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Amarillo [Kindle Edition]

Bill Durham
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (184 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.00
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Book Description

In the Texas Panhandle town of Amarillo, New York attorney Max Friedman is assigned to represent a nightmare client. Joe Wagner is a violent man, dangerous both to family and friends. As Max builds his defense case for murder, he reveals a reason for Joe's violence. But is it a justification? The characters whom Max meets during the course of his investigation include Smith Dixon, a career criminal trying to change the course of his life; Carl Puente, a gambler desperate for a big score; Carl's brother-in-law Freddie Odom, a family man drowning in alcoholism; legendary police detective Champ Phillips; Angel, a pool hall owner who both frightens and attracts Max; and Bailey, a wolf-dog hybrid who is the bouncer at the pool hall.

Product Details

  • File Size: 762 KB
  • Print Length: 341 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1450539513
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002HRF7RU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #499,781 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new type of legal thriller August 21, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As a lifelong mystery fan and author, I've noticed that there seem to be a few patterns that repeat themselves constantly. This isn't necessarily a bad thing; sometimes readers find comfort in the familiar. Bill Durham, however, has managed to shatter the patterns and yet create characters that seem like the people next door. Max Friedman, a disillusioned New York lawyer, is driving through the Panhandle of Texas trying to reach Phoenix. His car, however, has other plans. It falls to pieces, and Max's wallet is rather thin. So instead of going on to Phoenix, he tries to give Amarillo a try.

He settles down, rents an apartment, adopts two kittens and secures a law license. He becomes a regular at a local pool halls, makes some new friends, and falls in love with the owner, Angel. But some of Angel's other customers are desperate, broke, and in need of money - and they don't know how to get it. Eventually, the ringleader browbeats some of his fellow pool enthusiasts into ripping off a grocery store. In the aftermath, in an argument over money, one of them kills another.

Max is assigned to defend the man who murdered his cohort. The rest of the story involves some moving passages showing how the families of the surviving crooks coped. Max must create a reasonable defense for a nasty and unrepentant criminal, whom everyone knows is guilty. The story that unfolds is amazing - and unlike any other thriller that I've ever read. I recommend this book highly. - Mary Devlin, author of MURDER ON THE CANTERBURY PILGRIMAGE and THE LEGEND OF GOOD WOMEN
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read - a great story, well-told August 12, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
With lots of heart, Durham tells a great story here. Characters I truly cared about, twists in the story line I did not see coming. By the time I was 100 pages in, it really mattered to me what was going to happen to these people. A fine read, highly recommended. Courtroom scenes as good as any I've read by anyone else, a quirky romance, colorful folks, and the wonderful irritations of Texas weather -- they're all here. Enjoy!
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than Grisham's The Last Juror January 3, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Thanks to my friend Vicki, I've had the pleasure of devouring this book. I don't read often enough but have read these two books back to back, and I must say, I so much more enjoyed Durham's writing style than Grisham's. I LOVED reading Amarillo - every minute of it. I'm a Fort Worth girl now living in LA and I loved being taken back and forth from grinning at all the small town shenanigans (so well told) to the sick feeling of what might happen next. Durham's retelling of horses, riding, cowboy lingo, etc. is spot on, too. And lastly, I loved the accuracy with which the alcoholic's story was told. Love, love, loved it all!

Bill, hope you're writing the next one! I'll be looking for it.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A MODERN WESTERN WITH AN OVERBITE January 25, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"Amarillo" was free on my Kindle list and, because of the favorable ratings, I downloaded it. I'm glad I did because I enjoyed it. It started out poorly because some characters seemed too dim-witted to be believed. Their stupidity was disconcerting and I had trouble concentrating because of it. Then I realized I have known people like that in my lifetime and I was able to enjoy the rest of the book by assigning their names to some of my past acquaintances.

Are there really people who could pull off a notable robbery in a small city, turn around and blow large chunks of the loot the next day, and go undetected, even though they are shiftless and known to hang around together? It turns out that they didn't get away with it but not because of their mindlessness about staying below the radar. Another form of stupidity, uncontrolled dissension, did them in. That's all I'll say about the book theme.

A warning: The author, Bill Durham, uses vivid blue language and graphic sex scenes to punctuate his story. There's really no need for it because his writing skills would carry the day without all the explicit behavior. As I assign the characters' names to my acquaintances, some of whom are dedicated to bad language and bedroom heroics, I can't really say they carry on in the vivid manner described by Durham. And I'm no prude.

What Durham does in exemplary fashion is develop characters and scenes with clarity and realism. I suggest you keep a bottle of water nearby as you read to wash the dirt and grit of the Texas Panhandle from your gullet and wrap up against the blustery wind before the blistering heat bakes your brain. The author describes it all in glorious and true-to-life detail.

He is also talented in presenting dialogue.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You owe it to yourself to read this book January 5, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After one reading this book has become one of my favorites.

The plot is interesting, the characters are just plain fascinating, and the pace is excellent.

The technique of making the town a character was a great idea and works to tie everything together.

Recommended to all, any reader will enjoy this book.

All that said the main reason I wrote this is in the hopes that the author reads reviews and to implore him to continue writing, thank you for a wonderful book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Justice for all? July 11, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I liked this book as it had suspense woven throughout that kept me interested. The characters were intriguing. I think the story was a bit too long however. The language was very rough so beware if you object to the frequent use of obscenities and sexual subject matter.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Do yourself a favor - read this book
This book is amazing. The sense of time and place is incredible - I thought I was right there. The characters are multi-dimensional. evolving, sympathetic. Read more
Published 1 month ago by chris sergel
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good story.
Just strange where you may end up. Things that could happen in real life situations. Very good story.
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very well written story. Started slow by picked up midway.
Published 4 months ago by austerity
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Published 4 months ago by Donna L. Gresham
5.0 out of 5 stars Second Chances
Realistic situations faced by fascinating characters....unusual plot with a twist....dramatic ending....wishing author would have taken story just a bit farther.
Published 4 months ago by bossmare
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this! The characters were authentic and engaging
Loved this! The characters were authentic and engaging. I wanted to know them, and their stories. The pace of the writing carried the characters and the action in a page turning;... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Marilyn-Sue Warren
3.0 out of 5 stars Max and Angela make beautiful music together.
This is a difficult book to write a review about. I really did like the story and thought it was well written. However, it had to be one of the slowest books I've ever read. Read more
Published 5 months ago by jim mccarthy
5.0 out of 5 stars Amarillo
Great book, well worth burning the night oil for. Good solid characters, an alcoholic hero and a whole mess of suspects who have been drawn so well that you forget all outside... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Angloscand
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good read!
I enjoyed this book immensely - well developed characters and a real riveting plot. The story held my attention throughout.
Published 5 months ago by Donald Micek
5.0 out of 5 stars NYC Meets Texas
Pretty good courtroom thriller about a New York City lawyer stranded in Amarillo and getting involved in a case.

Good story with likeable characters. Enjoyed the read.
Published 5 months ago by Godzilla
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More About the Author

Good news for everyone who has read Amarillo! I am currently working on an audio version of it and am raising funds via an Indiegogo campaign. The reader is a very talented and experienced actor and audio book reader named Michael Butler Murray. You can go to the following site to watch a video and contribute:

Native Texan Bill Durham wanted to be three things when he grew up: a writer, an actor, and a cowboy. He has achieved all three goals. His novel Amarillo, a "cowboy noir" legal thriller set in contemporary Texas, has garnered sterling reviews from readers both American and foreign, many of whom have never even been to Texas.

As an actor, Bill has appeared on stages across the country, from New York City to Los Angeles, with stops along the way in Muleshoe, Lubbock, and Austin, Texas. His specialty is the classics--think Shakespeare and Moliere--although he also has an affinity for playing folks who are either crazy or evil, and sometimes both at once.

Bill's grandfather, Art Wilson, was a for-real cowboy who also played polo with movie stars, taught Clark Gable how to ride a horse, trained and jockeyed quarter horses, and forgot more about the equine world than most of us will ever know. Okay, point of clarification--Bill never actually became a cowboy, which is probably a good thing; riding horses in the freezing cold and sleeping on the hard ground will never be favorite activities. However, he is an accomplished horseman, a part of his personality that is reflected in a key scene of Amarillo.

Although Bill comes from a long line of rednecks, he graduated with a B.A. in Theatre Arts and English from Texas Tech University and an M.A. in Creative Writing from New York University. However, his breeding gives him carte blanche to say (and write) phrases such as "I ain't got no" and "gimme one a them."

He shares his life with his wife, who is an accomplished classical singer, his high-school age stepdaughter, four cats, and a dog.

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