A twisting, haunting true-life murder mystery about one of the most monstrous crimes in American history.
In the 1920s, the richest people per capita in the world were members of the Osage Indian nation in Oklahoma. After oil was discovered beneath their land, they rode in chauffeured automobiles, built mansions, and sent their children to study in Europe.
Then, one by one, the Osage began to be killed off. The family of an Osage woman, Mollie Burkhart, became a prime target. Her relatives were shot and poisoned. And it was just the beginning, as more and more members of the tribe began to die under mysterious circumstances.
In this last remnant of the Wild West - where oilmen like J. P. Getty made their fortunes and where desperadoes like Al Spencer, the "Phantom Terror," roamed - many of those who dared to investigate the killings were themselves murdered. As the death toll climbed to more than twenty-four, the FBI took up the case. It was one of the organization's first major homicide investigations and the bureau badly bungled the case. In desperation, the young director, J. Edgar Hoover, turned to a former Texas Ranger named Tom White to unravel the mystery. White put together an undercover team, including one of the only American Indian agents in the bureau. The agents infiltrated the region, struggling to adopt the latest techniques of detection. Together with the Osage they began to expose one of the most chilling conspiracies in American history.
In Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann revisits a shocking series of crimes in which dozens of people were murdered in cold blood. Based on years of research and startling new evidence, the book is a masterpiece of narrative nonfiction, as each step in the investigation reveals a series of sinister secrets and reversals. But more than that, it is a searing indictment of the callousness and prejudice toward American Indians that allowed the murderers to operate with impunity for so long. Killers of the Flower Moon is utterly compelling, but also emotionally devastating.
In April, millions of tiny flowers spread over the blackjack hills and vast prairies in the Osage territory of Oklahoma. There are Johnny-jump-ups and spring beauties and little bluets. The Osage writer John Joseph Mathews observed that the galaxy of petals makes it look as if the "gods had left confetti." In May, when coyotes howl beneath an unnervingly large moon, taller plants, such as spiderworts and black-eyed Susans, begin to creep over the tinier blooms, stealing their light and water. The necks of the smaller flowers break and their petals flutter away, and before long they are buried underground. This is why the Osage Indians refer to May as the time of the flower-killing moon.
On May 24, 1921, Mollie Burkhart, a resident of the Osage settlement town of Gray Horse, Oklahoma, began to fear that something had happened to one of her three sisters, Anna Brown. Thirty-four, and less than a year older than Mollie, Anna had ...
Grann's shock at discovering that the murder plots against the Osage might have gone far beyond those outlined in the trial – and his zeal for discovering the parties responsible for the dozens of unprosecuted murders – makes Killers of the Flower Moon more entertaining than a book about such a dire subject should be. He seems driven to amend the historical record, to prosecute, even from the distance of several generations of history, those responsible for the deaths of these now-forgotten victims. Grann's powerful narrative resurrects a bitterly important chapter in American history, suggesting that the trail of tears doesn't have to lead to a dead end.
(Reviewed by James Broderick).
Full Review (1072 words).
What do the following people have in common? James Earl Ray, who assassinated Martin Luther King; Former NFL star quarterback Michael Vick; and Carl Panzram, a confessed serial killer who committed more than 20 murders.
If you have no idea, then congratulations – you've led a life of moral rectitude. Or, at the very least, you've never spent any time at Leavenworth Federal Penitentiary, perhaps the most notorious prison in America and the one-time home of each of those mentioned above. The prison figures prominently in David Grann's Killers of the Flower Moon. As one prison-related website notes, "Its guest list reads like a who's-who of infamy, full of swindlers, gangsters, murderers and monsters."
If you liked Killers of the Flower Moon, try these:
An adventure which illuminating how extreme circumstances expose the truth about the natures of individual men and their bravery, loyalty, and friendship.
Journalist Maximillian Potter uncovers a fascinating plot to destroy the vines of La Romanée-Conti, Burgundy's finest and most expensive wine.
Discover your next great read here
To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child
Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!
Solve this clue:
and be entered to win..
Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.
Your guide toexceptional books
BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.