No Angel: My Harrowing Undercover Journey to the Inner Circle of the Hells Angels
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Product Description

Here, from Jay Dobyns, the first federal agent to infiltrate the inner circle of the outlaw Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, is the inside story of the twenty-one-month operation that almost cost him his family, his sanity, and his life.

Getting shot in the chest as a rookie agent, bartering for machine guns, throttling down the highway at 100 mph, and responding to a full-scale, bloody riot between the Hells Angels and their rivals, the Mongols–these are just a few of the high-adrenaline experiences Dobyns recounts in this action-packed, hard-to-imagine-but-true story.

Dobyns leaves no stone of his harrowing journey unturned. At runs and clubhouses, between rides and riots, Dobyns befriends bad-ass bikers, meth-fueled “old ladies,” gun fetishists, psycho-killer ex-cons, and even some of the “Filthy Few”–the elite of the Hells Angels who’ve committed extreme violence on behalf of their club. Eventually, at parties staged behind heavily armed security, he meets legendary club members such as Chuck Zito, Johnny Angel, and the godfather of all bikers, Ralph “Sonny” Barger. To blend in with them, he gets full-arm ink; to win their respect, he vows to prove himself a stone-cold killer.

Hardest of all is leading a double life, which has him torn between his devotion to his wife and children, and his pledge to become the first federal agent ever to be “fully patched” into the Angels’ near-impregnable ranks. His act is so convincing that he comes within a hairsbreadth of losing himself. Eventually, he realizes that just as he’s been infiltrating the Hells Angels, they’ve been infiltrating him. And just as they’re not all bad, he’s not all good.

Reminiscent of Donnie Brasco’s uncovering of the true Mafia, this is an eye-opening portrait of the world of bikers–the most in-depth since Hunter Thompson’s seminal work–one that fully describes the seductive lure criminal camaraderie has for men who would otherwise be powerless outsiders. Here is all the nihilism, hate, and intimidation, but also the freedom–and, yes, brotherhood–of the only truly American form of organized crime.

Customer Reviews:

  • No Angel - Jay Dobyns
    Good read. Moves at a fast pace. You won't want to put it down for long....more info
  • Not the best , but not bad
    The book paints a very different picture than the documentary about the same investigation. The documentary interviewed the bikers and naturally their views and memories were different than Dobyns. The documnetary states that the huge investigation netted little in the way of convictins and prison time, something the book seems to gloss over.

    Its obvious Dobyns has a very high confidence level, which is required in undercover work. Its also obvious he liked the biker lifestyle more than his real life. I think the writing leaves a lot to be desired, many parts read like a cheap detective novel in particular when the author(s) are describing what someone ate and the manner in which they did so.

    On the positive side, its an interesting subject. An entertainnig an quick read. I would have like more details about the Laughlin bloodbath since Dobyns and other people in the book were there. I thought Under and Alone was a far better book though....more info
  • A look inside and a real eye opener
    If you have any interest at all in The Hells Angels, Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs, Organized Criminal Organizations, Undercover Police work, and/or the sociological aspects of any of these you will most likely enjoy this book very much. Jay Dobyns does an excellent job of describing not only what he went through during this operation but more importantly how he felt during it all. He provides a look inside the enigmatic Hells Angels Motorcycle Club helping the reader understand how the members feel and why they act the way they do.
    Dobyns recognizes the fascination many people feel when they see a group of guys on big, powerful, loud Harley-Davidson motorcycles and he follows that fascination into the clubhouse where few of us could or would ever go. We meet real people and learn a little about how they live, what motivates them and how they interact with each other and people outside their world.
    This is not a dramatization of the culture it is a true story of real people on both sides of the law; their good points and bad. This is a thought provoking book which does not whitewash either the outlaws or the ATF. Dobyns has done an excellent job both as an ATF agent and an author.
    The Hells Angels are what they have been for as long as I've known of them (the 1960s) an outlaw motorcycle club, I don't condone or excuse many of the things they do but now I know them better than I ever expected to thanks to this book. ...more info
  • Engrossing, vivid reading
    Any library strong in contemporary true crime accounts needs NO ANGEL: MY HARROWING UNDERCOVER JOURNEY TO THE INNER CIRCLE OF THE HELLS ANGELS. It comes from a special agent who was the first to infiltrate the inner circle of the motorcycle club in a 21-month operation that nearly cost him his family and his life. Engrossing, vivid reading - hard to put down and a top pick for any general-interest lending library.
    ...more info
  • Amazing!
    This book was great. Its readability, capturing story, and conversational tone make it extremely hard to put down. I'd recommend it to anyone who is looking for an entertaining read, regardless of if the individual is interested in motorcycle gangs, organized crime, law enforcement, or something entirely different....more info
  • No Angel
    this is an amazing story of the undercover life of ATF Agent Jay Dobyns. He tells the story thru his own eyes and makes you feel like you are riding next to him the whole step of the way on his journey thru the Hells Angels. ...more info
  • Okay
    This book has its moments, but for the most part was not very exciting. I suppose the problem for me is I compared it to "Under and Alone" which is a far more exciting and interesting book about infiltrating a motorcycle club....more info
  • No Angel
    Very well written, answers all the questions which are left unanswered in 3 other books on this case. Found it easy to read with no holds, the REAL story. Highly recommend!!!...more info
  • No Angel

    I found No Angel to be a book I could not put down and finished in two days! The culture and lives of the Hells Angels described in the book was both harrowing and incomprehensible. A must read!!...more info
  • It's okay
    I have read Hunter S. Thompson's book, George Wethern's book, and Sonny Bargers Biography. This book was very readable, I read it in one sitting, however with any "true story", I have issues.
    The book is well written, and certainly a page turner. The author admits to various "indiscretions" (dick fingers intended) and of course finds God and family at the end. However, he does have litigation pending against the ATF and needs to come off well in this book.
    A very telling vignette in this book has to do with the the author encountering members of law enforcement (of which he was a member)at a motorcycle rally and being outraged that they would want to meet a ranking member of the Hells Angels and at the same time being extremely condescinding towards the officers in question.
    Worth a read although the author will get on your nerves, as he is obviously covering all his bases. His ghostwriter obviously has talent (and not as overworked as the poor soul who ghosted George Wethern). Agent Dobyns was enthralled with the Hells Angels (re: his intrpretation of the Laughlin incident with the Monglols)and he has years of experience working undercover.
    A good outsiders view of the Hells Angels, and a book where they come off looking pretty good. As I said, a very good read. I would recommend. Be sceptical of the author and his ghost writer (Nils Johnson-Shelton), but enjoy the view. ...more info