The Ghosts of Eden Park: Book summary and reviews of The Ghosts of Eden Park by Karen Abbott

The Ghosts of Eden Park

The Bootleg King, the Women Who Pursued Him, and the Murder That Shocked Jazz-Age America

by Karen Abbott

The Ghosts of Eden Park by Karen Abbott X
The Ghosts of Eden Park by Karen Abbott
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Book Summary

The epic true crime story of the most successful bootlegger in American history and the murder that shocked the nation, from the New York Times bestselling author of Sin in the Second City and Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy.

In the early days of Prohibition, long before Al Capone became a household name, a German immigrant named George Remus quits practicing law and starts trafficking whiskey. Within two years he's a multi-millionaire. The press calls him "King of the Bootleggers," writing breathless stories about the Gatsby-esque events he and his glamorous second wife, Imogene, host at their Cincinnati mansion, with party favors ranging from diamond jewelry for the men to brand-new cars for the women. By the summer of 1921, Remus owns 35 percent of all the liquor in the United States.

Pioneering prosecutor Mabel Walker Willebrandt is determined to bring him down. Willebrandt's bosses at the Justice Department hired her right out of law school, assuming she'd pose no real threat to the cozy relationship they maintain with Remus. Eager to prove them wrong, she dispatches her best investigator, Franklin Dodge, to look into his empire. It's a decision with deadly consequences. With the fledgling FBI on the case, Remus is quickly imprisoned for violating the Volstead Act. Her husband behind bars, Imogene begins an affair with Dodge. Together, they plot to ruin Remus, sparking a bitter feud that soon reaches the highest levels of government--and that can only end in murder.

Combining deep historical research with novelistic flair, The Ghosts of Eden Park is the unforgettable, stranger-than-fiction story of a rags-to-riches entrepreneur and a long-forgotten heroine, of the excesses and absurdities of the Jazz Age, and of the infinite human capacity to deceive.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Bestseller Abbott revives an obscure cause célèbre in this engrossing true crime narrative...This real-life page-turner will appeal to fans of Erik Larson." - Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Abbott recounts in tense, vivid detail Remus' entanglement in intrigue, betrayal, madness, and violence. An entertaining tale ripped from the headlines of Jazz Age America." - Kirkus Reviews

"Abbott continues her inquiry into sensational yet forgotten women's lives in this riveting combination of social history and true crime...Smart and delectable [and] generating lots of buzz." - Booklist

"Prose so rich and evocative, you feel you're living the story—and full of lots of 'I didn't know that' moments. Gatsby-era noir at its best." - Erik Larson, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dead Wake and Devil in the White City

"Few authors write as colorfully and compellingly about the past as Karen Abbott, particularly when bad behavior is involved. In The Ghosts of Eden Park, we meet the audacious, larger-than-life 'King of the Bootleggers,' George Remus, and the equally fascinating women who will seal his fate. Sex and greed, corruption and revenge, oceans of illegal booze—Abbott's action-packed, riveting tale has it all." - Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Wife and Love and Ruin

"[A] high-proof narrative from the Age of Excess, populated with real-life gangsters and flapper girls, but also with plenty of surprising characters who cut against type. This Prohibition-era tale of trapdoors and false bottoms, of wicked pleasures and brilliant deceptions, springs to life on the page—and has Hollywood written all over it." - Hampton Sides, New York Times bestselling author of In the Kingdom of Ice

This information about The Ghosts of Eden Park shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Karen Abbott Author Biography

Karen Abbott is the New York Times bestselling author of Sin in the Second City, American Rose, and, most recently, Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy, named one of the best books of 2014 by Library Journal, the Christian Science Monitor, and Amazon. She has written for newyorker.com, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Smithsonian Magazine, Salon and other publications. Her next book, The Ghosts of Eden Park, will be published by Crown on August 6.

Link to Karen Abbott's Website

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  • Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy jacket
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