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Killing Ways 2: Urban Stories [Kindle Edition]

Steven Torres
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Hard luck, hard knock, hot and cold blooded killers, criminals, and the people they collide with.

1 - The Biography of Stoop, the Thief - Chapter One: Stoop and Clyde. Stupendous Jones has had a hard life from the day he was born, but can he (as a twelve year old) save the life of the only guardian he's ever known? Should he even try?

2 - The Biography of Stoop, the Thief - Chapter Three: Stoop and Elizabeth. Stoop finally finds the woman he thinks is his mother, but will the cost of saving her from her own demons be too high for a young boy to pay? Publisher's Weekly called the story "moving." I challenge you to disagree.

3 - Bronx, Summer, 1971 - Ray Cruz hurts people for a living. When family members are found murdered, it's a race against the police to find the guilty and make them pay.

4 - Padrino - Ray Cruz is back, and his goddaughter has been brutally attacked. She's not sure who beat her, but Ray makes it his mission to find out.

5 - Elena Speaks of the City, Under Siege - It's a city under siege and you are young, beautiful and smart. But can you make it out of the city before your sanity crumbles like the infrastructure? And what would you do once you've left?

6 - Early Fall - Yolanda Morales comes across a young runaway who calls herself "Jasmine" and tries to save her from a life on the streets even if she doesn't want to be saved. But what can one determined woman do when the rich and reckless come to the city looking for prey?

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Product Details

  • File Size: 241 KB
  • Print Length: 72 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004RZ2W32
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #491,191 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars shining noir March 16, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
There are lots of variants in the definition of noir fiction, most of them having to do with bleak settings, and often citing the hopelessness--or helplessness--of the characters, who, despite their best efforts, are generally doomed from the onset.

In these half dozen stories, Steven Torres hews to the element of bleakness, but mostly shuns the hopelessness common to the genre. The characters in these stories may indeed find themselves trapped in lives of unremitting despair, and they may ultimately be doomed, but these are not people to lie down and surrender without a fight. They are rather the sort to make their own breaks and if God gives them the bad-eye, they're just as likely as not to poke it with a stick. The author has a gift for creating the anti-hero, protagonists who are themselves of a criminal sort and far from admirable, but who without exception are people of honor. They earn the reader's respect by acting according to set principles, or by their displays of loyalty and courage. You find yourself cheering for them, warts and all. It takes a good writer to make characters like these sympathetic, and this author succeeds admirably.

"Stoop and Clyde" and "Stoop and Elizabeth" - Abandoned by his mother and neglected by the uncle who takes him in, young Stoop (Stupendous) Jones survives, if only just, by stealing, but in two stories he uses his wits and his nerve to try to rescue the uncle from a predicament, and to save the drug addicted mother who left him as a baby. A promising glimpse at what would make a compelling series.

"Bronx, Summer of 1971" introduces Ray Cruz, a bad guy by almost any standards, except that when his godparents are brutally murdered, Cruz uses his own street smarts and toughness to relentlessly pursue their killers.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good read! February 17, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very good dark short stories. All of them were interesting and well written. I'd read this author again! Going to see if he has more on Amazon!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Killing Ways 2 August 1, 2012
By BigAl
Format:Kindle Edition
Can noir, which to me implies characters with a non-sentimental, dog-eat-dog view of life lived on the edge, be humorous? If asked before reading Killing Ways 2, I'd have said no, with the obvious exception that the genre sometimes seems to satirize itself, with characters that take the "it is what it is" ethos to an extreme. The first two stories in this collection changed my mind, where I saw humor and were coincidentally also my favorites.

These stories, "The Biography of Stoop, the Thief - Chapter One: Stoop and Clyde" and "The Biography of Stoop, the Thief - Chapter Three: Stoop and Elizabeth" are standalone short stories focusing on Stupendous Jones (known by most as Stoop). How he got his name is a sad commentary on his origins, yet still tickled my funny bone. Stoop's life is hard and he's virtually on his own from a young age. What could be sad and completely dark, comes off as that, and more, not only from the subtle humor Torres uses in describing Stoop's life, but also from the picture it paints of Stoop as a modern-day Tom Sawyer of the `hood. The other stories are darker, yet each is excellent, built on a solid premise, with strong characterization that quickly draws the reader into the story.

**Originally written for "Books and Pals" book blog. May have received a free review copy. **
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5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Written February 1, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Some of these stories are difficult to read because it is hard to accept that there is so much misery in the world, and yet there is not a word in this collection that I wouldn't read again. And I'm sure I will, many times because the prose is wonderfully crafted.
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