"One of the unsung legends of crime fiction" (Chicago Tribune), Kent Anderson, returns after two decades with this dazzling novel about justice, character and fate, set against the backdrop of an American city at war with itself.
A 2019 LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK PRIZE FINALIST
Oakland, California, 1983: a city churning with violent crime and racial conflict. Officer Hanson, a Vietnam veteran, has abandoned academia for the life-and-death clarity of police work, a way to live with the demons that followed him home from the war.
But Hanson knows that justice requires more than simply enforcing the penal code. He believes in becoming a part of the community he serveswhich is why, unlike most officers, he chooses to live in the same town where he works. This strategy serves him well...to a point. He forges a precarious friendship with Felix Maxwell, the drug king of East Oakland, based on their shared sense of fairness and honor. He falls in love with Libya the moment he sees her, a confident and outspoken black woman. He is befriended by Weegee, a streetwise eleven-year-old who is primed to become a dope dealer.
Every day, every shift, tests a cop's boundaries between the man he wants to be and the officer of the law he's required to be. At last an off-duty shooting forces Hanson to finally face who he is, and which side of the law he belongs on.
|Publisher:||Little, Brown and Company|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)|
About the Author
Kent Anderson is a U.S. Special Forces veteran who served in Vietnam and a former police officer in Portland, Oregon, and Oakland, California. With an MFA in creative writing from the University of Montana, he has taught college-level English and written screenplays. His two previous novels, Sympathy for the Devil and the New York Times Notable Book Night Dogs, both feature Hanson. Anderson may be the only person in U.S. history to have won two NEA grants for creative writing as well as two Bronze Stars. He lives in New Mexico.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Found it redundant at times and boring and not alot of Patterson apparent; he best get back to his solo role
Green Sun is the third novel by Kent Anderson to feature Hanson (we are not given a first name) and what a great character he is. Physically strong, brave and fearless he patrols the tougher streets of Oakland alone in his police car, usually working nights. He is very much a loner who does not relate to his colleagues. He has no friends or family and struggles with demons from his time in Vietnam. One reason that Hanson’s character is so convincing is because his background is almost identical to that of the author. I only hope that the author does not suffer in the same way from his own memories of that war. Most of the action relates to the various incidents that Hanson attends which are accompanied by a few ongoing threads of an overall story. That lack of a plot does not disadvantage the tale in any way because the smaller stories are fascinating and Anderson creates such tension and atmosphere that you have to keep turning the pages. Interspersed with the incidents are dreams and recollections of Hanson’s time in Vietnam which were clearly harrowing. Having somehow managed to cheat death in the Vietnam conflict Hanson has little concern for his own safety which explains the fearless way that he copes with his demanding role. The support characters of Felix, Levon, Tyree, Weegee and Libya will all capture your imagination, regardless of any initial judgements you may make on their various lifestyles. Given Anderson’s masterful writing talent I was a little surprised to see that he has only published four novels in a period spanning over thirty years. For the sake of his readers and for his future readers, I hope that the success of Green Sun will inspire him to produce more of the same in the near future. Green Sun will hold your attention and it will provoke your thoughts. I have awarded four stars.
Should be required reading in every police department across the nation. All humans deserve humane interaction. The quick draw undercuts justice. Harsh punishment and long prison sentences just increase the number of problems that every officer faces.
Kent Anderson is flat out a great and profound writer. I have read Sympathy For The Devil, a Viet-Nam saga, and Night Dogs, an amazing police procedural. Green Sun is a home run. Hanson is our hero if he can indeed be called a hero. The book reveals Hanson's Viet-Nam experiences along with what he encounters while on patrol in Oakland, one of the nations most difficult and crime infested cities. Here he fights AIDS, crack, and all manners of crime, punishment, and misery. What makes all the difference here is how Anderson examines being police and being a vet. Hanson looks at life from both perspectives which yield a different and unique view of what it is like to be police. Green Sun is a novel that embeds itself into the reader, making it a read that is hard to forget and meaningful to remember.