The Turnaround

The Turnaround

3.66 (2,789 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

List price: US$22.30

Currently unavailable

We can notify you when this item is back in stock

Add to wishlist

AbeBooks may have this title (opens in new window).

Try AbeBooks


On a hot summer afternoon in Washington DC 1972, three white teenagers, stoned and fearless, drive a stolen car into Heathrow Heights - a rough, black neighbourhood near where they live. Taunting local black kids through the car window, they speed off to what they think is safety. Tragically, they find themselves trapped in a dead-end street whilst an angry mob gathers. In the ensuing chaos, two of the white boys manage to escape, but Billy - the third friend - is shot dead. The youths from both neighbourhoods eventually go their separate ways, but this event will remain the defining moment in many of their lives. Thirty-five years later, one of these men reaches out to another, opening a door that could lead to salvation. However, another survivor of that day is now out of prison, and is looking for reparation in any form he can find it...The Turnaround takes us on a journey from the rock-and-soul streets of the 1970s to the changing neighbourhoods of DC today. It is a novel of fathers and sons, wives and husbands, loss, victory and ultimately violent redemption.
show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 304 pages
  • 159 x 242 x 29mm | 592g
  • Orion Publishing Co
  • Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0752875426
  • 9780752875422
  • 1,007,679

About George Pelecanos

George Pelecanos lives in Washington D.C. with his wife and children. He also manages Circle Films, an independent production company responsible for such films as the Coen Brothers' Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing and Barton Fink.
show more

Review quote

'George Pelecanos is in subdued, reflective mood: the novel is no less powerful for that. ... in its quiet way it is just as truthful and provocative' -- Marcel Berlins THE TIMES 'The Turnaround is about fathers and sons, growing up and growing old, yet it is effortlessly gripping and moving. It is, quite simply, a masterpiece.' -- Mark Sanderson EVENING STANDARD 'Crime novelist George Pelecanos has created a stylish, unsettling meditation on the repercussions of wrongdoing that confounds expectations. ... Thought-provoking as ever, Pelecanos manages to write a tale that is intimate and panoramic, taut and lyrical.' METRO 'He is, we reckon, the best Amerian writer working at the moment. And no, we don't just mean in crime fiction.' THE HERALD 'Pelecanos has a perfect ear for the rhythms of life and language in his beloved Washington - not the nabobs of Capital Hill, but the ghettoes and the immigrant communities he knows so well. ... This is an excellent thriller about choices, family values, loyalty, and, ultimately, violent redemption.' -- Matthew Lewin THE GUARDIAN 'What Billingham does for London in terms of grim reality, George Pelecanos and Richard Price, two of the writers on The Wire, do for urban East Coast America. The Turnaround is a complex story ... a wonderful low-key novel, as much about guilt and redemption as about crime, and - as always - Pelecanos is a meticulous chronicler of his place and time.' -- Carla McKay DAILY MAIL '[Pelecanos] deserves all the praise showered on him. ... Once again Pelecanos scores high ... American crime writing at its finest.' -- Mark Timlin INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY 'Pelecanos has a wonderful gift for scene-setting and his unobtrusive way of slipping in a subliminal soundtrack for the reader makes already supremely strong stories really burst into life.' DUBLIN EVENING HERALD 'Just as Dickens gave literary expression to the lives of the powerless in the most powerful city in the world, 19th century London, George Pelecanos too arguably has achieved the same feat in Washington. In The Turnaround ... you will not find prostrate oppressed characters ... there is always resilience, intelligence and, most of all, hope. These elements are not thrown together but beautifully combined in the prose and dialogue that may yet make The Turnaround a modern classic.' SOCIALIST REVIEW 'being one of the trio of crime novelists responsible for much of hte scriptwriting on The Greatest Show Ever is all the recommendation us Wire fans need. ... His eye for the detail (and the music) of American blue-collar life and willingness to let his creations breath make The Turnaround a credible and forceful examination into making up and making do.' THE WORD 'Pelecanos is skilled at narrative, and his characters' dilemmas are evoked grimly and vividly. Best of all is his bleak picture of the poorer side of a city where lives are constantly menaced by an unholy trinity of crime, racism and deprivation.' -- Andrew Taylor THE SPECTATOR 'This is an intelligent, moving and compelling novel, even by Pelecanos' high standards.' MORNING STAR 'George Pelecanos's work has long since transcended the crime fiction genre, and his fifteenth novel, The Turnaround, finds him at the height of his powers as a trenchant social critic.' NEW HUMANIST
show more

Rating details

2,789 ratings
3.66 out of 5 stars
5 16% (433)
4 44% (1,221)
3 33% (930)
2 6% (167)
1 1% (38)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X