4 out of 4 stars
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This is the story of Dan, a man who starts his criminal career in college selling ephedrine pills to his classmates. At the time this pills are not illegal and students use them to help them stay awake and study. Dan’s pharmaceutical enterprise grows and before long he is moving over a million pills a month. His life takes a dramatic turn when he gets arrested for tax evasion. He serves many months in prison and has to rebuild his life anew when he is finally released.
Dan’s release from prison marks the true beginning of this story. He is not the man he was before his incarceration. Where he was hesitant to commit crimes before, he now knowingly engages in criminal activity to deal with financial hardship.
Just when Dan thinks the worst is behind him, a close friend frames him for a crime he did not commit and he is arrested. When he is released on bail he flees the country to live the life of a fugitive. In his mind he has many reasons not to trust the justice system, besides he is only innocent of the crime he was arrested for but guilty of other unlawful acts.
Gringo is based on the true life story of Dan Tito Davis. The tale recounts his experiences on the run from the F.B.I. He learns Spanish while in Mexico and assimilates to the country’s culture. He does not remain there though; his life’s journey is one that takes him to many other countries. This is an adventurous tale that will keep you turning the pages. I read the entire book in one sitting.
Dan gets himself into many dangerous situations; it’s a miracle that he survives them all. If you are expecting the usual drug cartel narrative with gang violence and drug mules then you will be disappointed. Dan’s entry into a life of crime was most unexpected given his background and upbringing. He makes some bad life choices but his resilience is undeniable. Dan chooses a path that most people would not consider when he flees to Mexico. I am not a proponent of living a life of crime nor do I find it glamorous, but I find myself sympathizing with Dan.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. The book is written as a memoir and the language used by the author complements his writing style. I sense that there is a deliberate attempt to omit unnecessary details that would detract from the story. This approach makes the book easy to read. I enjoyed this book very much, it left me in suspense and I cannot wait to read the sequel.
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