Read advance reader review of The Mark Inside by Amy Reading, page 2 of 3

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The Mark Inside

A Perfect Swindle, a Cunning Revenge, and a Small History of the Big Con

by Amy Reading

The Mark Inside by Amy Reading X
The Mark Inside by Amy Reading
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  • First Published:
    Mar 2012, 304 pages

    Feb 2013, 304 pages


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There are currently 18 member reviews
for The Mark Inside
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  • Susan S. (Lafayette, CA)
    A disappointingly slow read
    I was very disappointed with this book. The topic of cons and con men to me is inherently fascinating, yet I found the book very difficult to get through. The author focused immediately, in minute detail, on someone I had never heard of, and then continued to make him the focus of most of the book without ever really making him interesting to me. She clearly had done a great deal of research, and clearly knew her topic very well, but just did not seem to know how to make the story flow in the way that good non-fiction should. The book didn't really get interesting until the last quarter when the focus switched to a major sting operation executed by law enforcers in the city of Denver. At that point the book turned into a page-turner, but it felt like a long slog to get to that part.
  • Mary Ann B. (Louisville, KY)
    The Mark Inside
    The Mark Inside is an interesting book about parting people from their money. Actually about one man in particular and how he tries to bring the con men down. This book does make you think about why people are conned. I always think it is a two way street. You can't sell unless someone wants to buy. This also reminded me of the movie The Sting. It showed how a con is set up and I believe that is the most interesting part of the book.
  • Stephanie W. (Hudson, OH)
    Hard to get through
    The Mark Inside promises a fascinating account of con artistry in America, but I think fascinating was a bit of an exaggeration. I enjoyed the story of the swindling of Frank Norfleet and his quest for revenge on the perpetrators, but got confused and bogged down by much of the history of the stock market, railroad speculation and other financial stuff. I had to work hard to finish the book and I don't think it was just the end of the school year that made me keep falling asleep while reading. As another reviewer said, this would have made a good magazine article or (much) shorter book.
  • Lucy B. (Urbana, Ohio)
    I know we have a lot of curruption today, but I was surprised to read how much corruption that was in the early years of the establishment of the United States. The writer did a good job telling the story, but my take is whether it wouldn't have been better to read Norfleet's book as he actually experienced it rather than read a second-hand story.
  • Bea C. (Liberty Lake, WA)
    TMI - Too Much Information
    This book tells you everything you wanted to know, a lots you didn't, about the "big con". This could have been a real interesting book. It is a non-fiction story about a rancher in 1919 who got swindled in a "big con" (think THE STING), then spent years tracking down the swindlers. We were sidelined with just TOO MUCH INFORMATION and details about every person in the sting and all the details about other cons they had pulled. The book plodded along and became so tedious to read that I skimmed the last half of the book just to find out whatever happened. I was struck by how crooked everyone seemed to be, from the victims, the swindlers to the police departments. If you had faith in your fellow man before you read this, you won't after. I think this would make a good movie and would be interesting to real history nuts who like to delve into subjects completely.
  • Sylvia G. (Scottsdale, AZ)
    Don't get conned
    This story of one big con and the resulting revenge, leads to some history of cons in general. While some of the information was interesting, it did not read anything like a novel, as promised in some of the blurbs on the back. I thought it was often bogged down in unnecessary detail and was very hard to follow and confusing at times. I would have happy with a long magazine article instead of an entire book.
  • Carol N. (San Jose, CA)
    The Mark Inside
    After having started this book 3 different times, I finally made it almost to the end and decided enough was enough. Storyline involves a variety con artists and swindlers. Expecting a “Sting-like novel, I found myself getting bogged down with what I though could have been a fascinating subject. I will say, however, that it does contain a great history of the city of Denver. With too much historical information and not enough storyline the flow of the novel stopped for this reader.
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