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Deathwork Paperback – September 1, 1978


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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Bantam Books (September 1, 1978)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553117351
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553117356
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,260,398 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dudley Ristow on February 19, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Deathwork is about four condemned murderers, three men and a woman, and the wardens who care for them whilst they wait on death row. The story takes you through the lives of the condemned depicting their respective paths to this one way street. When Mc Lendon takes you into the execution chamber: the electric chair, you go into Dante's inferno and emerge gasping. You are warned this is not a read for the queasy : it packs a lot of punch.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By 1000Books on January 17, 2010
Format: Paperback
A chillingly disturbing work about four convicts who are on death row, McLendon's book is quite gory. While so many books surround the intricate stories of what brings a person to such a point in life, this work is as interested in giving the reader a full experience of what it is like to watch someone die in the electric chair.

There is a certain bizarre, disgusting reality to it. While some books like to take a political stand, this one presents the realities of it; the despicable characters, the unpredictability of the contraption, the difficulty of the actual job as executioner, the politics, the mixed media and activist emotions. It's fascinating the way the executioners are portrayed.

The use of four inmates with a variety of stories makes the ending all the more chilling. After experiencing the description of one death, the other four become even more daunting. This is probably the way that the mandatory witnesses felt after seeing the gruesomeness of each execution. It's quite an interesting story to tell, in this regard.

The loss of a star is because I think there are places where - as an author - he could have brought the reader even deeper into the narrative. While his descriptions are adequately disgusting, they are not as detailed as they could be. He allows the reader a certain space from full experience. I appreciate it and at the same time, I think he should have been more aggressive and included it. Things like the smell, etc. I also think there a few places where the dialog is a bit over done and could have been communicated differently for greater effect.

If you are interested in the topic of death row and want to get a sense for the various players, this novel does a great job as a work of fiction. It's a fairly straight forward/easy read, with very few slow parts.
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By Janelle M. Worley on August 24, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An incredible account of the reality of execution. We usually don't think of the convict's side of things. I believe in the death penalty but this book shows that it's not just the animal, crazed derelict go to the chair. There's also real suffering on this side of things. With that said, I still believe in the death penalty for serial killers, psychopaths and sociopaths. These are the people that will NEVER change anf are just taking up space!
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By common man on March 19, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Well written account of the death procedure in the USA. Good characters, well developed. Gets gruesome near the end so be prepared.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It fulfilled my need for information
on the Florida prison system's policy on the death penalty. Author has valid information.
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