Book review

Every month, I read and review one ‘Amazon first read’ but have never shared the reviews here despite some fabulous books that I’ve read. This month I happened to pick up a book, which I would like to talk about, as it comments on the most relevant topic – a disturbing fact that nobody likes to discuss.

Before I share my review of the book, I would like to quote a few lines from William Blake’s poem ‘The Little Black Boy,’ written in 1789:

My mother bore me in the southern wild,
And I am black, but O! my soul is white;
……. 

My mother taught me underneath a tree 
And sitting down before the heat of day,
She took me on her lap and kissed me,
And pointing to the east began to say. 

Look on the rising sun: there God does live 
And gives his light, and gives his heat away. 
And flowers and trees and beasts and men receive
Comfort in morning joy in the noonday.
……Read full poem

Sadly, little seems to have changed!!

Under Color of Law (Trevor Finnegan, #1) by Aaron Philip Clark is a chilling and riveting account of the plight of black recruits and officers, so reminiscent of recent protests against the police department. This is an inside story of what goes behind the scene, an eye-opener about how some officers are brutal enough to indulge in violent means to eliminate those they don’t like. This fictional story smacks of stark realism, often brushed aside in connection with the high-handedness of cops.

Trevor joins LAPD (Los Angeles Police Department) with dreams of becoming a top-ranking officer and doesn’t give an ear to his father’s warnings that the system is rotten. He is ready to take all the pressure and has to lock horns with the corrupt and selfish persons around him. Does he succeed? Could he get justice for Brandon whose body has been found with no clues? Clark’s power-packed style of writing keeps you turning the pages and my heart sank with each development. I could feel the pain, the frustration, the yearning and the hope of Trevor who refuses to give up.

Clark’s characters are believable, crafted with incisive detail as if he has met them. Trevor’s confidence, determination and resilience shines through out the story. Joey Garcia and Boston Walsh have been handled brilliantly but it is Trevor’s relationship with Sarada that adds a touch of tenderness to the story. The book remains inconclusive but I could understand that the issues that have been raised can’t be resolved in a day and it would take years to see the change of attitudes. I would eagerly look forward to the next book in the series. Highly recommended!

Balroop Singh.

37 thoughts on “Book review

  1. I love Amazon first reads! My TBR is so backed up I don’t always get to them during the month of release. I don’t recall seeing this book before but it does sound very compelling. An excellent review, Balroop!

  2. Balroop, thank you first for quoting the poem by “ William Blake”, I really loved it.

    You have a strong review for “ Under the colour of law”. It is so much darkness out there
    but many still fight on to bring a better world. Trevor sounds like a great character and I wish him all success.

    Miriam

  3. Perfect poem to add to your great review, Balroop. This does sound like an insighful that mirrors current events.

  4. I don’t understand bigotry. We all love, hurt, cry, the same. Why can’t we accept and grow from our differences? This sounds like a thought-provoking story, Balroop. Wonderful review ❤

  5. Thanks for sharing your review, Balroop. “This fictional story smacks of stark realism.” How true. And can you imagine the people who have to live with this kind of stress everyday, who never know where the next threat will come from. Your review was thoughtful and stirring. Well done.

    1. You have to be a prime member of Amazon to get access to Amazon first reads Robbie. The yearly membership fee is charged and whatever you order from them is delivered at your doorstep next day. Thanks you for coming over to read my review. This book is really good.

  6. I think you hit the nail on the head, except I think it will take more than just years, perhaps a generation. Thanks for introducing me to the book. 🙂

    1. Those who were concerned about this issue like Blake raised it generations ago but we don’t see much change in the attitudes. Thank you Deb for coming over to read this review.

  7. The book finds so much relevance with the current scenario of the black lives matter protests. It is ironic that despite all the advancements we have made, we still seem to have people around us that take us back to pre the 1960s, the age of racial discrimination.

  8. Balroop, I don’t agree that no one wants to talk about these things. People I know and I talk about these sorts of important issues quite a bit. But yes, there are a lot of people out there with eyes tightly shut who don’t want to believe that this is our country’s shameful history. Denying it only perpetuates the problem, and makes them complicit in it.

    I wonder if you’ve ever heard this superb interview:
    https://billmoyers.com/content/james-cone-on-the-cross-and-the-lynching-tree/

    It is so informative, and necessary in fact. It’s an eyes wide open sort of thing.

    Cheers. 🙏❤️

  9. Wonderful review, Balroop. It’s sad that in this day and age things haven’t changed. One day it feels like we’ve made progress, and the next day, we’ve taken several steps back. The book does sound like an eye-opener and one that I’ll plan on reading. Thanks for sharing and bringing more awareness.

  10. Wonderful review and a good choice of William Blake’s poem to go with your review, Balroop. I can imagine the men and women who go into the police force have great motivations but didn’t expect the stress and threat in a real life. My brother-in-law’s father was a policeman, so he went into the field after college. Colleagues would put money in his drawer as a share of corruption. He couldn’t play along so he quit. Great insight and thoughtful review.

    1. Thanks for sharing your reflections Miriam. I agree with you, those who join the force with the idealism of youth get the shock of their life! It’s hard to survive in the corruption that is forced on them. 😊

  11. From 1789 when the poem was written until now, hope and faith will help all endure and hopefully lead to better days. Without it there is nothing. Sounds like a book worth reading. Thank-you for sharing your thoughts on it.

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