True Crime Book Reviews (page 57)

EXECUTION EVE by William J. Buchanan
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Nov. 1, 1993

"Photographs—not seen). (First printing of 20,000; film rights sold to Multimedia Motion Pictures)"
One of the strangest, most convoluted true-crime tales of the year, recounted with skill by Buchanan (Creative Writing/University of New Mexico), whose father figured prominently in the case. Read full book review >
TRUE CRIME
Released: Nov. 1, 1993

"Genuinely frightening—and not for weak stomachs. (Thirty b&w photos and line drawings—not seen)"
Calling his February 1983 arrest ``the day help arrived,'' London civil-servant Dennis Nilsen, a former constable, readily confessed to the murder and dismemberment of 15 young men who'd visited his apartment. Read full book review >

THE MYSTERY OF BEAUTIFUL NELL CROPSEY by Bland Simpson
TRUE CRIME
Released: Oct. 21, 1993

"Don't be disappointed, though, if you never do find out who killed beautiful Nell Cropsey. (Five illustrations)"
On the evening of November 20, 1901, Gibson girl Nell Cropsey, oldest daughter of a transplanted Brooklyn family, stepped out into her family's front hall in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, to join her suitor Jim Wilcox—and was never seen alive again. Read full book review >
THE GANG THEY COULDN'T CATCH by Debra Weyermann
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 5, 1993

"Jaunty and smooth, like a Donald Westlake caper—except all true. (Photographs)"
Tucson newspaper reporter Weyermann tells, with humor and insightful objectivity, the story of the 1981 heist of $3.3 million from a Tucson bank depository. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 1, 1993

"Well-researched local history on a still timely issue: the effect of class and ethnicity on criminal justice. (Seven b&w illustrations)"
An intriguing account of a New England rush to judgment in the Jacksonian Era. Read full book review >

TRUE CRIME
Released: Sept. 29, 1993

"A complex tale lacking in narrative drive—but of interest for its Oresteian picture of a family bent on self-destruction. (Photos)"
Lackluster, overcomplicated chronicle of patricide and matricide in southern California. Read full book review >
TRUE CRIME
Released: Sept. 15, 1993

"Solid criminology, weak sociology, and just compelling enough to satisfy hungry true-crime fans. (Sixteen pages of b&w photographs—not seen)"
The cocaine-and-cash-fueled high life of South Florida in the 1980's serves as glittering backdrop for this ambitious, if uneven, true-crime debut from Miami attorney Cope. Read full book review >
TRUE CRIME
Released: Sept. 8, 1993

"Fine writing, Kodachrome vision, and superintense drama: a real plum for true-crime fans. (Eight pages of b&w photographs- -not seen)"
Sweeping murder-and-megabucks true-life gothic, Texas-style. Read full book review >
TRUE CRIME
Released: Sept. 7, 1993

"A fast-paced, suspenseful re-creation of how a vicious killer was run to ground."
Smoothly written bio of a lone-wolf executioner for the mob. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"Evocative and entertaining popular history. (Eight pages of photographs)"
In a well-crafted compilation of letters, lurid newspaper accounts, legal documents, and photographs and drawings of the day, Cooper (a former Columbia law professor) tells a story of high aspirations, of a failed marriage and a scandalous divorce, and of a 1860's-style murder that might have been dreamed up by William Dean Howells. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"An excellent introduction that raises such major questions as why creative artists are so fascinated by outlaws and why crime permeates popular culture in a relatively peaceful society. (Twenty-three illustrations)"
An engaging and anecdotal exploration by Prassel (Criminal Justice/Univ. of Arkansas; The Western Peace Officer, 1992—not reviewed) of the background, history, legends, social contexts, and representations of the outlaw, from Robin Hood to Thelma and Louise. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"An engrossing look at a shadowy area of American life—and the dark underbelly of the Reagan years. (Eight pages of photographs)"
A startling portrayal of life at the frayed edges of the American Dream—of drag shows, transvestite hustlers, teenage hookers, flophouses—and murder most foul. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >