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Blacktop Wasteland

Narrated by: Adam Lazarre-White
Length: 11 hrs and 7 mins
4.8 out of 5 stars (30 ratings)

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Summary

It's a crime that history repeats itself.

Beauregard 'Bug' Montage: honest mechanic, loving husband, devoted parent. He's no longer the criminal he once was - the sharpest wheelman on the east coast, infamous from the hills of North Carolina to the beaches of Florida.

But when his respectable life begins to crumble, a shady associate comes calling with a clean, one-time job: a diamond heist promising a get-rich payout. Inexorably drawn to the driver's seat - and haunted by the ghost of his outlaw father - Bug is yanked back into a savage world of bullets and betrayal, which soon endangers all he holds dear. 

Like Breaking Bad in a high-speed collision with Drive, this stunning debut holds up a cracked mirror to the woozy ideals of the American dream - a dazzling, operatic story of a man pushed to his limits by poverty, race and a scarred, self-destructive masculinity.

The perfect gripping listen for fans of acclaimed writers such as Don Winslow, Attica Locke, Bill Beverley and Thomas Mullen. 

©2020 Shawn A. Crosby (P)2020 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

Critic reviews

"Every once in a while a writer comes along with an incredible voice. Think Elmore Leonard, or Chester Himes...add S. A. Cosby to that list." (Steve Cavanagh) 

"Blacktop Wasteland is an urgent, timely, pitch-perfect jolt of American noir." (Dennis Lehane)  

"Sensationally good - new, fresh, real, authentic, twisty, with characters and dilemmas that will break your heart." (Lee Child)  

What listeners say about Blacktop Wasteland

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant, nailbiting Southern Noir

Loved this book from beginning to end. S.A Cosby brings this slice of southern life vividly to life with characters you will believe in. One of the best books I have read this year and the narration is first class. I highly recommend it.

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Highly recommended sleasy noir

A gripping account of the traditional story of a former criminal forced back into the 'life' and one last job. A great cast of sleasy ,sweaty, scarred and psychopathic lowlifes populate this book and probably the best account I've com e across of what it is to be the get-away-driver.

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    3 out of 5 stars

Great writing and narration. Lacks originality.

This is a great listen on Audible, hovering between four and five stars, and just shy of greatness. More so for the writing than the originality. I've heard people say Blacktop Wasteland feels like Breaking Bad meets Fast and Furious, and although I haven't seen much of the latter, I think that's a pretty fair analogy if you want to simplify it. But everything does feel a little too familiar and that's the problem. There's no real knockout moment. Not for me anyway. And that's where it loses a mark. So, is that a bad thing? No. Not when it's so well written. I mean, it's a debut novel. It really is a damn fine piece of work. I just think it needed that something extra to stand out and get me wanting to talk about it more. It's a 4.5 overall, but I'm keeping it a 4 for Goodreads. 4 feels right. Soon to be a movie. Guaranteed.

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A total page turner

Read a review in the FT and bought the book and have been bowled over by this totally engaging drama of motives that are very understandable and actions and behaviours that are totally wrong. A roller coaster ride with endless twists and turns as the lead characters life falls apart, friendships are broken and the memory of his father almost takes over. Brilliantly read - thoroughly recommended

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A terrific read.....

Beauregard “Bug” Montage is known in some circles as the best getaway driver for miles around. He is now retired and leading a good life and trying to provide for his family. But events beyond his control have caused him some serious financial losses. Just “one last job” would see him right. A jewellery store is ripe for the picking and all Bug has to do is drive the car. So the gang sets off, they hold up the store and take the diamonds. Everything goes to plan and they escape without a hitch. So Bug is able to pay off his debts and return to an honest living. NO!! Of course, this is not what happened. Bug carried out his part of the deal but greed and stupidity gets in the way of his companions. The repercussions are enormous and threaten the very people he has hoped to protect. This was a compelling story – fast and furious – and one of m best crime thrillers of the year. The plot device of “one last heist” is far from new but Cosby writes with urgency and originality and we are cheering Bug along until the end. A terrific read. This worked well as an audiobook - although I thought the reader was a little ponderous and slow.

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    4 out of 5 stars

Hard boiled deep southern gearhead noir.

I loved this. The Narration is excellent. This is quite a dialogue heavy book and Adam Lazarre-White really brings the characters to life with his intonation and believable cadence. Along with the top notch naration I very much enjoyed the style of the writing. The matter of fact decriptions of the action and violence owe a debt to Ramond Chandler or William Gibson. The plot moves along at a cracking pace as the tension mounts. An excellent thriller.

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Blacktop Wasteland

After hearing this author speak at the Locked Up Festival then seeing recommendations from several authors, I was really looking forward to this book. It is essentially the old story of an ex-bad guy trying really hard to turn his life around, but being dragged into 'one last job', and we all know how that usually goes! This is a great story with some action sequences, specifically the car chases, that are so well written that they deserve to be on screen. There is a whole cast of well-written, believable characters, especially the lead character Beauregard 'Bug' Montage. You can't help but root for him and understand almost every action he takes. Well worth a listen.

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Brilliant book

Best book I have listened to for a while. Wonderful twisting story superbly narrated. Highly recommended.

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Fantastic!

So exciting and a real page turner. An original and fresh voice. Enjoyed every minute, a movie in the making.

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Ultimate heist with amazing narration

I listened to this book and can’t recommend the book enough. The narrator did an amazing job of brining all the characters to life, switching seamlessly between characters. The combination of the plot and narration draw you into the story of Beauregard and his struggle to be the family man his father was not. In his other life as Bug is a get away driver whose love of cars and his father means he can’t separate himself from the Duster car that represents that part of his life. In an attempt to make a fresh start Bug agreed to one last heist and opens a Pandora’s box which cannot be closed. You won’t regret listening to this book. Hang on at the end for the question and answer session with the author.