- Expected 10 Dec 2020
- 8,99 €
The System can save you, or it can break you . . .
On the sixth of December 1993, a drug dealer named Scrappy is shot and left for dead on her mother’s lawn in South Central Los Angeles. A heroin addict witnesses the shooting and seizes the moment to steal Scrappy’s drugs, as well as the handgun that was dropped at the scene. When he’s busted, he names two local gang members as the shooters.
There’s only one problem: one of them is guilty; the other, innocent. None of that matters, though, when the gun turns up again – miles from where the shooting happened – and both are arrested. Innocent or not, the gang tells them both to keep their mouths shut and take their charges.
With these two off the streets, Little, the unlikeliest of new gang members, is given a very serious job: discover how the gun got moved, who moved it, and why. Because it had to be a frame-up and the cops had to be involved. Hadn't they?
Played out in the streets, precincts, jails, and courtrooms of Los Angeles, The System by Ryan Gattis is a breakneck journey through every phase of the American criminal justice system. It is the story of a crime – from the moments before shots are fired, to the verdict and its violent aftershocks – told through the vivid chorus of those involved: the guilty, the innocent, the victim, the families who love them, and those simply doing their jobs. After all, justice is a matter of perspective.
On the night of Dec. 6, 1993, heroin addict Augie Clark, a key player in this ambitious crime novel set in L.A. from Gattis (Safe), witnesses his dealer, Scrappy\n, getting shot outside her mother's house, and recognizes the shooter as gangbanger Wizard\n, but doesn't know who the guy with Wizard is. Clark saves Scrappy's life with some quick first aid, calls an ambulance and pockets the gun used in the shooting left at the scene. The next day, Clark's parole officer finds the gun during a routine check on Clark, and blackmails him to finger Wizard and Wizard's usual accomplice, Dreamer\n, who has no felony record. The long, torturous road to trial offers a devastating portrait of the criminal network operating from jails, and shows how a person like Dreamer, the book's only sympathetic character, has little hope of justice. At times, this reads like a legal thriller, but with a lot more grit and sharper than usual characterization. Gattis expands the story dramatically through multiple first-person monologues from those on both sides of the criminal justice system. Too often, though, the monologues self-consciously strive for profundity in hard-to-swallow ways. Still, this is a story with great resonance for today. \n