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JFK

THE MAGNIFICENT JOURNEY

A curious combination of convincing historical analysis, poetry, and art.

A creative approach to the seemingly bizarre circumstances surrounding President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

Undoubtedly, Kennedy’s murder on Nov. 22, 1963, is a wound in America’s national psyche that hasn’t healed. Salerian (POEMS and Paintings for 20,000 Doctors, 2015, etc.) takes this sad truth a step further by classifying it as a tragedy of global proportions. He writes of his own personal reaction in the preface: “I was 16, then living in Istanbul, Turkey, and I cried when JFK died….JFK had given me—and the rest of the planet—hope for a better world.” He then proceeds to dismantle the official narrative of Kennedy’s death through a series of concise chapters with titles such as, “What the Secret Service has to tell us,” “Understanding photograph reconstruction,” and “Premature Deaths of Witnesses and Reporters.” The author even provocatively suggests the term “cerebro-genocide” to describe the obstacles preventing a thorough investigation of what he sees as lingering inconsistencies. He’s eventually led to “the conclusion that many intellectuals with crucial information about JFK’s death were silenced.” Unfortunately, sometimes-faulty punctuation, as well as missing or misspelled words (“By was of summary”), may distract readers, but overall, Salerian still manages to construct a convincing argument. This text may be most valuable as a primer for younger readers who are unfamiliar with the political landscape of the early 1960s and the forces at play around the time of the puzzling, maddening event. What sets this book apart from others of its type is its inclusion of original artwork and poetry; it contrasts nicely with the forensic quality of the prose, yet also draws out its emotional underpinnings. The paintings are mostly untitled, boldly colored, and abstract, and the poems feature narrow columns of text and a plaintive voice calling for peace, justice, and transparency. Fittingly, the first verse of “Naked Village” reads: “Why not to build / A different world / One village at a time / A transparent village / Every nail every stone / Glass columns / Civil servants / And the Army / All naked / Naked weapons / No secrets / No secret tools.”

A curious combination of convincing historical analysis, poetry, and art.

Pub Date: Aug. 14, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-5169-0916-2

Page Count: 164

Publisher: CreateSpace

Review Posted Online: May 4, 2016

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KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON

THE OSAGE MURDERS AND THE BIRTH OF THE FBI

Dogged original research and superb narrative skills come together in this gripping account of pitiless evil.

Awards & Accolades

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  • Readers Vote
  • 27


Our Verdict

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  • Kirkus Reviews'
    Best Books Of 2017


  • New York Times Bestseller


  • IndieBound Bestseller


  • National Book Award Finalist

Greed, depravity, and serial murder in 1920s Oklahoma.

During that time, enrolled members of the Osage Indian nation were among the wealthiest people per capita in the world. The rich oil fields beneath their reservation brought millions of dollars into the tribe annually, distributed to tribal members holding "headrights" that could not be bought or sold but only inherited. This vast wealth attracted the attention of unscrupulous whites who found ways to divert it to themselves by marrying Osage women or by having Osage declared legally incompetent so the whites could fleece them through the administration of their estates. For some, however, these deceptive tactics were not enough, and a plague of violent death—by shooting, poison, orchestrated automobile accident, and bombing—began to decimate the Osage in what they came to call the "Reign of Terror." Corrupt and incompetent law enforcement and judicial systems ensured that the perpetrators were never found or punished until the young J. Edgar Hoover saw cracking these cases as a means of burnishing the reputation of the newly professionalized FBI. Bestselling New Yorker staff writer Grann (The Devil and Sherlock Holmes: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession, 2010, etc.) follows Special Agent Tom White and his assistants as they track the killers of one extended Osage family through a closed local culture of greed, bigotry, and lies in pursuit of protection for the survivors and justice for the dead. But he doesn't stop there; relying almost entirely on primary and unpublished sources, the author goes on to expose a web of conspiracy and corruption that extended far wider than even the FBI ever suspected. This page-turner surges forward with the pacing of a true-crime thriller, elevated by Grann's crisp and evocative prose and enhanced by dozens of period photographs.

Dogged original research and superb narrative skills come together in this gripping account of pitiless evil.

Pub Date: April 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-385-53424-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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NIGHT

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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