California that primarily addresses a prominent problem apparently existent well beyond that state. The book is dedicated “to the nearly half a million children in the United States living in foster care, group homes and institutions. And to the thousands among them who age out of the system each year and are forced to find their way of life with little or no support.” To tell his story as completely as possible, and yet attempt to make it an enjoyable read, he has proceeded to set forth 740+ pages divided into 94 chapters. He also has included a sizeable number of characters in several differing situations. Further, to very clearly define the situation, he presented these individuals as distinctly characteristic of the best and worst types representing each side of the equation. Because of the diverse nature of the situations and the number of differing characters, a more usual description of the quite involved plot would be more extensive than really would seem feasible in a review. So, very briefly, a young boy enters the system, grows to just two months away from leaving when he is accused and found guilty of a murder that incarcerates him for life. Later, it is discovered that he had been falsely accused. He is released and in a most dramatic fashion is able to bring about quite drastic change.
This is a well-written book dealing with a monstrous social problem by an author who is most knowledgeable about the existing conditions, the unprincipled individuals in prominent positions within the system itself, the dishonest ambitious and uncaring politicians and how these situations develop, especially when aided and abetted by the divisive, unprincipled manner in which the judiciary from judges and district attorneys’ down to various levels of the police can use any means to subvert justice if pressure ‘dictates’. The author additionally has a fine grasp of both amateur and professional boxing and of the prison system and the inmates.
This is a long read and does suffer toward the latter part from some breakdown in proofing, probably for this exact reason. HOWEVER, the author has provided a story that moves so well that this offers only momentary annoyance and nothing more.
Conclusion: A book that begins as a rather simple ‘tear-jerker’ and develops into a serious look at several huge societal problems all interwoven in a story ranging from brutality to poignancy with well-developed characters and conducted at a pace which makes the book difficult to put down.
5* Interwoven societal problems presented in most enjoyably readable fashion.