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West Side (The Thorn Savage NYPD Series Book 4) [Kindle Edition]

John Mackie
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Book Description

In a Manhattan bar, two strangers pick up a young man—a soon-to-be-dead look-alike for one of them. Later, when a patient dies in the office of a West Side neurologist, the NYPD demands an autopsy. But the death is ruled a simple heart attack. The body and any potential evidence are cremated, the insurance company pays a million and a half to the beneficiary—and a perfect fraud is complete. But now the partners in crime are thinking that one perfect scam deserves another. All they need is their next victim….

When Detective Sergeant Thorn Savage and his Manhattan South Homicide squad are assigned to the stalled case, their investigation takes them into the city’s seamy underbelly, where dangerous fun—and the answers to an ingenious murder case—await those who know where to find them….

Editorial Reviews


"A gritty walk through New York's underbelly told by someone who obviously has been there...EXCELLENT Police procedural..." BOOK BITCH

"An excellent novel that is part thriller, part police procedural. The details of the investigation, with its many twists, turns, and roadblocks, are fascinating. A SUPERIOR thriller. THE ROMANCE READERS CONNECTION 

"Mackie shows off his skills at solid, no-frills, action-packed police procedurals...." SOUTH FLORIDA SUN-SENTINEL

"Where will John take Savage next? Whichever direction you can count on it being action packed...." BOOK BITCH

"To John Mackie, Harry Bosch would go through a door with you anytime, anywhere...." MICHAEL CONNELLY

About the Author

John Mackie is a highly decorated veteran of the New York City Police Department. He served in the Street Crime Unit, Midtown South, Internal Affairs, and the Narcotics Division of the Organized Crime Control Bureau, garnering dozens of medals and commendations over the course of his NYPD career. A holder of the department’s prized Medal of Valor, he retired as a sergeant and now makes his home in Florida. Visit the author’s Web site at

Product Details

  • File Size: 669 KB
  • Print Length: 326 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #217,520 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars John Mackie Mytery Writer January 9, 2006
Format:Mass Market Paperback
John Mackie, a former member of the NYPD is one of the best contemporary mystery/detective writers. His cop stories rank right up there with Joseph Wambaugh and Archer Mayor. He is one terrific read. He understands human nature and is able to convey it. He also is an expert on police procedure. New York City and his characters come out of the pages. You can visualize every street, smell the city and feel the beat. Detective Thorn Savage, his main character, is smart and sophisticted. Savage heads up a team of elite homicide dectectives. Mackie's stories grab you from the first page. Mackie has written four books: Manhattan South, Manhattan North, East Side,West Side. I hope it will not be too long until there is a fifth book
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "On The Sidewalks of New York..." December 29, 2005
By Konrei
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The wonderful thing about John Mackie as a writer is his ability to take a canned and generically labelled storyline down from the shelf and cook up something mesmerizingly readable and thoroughly entertaining with it.

In MANHATTAN SOUTH Mackie presented us with a tale of political blackmail ending in death; MANHATTAN NORTH was the story of a drug lord seeking to revenge himself on the cop that sent him up; and EAST SIDE concerned itself with a Church scandal and a cover-up.

WEST SIDE, his latest, is about an insurance fraud scam sometimes called the "Dead Man's Shuffle," where some poor passed-on unfortunate takes the identity of the still-quite-alive insured, who then collects on his own premium. In this case, the three beneficiaries are well-heeled but greedy denizens of New York's leather bar scene, who have killed a gay drifter as a substitute.

Although initially it looks like they are free, clear and in the money, alarm bells start ringing when the deceased is immediately cremated, the doctor who signed the death certificate begins to develop a sweaty lip, and two of the three conspirators suddenly vanish before sunup.

Detective Sergeant Thorn Savage begins a laborious and sometimes hilarious manhunt through New York's gay bars, sometimes finding clues but most often being propositioned by men wearing spiked gloves and nipple rings, but never finding true love.

Fortunately for Savage, the three caballeros leave a wake as big as the USS Theodore Roosevelt's behind them. Unfortunately, they seem to have gone everywhere from Brooklyn to Belfast to Amsterdam to Sardinia to South Florida, and Savage has to play continental hopscotch to close the case and bring the perpetrators to justice.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reader review of "West Side" by John Mackie. December 22, 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Just had the pleasure of reading "West Side" by John Mackie. Unlike police novels by most authors, this one is right on target. Mackie has obviously been there and done that. His descriptive powers and attention to detail bring each charactor to life and draw the reader into each scene.

He has captured the flavor of a NYPD Homicide Squad as its members labor to solve their latest puzzle. His excellent knowledge of police procedure makes fascinating reading as you follow the men and women of this elite unit in their step by step trackdown of a vicious killer team.

Best book I have read in a very long time.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars John Mackie Hits Another Home Run October 16, 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
John Mackie has the talent of making his characters come alive and literally jump out at you. His penchant for detail and description puts him in the same league with James Lee Burke. They don't come any better.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mackie Does It Again! Another Great Read! December 12, 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Author John Mackie keeps on surprising me. Just when I think I know the kind of book he'll write, he takes a new turn. In this novel he unravels a brilliant scheme of multiple murders for insurance. Unlike his other books, this one is not so much an action story because the detectives involved are never in jeopardy. That takes some of the "edge" off of the story. But this is equally as fascinating as Mackies other books because it shows, in exquisite detail, how really good detective work is done in the real world. Hard to put this book down. A caveat; if you don't want to read about the seamy side of homosexual life, this is not your bag. I'm hooked on John Mackie's style, though. If he writes it, I'll read it. The former NYPD detective KNOWS of what he writes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Thorn Savage series is well worth reading March 3, 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I have read all of John Mackie books and very much enjoyed them. They are engrossing and have a real feel about them, probably because Mackie is or was a police officer himself. I'm very sorry he doesn't currently have a publisher, especially given the amount of terrible books being published instead.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars West Side April 17, 2009
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This was my third in the Sgt. Savage series and I wish there were more. I have a feeling there is more to tell. If you have ever been curious as to what takes place on a day to day basis within a Police Dept, then run don't walk to order them all. All of the characters are true to life, exciting and a little manic, just what you expect from someone who has seen the "Not so nice side of life". If you are trying to get out of a committment, simply say I can't put this book down and I am not going, it will be the truth.
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More About the Author

Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, John attended public schools and grew up playing baseball. In this, the first chapter of his life, he was a die-hard Brooklyn Dodger fan and spent many summer hours as a boy watching his heroes play at Ebbets Field. He often fantasized that someday he would be wearing a Dodger uniform and playing third base for them. Though good with a glove and bat, and blessed with a great arm, playing for the Dodgers was not to be. Besides, the Bums had gone west to Los Angeles. He was a New Yorker.

In the second chapter of his life, the fantasy thinking of his youth soon faded into reality and he became a New York City policeman. It was a good decision. John soon found that he loved The Job,and would rather be a New York City cop than a third baseman for any ball club...well, almost. His years with the department were spent working in Midtown Manhattan (Times Square), Uptown Manhattan in Harlem, and in the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Bedford Stuyvesant and Brownsville. During his tenure as a policeman, John loved to work the street. He was decorated more than thirty times, and is a holder of the NYPD's prestigious Medal of Valor. He stayed with the department for seventeen years until work-related injuries forced him into early retirement while at the rank of sergeant.

Then came chapter three. Needing a new identity, John had to reinvent himself. He picked up a pen and, with a tightly focused view on becoming a published author of fiction, began to write. The reality thinking of his middle life had reverted back to the fantasy thinking of his youth. The pursuit turned out to be a long and winding road, one that demanded three things: talent, perseverance, and luck. He believed he had the talent; he certainly had the perseverance... it was the luck which he seemed to lack. But things eventually began to happen. Perseverance and talent finally found luck. His first book, MANHATTAN SOUTH, was published by NAL/Penguin in July 2002. MANHATTAN NORTH, EAST SIDE, and WEST SIDE followed. His latest, TO KILL A QUEEN, was published in 2012.

John now makes his home in Florida.

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