He Calls Me by Lightning: The Life of Caliph Washington and the Forgotten Saga... by S. Jonathan BassIn 1957 Alabama, a traffic stop ended with an African American veteran's being accused of killing a white policeman. Caliph Washington was convicted in several trials, but each conviction was overturned. Later, Governor George Wallace stayed his execution numerous times. Vividly depicting Washington's life, the questionable convictions, and the Jim Crow atmosphere surrounding the case, He Calls Me by Lighting offers an eye-opening critique of the racial disparities in American criminal justice.
Scars of Independence: America's Violent Birth by Holger HoockAccording to historian Holger Hoock, the American Revolution wasn't only a conflict over principles, but also a violent civil war whose legacy historians have only recently recognized. In Scars of Independence, he carefully assesses how this violence affected everyone: Patriot and Loyalist civilians, military personnel on all sides, Native Americans, and free and enslaved blacks. Hoock's balanced and accessible historical analysis includes explicit descriptions of atrocities, which may be disturbing to some readers. Library Journal calls the book "as fascinating as it is enlightening."
Apollo 8: The Thrilling Story of the First Mission to the Moon by Jeffrey KlugerIn Apollo 8, acclaimed science writer Jeffrey Kluger provides a you-were-there reading experience as he recounts the preparations that culminated in the first manned flight to the moon. Drawing on his interviews with crew members Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders, as well as the NASA Oral History Project and other records, Kluger enriches the personal and technical details of the mission with facets of the Cold War-era politics that spurred the race to the moon. Space flight aficionados won't want to miss Kluger's "laudable storytelling" (Publishers Weekly).
The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America by Richard RothsteinIn this thoroughly researched analysis, housing policy expert Richard Rothstein traces the development of America's restrictive residential codes back to the early 20th century. He shows that modern segregation is built on overlapping local, state, and federal laws -- not just on prejudice-based social customs. Whether you're looking for a comprehensive review of law and policy or an accessible discussion of the history, you'll find The Color of Law both informative and sobering.
Anatomy of Terror: From the Death of Bin Laden to the Rise of the Islamic State by Ali SoufanIdentifying the primary goals of different terrorist leaders, antiterrorism expert Ali Soufan explains how radical Islamists think. Drawing on both unclassified reports and his own knowledge from working in the FBI, he reveals that al-Qaida cells have continued to grow and organize, so that they again represent a significant threat. In a starred review, Kirkus Reviews notes that Anatomy of Terror offers a lucid account of this "dizzying scenario of violence."
The Art of the Con: The Most Notorious Fakes, Frauds, and Forgeries in the Art World by Anthony M. AmoreConfidence scams, forgeries, and theft plague the world of art, costing museums and legitimate private owners millions of dollars. In The Art of the Con, security expert Anthony Amore (head of security at Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum) explores instances of art fraud and theft, details specific methods, and examines the mindset of certain victims. Fans of both art history and true crime accounts will be enthralled and may want to follow up with Robert Wittman's Priceless or Ulrich Boser's The Gardner Heist.
Anatomy of Injustice: A Murder Case Gone Wrong by Raymond BonnerIn Anatomy of Injustice, Pultizer Prize-winning journalist Raymond Bonner chronicles the murder conviction and appeals of an African American handyman in Greenwood, SC. After Edward Lee Elmore was convicted of killing an elderly widow, death penalty appeals specialists tried to show that the investigation was negligent and Elmore's trial representation was ineffective (among other things). However, 22 years passed before his execution was finally blocked. Bonner's powerful narration will engross those interested in the death penalty as well as true crime buffs.
Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can... by Marc GoodmanIn this accessible discussion, cybersecurity expert Marc Goodman details the current vulnerability of convenient devices (such as baby monitors, GPS, and online calendars) and describes the near-future potential for cybercriminals or governments to paralyze our lives. Though Future Crimes includes reassuring information on minimizing Internet risks, this is a sobering report for anyone who uses Internet-connected devices.
Long Mile Home: Boston Under Attack, the City's Courageous Recovery, and the Epic... by Scott Helman and Jenna RussellNear the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon, two improvised bombs exploded, killing three people and injuring hundreds. In this gripping account, Pulitzer Prize-winning Boston Globe reporters Scott Hellman and Jenna Russell depict the responses of those most closely involved -- marathon officials, first responders, hospital workers, the injured, and the families of those killed. They portray the hunt for the bombers and its conclusion, and they also bring to life the resilient Boston community in the subsequent weeks and months.
Little Demon in the City of Light: A True Story of Murder in Belle Époque Paris by Steven LevingstonDuring the late 19th century, people wondered whether hypnotic subjects could be induced to do something contrary to their moral beliefs. In Little Demon in the City of Light, author Steven Levingston relates the case of Gabrielle Bompard, who seduced and killed a wealthy Parisian, claiming at her trial that she was innocent because she had been hypnotized. This compelling account will mesmerize 19th-century Paris enthusiasts, historical true crime aficionados, and anyone interested in early forensic science.
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