True Crime Book Reviews

SNATCHED by Bruce Porter
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"An engaging, improbable true-crime tale that underscores the grandiose futility of the drug war."
Pulpy account of a glamorous narcotrafficker ensnared by her past. Read full book review >
INFAMY by Lydia Cacho
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 12, 2016

"An important record of the incremental steps one journalist took against sexual violence in Mexico."
A Mexican journalist bravely sets precedent in the highest court in targeting corruption and influence pedaling. Read full book review >

HISTORY
Released: April 11, 2016

"Victorian murder mysteries are usually entertaining. Even without a Sherlock, this highly readable story still shows the cleverness of the police and the frustrations of prosecutors."
Murphy (Interdisciplinary Writing/Univ. of Colorado; Shooting Victoria: Madness, Mayhem, and the Rebirth of the British Monarchy, 2013) exposes the inequities of British justice in the 1871 case of Jane Clouson, who was "found attacked and horribly disfigured on a quiet country lane outside of Greenwich."Read full book review >
THE LONG SHADOW OF SMALL GHOSTS by Laura Tillman
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 5, 2016

"A Helter Skelter for our time, though without a hint of sensationalism—unsettling in the extreme but written with confidence and deep empathy."
A haunted, haunting examination of mental illness and murder in a more or less ordinary American city. Read full book review >
CONVICTING THE INNOCENT by Stanley Cohen
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 5, 2016

"A valuable accounting of a hidden societal plague, likelier to appeal to attorneys, students, and activists than to the police officers, prosecutors, and 'tough on crime' types who should read it."
A disturbing compendium of wrongful convictions resulting in death sentences, focusing on individual stories and patterns of institutional failure. Read full book review >

THE WAY OF THE GUN by Iain Overton
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 22, 2016

"A passionate mix of rhetoric and travelogue, Overton's book takes the gun debate into impressive new territory."
In Overton's first book, the British journalist travels the globe to see how the logic of the Second Amendment has affected people beyond America's borders. Read full book review >
A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE by Óscar Martínez
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 8, 2016

"Smart, angry immersive journalism from an author who warrants wider readership on this side of the border."
Hard-hitting exploration of the violence visited by globalization and the narco-economy upon Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. Read full book review >
A MURDER OVER A GIRL by Ken Corbett
SOCIAL SCIENCES
Released: March 1, 2016

"An emotionally resonant account of a real-life tragedy."
A teenager's murder raises issues of bullying and homophobia. Read full book review >
NARCONOMICS by Tom Wainwright
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Feb. 23, 2016

"A daring work of investigative journalism and a well-reasoned argument for smarter drug policies."
In his first book, seasoned journalist Wainwright asks a radical question: what if we stopped looking at drug cartels as armies of faceless gangsters and instead analyzed them as innovative global businesses? Read full book review >
INCARCERATION NATIONS by Baz Dreisinger
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"An eye-opening, damning indictment of the American prison system and the way its sins reverberate around the globe."
A writer and social activist chronicles her visits to prisons around the globe to gain insight into what works and doesn't work. Read full book review >
NEMESIS by Misha Glenny
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"Glenny does an admirable investigative job, delving deeply into the complicated causes and effects of Rio's drug trafficking."
A page-turning chronicle of the life and career of a favela don illustrates the larger challenges of a deeply impoverished, class-ridden Brazilian society.Read full book review >
WHILE THE CITY SLEPT by Eli Sanders
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: Feb. 2, 2016

"An exceptional story of compelling interest in a time of school shootings, ethnic and class strife, and other unbound expressions of madness and illness."
Disturbing, sometimes-horrifying story of true crime and justice only partially served. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Frances Stroh
author of BEER MONEY
May 4, 2016

Frances Stroh’s earliest memories are ones of great privilege: shopping trips to London and New York, lunches served by black-tied waiters at the Regency Hotel, and a house filled with precious antiques, which she was forbidden to touch. Established in Detroit in 1850, by 1984 the Stroh Brewing Company had become the largest private beer fortune in America and a brand emblematic of the American dream itself; while Stroh was coming of age, the Stroh family fortune was estimated to be worth $700 million. But behind the beautiful façade lay a crumbling foundation. As their fortune dissolved in little over a decade, the family was torn apart internally by divorce and one family member's drug bust; disagreements over the management of the business; and disputes over the remaining money they possessed. “The author’s family might have successfully burned through a massive fortune, but they squandered a lot more than that,” our reviewer writes about Stroh’s debut memoir, Beer Money. “A sorrowful, eye-opening examination of familial dysfunction.” View video >