List books in category Biographies & Memoirs / Criminals & Outlaws

  • White American Youth: My Descent into America s Most Violent Hate Movement--and How I Got Out

    White American Youth: My Descent into America’s Most Violent Hate Movement–and How I Got Out
    Christian Picciolini

    As featured on Fresh Air and the TED stage, a stunning look inside the world of violent hate groups by a onetime white supremacist leader who, shaken by a personal tragedy, abandoned his destructive life to become an anti-hate activist. Raw, inspiring, and heartbreakingly candid, White American Youth explores why so many young people lose themselves in a culture of hatred and violence and how the criminal networks they forge terrorize and divide our nation. The story begins when Picciolini found himself stumbling through high school, struggling to find a community among other fans of punk rock music. There, he was recruited by a notorious white power skinhead leader and encouraged to fight with the movement to "protect the white race from extinction." Soon, he had become an expert in racist philosophies, a terror who roamed the neighborhood, quick to throw fists. When his mentor was sent to prison, sixteen-year-old Picciolini took over the man's role as the leader of an infamous neo-Nazi skinhead group. Seduced by the power he accrued through intimidation, and swept up in the rhetoric he had adopted, Picciolini worked to grow an army of extremists. He used music as a recruitment tool, launching his own propaganda band that performed at white power rallies around the world. But slowly, as he started a family of his own and a job that for the first time brought him face to face with people from all walks of life, he began to recognize the cracks in his hateful ideology. Then a shocking loss at the hands of racial violence changed his life forever, and Picciolini realized too late the full extent of the harm he'd caused. "Simultaneously horrifying and redemptive" (AlterNet), White American Youth examines how radicalism and racism can conquer a person's way of life and how we can work together to stop those ideologies from tearing our world apart. *An earlier edition of this book was published as Romantic Violence

  • Jealous Rage: Stunning True Tales of Intimates, Passion, and Murder (Volume 1): Volume 1

    Jealous Rage: Stunning True Tales of Intimates, Passion, and Murder (Volume 1): Volume 1
    R. Barri Flowers

    From R. Barri Flowers, award-winning criminologist and the bestselling author of Murder at the Pencil Factory, Murder Chronicles, Murder During the Chicago World’s Fair, Serial Killer Couples, and The Sex Slave Murders, comes the gripping historical true crime anthology, Jealous Rage: Stunning True Tales of Intimates, Passion, and Murder (Volume 1).Each chapter will chronicle a riveting, real life, age-old murder case involving jealousy, betrayal, and homicidal fury between spouses, lovers, and others caught in the fatal crossfire, and justice being served or not.Chapter 1: Murder of the U.S. Attorney: Congressman Sickles’ Crime of Passion in 1859Chapter 2: Murder of the Doctor’s Wife: The 1867 Crimes of Bridget DurganChapter 3: Murder of the French Lover: The Killing of Madame Lassimonne in 1892Chapter 4: Murderess on the Loose: The 1922 Hammer Wrath of Clara PhillipsChapter 5: Killer of Her Husband’s Secretary: The 1935 Love Triangle Ire of Etta ReismanChapter 6: Murdered by the King of Western Swing: The Beating Death of Ella Mae Cooley in 1961Chapter 7: Murder of the Horse Trainer’s Rival: The 1978 Bitter Breakup of Buddy Jacobson and the ModelChapter 8: Murder of a Star Quarterback in 2009: The Tragic Tale of Steve McNair and Sahel KazemiBonus material includes two complete and captivating historical true crime shorts, The Amityville Massacre: The DeFeo Family's Nightmare, and Missing or Murdered: The Disappearance of Agnes Tufverson; as well as excerpts from the author’s bestselling books The Sex Slave Murders: The True Story of Serial Killers Gerald & Charlene Gallego; The Dreadful Acts of Jack the Ripper and Other True Tales of Serial Murder and Prostitutes; Murder During the Chicago World's Fair: The Killing of Little Emma Werner; and Murders in the United States: Crimes, Killers, and Victims of the Twentieth Century.

  • Donnie Brasco: Unfinished Business: Shocking Declassified Details from the FBI s Greatest Undercover Operation and a Bloody Timeline of

    Donnie Brasco: Unfinished Business: Shocking Declassified Details from the FBI’s Greatest Undercover Operation and a Bloody Timeline of
    Joe Pistone

    When FBI Special Agent Joe Pistone began a “six-month” operation infiltrating New York's Bonanno crime family in 1975, he had no idea what was about to happen. Posing as jewel thief “Donnie Brasco,” Pistone spent the next six years undercover in the Family, witnessing-and sometimes participating in-the Mafia's gruesome activities while gathering enough evidence to send over 200 gangsters to jail. Pistone told his story in the 1988 book Donnie Brasco: My Undercover Life in the Mafia-a New York Times bestseller and later a feature film starring Johnny Depp and Al Pacino. But because of pending trials at the time of publication, many details of the alleged crimes were held back. Now, in Donnie Brasco: Unfinished Business, Pistone for the first time reveals with great detail the horrific deeds of wiseguys Tony Mirra, “Lefty” Ruggiero, Sonny Black, and the rest of the cold-blooded Bonanno crew. Pistone puts the operation into historical perspective, detailing the timeline of Mafia trials that crippled the New York City crime family over the past 25 years. He also recounts his experiences after the operation, his time on the Hollywood set with Pacino and Depp, and other undercover operations through present-day. A tense, thrilling account of the greatest infiltration ever by a federal agent into the most brutal gang of killers in the world, Donnie Brasco: Unfinished Business is the final chapter in the story of a real American hero.

  • Once a King, Always a King: The Unmaking of a Latin King

    Once a King, Always a King: The Unmaking of a Latin King
    Reymundo Sanchez

    This riveting sequel to "My Bloody Life" traces Reymundo Sanchez's struggle to create a "normal" life outside the Latin Kings, one of the nation's most notorious street gangs, and to move beyond his past. Sanchez illustrates how the Latin King motto "once a king, always a king" rings true and details the difficulty and danger of leaving that life behind. Filled with heart-pounding scenes of his backslide into drugs, sex, and violence, Once a King, Always a King recounts how Sanchez wound up behind bars and provides an engrossing firsthand account of how the Latin Kings are run from inside the prison system. Harrowing testaments to Sanchez's determination to rebuild his life include his efforts to separate his family from gang life and his struggle to adapt to marriage and the corporate world. Despite temptations, nightmares, regressions into violence, and his own internal demons, Sanchez makes an uneasy peace with his new life. This raw, powerful, and brutally honest memoir traces the transformation of an accomplished gangbanger into a responsible citizen.

  • In the Best of Families: The Anatomy of a True Tragedy

    In the Best of Families: The Anatomy of a True Tragedy
    Dennis McDougal

    Ronald Reagan's personal attorney Roy Miller was a California success story. The Miller family's friends could never have imagined the horror and darkness that were to follow as Michael, the Miller's youngest son killed and raped his own mother.

  • The Baby Thief: The Untold Story of Georgia Tann, the Baby Seller Who Corrupted Adoption

    The Baby Thief: The Untold Story of Georgia Tann, the Baby Seller Who Corrupted Adoption
    Barbara Bisantz Raymond

    The shocking story of Geogia Tann, a notorious dealer in black-market babies between 1920 and 1950 whose actions ultimately popularized–and corrupted–adoption as we know it today. For almost three decades, renowned baby-seller Georgia Tann ran a children's home in Memphis, Tennessee–selling her charges to wealthy clients nationwide, Joan Crawford among them. Part social history, part detective story, part expose, The Baby Thief is a riveting investigative narrative that explores themes that continue to reverberate today.

  • Wiseguy: The 25th Anniversary Edition

    Wiseguy: The 25th Anniversary Edition
    Nicholas Pileggi

    Nicholas Pileggi’s vivid, unvarnished, journalistic chronicle of the life of Henry Hill—the working-class Brooklyn kid who knew from age twelve that “to be a wiseguy was to own the world,” who grew up to live the highs and lows of the mafia gangster’s life—has been hailed as “the best book ever written on organized crime” (Cosmopolitan).This is the true-crime bestseller that was the basis for Martin Scorsese’s film masterpiece GoodFellas, which brought to life the violence, the excess, the families, the wives and girlfriends, the drugs, the payoffs, the paybacks, the jail time, and the Feds…with Henry Hill’s crackling narration drawn straight out of Wiseguy and overseeing all the unforgettable action. “Nonstop…absolutely engrossing” (The New York Times Book Review). Read it and experience the secret life inside the mob—from one who’s lived it.

  • Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders

    Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders
    Greg King

    The first comprehensive biography of Sharon Tate: Hollywood star, wife of Roman Polanski, victim of Charles Manson, and symbol of the death of the 1960s. It began as a home invasion by the “Manson family” in the early hours of August 9, 1969. It ended in a killing spree that left seven people dead: actress Sharon Tate, writer Voyteck Frykowski, coffee heiress Abigail Folger, hair stylist Jay Sebring, student Steven Parent, and supermarket owner Leno LaBianca and his wife, Rosemary. The shock waves of these crimes still reverberate today. They have also, over time, eclipsed the life of their most famous victim—a Dallas, Texas, beauty queen with Hollywood aspirations. After more than a dozen small film and television roles, Tate gained international fame with the screen adaptation of Jacqueline Susann’s Valley of the Dolls, but The Fearless Vampire Killers marked a personal turning point, as she would marry its star and director, Roman Polanski. Tate now had a new dream: to raise a family—and she was only weeks away from giving birth the night Charles Manson’s followers murdered her. Drawn from a wealth of rare material including detective reports, parole transcripts, Manson’s correspondence, and revealing new interviews with Tate’s friends and costars as well as surviving relatives of the murder victims, Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders gives readers a vital new perspective on one of the most notorious massacres of the twentieth century. The dark legacy of the cult phenomenon is still being explored in novels (Emma Cline’s The Girls) and TV shows (NBC’s Aquarius). In addition to providing the first full-fledged biography of Sharon Tate, author Greg King finally gives a voice to the families of the slain, notably Tate’s mother, Doris. Her advocacy for victims’ rights was recognized during President George H. W. Bush’s 1992 “A Thousand Points of Light” ceremony. This is the true story of a star who is being rediscovered by a new generation of fans, a woman who achieved in death the fame she yearned for in life.

  • Bandido: The Life and Times of Tiburcio Vasquez

    Bandido: The Life and Times of Tiburcio Vasquez
    John Boessenecker

    Tiburcio Vasquez is, next to Joaquin Murrieta, America's most infamous Hispanic bandit. After he was hanged as a murderer in 1875, the Chicago Tribune called him "the most noted desperado of modern times." Yet questions about him still linger. Why did he become a bandido? Why did so many Hispanics protect him and his band? Was he a common thief and heartless killer who got what he deserved, or was he a Mexican American Robin Hood who suffered at the hands of a racist government? In this engrossing biography, John Boessenecker provides definitive answers.Bandido pulls back the curtain on a life story shrouded in myth — a myth created by Vasquez himself and abetted by writers who saw a tale ripe for embellishment. Boessenecker traces his subject's life from his childhood in the seaside adobe village of Monterey, to his years as a young outlaw engaged in horse rustling and robbery. Two terms in San Quentin failed to tame Vasquez, and he instigated four bloody prison breaks that left twenty convicts dead. After his final release from prison, he led bandit raids throughout Central and Southern California. His dalliances with women were legion, and the last one led to his capture in the Hollywood Hills and his death on the gallows at the age of thirty-nine.From dusty court records, forgotten memoirs, and moldering newspaper archives, Boessenecker draws a story of violence, banditry, and retribution on the early California frontier that is as accurate as it is colorful. Enhanced by numerous photographs — many published here for the first time — Bandido also addresses important issues of racism and social justice that remain relevant to this day.

  • Mindhunter: Inside the FBI s Elite Serial Crime Unit

    Mindhunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit
    John E. Douglas

    Now a Netflix original series Discover the classic, behind-the-scenes chronicle of John E. Douglas’ twenty-five-year career in the FBI Investigative Support Unit, where he used psychological profiling to delve into the minds of the country’s most notorious serial killers and criminals.In chilling detail, the legendary Mindhunter takes us behind the scenes of some of his most gruesome, fascinating, and challenging cases—and into the darkest recesses of our worst nightmares. During his twenty-five year career with the Investigative Support Unit, Special Agent John Douglas became a legendary figure in law enforcement, pursuing some of the most notorious and sadistic serial killers of our time: the man who hunted prostitutes for sport in the woods of Alaska, the Atlanta child murderer, and Seattle's Green River killer, the case that nearly cost Douglas his life. As the model for Jack Crawford in The Silence of the Lambs, Douglas has confronted, interviewed, and studied scores of serial killers and assassins, including Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, and Ed Gein, who dressed himself in his victims' peeled skin. Using his uncanny ability to become both predator and prey, Douglas examines each crime scene, reliving both the killer's and the victim's actions in his mind, creating their profiles, describing their habits, and predicting their next moves.

  • The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer

    The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer
    Philip Carlo

    Philip Carlo's The Ice Man spent over six weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List. Top Mob Hitman. Devoted Family Man. Doting Father. For thirty years, Richard "The Iceman" Kuklinski led a shocking double life, becoming the most notorious professional assassin in American history while happily hosting neighborhood barbecues in suburban New Jersey. Richard Kuklinski was Sammy the Bull Gravano's partner in the killing of Paul Castellano, then head of the Gambino crime family, at Sparks Steakhouse. Mob boss John Gotti hired him to torture and kill the neighbor who accidentally ran over his child. For an additional price, Kuklinski would make his victims suffer; he conducted this sadistic business with coldhearted intensity and shocking efficiency, never disappointing his customers. By his own estimate, he killed over two hundred men, taking enormous pride in his variety and ferocity of technique.This trail of murder lasted over thirty years and took Kuklinski all over America and to the far corners of the earth, Brazil, Africa, and Europe. Along the way, he married, had three children, and put them through Catholic school. His daughter's medical condition meant regular stays in children's hospitals, where Kuklinski was remembered, not as a gangster, but as an affectionate father, extremely kind to children. Each Christmas found the Kuklinski home festooned in colorful lights; each summer was a succession of block parties. His family never suspected a thing.Richard Kuklinski is now the subject of the major motion picture titled "The Iceman"(2013), starring James Franco, Winona Ryder, Ray Liotta, and Chris Evans.

  • Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson

    Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson
    Jeff Guinn

    The New York Times bestselling, authoritative account of the life of Charles Manson, filled with surprising new information and previously unpublished photographs: “A riveting, almost Dickensian narrative…four stars” (People).More than forty years ago Charles Manson and his mostly female commune killed nine people, among them the pregnant actress Sharon Tate. It was the culmination of a criminal career that author Jeff Guinn traces back to Manson’s childhood. Guinn interviewed Manson’s sister and cousin, neither of whom had ever previously cooperated with an author. Childhood friends, cellmates, and even some members of the Manson family have provided new information about Manson’s life. Guinn has made discoveries about the night of the Tate murders, answering unresolved questions, such as why one person near the scene of the crime was spared. Manson puts the killer in the context of the turbulent late sixties, an era of race riots and street protests when authority in all its forms was under siege. Guinn shows us how Manson created and refined his message to fit the times, persuading confused young women (and a few men) that he had the solutions to their problems. At the same time he used them to pursue his long-standing musical ambitions. His frustrated ambitions, combined with his bizarre race-war obsession, would have lethal consequences. Guinn’s book is a “tour de force of a biography…Manson stands as a definitive work: important for students of criminology, human behavior, popular culture, music, psychopathology, and sociopathology…and compulsively readable” (Ann Rule, The New York Times Book Review).

  • Cartel Wives: A True Story of Deadly Decisions, Steadfast Love, and Bringing Down El Chapo

    Cartel Wives: A True Story of Deadly Decisions, Steadfast Love, and Bringing Down El Chapo
    Mia Flores

    An astonishing, revelatory, and redemptive memoir from two women who escaped the international drug trade, with never-before-revealed details about El Chapo, the Sinaloa Cartel, and the dangerous world of illicit drugs.Olivia and Mia Flores are married to the highest level drug traffickers ever to become US informants. Their husbands worked with–and then brought down–El Chapo, as well as dozens of high-level members of the Mexican cartels. They had everything money could buy: luxury cars, huge houses, and expensive jewelry–but they chose to give it all up when they cooperated with the US government. They knew that life was about more than wealth; it was about love, family, and doing what's right. CARTEL WIVES is a love story, a "Married to the Mob" story, an insider's look into the terrifying but high-flying empire of the new world of drugs, and, finally, the story of a major DEA and FBI operation.

  • Murder Chronicles: A Collection of Chilling True Crime Tales

    Murder Chronicles: A Collection of Chilling True Crime Tales
    R. Barri Flowers

    From award winning criminologist R. Barri Flowers and the bestselling author of The Sex Slave Murders 1 & 2, Serial Killer Couples, and Murder of the Banker’s Daughter comes Murder Chronicles, a gripping collection of true crime tales.The collection includes ten compelling stories of murder, madness, and mayhem that span more than a century of American history and homicidal criminality that will keep you reading from beginning to end.1. Murder at the Pencil Factory: The Killing of Mary Phagan – 100 Years Later, the brutal murder of a young girl turn locals into vigilantes out for justice.2. The "Gold Special" Train Robbery: Deadly Crimes of the D'Autremont Brothers, a daring train robbery by a trio of brother bandits goes wrong and turns deadly.3. Murder of the Banker's Daughter: The Killing of Marion Parker, a brazen abduction of a schoolgirl turns tragic as authorities hunt for the killer.4. Mass Murder in the Sky: The Bombing of Flight 629, a mother’s Christmas gift turns deadly, exploding in an airliner above Denver, with a domestic terrorist on loose.5. The Amityville Massacre: The DeFeo Family's Nightmare, family is shot to death by a killer too close to home. Inspiration for The Amityville Horror movies.6. The Pickaxe Killers: Karla Faye Tucker & Daniel Garrett, pair of killers seek revenge and pay the price themselves.7. Murderous Tandem: James Gregory Marlow and Cynthia Coffman, two killers pick off victims one by one till brought to justice.8. Murder in Mission Hill: The Disturbing Tale of Carol Stuart & Charles Stuart, a wife’s murder draws national attention with an unlikely killer on the loose.9. Murder in Bellevue: The Killing of Alan and Diane Johnson, in a case of parricide, a teenage girl’s obsession turns deadly.10. Murder of a Star Quarterback: The Tragic Tale of Steve McNair & Sahel Kazemi, adultery, jealousy, fame, and fortune turn deadly for a well-known ex-football great.Bonus material includes excerpts from bestselling true crime books by R. Barri Flowers, The Sex Slave Murders and Serial Killer Couples.Follow the author in Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Goodreads, LibraryThing, YouTube, Flickr, Wikipedia, and www.rbarriflowers.net and www.rbarriflowers.com.

  • Confessions of a Cartel Hit Man

    Confessions of a Cartel Hit Man
    Martin Corona

    The true confession of an assassin, a sicario, who rose through the ranks of the Southern California gang world to become a respected leader in an elite, cruelly efficient crew of hit men for Mexico's "most vicious drug cartel," and eventually found a way out and an (almost) normal life. Martin Corona, a US citizen, fell into the outlaw life at twelve and worked for a crew run by the Arellano brothers, founders of the the Tijuana drug cartel that dominated the Southern California drug trade and much bloody gang warfare for decades. Corona's crew would cross into the United States from their luxurious hideout in Mexico, kill whoever needed to be killed north of the border, and return home in the afternoon. That work continued until the arrest of Javier Arellano-Félix in 2006 in a huge coordinated DEA operation. Martin Corona played a key role in the downfall of the cartel when he turned state's evidence. He confessed to multiple murders. Special Agent of the California Department of Justice Steve Duncan, who wrote the foreword, says Martin Corona is the only former cartel hit man he knows who is truly remorseful. Martin's father was a US Marine. The family had many solid middle-class advantages, including the good fortune to be posted in Hawaii for a time during which a teenage Martin thought he might be able to turn away from the outlaw life of theft, drug dealing, gun play, and prostitution. He briefly quit drugs and held down a job, but a die had been cast. He soon returned to a gangbanging life he now deeply regrets. How does someone become evil, a murderer who can kill without hesitation? This story is an insight into how it happened to one human being and how he now lives with himself. He is no longer a killer; he has asked for forgiveness; he has made a kind of peace for himself. He wrote letters to family members of his victims. Some of them not only wrote back but came to support him at his parole hearings. It is a cautionary tale, but also one that shows that evil doesn't have to be forever.

  • Hell s Angel: The Autobiography Of Sonny Barger

    Hell’s Angel: The Autobiography Of Sonny Barger
    Sonny Barger

    Narrated by the visionary founding member, Hell's Angel provides a fascinating all-access pass to the secret world of the notorious Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club. Sonny Barger recounts the birth of the original Oakland Hell's Angels and the four turbulent decades that followed. Hell's Angel also chronicles the way the HAMC revolutionized the look of the Harley-Davidson motorcycle and built what has become a worldwide bike-riding fraternity, a beacon for freedom-seekers the world over.Dozens of photos, including many from private collections and from noted photographers, provide visual documentation to this extraordinary tale. Never simply a story about motorcycles, colorful characters, and high-speed thrills, Hell's Angel is the ultimate outlaw's tale of loyalty and betrayal, subcultures and brotherhood, and the real price of freedom. Due to copyright restrictions, this eBook may not contain all of the images available in the print edition.

  • The Search for Anne Perry: The Hidden Life of a Bestselling Crime Writer

    The Search for Anne Perry: The Hidden Life of a Bestselling Crime Writer
    Joanne Drayton

    A New York Times Best Seller!In 1994, director Peter Jackson released the movie Heavenly Creatures, based on a famous 1950s matricide committed in New Zealand by two teenage girls embroiled in an obsessive relationship. The movie launched Jackson’s international career. It also forever changed the life of Anne Perry, an award-winning, bestselling crime writer, who at the time of the movie’s release was publicly outed at Juliet Hulme, one of the murderers. A new light was now cast, not only on Anne’s life but also on her novels, which feature gruesome and violent deaths and confront dark issues, including infanticide and incest.Acclaimed literary biographer Joanne Drayton was given unparalleled access to Anne Perry, her friends, relatives, colleagues, and archives to complete this book. She intersperses the story of her life with an examination of her writing, drawing parallels between Perry’s own experiences and her characters and storylines. Anne Perry’s books deal with miscarriages of justice, family secrets exposed, punishment, redemption, and forgiveness, themes made all the more poignant in light of her past. She has sold 25 million books worldwide and published in 15 different languages, yet she will now forever be known as a murderer who became a writer of murder stories. The Search for Anne Perry is a gripping account of a life, and provides understanding of the girl Anne was, the adult she became, her compulsion to write, and her view of the world.

  • The Most Dangerous Animal of All: Searching for My Father . . . and Finding the Zodiac Killer

    The Most Dangerous Animal of All: Searching for My Father . . . and Finding the Zodiac Killer
    Gary L. Stewart

    New York Times BestsellerSoon after his birthmother contacted him for the first time at the age of thirty-nine, adoptee Gary L. Stewart decided to search for his biological father. His quest would lead him to a horrifying truth and force him to reconsider everything he thought he knew about himself and his world.Written with award-winning author and journalist Susan Mustafa, The Most Dangerous Animal of All tells the story of Stewart's decade-long hunt. While combing through government records and news reports and tracking down relatives and friends, Stewart turns up a host of clues—including forensic evidence—that conclusively identify his father as the Zodiac Killer, one of the most notorious and elusive serial murderers in history.For decades, the Zodiac Killer has captivated America's imagination. His ability to evade capture while taunting authorities made him infamous. The vicious specificity of his crimes terrified Californians before the Manson murders and after, and shocked a culture enamored with the ideals of the dawning Age of Aquarius. To this day, his ciphers have baffled detectives and amateur sleuths, and his identity remains one of the twentieth century's great unsolved mysteries.The Most Dangerous Animal of All reveals the name of the Zodiac for the very first time. Mustafa and Stewart construct a chilling psychological profile of Stewart's father: as a boy with disturbing fixations, a frustrated intellectual with pretensions to high culture, and an inappropriate suitor and then jilted lover unable to process his rage. At last, all the questions that have surrounded the case for almost fifty years are answered in this riveting narrative. The result is a singular work of true crime at its finest—a compelling, unbelievable true story told with the pacing of a page-turning novel—as well as a sensational and powerful memoir.

  • Marching Powder: A True Story of Friendship, Cocaine, and South America s Strangest Jail

    Marching Powder: A True Story of Friendship, Cocaine, and South America’s Strangest Jail
    Thomas McFadden

    Rusty Young was backpacking in South America when he heard about Thomas McFadden, a convicted English drug trafficker who ran tours inside Bolivia's notorious San Pedro prison. Intrigued, the young Australian journalist went to La Paz and joined one of Thomas's illegal tours. They formed an instant friendship and then became partners in an attempt to record Thomas's experiences in the jail. Rusty bribed the guards to allow him to stay and for the next three months he lived inside the prison, sharing a cell with Thomas and recording one of the strangest and most compelling prison stories of all time. The result is Marching Powder.This book establishes that San Pedro is not your average prison. Inmates are expected to buy their cells from real estate agents. Others run shops and restaurants. Women and children live with imprisoned family members. It is a place where corrupt politicians and drug lords live in luxury apartments, while the poorest prisoners are subjected to squalor and deprivation. Violence is a constant threat, and sections of San Pedro that echo with the sound of children by day house some of Bolivia's busiest cocaine laboratories by night. In San Pedro, cocaine–"Bolivian marching powder"–makes life bearable. Even the prison cat is addicted.Yet Marching Powder is also the tale of friendship, a place where horror is countered by humor and cruelty and compassion can inhabit the same cell. This is cutting-edge travel-writing and a fascinating account of infiltration into the South American drug culture.

  • Double Cross: The Explosive Inside Story of the Mobster Who Controlled America

    Double Cross: The Explosive Inside Story of the Mobster Who Controlled America
    Sam Giancana

    One of the most feared Chicago mobsters Sam Giancana clawed his way to the top of the Mafia hierarchy by starting as a hit man for Al Capone. He was known as one of the best vehicle escape artists, a tenacious business man, and a ruthless killer. He partied with major stars such as Frank Sinatra and Marilyn Monroe and did business with agents ranging from the CIA to the Vatican to the shah of Iran. When politician Joe Kennedy gave Giancana the chance to use mob muscle to get his son John elected, Giancana jumped at the task. But the Kennedy brothers double-crossed him, waging full-out war on organized crime throughout the United States. And Giancana went after them.Written with suspense and conviction, we learn about how the CIA asked Giancana to assassinate Fidel Castro. The book includes Giancana's testimony about the truth of his involvement in the deaths of Monroe and others, among others. Chuck Giancana, Sam's brother, contributes a unique perspective of the mobs relationship with the Bay of Pigs and many other pivotal events of the 60's and beyond. Double Cross is an eye-opening account of the interworking of the government and the mob and how this relationship has impacted American history.

  • Jim Bridger

    Jim Bridger
    J. Cecil Alter

    On March 20, 1822, the Missouri Republican published a notice addressed “to enterprising young men” in the St. Louise area. “The subscriber,” it said “wishes to engage one hundred young men to ascend the Missouri River to its source, there to be employed for one, two, or three years. For particulars enquire of Major Andrew Henry… or of the subscriber near St. Louise.” The “subscriber” was General William H. Ashley, and among the “enterprising young men” who embarked with Major Henry less than a month later was eighteen-year-old James Bridger, former blacksmith’s apprentice. So began the Ashley-Henry fur empire and the long, colorful career of Jim Bridger. In the years that followed, Jim Bridger became a master mountain man, an expert trapper, and a guide without equal. He came to know the Rocky Mountain region and its inhabitants as a farmer knows his fields and flocks. Indeed, J. Cecil Alter tells us, “he was among the first white men to use the Indian trail over South Pass; he was first to taste the waters of the Great Salt lake, first to report a two-ocean stream, foremost in describing the Yellowstone Park phenomena, and the only man to run the Big Horn River rapid on a raft; and he originally selected the Crow Creek-Sherman-Dale Creek route the Laramie Mountains and Bridger’s Pass over the Continental Divide, which were adopted by the Union pacific Railroad.” Such knowledge, together with extraordinary skill and uncanny luck, preserved Jim Bridger in a country where nearly half of his mountain companions met violent death. It also gave rise to a brood of impossible tales about Old Gabe and his adventures-tales which he himself may unwittingly have helped along with his droll humor. Based on Mr. Alter’s original biography of 1925 (a facsimile edition of which, with addenda, appeared in 1950) and a wealth of new facts gleaned from many years of careful research, Jim Bridger is the authentic story of the Old Scout’s life. Only those events in which Bridger took part are included; improbable and uncorroborated stories, however interesting, have been omitted.

  • The Butcher: Anatomy of a Mafia Psychopath

    The Butcher: Anatomy of a Mafia Psychopath
    Philip Carlo

    The New York Times bestselling author of Gaspipe and The Ice Man, Phillip Carlo returns with a hair-raising portrait of arguably the most depraved psychopath in the history of the Mafia, mob enforcer Tommy “Karate” Pitera. The Butcher tells the riveting true story of a hit man who loved his work too much—a maniac believed responsible for more than sixty remarkably brutal murders—whom even organized crime’s most cold-blooded assassins feared. Another riveting journey into the darkest corners of the underworld, Carlo’s The Butcher is destined to be a true crime classic alongside Wiseguys by Nicholas Pileggi and Underboss by Peter Maas.

  • The Black Hand: The Story of Rene Boxer Enriquez and His Life in the Mexican Mafia

    The Black Hand: The Story of Rene “Boxer” Enriquez and His Life in the Mexican Mafia
    Chris Blatchford

    THE BLACK HAND is the true story of Rene Enriquez, aka "Boxer," and his rise in a secret criminal organization, a new Mafia, that already has a grip on all organized crime in California and soon all of the United States. This Mafia is using a base army of an estimated 60,000 heavily armed, loyal Latino gang members, called Surenos, driven by fear and illicit profits. They are the most dangerous gang in American history and they wave the flag of the Black Hand. Mafioso Enriquez gives an insider′s view of how he devoted his life to the cause–the Mexican Mafia, La Familia Mexicana, also known as La Eme–only to find betrayal and disillusionment at the end of a bloody trail of violence that he followed for two decades. And now, award-winning investigative journalist Chris Blatchford, with the unprecedented cooperation of Rene Enriquez, reveals the inner workings, secret meetings, and elaborate murder plots that make up the daily routine of the Mafia brothers. It is an intense, never-before-told story of a man who devoted his life to a bloody cause only to find betrayal and disillusionment. Based on years of research and investigation, Chris Blatchford has delivered a historic narrative of a nefarious organization that will go down as a classic in mob literature.

  • The Cook Up: A Crack Rock Memoir

    The Cook Up: A Crack Rock Memoir
    D. Watkins

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERNEW YORK TIMES EDITORS' CHOICEO MAGAZINE BEST SUMMER BOOKTold by the man who lived it, The Cook Up is a riveting look inside the Baltimore drug trade as portrayed in the hit HBO series, The Wire. The smartest kid on his block in East Baltimore, D. was certain he would escape the life of drugs, decadence, and violence that had surrounded him since birth. But when his brother Devin is shot-only days after D. receives notice that he's been accepted into Georgetown University-the plans for his life are exploded, and he takes up the mantel of his brother's crack empire. D. succeeds in cultivating the family business, but when he meets a woman unlike any he's known before, his priorities are once more put into question. Equally terrifying and hilarious, inspiring and heartbreaking, D.'s story offers a rare glimpse into the mentality of a person who has escaped many hells.

  • Once a Cop: The Street, the Law, Two Worlds, One Man

    Once a Cop: The Street, the Law, Two Worlds, One Man
    Corey Pegues

    New York City Book Awards Hornblower Award Winner African American Literary Award Winner for Best Biography/Memoir As a youth, Corey Pegues was a criminal. As an adult, he became a high-ranking police officer.In this fascinating look at life on both sides of the law, Corey Pegues opens up about why he joined the New York Police Department after years as a drug dealer. Pegues speaks honestly about the poor choices he made while coming of age in New York City during the height of the crack epidemic. He’s equally candid about why he turned his life around, and takes you inside the NYPD, where he becomes a decorated officer despite bureaucratic pitfalls and discriminatory practices. Written with the voice and panache of someone who knows the streets, Once a Cop is a credible and informative look at the forces that lead some into a life of crime and what it means to make good on a second chance.

  • The Last Madam: A Life in the New Orleans Underworld

    The Last Madam: A Life in the New Orleans Underworld
    Chris Wiltz

    The “raunchy, hilarious, and thrilling” true story of the incomparable Norma Wallace, proprietor of a notorious 1920s New Orleans brothel (NPR). Norma Wallace grew up fast. In 1916, at fifteen years old, she went to work as a streetwalker in New Orleans’ French Quarter. By the 1920s, she was a “landlady”—or, more precisely, the madam of what became one of the city’s most lavish brothels. It was frequented by politicians, movie stars, gangsters, and even the notoriously corrupt police force. But Wallace acquired more than just repeat customers. There were friends, lovers . . . and also enemies. Wallace’s romantic interests ran the gamut from a bootlegger who shot her during a fight to a famed bandleader to the boy next door, thirty-nine years her junior, who became her fifth husband. She knew all of the Crescent City’s dirty little secrets, and used them to protect her own interests—she never got so much as a traffic ticket, until the early 1960s, when District Attorney Jim Garrison decided to clean up vice and corruption. After a jail stay, Wallace went legitimate as successfully as she had gone criminal, with a lucrative restaurant business—but it was love that would undo her in the end. The Last Madam combines original research with Wallace’s personal memoirs, bringing to life an era in New Orleans history rife with charm and decadence, resurrecting “a secret world, like those uncovered by Luc Sante and James Ellroy” (Publishers Weekly). It reveals the colorful, unforgettable woman who reigned as an underworld queen and “capture[s] perfectly the essential, earthy complexity of the most fascinating city on this continent” (Robert Olen Butler).

  • Corruption Officer: From Jail Guard to Perpetrator Inside Rikers Island

    Corruption Officer: From Jail Guard to Perpetrator Inside Rikers Island
    Gary L. Heyward

    In this shocking memoir from a former corrections officer, Gary Heyward shares an eye-opening, gritty, and devastating account of his descent into criminal life, smuggling contraband inside the infamous Rikers Island jails.Gary Heyward’s life changed forever when he received a letter from the New York City Department of Corrections announcing he was accepted into the academy for new recruits. For the Harlem-born ex-Marine, being an officer of the law was the ticket he’d been waiting for to move up from a low-wage security job and out of the Polo Ground Projects in New York City—and take his mother with him. Heyward was warned of the temptations he’d encounter as a new officer, but when faced with financial hardship, he suddenly found himself unable to resist the income generated from selling contraband to inmates. In his distinctive voice, Heyward takes you on a journey inside the walls of Rikers Island, showing how he teamed up with various inmates and other officers to develop a system that allowed him to profit from selling drugs inside the jail. Corruption Officer is a jarring exposé of a man having lived on both sides of the law, a rare insider’s look at a corrupt city jail, and a testament to the lengths we’ll go when our backs are against the wall.

  • Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake

    Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake
    Frank W. Abagnale

    The uproarious, bestselling true story of the world's most sought-after con man, immortalized by Leonardo DiCaprio in DreamWorks' feature film of the same name.Frank W. Abagnale, alias Frank Williams, Robert Conrad, Frank Adams, and Robert Monjo, was one of the most daring con men, forgers, imposters, and escape artists in history. In his brief but notorious criminal career, Abagnale donned a pilot's uniform and copiloted a Pan Am jet, masqueraded as the supervising resident of a hospital, practiced law without a license, passed himself off as a college sociology professor, and cashed over $2.5 million in forged checks, all before he was twenty-one. Known by the police of twenty-six foreign countries and all fifty states as "The Skywayman," Abagnale lived a sumptuous life on the lam–until the law caught up with him. Now recognized as the nation's leading authority on financial foul play, Abagnale is a charming rogue whose hilarious, stranger-than-fiction international escapades, and ingenious escapes-including one from an airplane-make Catch Me If You Can an irresistible tale of deceit.

  • Wicked Lexington, Kentucky

    Wicked Lexington, Kentucky
    Fiona Young-Brown

    Despite its illustrious beginnings as the "Athens of the west," Lexington has always had a darker side lurking just beneath its glossy sheen. It didn't take long for the first intellectual hub west of the Alleghenies to quickly morph into a city with the same scandalous inclinations as neighboring Louisville and Cincinnati. Filled with tales of infamous duels, cheating congressmen, and much more, Wicked Lexington offers the first collection the city's rowdy and ruckus history. From Belle Brezing's infamous brothel of the late 1800s, frequented by some of the city's most prominent businessmen, and once pardoned by the governor, to historic sports scandals of the 1900s, local author Fiona Young-Brown tracks Lexington's penchant for misdeeds from founding to modern times.

  • Out of Orange: A Memoir

    Out of Orange: A Memoir
    Cleary Wolters

    The real-life Alex Vause from the critically acclaimed, top-rated Netflix show Orange Is the New Black tells her story in her own words for the first time—a powerful, surprising memoir about crime and punishment, friendship and marriage, and a life caught in the ruinous drug trade and beyond.Fans nationwide have fallen in love with Orange Is the New Black, the critically acclaimed and wildly popular Netflix show based on Piper Kerman’s sensational #1 New York Times bestseller. Now, Catherine Cleary Wolters—the inspiration for Alex Vause, Piper’s ex-girlfriend, friend, and sometimes-romantic partner on the show—tells her true story, offering details and insights that fill in the blanks, set the record straight, and answer common fan questions.An insightful, frustrating, heartbreaking, and uplifting analysis of crime and punishment in our times, Out of Orange is an intimate look at international drug crime—a seemingly glamorous lifestyle that dazzles unsuspecting young women and eventually leads them to the seedy world of prison. Told by a woman originally thrust into the spotlight without her permission—Wolters learned about Piper’s memoir in the media—Out of Orange chronicles Wolter’s time in the drug trade, her incarceration, her friendships and acquaintances with odd cellmates, her two marriages, and her complicated relationship with Piper. But Wolters is not solely defined by her past; she also reflects on her life and the person she is today.Filled with colorful characters, fascinating tales, painful sobering lessons, and hard-earned wisdom, Out of Orange is sure to be provocative, entertaining, and ultimately inspiring.

  • American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road

    American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road
    Nick Bilton

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER. The unbelievable true story of the man who built a billion-dollar online drug empire from his bedroom—and almost got away with it In 2011, a twenty-six-year-old libertarian programmer named Ross Ulbricht launched the ultimate free market: the Silk Road, a clandestine Web site hosted on the Dark Web where anyone could trade anything—drugs, hacking software, forged passports, counterfeit cash, poisons—free of the government’s watchful eye. It wasn’t long before the media got wind of the new Web site where anyone—not just teenagers and weed dealers but terrorists and black hat hackers—could buy and sell contraband detection-free. Spurred by a public outcry, the federal government launched an epic two-year manhunt for the site’s elusive proprietor, with no leads, no witnesses, and no clear jurisdiction. All the investigators knew was that whoever was running the site called himself the Dread Pirate Roberts. The Silk Road quickly ballooned into $1.2 billion enterprise, and Ross embraced his new role as kingpin. He enlisted a loyal crew of allies in high and low places, all as addicted to the danger and thrill of running an illegal marketplace as their customers were to the heroin they sold. Through his network he got wind of the target on his back and took drastic steps to protect himself—including ordering a hit on a former employee. As Ross made plans to disappear forever, the Feds raced against the clock to catch a man they weren’t sure even existed, searching for a needle in the haystack of the global Internet. Drawing on exclusive access to key players and two billion digital words and images Ross left behind, Vanity Fair correspondent and New York Times bestselling author Nick Bilton offers a tale filled with twists and turns, lucky breaks and unbelievable close calls. It’s a story of the boy next door’s ambition gone criminal, spurred on by the clash between the new world of libertarian-leaning, anonymous, decentralized Web advocates and the old world of government control, order, and the rule of law. Filled with unforgettable characters and capped by an astonishing climax, American Kingpin might be dismissed as too outrageous for fiction. But it’s all too real.

  • All-American Murder: The Rise and Fall of Aaron Hernandez, the Superstar Whose Life Ended on Murderers Row

    All-American Murder: The Rise and Fall of Aaron Hernandez, the Superstar Whose Life Ended on Murderers’ Row
    James Patterson

    Discover the shocking #1 New York Times bestseller: the true story of a young NFL player's first-degree murder conviction and untimely death — and his journey from the Patriots to prison.Aaron Hernandez was a college All-American who became the youngest player in the NFL and later reached the Super Bowl. His every move as a tight end with the New England Patriots played out the headlines, yet he led a secret life — one that ended in a maximum-security prison. What drove him to go so wrong, so fast?Between the summers of 2012 and 2013, not long after Hernandez made his first Pro Bowl, he was linked to a series of violent incidents culminating in the death of Odin Lloyd, a semi-pro football player who dated the sister of Hernandez's fiancée, Shayanna Jenkins.All-American Murder is the first book to investigate Aaron Hernandez's first-degree murder conviction and the mystery of his own shocking and untimely death.

  • The Boston Mob Guide: Hit Men, Hoodlums & Hideouts

    The Boston Mob Guide: Hit Men, Hoodlums & Hideouts
    Beverly Ford

    The capture of notorious mobster James "Whitey" Bulger closed an infamous chapter in Boston history. Yet the city's criminal underworld has a long and bloody rap sheet that stretches back to the beginning of the twentieth century. Boston journalists Beverly Ford and Stephanie Schorow reveal the underbelly of Boston through profiles of ruthless gangsters like Charles "King" Solomon, the Angiulo brothers, Joseph "The Animal" Barboza, Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi and many more. Ford and Schorow navigate the backrooms and seedy hangouts where deadly hits and lucrative heists were hatched to guide readers to the real story of Boston's gangster past.

  • This Is for the Mara Salvatrucha: Inside the MS-13, America s Most Violent Gang

    This Is for the Mara Salvatrucha: Inside the MS-13, America’s Most Violent Gang
    Samuel Logan

    Like any American teenager, Brenda Paz spent much of her time with her friends. They would go to parties, listen to music, and show off their cars late into the night. But Brenda and her friends belonged to the Mara Salvatrucha–the MS-13–the most violent gang in America, and in addition to enjoying the things that all teenagers do, her friends were thieves, drug dealers, human traffickers, and murderers. A street gang that began in Los Angeles in the 1980s, the Mara Salvatrucha has spread across the United States and Central America with startling speed, boasting tens of thousands of members. They deal ruthlessly with competing gangs and any members who display disloyalty, often leaving a trail of dismembered corpses in their wake. They are poised to surpass the Mafia as the country's most organized criminal network. And by operating within the insular Central American immigrant communities, the Mara Salvatrucha has been able to easily elude law enforcement. All that changed when Brenda Paz turned informant for the FBI, exposing the incredible scope of the gang's operations. But Brenda's cooperation with the FBI was only the beginning. What followed is an extraordinary story of strength, intelligence, and incredible courage. This Is for the Mara Salvatrucha takes us into a dark and violent world that few people have seen, but is closer than you think.

  • Pablo Escobar: My Father

    Pablo Escobar: My Father
    Juan Pablo Escobar

    THE POPULAR SERIES NARCOS CAPTURES ONLY HALF THE TRUTH. HERE, AT LAST, IS THE FULL STORY.THE INTERNATIONAL BEST SELLER!Until now, we believed that everything had been said about the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, the most infamous drug kingpin of all time, but these versions have always been told from the outside, never from the intimacy of his own home.More than two decades after the full-fledged manhunt finally caught up with the king of cocaine, Juan Pablo Escobar travels to the past to reveal an unabridged version of his father—a man capable of committing the most extreme acts of cruelty while simultaneously professing infinite love for his family.This is not the story of a child seeking redemption for his father, but a shocking look at the consequences of violence and the overwhelming need for peace and forgiveness.

  • The Mastermind: Drugs. Empire. Murder. Betrayal.

    The Mastermind: Drugs. Empire. Murder. Betrayal.
    Evan Ratliff

    The incredible true story of the decade-long quest to bring down Paul Le Roux—the creator of a frighteningly powerful Internet-enabled cartel who merged the ruthlessness of a drug lord with the technological savvy of a Silicon Valley entrepreneur.“A tour de force of shoe-leather reporting—undertaken, amid threats and menacing, at considerable personal risk.”—Los Angeles TimesIt all started as an online prescription drug network, supplying hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of painkillers to American customers. It would not stop there. Before long, the business had turned into a sprawling multinational conglomerate engaged in almost every conceivable aspect of criminal mayhem. Yachts carrying $100 million in cocaine. Safe houses in Hong Kong filled with gold bars. Shipments of methamphetamine from North Korea. Weapons deals with Iran. Mercenary armies in Somalia. Teams of hit men in the Philippines. Encryption programs so advanced that the government could not break them. The man behind it all, pulling the strings from a laptop in Manila, was Paul Calder Le Roux—a reclusive programmer turned criminal genius who could only exist in the networked world of the twenty-first century, and the kind of self-made crime boss that American law enforcement had never imagined. For half a decade, DEA agents played a global game of cat-and-mouse with Le Roux as he left terror and chaos in his wake. Each time they came close, he would slip away. It would take relentless investigative work, and a shocking betrayal from within his organization, to catch him. And when he was finally caught, the story turned again, as Le Roux struck a deal to bring down his own organization and the people he had once employed. Award-winning investigative journalist Evan Ratliff spent four years piecing together this intricate puzzle, chasing Le Roux’s empire and his shadowy henchmen around the world, conducting hundreds of interviews and uncovering thousands of documents. The result is a riveting, unprecedented account of a crime boss built by and for the digital age.Praise for The Mastermind“The Mastermind is true crime at its most stark and vivid depiction. Evan Ratliff’s work is well done from beginning to end, paralleling his investigative work with the work of the many federal agents developing the case against LeRoux.”—San Francisco Book Review (five stars)“A wholly engrossing story that joins the worlds of El Chapo and Edward Snowden; both disturbing and memorable.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • The Shot Caller: A Latino Gangbanger’s Miraculous Escape from a Life of Violence to a New Life in Christ

    The Shot Caller: A Latino Gangbanger’s Miraculous Escape from a Life of Violence to a New Life in Christ
    Casey Diaz

    “This is a story of a tough young man who lost his way, and of a loving God who never forgot him, no matter where he was.” — Nicky Cruz, bestselling author of Run Baby Run The son of El Salvadorian immigrants, Casey Diaz was brought to Los Angeles at the age of two. An abusive, impoverished family life propelled Casey at only eleven years of age into the Rockwood Street Locos gang. Casey was willing to do anything to be number one, but years of chasing rival gang members led to a dramatic ambush and arrest by the LAPD.At just sixteen, Casey was sentenced to more than twelve years in solitary confinement in California’s toughest prison as one of the state’s most violent offenders. He thought his life was over.Yet, when a determined elderly woman paid Casey a visit, a whole new world of possibilities began to unfold. Casey scoffed as she quietly insisted God was going to use him. As the days in solitary wore on, Casey realized Someone else was calling the shots. What happened next can only be described as a miracle.Perfect for:People who believe they’re too far goneParents who want to keep their kids out of gangs – what are the warning signsSocial workers who interact with at-risk youthThose looking for a gritty, informed perspective on LA street gangs and gang culture A visceral insider’s look at the violent world of gangs and prison life, The Shot Caller is a remarkable demonstration of God’s reckless, unending grace and His desire to reach even the worst of sinners—no matter where they are.

  • The Night Stalker: The Life and Crimes of Richard Ramirez

    The Night Stalker: The Life and Crimes of Richard Ramirez
    Philip Carlo

    “I couldn’t put the book down…very scary indeed.” —Los Angeles Times The Classic Account Of One Of The World’s Most Feared Serial Killers Decades after Richard Ramirez left thirteen dead and paralyzed the city of Los Angeles, his name is still synonymous with fear, torture, and sadistic murder. Philip Carlo’s classic The Night Stalker, based on years of meticulous research and extensive interviews with Ramirez, revealed the killer and his horrifying crimes to be even more chilling than anyone could have imagined. From watching his cousin commit murder at age eleven to his nineteen death sentences to the juror who fell in love with him, the story of Ramirez is a bizarre and spellbinding descent into the very heart of human evil. Incredibly, after The Night Stalker was first published, thousands of women from all over the world contacted Carlo, begging to be put in touch with the killer. Carlo interviewed them and here presents their disturbing stories and the dark sexual desires that would drive them towards a brutal murderer. And in an exclusive death row interview, the killer himself gives his thoughts on the “Ramirez Groupies”—and what he thinks they really want. “An astonishing portrait of a killer not seen since In Cold Blood.” —New York Daily News “An exceptionally well-told true crime tale.” —Publishers Weekly16 Pages Of Shocking Photos

  • Tearing Down the Wall of Sound

    Tearing Down the Wall of Sound
    Mick Brown

    He had a number one hit at eighteen. He was a millionaire with his own record label at twenty-two. He was, according to Tom Wolfe, “the first tycoon of teen.” Phil Spector owned pop music. From the Crystals, the Ronettes (whose lead singer, Ronnie, would become his second wife), and the Righteous Brothers to the Beatles (together and singly) and finally the seventies punk icons The Ramones, Spector produced hit after hit. But then he became pop music's most famous recluse. Until one day in the spring of 2007, when his name hit the tabloids, connected to a horrible crime. In Tearing Down the Wall of Sound, Mick Brown, who was the last journalist to interview Spector before his arrest, tells the full story of the troubled musical genius.

  • Among the Thugs

    Among the Thugs
    Bill Buford

    They have names like Barmy Bernie, Daft Donald, and Steamin' Sammy. They like lager (in huge quantities), the Queen, football clubs (especially Manchester United), and themselves. Their dislike encompasses the rest of the known universe, and England's soccer thugs express it in ways that range from mere vandalism to riots that terrorize entire cities. Now Bill Buford, editor of the prestigious journal Granta, enters this alternate society and records both its savageries and its sinister allure with the social imagination of a George Orwell and the raw personal engagement of a Hunter Thompson.

  • The Girl in the Leaves

    The Girl in the Leaves
    Robert Scott

    THE STORY OF ONE OF THE MOST BIZARRE MASS MURDERS EVER RECORDED. AND THE GIRL WHO ESCAPED WITH HER LIFE. In the fall of 2010, in the all-American town of Apple Valley, Ohio, four people disappeared without a trace: Stephanie Sprang; her friend, Tina Maynard; and Tina’s two children, thirteen-year-old Sarah and eleven-year-old Kody. Investigators began scouring the area, yet despite an extensive search, no signs of the missing people were discovered. On the fourth day of the search, evidence trickled in about neighborhood “weirdo” Matthew Hoffman. A police SWAT team raided his home and found an extremely disturbing sight: every square inch of the place was filled with leaves and a terrified Sarah Maynard was bound up in the middle of it like some sort of perverted autumn tableau. But there was no trace of the others. Then came Hoffman’s confession to an unspeakable crime that went beyond murder and defied all reason. His tale of evil would make Sarah’s survival and rescue all the more astonishing—a compelling tribute to a young girl’s resilience and courage and to her fierce determination to reclaim her life in the wake of unimaginable wickedness.

  • Sleep, My Child, Forever: The Riveting True Story of a Mother Who Murdered Her Own Children

    Sleep, My Child, Forever: The Riveting True Story of a Mother Who Murdered Her Own Children
    John Coston

    The dark double life of Ellen Boehm, the mother who murdered her two sons—and nearly killed her daughter. Ellen Boehm, a single mom from St. Louis, Missouri, appeared devoted to her children. But in reality, she was unequipped for motherhood, financially strapped, and desperate. Within a year of each other, her sons, ages two and four, died mysteriously, and Boehm’s eight-year-old daughter then suffered a near-fatal mishap when a hair dryer fell into the girl’s bath. While neighbors wondered how Boehm remained so calm through it all, Det. Sgt. Joseph Burgoon of St. Louis Homicide had darker suspicions. Burgoon soon unraveled a labyrinth of deception, greed, and obsession that revealed a cold-blooded killer whose get-rich-quick scheme came at the cost of her children’s lives. Boehm had taken out insurance policies on her children with six different companies totaling nearly $100,000. Using police reports, case documents, and photos, journalist John Coston recreates the events that led to one mother’s unspeakable acts of filicide—and a cop’s relentless pursuit of the truth.

  • Boardwalk Gangster: The Real Lucky Luciano

    Boardwalk Gangster: The Real Lucky Luciano
    Tim Newark

    For the first twenty-five years of his criminal career, Charles "Lucky" Luciano was a vicious mobster who rose to become the multimillionaire king of the New York underworld. For the next twenty-five years of his life, Luciano was a legend—but a fake master criminal without real power, his evil reputation manipulated and maintained by the government agents who had put him behind bars. Drawing on secret government documents from archives in the United States and Europe, this myth-busting biography tells the real story from Luciano's early days as a top hit man for the Mob to his exploits running sex and narcotics empires. His criminal career abruptly ended with conviction and imprisonment, but his reputation was only enhanced by rumors that he was winning World War II for the Allies in Sicily and the Mediterranean. Now, for the first time, author Tim Newark exposes the truth about what Luciano really did do to help the Allies in the war. With his expulsion from the United States after the war ended, Luciano returned to Italy. He was reputed to have overseen a massive transatlantic narcotics network and became the arch-villain for international law enforcement agencies. But Newark reveals how Luciano really spent his twilight years. Lucky Luciano: The Real and the Fake Gangster turns accepted Mafia history on its head with an extraordinary story that has never been told before.

  • Bound by Honor: A Mafioso s Story

    Bound by Honor: A Mafioso’s Story
    Bill Bonanno

    No one can tell the true story of the Mafia in America better than Bill Bonanno. He was there. He lived it. Bill Bonanno was born into a world of respect, tradition, and honor. The son of legendary mafioso Joe Bonanno, Bill was a "made" member of the Mafia by the time he was in his early twenties. He was rumored to be the model for The Godfather's Michael Corleone and was the subject of Gay Talese's best-selling Honor Thy Father.Now retired, Bill is finally ready to give an eyewitness account of his life as a high-ranking captain in the Bonanno crime family, one of America's most powerful Mafia syndicates. He takes you inside the mob at its peak, when New York's Five Families-Bonanno, Gambino, Colombo, Lucchese, and Genovese-not only dominated local businesses, but also controlled national politics. For the first time, Bill Bonanno discloses the machinations behind his marriage to Rosalie Profaci (niece of the powerful don Joe Profaci), and even that cemented the alliance between the two Families with all the pomp and circumstance of a royal wedding. From the truth about the mysterious disappearance of his father to a startling disclosure about he mob's participation in the Kennedy assassination, Bill Bonanno lays bare the inner workings of his chaotic, violent, and surprisingly human world with unparalleled detail and insight. Bound By Honor not only recounts Bill Bonanno's tumultuous life, but also is an engrossing chronicle of organized crime. Bonanno's story provides a remarkable glimpse into all of the intriguing personalities of the underworld of yesterday to today, from Bugsy Siegel to John Gotti.This book is a must for readers of Mario Puzo, Gay Talese, Nicholas Pileggi, and others who have written abut the Mafia, but who have never been in the eye of the storm in quite the same way as Bill Bonanno in Bound By Honor.

  • Blood Highway

    Blood Highway
    Sheila Johnson

    Dead WrongOn January 23, 2000, already battered by an ice storm, the rural Alabama resort town of Mentone was about to be struck by an even more terrifying freak catastrophe. Hurtling down the highway in a Lincoln Town Car was Hayward Bissell, a 400-pound madman on a murder rampage. Ramming the pickup truck of Don and Rhea Pirch, Bissell lured Don Pirch on to the road, running him down with his car.Dead ReckoningBissell next targeted the home of James and Sue Pumphrey. After stabbing James Pumphrey in the stomach, Bissell was thwarted by two family dogs, who gave their lives to protect their owners. Their sacrifice bought Pumphrey enough time to get a gun and scare off Bissell–who didn't know the weapon was actually inoperable.Dead EndWhen Bissell was finally stopped, police discovered that he wasn't alone. Occupying the passenger seat beside him was the mutilated, partially dismembered body of his pregnant girlfriend, Patricia Ann Booher.In February 2002, Bissell pled "guilty but insane" and was sent to prison for life. Was he really crazy? Or was he crazy like a fox, turning it on and off to try to beat a death sentence for Booher's murder. . .Includes 16 Pages Of Shocking Photos

  • Columbine

    Columbine
    Dave Cullen

    A masterpiece of reportage, this is the definitive account of the Columbine massacre, its aftermath, and its significance, from the acclaimed journalist who followed the story from the outset."The tragedies keep coming. As we reel from the latest horror . . ."So begins a new epilogue, illustrating how Columbine became the template for nearly two decades of "spectacle murders." It is a false script, seized upon by a generation of new killers. In the wake of Parkland, Charleston, Newtown, Aurora, and Virginia Tech, the imperative to understand the crime that sparked this plague grows more urgent every year.What really happened April 20, 1999? The horror of Columbine left an indelible stamp on the American psyche, but most of what we "know" is wrong. It wasn't about jocks, goths, or the Trench Coat Mafia. Dave Cullen was one of the first reporters on scene, and spent ten years on this book — widely recognized as the definitive account. With a keen investigative eye and psychological acumen, Cullen draws on mountains of evidence, insights from the world's leading forensic psychologists, and the killers' own words and drawings — several reproduced in a new appendix for the paperback. In this New York Times bestselling work, Cullen paints raw portraits of two polar opposite killers, who stand in stark contrast against the flashes of resilience and redemption among the survivors of the Columbine massacre.*Includes reading group guide*

  • Cruel Death

    Cruel Death
    M. William Phelps

    "Phelps is one of America's finest true-crime writers." –Vincent Bugliosi "Phelps is the Harlan Coben of real-life thrillers." –Allison BrennanIt was Memorial Day weekend, the start of the summer season. Thousands headed to Ocean City, Maryland, to enjoy its scenic beaches, lively boardwalk, and trendy nightclubs. Among the bright-spirited vacationers was a couple with a much darker idea of fun. Erica Sifrit, a former honor student, was packing a gun in her Coach bag. Her husband, B.J., an ex-Navy SEAL, was trained in violence. What started as a chance encounter with another couple ended with two dismembered victims buried in a Delaware landfill. M. William Phelps updates this modern-day "Bonnie and Clyde" saga to create a haunting account of money, madness, sex, and murder. . . Praise for M. William Phelps"Phelps's writing reads like a mystery novel." –Suspense Magazine"One of our most engaging crime journalists." –Katherine RamslandIncludes 16 Pages Of Dramatic Photos

  • Hunting Charles Manson: The Quest for Justice in the Days of Helter Skelter

    Hunting Charles Manson: The Quest for Justice in the Days of Helter Skelter
    Lis Wiehl

    "Hunting Charles Manson the best true crime book you will ever read….Lock your doors, keep the night lights on, and read this book." – Linda Fairstein, New York Times bestselling crime novelistIn the late summer of 1969, the nation was transfixed by a series of gruesome murders in the hills of Los Angeles. Newspapers and television programs detailed the brutal slayings of a beautiful actress–twenty six years old and eight months pregnant with her first child–as well as a hair stylist, an heiress, a businessman, and other victims. The City of Angels was plunged into a nightmare of fear and dread. In the weeks and months that followed, law enforcement faced intense pressure to solve crimes that seemed to have no connection.Finally, after months of dead-ends, false leads, and near-misses, Charles Manson and members of his "family" were arrested. The bewildering trials that followed once again captured the nation and forever secured Manson as a byword for the evil that men do.Drawing upon deep archival research and exclusive personal interviews–including unique access to Manson Family parole hearings–former federal prosecutor and Fox News legal analyst Lis Wiehl has written a propulsive, page-turning historical thriller of the crimes and manhunt that mesmerized the nation. And in the process, she reveals how the social and political context that gave rise to Manson is eerily similar to our own.

  • Mr. Smith Goes to Prison: What My Year Behind Bars Taught Me About America s Prison Crisis

    Mr. Smith Goes to Prison: What My Year Behind Bars Taught Me About America’s Prison Crisis
    Jeff Smith

    The fall from politico to prisoner isn't necessarily long, but the landing, as Missouri State Senator Jeff Smith learned, is a hard one.In 2009, Smith pleaded guilty to a seemingly minor charge of campaign malfeasance and earned himself a year and one day in Kentucky's FCI Manchester. Mr. Smith Goes to Prison is the fish-out-of-water story of his time in the big house; of the people he met there and the things he learned: how to escape the attentions of fellow inmate Cornbread and his friends in the Aryan Brotherhood; what constitutes a prison car and who's allowed to ride in yours; how to bend and break the rules, whether you're a prisoner or an officer. And throughout his sentence, the young Senator tracked the greatest crime of all: the deliberate waste of untapped human potential. Smith saw the power of millions of inmates harnessed as a source of renewable energy for America's prison-industrial complex, a system that aims to build better criminals instead of better citizens. In Mr. Smith Goes to Prison, he traces the cracks in America's prison walls, exposing the shortcomings of a racially-based cycle of poverty and crime that sets inmates up to fail. Speaking from inside experience, he offers practical solutions to jailbreak the nation from the financially crushing grip of its own prisons and to jumpstart the rehabilitation of the millions living behind bars.

  • Gotti s Boys: The Mafia Crew That Killed for John Gotti

    Gotti’s Boys: The Mafia Crew That Killed for John Gotti
    Anthony M. DeStefano

    Meet the men who murdered for the mob—and made John Gotti the most powerful and deadly crime boss in America . . . They called him the “Teflon Don.” But in his short reign as the head of the Gambino crime family, John Gotti wracked up a lifetime of charges from gambling, extortion, and tax evasion to racketeering, conspiracy, and five convictions of murder. He didn’t do it alone. Surrounding himself with a rogues gallery of contract killers, fixers, and enforcers, he built one of the richest, most powerful crime empires in modern history. Who were these men? Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Anthony M. DeStefano takes you inside Gotti’s inner circle to reveal the dark hearts and violent deeds of the most remorseless and cold-blooded characters in organized crime. Men so vicious even the other Mafia families were terrified of them. Meet Gotti’s Boys . . . * Charles Carneglia: the ruthless junkyard dog who allegedly disposed of bodies for the mob—by dissolving them in acid then displaying their jewels. * Gene Gotti: the younger Gotti brother who ran a multimillion-dollar drug smuggling ring—enraging his bosses in the Gambino family. * Angelo “Quack-Quack” Ruggiero: the loose-lipped contract killer who was wire-tapped by the FBI—and dared to insult Gotti behind his back. * Tony “Roach” Rampino: the hardcore stoner who looked like a cockroach—and used his gangly arms and horror-mask face to frighten his enemies. * “Sammy the Bull” Gravano: the Gambino underboss who helped John Gotti execute Gambino mob boss Paul Castellano—then sang like a canary to take Gotti down. Rounding out this nefarious group were the likes of Frank DeCicco, Vincent Artuso, and Joe “The German” Watts, a man who wasn’t a Mafiosi but had all of the power and prestige of one in John Gotti’s slaughterhouse crew. Gotti’s Boys is a killer line-up of the crime-hardened mob soldiers who killed at their ruthless leader’s merciless bidding—brought to vivid life by the prize-winning chronicler of the American mob.

  • Creepy Crawling: Charles Manson and the Many Lives of America s Most Infamous Family

    Creepy Crawling: Charles Manson and the Many Lives of America’s Most Infamous Family
    Jeffrey Melnick

    "Creepy crawling" was the Manson Family's practice of secretly entering someone's home and, without harming anyone, leaving only a trace of evidence that they had been there, some reminder that the sanctity of the private home had been breached. Now, author Jeffrey Melnick reveals just how much the Family creepy crawled their way through Los Angeles in the sixties and then on through American social, political, and cultural life for close to fifty years, firmly lodging themselves in our minds. Even now, it is almost impossible to discuss the sixties, teenage runaways, sexuality, drugs, music, California, and even the concept of family without referencing Manson and his "girls." Not just another history of Charles Manson, Creepy Crawling explores how the Family weren't so much outsiders but emblematic of the Los Angeles counterculture freak scene, and how Manson worked to connect himself to the mainstream of the time. Ever since they spent two nights killing seven residents of Los Angeles—what we now know as the "Tate-LaBianca murders"—the Manson family has rarely slipped from the American radar for long. From Emma Cline's The Girls to the recent TV show Aquarius, the family continues to find an audience. What is it about Charles Manson and his family that captivates us still? Author Jeffrey Melnick sets out to answer this question in this fascinating and compulsively readable cultural history of the Family and their influence from 1969 to the present.

  • Crooked Snake: The Life and Crimes of Albert Lepard

    Crooked Snake: The Life and Crimes of Albert Lepard
    Lovejoy Boteler

    In 1968, during Albert Lepard’s fifth escape from a life sentence at Parchman Penitentiary, he kidnapped Lovejoy Boteler, then eighteen years old, from his family’s farm in Grenada, Mississippi. Three decades later, still beset by half-buried memories of that time, Boteler began researching his kidnapper’s nefarious, sordid life to discover how and why this terrifying abduction occurred.Crooked Snake: The Life and Crimes of Albert Lepard is the true story of Lepard, sentenced to life in Parchman for the murder of seventy-four-year-old Mary Young in 1959. During the course of his sentence, Lepard escaped from prison six times in fourteen years. In Crooked Snake, Boteler pieces together the story of this cold-blooded murderer's life using both historical records and personal interviews—over seventy in all—with ex-convicts who gravitated to and ran with Lepard, the family members who fed and sheltered the fugitive during his escapes, the law officers who hunted him, and the regular folks who were victimized in his terrible wake.Throughout Crooked Snake, Boteler reveals his kidnapper’s hardscrabble childhood and tracks his whereabouts before his incarceration and during his jailbreaks. Lepard’s escapes take him to Florida, Michigan, Kansas, California, and Mexico. Crooked Snake captures a slice of history and a landscape that is fast disappearing. These vignettes describe Mississippi’s countryside and spirit, ranging from sharecropper family gatherings in Attala County’s Seneasha Valley to the twenty-thousand-acre Parchman farm and its borderlands teeming with alligator, panther, bear, and wild boar.

  • The Onion Field

    The Onion Field
    Joseph Wambaugh

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “A fascinating account of a double tragedy: one physical, the other psychological.”—Truman CapoteThis is the frighteningly true story of two young cops and two young robbers whose separate destinies fatally cross one March night in a bizarre execution in a deserted Los Angeles field.“A complex story of tragic proportions . . . more ambitious than In Cold Blood and equally compelling!”—The New York Times“Once the action begins it is difficult to put the book down. . . . Wambaugh’s compelling account of this true story is destined for the bestseller lists.”—Library Journal

  • American Predator: The Hunt for the Most Meticulous Serial Killer of the 21st Century

    American Predator: The Hunt for the Most Meticulous Serial Killer of the 21st Century
    Maureen Callahan

    INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERA Washington Post "10 Books To Read in July"A Los Angeles Times "Seven Highly Anticipated Books for Summer Reading"A USA Today "20 of the Season's Hottest New Books"A New York Post "25 Best Beach Reads of 2019 You Need to Pre-Order Now" "Maureen Callahan's deft reporting and stylish writing have created one of the all-time-great serial-killer books: sensitive, chilling, and completely impossible to put down." –Ada Calhoun, author of St. Marks Is Dead Ted Bundy. John Wayne Gacy. Jeffrey Dahmer. The names of notorious serial killers are usually well-known; they echo in the news and in public consciousness. But most people have never heard of Israel Keyes, one of the most ambitious and terrifying serial killers in modern history. The FBI considered his behavior unprecedented. Described by a prosecutor as "a force of pure evil," Keyes was a predator who struck all over the United States. He buried "kill kits"–cash, weapons, and body-disposal tools–in remote locations across the country. Over the course of fourteen years, Keyes would fly to a city, rent a car, and drive thousands of miles in order to use his kits. He would break into a stranger's house, abduct his victims in broad daylight, and kill and dispose of them in mere hours. And then he would return home to Alaska, resuming life as a quiet, reliable construction worker devoted to his only daughter.When journalist Maureen Callahan first heard about Israel Keyes in 2012, she was captivated by how a killer of this magnitude could go undetected by law enforcement for over a decade. And so began a project that consumed her for the next several years–uncovering the true story behind how the FBI ultimately caught Israel Keyes, and trying to understand what it means for a killer like Keyes to exist. A killer who left a path of monstrous, randomly committed crimes in his wake–many of which remain unsolved to this day.American Predator is the ambitious culmination of years of interviews with key figures in law enforcement and in Keyes's life, and research uncovered from classified FBI files. Callahan takes us on a journey into the chilling, nightmarish mind of a relentless killer, and to the limitations of traditional law enforcement.

  • American Junkie

    American Junkie
    Tom Hansen

    "Takes you to the gristle-chewing tracks of the gnarly Emerald City before the first wave of Sub Pop loving kids arrived.” Chris Estey, KEXP Radio, SeattleIn American Junkie, Tom Hansen takes us non-stop into a land of desperate addicts, failed punk bands, and brushes with sad fame, selling drugs during the Seattle grunge years. It's a story that maps his heroin addiction, from the promise of a young life to the prison of a mattress, from budding musician to broken down junkie, drowning in syringes and cigarette butts, shooting heroin into wounds the size of softballs, and ultimately, a ride to a hospital for a six-month stay and a painful self-discovery that cuts down to the bone. Through it all he never really loses his step, never lets go of his smarts, and always projects quintessential American reason, humor, and hope to make a story not only about drugs, but a compelling study of vulnerability and toughness.

  • The 21 KEYS Of Success: Ridin’ With Rick

    The 21 KEYS Of Success: Ridin’ With Rick
    Kolie Crutcher

    Award-winning, internationally-published and best-selling author Kolie Crutcher, provides never-before granted access to the unfiltered success principles of America's most infamous cocaine kingpin–Freeway Ricky Ross. In Ridin' With Rick: The 21 Keys of Success, Crutcher (also an electrical engineer) masterfully breaks down the 21 success principles he personally witnessed the former kingpin use, as they rode around L.A. to conduct business with Hollywood's elite executives, sports figures and celebrities.After Ross' release from federal prison, Crutcher spent six months ridin' with, studying and documenting the practices of the ex-drug lord–who often made $2-3 million daily from the sale of crack cocaine in the 1980s. The 21 Keys uniquely reveals how the same principles that made millions of dollars in illegal cocaine money can be used to make millions of dollars legally in Hollywood and legitimate business! By way of chapters (keys) such as "Don't Front What You Can't Lose", "Make Your Name Carry Weight" and "Cocaine Love", Crutcher takes you along for the ride with Freeway Rick–as no one else can. So whether you are a street hustler on the corner, or a "legit" businessperson in the corner office, the 21 Keys work universally for all striving to overcome life's adversities and live the life you want. After Ridin' With Rick, you will understand how to turn failure into fame, poverty into plenty, and setbacks into success!

  • One Day She ll Darken: The Mysterious Beginnings of Fauna Hodel

    One Day She’ll Darken: The Mysterious Beginnings of Fauna Hodel
    Fauna Hodel

    The inspiration for the TNT TV series I Am the Night. The Black Dahlia Murder is near-legend in the annals of true crime. But behind the shocking case of a young actress’s gruesome slaying lies the story of another woman. Was Fauna Hodel the child of incest, and the catalyst for a sensational trial that left her well-to-do family scarred by scandal, even as the accused sexual predator walked free? Taken as an infant from her teenage mother, Fauna was placed in the care of a working-class black woman, who raised the white child as her own. Together, as a close-knit mother and daughter, they weathered years of poverty and bigotry, alcoholism and sexual abuse, pregnancy and even death—until the time came for Fauna to seek out her real mother, and uncover her lost past. But as Fauna will learn, some truths don’t want to be told. Now includes an 8-page photo insert from Fauna's personal collection.

  • Pimp: The Story of My Life

    Pimp: The Story of My Life
    Iceberg Slim

    “[In Pimp], Iceberg Slim breaks down some of the coldest, capitalist concepts I’ve ever heard in my life.” —Dave Chappelle, from his Nextflix special The Bird RevelationPimp sent shockwaves throughout the literary world when it published in 1969. Iceberg Slim’s autobiographical novel offered readers a never-before-seen account of the sex trade, and an unforgettable look at the mores of Chicago’s street life during the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. In the preface, Slim says it best, “In this book, I will take you, the reader, with me into the secret inner world of the pimp.” An immersive experience unlike anything before it, Pimp would go on to sell millions of copies, with translations throughout the world. And it would have a profound impact upon generations of writers, entertainers, and filmmakers, making it the classic hustler’s tale that never seems to go out of style.

  • My Bloody Life: The Making of a Latin King

    My Bloody Life: The Making of a Latin King
    Reymundo Sanchez

    Looking for an escape from childhood abuse, Reymundo Sanchez turned away from school and baseball to drugs, alcohol, and then sex, and was left to fend for himself before age 14. The Latin Kings, one of the largest and most notorious street gangs in America, became his refuge and his world, but its violence cost him friends, freedom, self-respect, and nearly his life. This is a raw and powerful odyssey through the ranks of the new mafia, where the only people more dangerous than rival gangs are members of your own gang, who in one breath will say they’ll die for you and in the next will order your assassination.