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Armed and Dangerous: The Hunt for One of America's Most Wanted Criminals Mass Market Paperback – July 28, 2009

34 customer reviews

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Armed and Dangerous: The Hunt for One of America's Most Wanted Criminals + Under and Alone: The True Story of the Undercover Agent Who Infiltrated America's Most Violent Outlaw Motorcycle Gang + No Angel: My Harrowing Undercover Journey to the Inner Circle of the Hells Angels
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

After his bestselling debut, Under and Alone (also coauthored by Century), Queen, a retired Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agent, returns with a less successful effort. Here Queen goes back to his early days with ATF, describing his obsessive 1985 quest to take down Mark Stephens, equal parts gunman, mountain man, drug trafficker, and out-and-out thug. As laudatory as the effort to apprehend Stephens was, the story is too slight to sustain even a brief book, which might explain why Queen fills it out with discussions of unrelated investigations he pursued while waiting for approval to go up into the mountains after his quarry. He also seems to devote as much time to his arguments with his superiors as to the effort to ascend the rugged terrain in the mountains of Southern California where Stephens was hiding out, and the anticlimactic conclusion of their encounter is disappointing. Queen relies on an uncorroborated account from an ex-con and associate of Stephens's for a section that makes Stephens seem truly psychotic. The passing references to the toll the agent's hard-charging style took on his marriage could have been better developed. (July 3)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

ATF agent Queen seemed the only one likely to apprehend pot-grower and accomplished survivalist Mark Stephens in 1986. As polished by Century, Queen's rat-a-tat prose suggests the automatic weapons' fire Stephens had employed in "terrorizing the towns of California's Inland Empire" before relocating permanently to the wilderness. Besides his adeptness at living in the wild, Stephens made his own machine guns ("a hobby, an interesting pastime") and grew pot plants 10 to 12 feet tall. Queen matched Stephens in survival and tracking skills, and the two men's similarities greatly enliven the story of their conflict. In fact, the standoff after which Stephens was taken into custody might have ended more quickly had Stephens not thought that Queen, "with his long, curly hair looked more like a drug-crazed hippie bent on stealing his dope" than like a lawman. A ripping good manhunt saga, detailed and suspenseful, not at all dimished by the deflationary fact that Stephens plea-bargained down to "a single possession of illegal weapons count" and got only five years in federal prison. Tribby, Mike --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reprint edition (July 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345505980
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345505989
  • Product Dimensions: 4.1 x 0.6 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,226,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By C. Carter on July 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I was blown away by Queen's first book "Under and Alone" and this ATF Agent kept me awake once again with "Armed and Dangerous". You get a real life look at what real law-enforcement types have to go through to do their jobs. You learn that they not only have to fight the bad guys but their bosses so they can go after the bad guys. In this book Queen actually has to get to the 'top of the mountain' to catch a crazy drug dealer that has kept all other law enforcement agencies at bay. A great read.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Bradley F. Smith on October 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Your first clue that there is not much here is the big type size. Someone tried to stretch this tale into a book, but the material is inadequate. Queen spends page after page building up to the big moment when he defies death and captures some pyscho in the San Bernardino mountains more than 25 years ago. The problem is the arrest was fairly routine. There is a lot of extraneous detail about unrelated investigations leading up to the main case, obviously an effort to stretch the book. I hope Queen has some more substantial stories left in him, or else his best book, about his undercover stint as a Mongol motorcycle gangbanger, may be his only claim to fame as a writer.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Modern Savage on November 11, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book starts out well and builds excitement and anticipation over the course of the book. Queen does a good job of creating a montage of his primary investigation, peppered with past experiences and ancillary cases. But in the end this book is "all bark and no bite". The maniacal, gun-running, pot-dealing habitual violent offender that is built up as a menace to society is apprehended in a most anti-climactic and unremarkable fashion. This book does a lot of tough-talking and chest-beating but in the end there is no real danger, nor is there any level of gun-play or rabid pursuits. I'm almost embarrassed to admit it, but this book reminds me of many episodes of "Dog the Bounty Hunter", where Dog builds up the fugitive, puts on a lot of vests, straps pouches and body armor only to have the fugitive lay down at the first sight of the bounty hunter!
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By V. Kennedy on July 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is a true story about an ATF agent's efforts to bring a drug dealer to justice. It might not sound that hard, but the fact is that the perp lives in an inaccessible hideout in the mountains outside LA. No one can flush him out long enough to capture him. The guy's going to kill someone with one of his submachine guns if he's not stopped. It's like reading a thriller instead of a true to life drama that really took place. It gives some interesting insight into the way ATF and the police handle matters like this. It's a good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amy Lieber on March 27, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is William Queens second book i had to read...all truth and considering this is the man who brought down one of the hardest motorcycle gangs...A must read for anyone in any walk of life! Talk about a fearless man....hero is an understatement! thank you to William Queen!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Shawn Johnson on August 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I really liked his first book and thought this might be about the same. I was wrong, not even close! The read was quick and the ending was pretty lame. Sometimes the true story is not the best story! I should of waited and got the book from a friend or the library. Sorry!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gerald J. Croston on January 13, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Book is OK. He seems to gained a love affair for himself in this book. It sure seems like a lot of work considering the bad guy only got 5 years. I know a guy who got more time than that for shoplifting.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Skipping/Ocean on December 22, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I ended up pretty confused by this book. Two SWAT teams try to make it to the bad guys hide out only to turn back because it too all day to get there. Queen makes it in one night despite sleeping for several hours, from sunset to 3AM arriving just before dawn. Their support group stays behind in their base camp but arrive at the bad guys camp seemingly minutes behind Queen. Queen makes a harrowing jump into the rescue helicopter yet the 200 pound plus bad guy in handcuffs is tossed by two other agents into the same chopper. I just ended up not believing much of what happened and didn't happen. Queen arrives at work at 3 AM to work out every day but gets winded and pukes after a 5 minute chase of the bad guy? I don't get it and nothing really ever happened in this whole book.
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