50 Books By Authors of Color: Book 24
Title: Crime Partners
Author: Donald Goines
When I started this project I knew I’d end up reading some Donald Goines. Donald Goines along with Iceberg Slim and lauded by many as the fathers (though Slim began writing earlier) of Urban Fiction. Which admittedly is not a genre I read a lot of, but this book was written in the 1970’s so a lot of the stuff in this book gets forgiven due to age. The book starts out with two heroin addicts, Jo-Jo and Tina in the middle of cooking up a back to shoot up and waiting desperately for their dealer to show up so they can re-up. Tina’s daughter accidentally knocks the heroin onto a rug and as a result Jo-Jo beats her to death. Note, not half to death, to actual death. It is after this that we meet the “good guys” of this story. Two men, Jackie and Billy, our “Crime Partners”, who were the dealers that had been sent to deliver the goods to Jo-Jo and Tina.
Upon entering the apartment they discover the dead body of Tina’s young daughter and as the Robin Hood characters, they kill Tina and Jo-Jo in retaliation for the death of her child. It doesn’t take long for Jackie and Billy to become involved with Kenyatta, a local crime boss type who wants to gain infamy by killing racist white cops and knocking off big drug dealers. Though, from my impression it wasn’t because he objected to drug dealers flooding the community with dope, instead it really seemed as though it was for the street credit that would be gained from doing so. But I think that one could argue that Robin Hood robbed the rich and gave to the poor for the notoriety, so I can’t really argue against that.
In the same way that Robin Hood glorifies robbing, raping and regicide, Crime Partner follows the same basic principles. While I didn’t like it, I can see the appeal to young males who believe that their only way to achieve respect is through money, drugs and hoes.
Overall Rating: 2/5 – really it just wasn’t my thing