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Doctor Dealer: The Rise and Fall of an All-American Boy and His Multimillion-Dollar Cocaine Empire

av Mark Bowden

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1292213,504 (3.57)2
From the # 1 New York Times-bestselling author of Black Hawk Down: The "shocking" story of the country's unlikeliest drug kingpin (The Baltimore Sun).   By the early 1980s, Larry Lavin had everything going for him. He was a bright, charismatic young man who rose from working-class roots to become a dentist with an Ivy League education and a thriving practice, and a beloved father with a well-respected family in one of Philadelphia's most exclusive suburbs.   But behind the façade of his success was a dark secret: Lavin was also the mastermind behind a cocaine empire that spread from Miami to Boston to New Mexico, catering to lawyers, stockbrokers, and other professionals, and generating an annual income of $60 million for the good doctor.   Now, Mark Bowden, a "master of narrative journalism" (The New York Times Book Review) tells the harrowing saga of Lavin's rise and fall in "a shocking American tragedy . . . [that] shoots straight from the hip" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).   "An engrossing crime story and a compelling morality tale." --The Arizona Republic   "Has all the elements of a chilling suspense thriller . . . A smoothly crafted, exciting, can't-put-it-down book." --The New Voice (Louisville)… (mer)
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Well written, lots of detail about Larry Lavin. He begins dealing drugs in dental school and this eventually becomes a multi million dollar business. He and his wife seem to enable each other.. love the excitement, love the money.. ( )
  loraineo | Jun 4, 2018 |
Mark Bowden is among my favorite authors, and I really enjoyed this book. Bowden tells the story of Larry Lavin, a student-turned-drug dealer-turned dentist-turned fugitive. Bowden portrays Lavin in a fairly unbiased light, showing him as charming to some, annoying to others, greedy, generous, ambitious, and arrogant. The reader sees all sides of Larry Lavin, and we are ultimately left with a complex impression of Lavin. I found myself alternately liking him and finding him annoying.

The story of Lavin's youth and his gradual rise to become a drug kingpin in Philadelphia is detailed and filled with any number of anecdotes about brushes with the law, hard-partying, dental school, and family life. The section on his flight to Virginia Beach, his capture, and his prosecution felt a little bit rushed compared with the level of detail we got before that point, which is one of the reasons I am giving this book four stars instead of five.

The other reason I am giving this book four stars instead of five is because I didn't like the way the author presented some of the anecdotes regarding Lavin's run-ins with the criminal underworld of Philadelphia in the late 70s. He routinely used the word "whores" for prostitutes, and while I think that this was Lavin's term, it seemed that the author picked it up as well. I also felt that he portrayed the few black dealers in the book as dangerous thugs, while the "thug" image was not as readily attributed to two of the white dealers who did use violence or intimidation. (Lavin himself was largely able to stay away from the use of intimidation in his dealings, and he regularly wrote off 'bad debts' rather than use force to collect them.) Part of this portrayal may be due to the fact that Lavin did have violent or aggressive run-ins with those dealers or their associates, whereas the violence committed by the white dealers did not involve Lavin. Nonetheless, I felt as though there was an opportunity to provide some context about race relations in Philadelphia during Lavin's tenure there, and in this area the author fell short. This would have given the reader a better sense of the climate in which Lavin was operating his relatively insulated enterprise. ( )
  slug9000 | Apr 15, 2014 |
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From the # 1 New York Times-bestselling author of Black Hawk Down: The "shocking" story of the country's unlikeliest drug kingpin (The Baltimore Sun).   By the early 1980s, Larry Lavin had everything going for him. He was a bright, charismatic young man who rose from working-class roots to become a dentist with an Ivy League education and a thriving practice, and a beloved father with a well-respected family in one of Philadelphia's most exclusive suburbs.   But behind the façade of his success was a dark secret: Lavin was also the mastermind behind a cocaine empire that spread from Miami to Boston to New Mexico, catering to lawyers, stockbrokers, and other professionals, and generating an annual income of $60 million for the good doctor.   Now, Mark Bowden, a "master of narrative journalism" (The New York Times Book Review) tells the harrowing saga of Lavin's rise and fall in "a shocking American tragedy . . . [that] shoots straight from the hip" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).   "An engrossing crime story and a compelling morality tale." --The Arizona Republic   "Has all the elements of a chilling suspense thriller . . . A smoothly crafted, exciting, can't-put-it-down book." --The New Voice (Louisville)

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