"The criminal class is a more exact cross-section of humanity than any trade could be."
—Luc Sante, The Believer
Weed, coke, heroin, molly, promethazine, crack, PCP, LCD, opium, hashish, mushrooms, and countless other illicit substances flood the streets of New York City where they are consumed as quickly as they can be delivered.
For Dealers, street reporter Peter Madsen set out across New York City—from staid Gramercy residences to bleak homeless hangouts; grimy Bushwick bike messenger bars and tony Park Avenue penthouses—to interview this particular criminal class. Through anonymous one-on-one interviews with an alarmingly wide host of subjects (including a transient heroin-addict supporting his habit, cute art-school girls running a weed lounge, a connection-ready concierge, fixed-gear weed couriers, stick-up kids, and a lawyer who deals on the side), Madsen extracts un-glamorized, sometimes hilarious, and always nuanced accounts of the navigators of New York City's expansive drug underworld. Demand never ceases to grow, and where there is demand, there will always be plenty of outlaw capitalists willing to step up and supply.
"Dealers hooks a reader with its seedy content, but it's the gradual unfolding of Madsen himself as a central character that carries the reader through it...an addictive read about addictive personalities, [it] ends up a more interesting survey of New York ingenuity."
-New York Daily News
"By way of bicycle, Madsen learned the ins and outs of neighborhoods across all boroughs, interacting with people of all walks of life...[he] lets the interviewee set the tone and paint the picture - one that is as often enchanting and intimidating as it is laughable and relatable"