The Power of the Dog

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The Power of the Dog
The Power of the Dog.jpg
AuthorDon Winslow
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
GenreThriller, Crime novel
PublisherAlfred A. Knopf
Publication date
2005
Media typePrint (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages539 pages
ISBN0-375-40538-0
OCLC56912098
Dewey Decimal813/.54 22
LC ClassPS3573.I5326 P69 2005
 
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The Power of the Dog
The Power of the Dog.jpg
AuthorDon Winslow
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
GenreThriller, Crime novel
PublisherAlfred A. Knopf
Publication date
2005
Media typePrint (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages539 pages
ISBN0-375-40538-0
OCLC56912098
Dewey Decimal813/.54 22
LC ClassPS3573.I5326 P69 2005

The Power of the Dog is a 2005 crime/thriller novel by Don Winslow, based on the DEA's involvement with the War on Drugs. The book was published after six years of writing and research by the author.

Art Keller, through tenacity, skilled experience, and what he once thought of as luck, positions himself as a strategic piece in the DEA's war on drugs. His career really begins in a boxing ring, where he is pummeled a great deal, forced to use every skill he has, engage his tactical mind in order to survive, and still loses the three-round bout. But from the blood, pain and street-wise cunning, it appears that he has won the real match, but he's still one step behind in the greater game.

The next 29 years his life is a repeat of that sparring match. In a high powered story of political forces, and brutal mentalities, Art Keller attempts to do his job, while not becoming a victim of his obsessions. Following Keller and the other characters of this novel, Don Winslow positions us as witnesses to tremendous crimes, and horrific destruction, while listening to members of both sides of this 'war' declare victory and prosperity from the engagements that leave towns destroyed and families murdered.

While The Power of the Dog is a novel, the tremendous effort in historic and cultural research by the author is very evident.

Plot summary[edit]

The novel begins in 1975 with the main character Art Keller watching the opium poppy fields of the Mexican state of Sinaloa burn. The burning is done in preference to the use of Agent Orange. Keller has just begun his career as a DEA agent, coming over from operative work with the CIA, and a veteran of Viet Nam's Phoenix Program.

Keller tells us that though there are similarities, this isn't Operation Phoenix but Operation Condor.

Keller's career looks like it might end before it begins, until he works his way into the friendship of the Barrera brothers and Miguel Angel Barrera, referred to us as Tío (meaning Uncle/Valued Elder Patron). Tío sets it up so that Don Pedro Aviles, the main drug lord of Sinaloa, is assassinated, while giving Art Keller the credit for the drug lord's death during an arrest. Tío then leads the Sinaloa heroin traffickers into the modern age as the cartel's new leader.

Characters[edit]

Allusions to actual history, geography and current science[edit]

The Power of the Dog starts in 1975 and follows the DEA's War on Drugs and various aspects of Operation Condor.

Portrayal of the Mexican presidential candidate Luis Donaldo Colosio's murder in Tijuana on March 23, 1994.

Aspects and some of the resolutions of the Cristero War are mentioned.

External links[edit]