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True Crime

Riding with Evil

Riding with Evil

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Sons of Anarchy meets The Departed in this fast-paced, high-wire act memoir from former ATF agent Ken Croke, the first federal agent in history to go undercover and successfully infiltrate the infamous--and infamously violent--Pagan Motorcycle Club, a white supremacist biker gang.

Longtime ATF agent Ken Croke had earned the right to coast to the end of a storied career, having routinely gone undercover to apprehend white supremacists, gun runners, and gang members. But after a chance encounter with an associate of the Pagan Motorcycle Gang created an opening, he transformed himself into "Slam," a monstrous, axe-handle wielding enforcer whose duty was to protect the leadership "mother club" at all costs. He befriended the club's most violent and criminally insane members and lived among them for two years, covertly building a case that would eventually take down the top members of the gang in a massive federal prosecution, even as he risked his marriage, his sanity, and his life. With today's law enforcement largely moving toward the comparative safety of cyber operations, it became one of the last of its kind, a masterclass in old school tactics that marked Croke as a dying breed of undercover agent and became legendary in law enforcement.

Now for the first time, Croke tells the story of his terrifying undercover life in the Pagans--the unspeakable violence, extremism, drugs, and disgusting rituals. Written with bestselling crime writer Dave Wedge and utilizing the exclusive cooperation of those who lived the case with him, as well as thousands of pages of court files and hours of surveillance tapes and photos, Croke delivers a frightening, nail-biting account of the secretive and brutal biker underworld.

Ripple

Ripple

$16.00
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"Riveting... a personal and highly original work of true-crime storytelling." -- John Douglas, former FBI criminal profiling pioneer and co-author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Mindhunter

A chilling investigation into the unsolved "boy in the woods" murder; journalist Jim Cosgrove chronicles his decades-long struggle to uncover the truth of a family friend's disappearance and death -- perfect for fans of I'll be Gone in the Dark and Memorial Drive.

For nine years, South Carolina officials struggled to identify "the boy in the woods," a young man whose body had been discovered just south of Myrtle Beach in a fishing village called Murrells Inlet.

Meanwhile, 1,200 miles away in Kansas City, Missouri, Frank McGonigle's family searched for him at Grateful Dead concerts and in the face of every long-haired hitchhiker they passed. Consumed by guilt for how they'd treated him, Frank's eight siblings slowly came to understand that -- like Jerry Garcia sang -- he's gone and nothin's gonna bring him back.

Frank McGonigle was finally found -- and identified as "the boy in the woods."

Four years later, the case still unsolved, Jim Cosgrove, a McGonigle family friend and investigative journalist, picked up the trail of Frank's cold case and began uncovering connections to a ruthless local crime boss and blunders by the threadbare sheriff's department.

When his research began to stall, a chance meeting with the soft-hearted, straight-talking "energy reader" Carol Williams provided a metaphysical spark that reignited Jim's resolve. Although his work as a journalist trained him to be skeptical, Cosgrove found himself starting to become a believer when Carol provided details about Frank's murder that turned out to be freakishly accurate.

In 2019, Cosgrove returned to Murrells Inlet with one of Frank's brothers to dredge up some old leads and settle Frank's case once and for all...

Rivals of the Ripper

Rivals of the Ripper

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When discussing unsolved murders of women in late Victorian London, most people think of the depredations of Jack the Ripper, the Whitechapel Murderer. But he was just one of a string of phantom murderers whose unsolved slayings outraged late Victorian Britain. The mysterious Great Coram Street, Burton Crescent and Euston Square murders were talked about with bated breath, and the northern part of Bloomsbury got the unflattering nickname of the 'murder neighbourhood' thanks to its profusion of unsolved mysteries.

Marvel at the convoluted Kingswood Mystery, littered with fake names and mistaken identities; be puzzled by the blackmail and secret marriage in the Cannon Street Murder; and shudder at the vicious yet silent killing in St Giles that took place in a crowded house in the dead of night.

Rivals of the Ripper is the first to resurrect these unsolved Victorian murder mysteries, and to highlight the ghoulish handiwork of the Rivals of the Ripper: the spectral killers of gas-lit London.

Rogues

Rogues

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - From the award-winning author of Empire of Pain and Say Nothing--and one of the most decorated journalists of our time--twelve enthralling true stories of skulduggery and intrigue

"An excellent collection of Keefe's detective work, and a fine introduction to his illuminating writing." --NPR

"Fast-paced...Keefe is a virtuoso storyteller." --The Washington Post

Patrick Radden Keefe has garnered prizes ranging from the National Magazine Award to the Orwell Prize to the National Book Critics Circle Award for his meticulously-reported, hypnotically-engaging work on the many ways people behave badly. Rogues brings together a dozen of his most celebrated articles from The New Yorker. As Keefe says in his preface "They reflect on some of my abiding preoccupations: crime and corruption, secrets and lies, the permeable membrane separating licit and illicit worlds, the bonds of family, the power of denial."

Keefe brilliantly explores the intricacies of forging $150,000 vintage wines, examines whether a whistleblower who dared to expose money laundering at a Swiss bank is a hero or a fabulist, spends time in Vietnam with Anthony Bourdain, chronicles the quest to bring down a cheerful international black market arms merchant, and profiles a passionate death penalty attorney who represents the "worst of the worst," among other bravura works of literary journalism.

The appearance of his byline in The New Yorker is always an event, and collected here for the first time readers can see his work forms an always enthralling but deeply human portrait of criminals and rascals, as well as those who stand up against them.

Rogues

Rogues

$30.00
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - From the award-winning author of Empire of Pain and Say Nothing--and one of the most decorated journalists of our time--twelve enthralling true stories of skulduggery and intrigue

"An excellent collection of Keefe's detective work, and a fine introduction to his illuminating writing." --NPR

"Fast-paced...Keefe is a virtuoso storyteller." --The Washington Post

Patrick Radden Keefe has garnered prizes ranging from the National Magazine Award to the Orwell Prize to the National Book Critics Circle Award for his meticulously-reported, hypnotically-engaging work on the many ways people behave badly. Rogues brings together a dozen of his most celebrated articles from The New Yorker. As Keefe says in his preface "They reflect on some of my abiding preoccupations: crime and corruption, secrets and lies, the permeable membrane separating licit and illicit worlds, the bonds of family, the power of denial."

Keefe brilliantly explores the intricacies of forging $150,000 vintage wines, examines whether a whistleblower who dared to expose money laundering at a Swiss bank is a hero or a fabulist, spends time in Vietnam with Anthony Bourdain, chronicles the quest to bring down a cheerful international black market arms merchant, and profiles a passionate death penalty attorney who represents the "worst of the worst," among other bravura works of literary journalism.

The appearance of his byline in The New Yorker is always an event, and collected here for the first time readers can see his work forms an always enthralling but deeply human portrait of criminals and rascals, as well as those who stand up against them.

Scarred

Scarred

$27.95
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As seen in the HBO docuseries THE VOW: The shocking and subversive memoir of a 12-year-NXIVM-member-turned-whistleblower, and her inspiring true story of abuse, escape, and redemption.

'Master, would you brand me? It would be an honor.'

From the second I climb onto the table, acutely aware that I am lying in the sweat of my sisters, I will have blocked that out. Lying there completely naked, I am at my most vulnerable but determined to prove my strength. I try to keep my legs closed as my body wills itself to protect my most private area. . . . I tell myself: I am a warrior. I birthed a human. I can handle pain. But nothing could have ever prepared me for the feel of this fire on my skin.

Scarred is Sarah Edmondson's compelling memoir of her recruitment into the NXIVM cult, the 12 years she spent within the organization (during which she enrolled over 2,000 members and entered DOS--NXIVM's secret sisterhood), her breaking point, and her harrowing fight to get out, to expose Keith Raniere and the leadership, to help others, and to heal. Complete with personal photographs, Scarred is also an eye-opening story about abuses of power, female trust and friendship, and how sometimes the search to be better can override everything else.

- In the tradition of Unorthodox by Deborah Feldman, Escape by Carolyn Jessop, and Troublemaker by Leah Remini
- This tell-all follows Sarah from the moment she takes her first NXIVM seminar, to the invitation she accepts from her best friend, Lauren Salzman, into DOS, to her journey toward become a key witness in the federal case against its founders
- Evokes questions about friendship, ethics, good and evil, making it a brilliant selection for book clubs

Audio edition read by the author.

Science of Murder

Science of Murder

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Discover the science of forensics through Agatha Christie's novels in the ultimate true crime investigation

Agatha Christie is the bestselling novelist of all time, and nearly every story she ever wrote involves one--or, more commonly, several--dead bodies. And the cause of death, the motives behind violent crimes, the clues that inevitably are left behind, and the people who put the pieces together to solve the mystery invite the reader to analyze the evidence and race to find the answer before the detective does. Nearly every step of the way, Christie outlines the nuts and bolts of early 20th-century crime detection, relying on physical evidence to tell the real story behind the facades humans erect to escape detection.

Christie wouldn't have talked of forensics as it is understood today--most of her work predates the modern developments of forensics science--but in each tale she harnesses the power of human observation, ingenuity, and scientific developments of the era. A fascinating, science-based deep dive, The Science of Murder examines the use of fingerprints, firearms, handwriting, blood spatter analysis, toxicology, and more in Christie's beloved works.

What readers are saying:

Highly entertaining with many fascinating snippets of insider information about real life criminal cases. This is a must for Christie fans.

Thoroughly researched and a delight to read!

A wealth of information and knowledge to help give an insight to the golden age of crime fiction.

Absolutely brilliant book that looks at how Agatha Christie made use of developments in forensic science in her novels and upgraded her understanding over time.

Agatha Christie is one of my favorite authors, unparalleled in her clever plots and twisting tales. She was also a forensic expert, weaving into her novels human observation, ingenuity and genuine science of the era. This book illuminates all of Agatha's incredible knowledge, showing how she stayed at the cutting edge of forensic knowledge, as seen through her much loved characters.

Scoundrel

Scoundrel

$17.99
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A Recommended Read from: The Los Angeles Times * Town and Country * The Seattle Times * Publishers Weekly * Lit Hub * Crime Reads * Alma

From the author of The Real Lolita and editor of Unspeakable Acts, the astonishing story of a murderer who conned the people around him--including conservative thinker William F. Buckley--into helping set him free

In the 1960s, Edgar Smith, in prison and sentenced to death for the murder of teenager Victoria Zielinski, struck up a correspondence with William F. Buckley, the founder of National Review. Buckley, who refused to believe that a man who supported the neoconservative movement could have committed such a heinous crime, began to advocate not only for Smith's life to be spared but also for his sentence to be overturned.

So begins a bizarre and tragic tale of mid-century America. Sarah Weinman's Scoundrel leads us through the twists of fate and fortune that brought Smith to freedom, book deals, fame, and eventually to attempting murder again. In Smith, Weinman has uncovered a psychopath who slipped his way into public acclaim and acceptance before crashing down to earth once again.

From the people Smith deceived--Buckley, the book editor who published his work, friends from back home, and the women who loved him--to Americans who were willing to buy into his lies, Weinman explores who in our world is accorded innocence, and how the public becomes complicit in the stories we tell one another.

Scoundrel shows, with clear eyes and sympathy for all those who entered Smith's orbit, how and why he was able to manipulate, obfuscate, and make a mockery of both well-meaning people and the American criminal justice system. It tells a forgotten part of American history at the nexus of justice, prison reform, and civil rights, and exposes how one man's ill-conceived plan to set another man free came at the great expense of Edgar Smith's victims.

Scoundrel

Scoundrel

$28.99
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A Recommended Read from: The Los Angeles Times * Town and Country * The Seattle Times * Publishers Weekly * Lit Hub * Crime Reads * Alma

From the author of The Real Lolita and editor of Unspeakable Acts, the astonishing story of a murderer who conned the people around him--including conservative thinker William F. Buckley--into helping set him free

In the 1960s, Edgar Smith, in prison and sentenced to death for the murder of teenager Victoria Zielinski, struck up a correspondence with William F. Buckley, the founder of National Review. Buckley, who refused to believe that a man who supported the neoconservative movement could have committed such a heinous crime, began to advocate not only for Smith's life to be spared but also for his sentence to be overturned.

So begins a bizarre and tragic tale of mid-century America. Sarah Weinman's Scoundrel leads us through the twists of fate and fortune that brought Smith to freedom, book deals, fame, and eventually to attempting murder again. In Smith, Weinman has uncovered a psychopath who slipped his way into public acclaim and acceptance before crashing down to earth once again.

From the people Smith deceived--Buckley, the book editor who published his work, friends from back home, and the women who loved him--to Americans who were willing to buy into his lies, Weinman explores who in our world is accorded innocence, and how the public becomes complicit in the stories we tell one another.

Scoundrel shows, with clear eyes and sympathy for all those who entered Smith's orbit, how and why he was able to manipulate, obfuscate, and make a mockery of both well-meaning people and the American criminal justice system. It tells a forgotten part of American history at the nexus of justice, prison reform, and civil rights, and exposes how one man's ill-conceived plan to set another man free came at the great expense of Edgar Smith's victims.

Second City Sinners

Second City Sinners

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Countless criminals have made their mark on Chicago and the surrounding communities. Chicago Sun-Times journalist Jon Seidel takes readers back in time to the days when H. H. Holmes lurked in his "Murder Castle" and guys named Al Capone and John Dillinger ruled the underworld. Drawing upon years of reporting, and with special access to the Chicago Daily News and Chicago Sun-Times archives, Jon Seidel explains how men like Nathan Leopold, Richard Loeb, and Richard Speck tried to get away with history's most disturbing crimes.


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Serial Killers

Serial Killers

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A comprehensive examination into the frightening true crime history of serial homicide--including information on America's most prolific serial killers such as:

Jeffrey Dahmer - Ted Bundy - "Co-ed Killer" Ed Kemper - The BTK Killer - "Highway Stalker" Henry Lee Lucas - Monte Ralph Rissell - "Shoe Fetish Slayer" Jerry Brudos - "Night Stalker" Richard Ramirez - "Unabomber" Ted Kaczynski - Ed Gein "The Butcher of Plainfield" - "Killer Clown" John Wayne Gacy - Andrew Cunanan - And more...

In this unique book, Peter Vronsky documents the psychological, investigative, and cultural aspects of serial murder, beginning with its first recorded instance in Ancient Rome through fifteenth-century France on to such notorious contemporary cases as cannibal/necrophile Ed Kemper, the BTK killer, Henry Lee Lucas, Monte Ralph Rissell, Jerry Brudos, Richard Ramirez, "Unabomber" Ted Kaczynski, Ed Gein, John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, and the emergence of what he classifies as the "serial rampage killer" such as Andrew Cunanan, who murdered fashion designer Gianni Versace.

Vronsky not only offers sound theories on what makes a serial killer but also makes concrete suggestions on how to survive an encounter with one--from recognizing verbal warning signs to physical confrontational resistance. Exhaustively researched with transcripts of interviews with killers, and featuring up-to-date information on the apprehension and conviction of the Green River killer and the Beltway Snipers, Vronsky's one-of-a-kind book covers every conceivable aspect of an endlessly riveting true crime phenomenon.

INCLUDES PHOTOGRAPHS

Serial Killers Apprentice

Serial Killers Apprentice

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Elmer Wayne Henley, Jr. was only fourteen when he first became entangled with serial rapist and murderer Dean Corll in 1971. Fellow Houston, Texas, teenager David Brooks had already been ensnared by the charming older man, bribed with cash to help lure boys to Corll's home. When Henley unwittingly entered the trap, Corll evidently sensed he'd be of more use as a second accomplice than another victim. He baited Henley with the same deal he'd given Brooks: $200 for each boy they could bring him.

Henley didn't understand the full extent of what he had signed up for at first. But once he started, Corll convinced him that he had crossed the line of no return and had to not only procure boys but help kill them and dispose of the bodies, as well. When Henley first took a life, he lost his moral base. He felt doomed. By the time he was seventeen, he'd helped with multiple murders and believed he'd be killed, too. But on August 8, 1973, he picked up a gun and shot Corll. When he turned himself in, Henley showed police where he and Brooks had buried Corll's victims in mass graves. Twenty-eight bodies were recovered--most of them boys from Henley's neighborhood--making this the worst case of serial murder in America at the time. The case reveals gross failures in the way cops handled parents' pleas to look for their missing sons and how law enforcement possibly protected a larger conspiracy.

The Serial Killer's Apprentice tells the story of Corll and his accomplices in its fullest form to date. It also explores the concept of "mur-dar" (the predator's instinct for exploitable kids), current neuroscience about adolescent brain vulnerabilities, the role of compartmentalization, the dynamic of a murder apprenticeship, and how tales like Henley's can aid with early intervention. Despite his youth and cooperation, Henley went to trial and received six life sentences. He's now sixty-five and has a sense of perspective about how adult predators can turn formerly good kids into criminals. Unexpectedly, he's willing to talk. This book is his warning and the story of the unspeakable evil and sorrow that befell Houston in the early 1970s.

Serial Killers of the 80s

Serial Killers of the 80s

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The 1980s were a time of notorious serial killers--Jeffrey Dahmer, Aileen Wuornos, Samuel Little--but also of advances in forensics that helped lead to their capture.
The serial killer became part of our common cultural consciousness in the 1970s and, in the decade that followed, the FBI confronted even more incomprehensible crimes and their perpetrators. This engrossing collection of illustrated true-crime profiles details the unthinkable exploits of a rogue's gallery that includes--in addition to Jeffrey Dahmer, Aileen Wuornos, and Gary Ridgway--Samuel Little and Joseph James DeAngelo, serial murderers whose criminal legacies are still making headlines today.
Shooter at Midnight

Shooter at Midnight

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The harrowing true story of a cold-blooded murder and the campaign to bring justice to a suffering Midwestern town

On a November night in 1990, Cathy Robertson is murdered in her home outside Chillicothe, Missouri. After law enforcement conduct a haphazard investigation, the sheriff's office puts the case in the hands of a Kansas City private eye with his own agenda. In a close-knit town still reeling from the aftereffects of the farming crisis, friends and neighbors abruptly fracture into opposing camps. Mark Woodworth, a Robertson family neighbor, eventually receives four life sentences for a crime that a growing group of local supporters believe he didn't commit.

In a surprising, dramatic narrative that spans decades, Mark's family turns to Robert Ramsey, an attorney willing to take on a corrupt political machine suppressing the truth. But the community's way of life is irrevocably damaged by the parallel tragedies of the farming crisis and Cathy's unsolved murder, in a gripping story about the fault-lines of a fracturing America that continue to cut across the farm belt today.

Six Days in August

Six Days in August

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On the morning of August 23, 1973, a man wearing a wig, makeup, and a pair of sunglasses walked into the main branch of Sveriges Kreditbank, a prominent bank in central Stockholm. He ripped out a submachine gun, fired it into the ceiling, and shouted, The party starts! This was the beginning of a six-day hostage crisis--and media circus--that would mesmerize the world, drawing into its grip everyone from Sweden's most notorious outlaw to the prime minister himself.

As policemen and reporters encircled the bank, the crime-in-progress turned into a high-stakes thriller broadcast on live television. Inside the building, meanwhile, complicated emotional relationships developed between captors and captives that would launch a remarkable new concept into the realm of psychology, hostage negotiation, and popular culture.

Based on a wealth of previously unpublished sources, including rare film footage and unprecedented access to the main participants, Six Days in August captures the surreal events in their entirety, on an almost minute-by-minute basis. It is a rich human drama that blurs the lines between loyalty and betrayal, obedience and defiance, fear and attraction--and a groundbreaking work of nonfiction that forces us to consider Stockholm syndrome in an entirely new light.

Slenderman

Slenderman

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The first full account of the Slenderman stabbing, a true crime narrative of mental illness, the American judicial system, the trials of adolescence, and the power of the internetOn May 31, 2014, in the Milwaukee suburb of Waukesha, Wisconsin, two twelve-year-old girls attempted to stab their classmate to death. Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier's violence was extreme, but what seemed even more frightening was that they committed their crime under the influence of a figure born by the internet: the so-called "Slenderman." Yet the even more urgent aspect of the story, that the children involved suffered from undiagnosed mental illnesses, often went overlooked in coverage of the case.Slenderman: Online Obsession, Mental Illness, and the Violent Crime of Two Midwestern Girls tells that full story for the first time in deeply researched detail, using court transcripts, police reports, individual reporting, and exclusive interviews. Morgan and Anissa were bound together by their shared love of geeky television shows and animals, and their discovery of the user-uploaded scary stories on the Creepypasta website could have been nothing more than a brief phase. But Morgan was suffering from early-onset childhood schizophrenia. She believed that she had seen Slenderman long before discovering him online, and the only way to stop him from killing her family was to bring him a sacrifice: Morgan's best friend Payton "Bella" Leutner, whom Morgan and Anissa planned to stab to death on the night of Morgan's twelfth birthday party. Bella survived the attack, but was deeply traumatized, while Morgan and Anissa were immediately sent to jail, and the severity of their crime meant that they would be prosecuted as adults. There, as Morgan continued to suffer from worsening mental illness after being denied antipsychotics, her life became more and more surreal.Slenderman is both a page-turning true crime story and a search for justice.

Slenderman: Online Obsession, Mental Illness, and the Violent Crime of Two Midwestern Girls

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The first full account of the Slenderman stabbing, a true crime narrative of mental illness, the American judicial system, the trials of adolescence, and the power of the internetOn May 31, 2014, in the Milwaukee suburb of Waukesha, Wisconsin, two twelve-year-old girls attempted to stab their classmate to death. Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier's violence was extreme, but what seemed even more frightening was that they committed their crime under the influence of a figure born by the internet: the so-called "Slenderman." Yet the even more urgent aspect of the story, that the children involved suffered from undiagnosed mental illnesses, often went overlooked in coverage of the case.Slenderman: Online Obsession, Mental Illness, and the Violent Crime of Two Midwestern Girls tells that full story for the first time in deeply researched detail, using court transcripts, police reports, individual reporting, and exclusive interviews. Morgan and Anissa were bound together by their shared love of geeky television shows and animals, and their discovery of the user-uploaded scary stories on the Creepypasta website could have been nothing more than a brief phase. But Morgan was suffering from early-onset childhood schizophrenia. She believed that she had seen Slenderman long before discovering him online, and the only way to stop him from killing her family was to bring him a sacrifice: Morgan's best friend Payton "Bella" Leutner, whom Morgan and Anissa planned to stab to death on the night of Morgan's twelfth birthday party. Bella survived the attack, but was deeply traumatized, while Morgan and Anissa were immediately sent to jail, and the severity of their crime meant that they would be prosecuted as adults. There, as Morgan continued to suffer from worsening mental illness after being denied antipsychotics, her life became more and more surreal.Slenderman is both a page-turning true crime story and a search for justice.
Snakehead: An Epic Tale of the Chinatown Underworld and the American Dream

Snakehead: An Epic Tale of the Chinatown Underworld and the American Dream

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In this thrilling panorama of real-life events, the bestselling author of Empire of Pain investigates a secret world run by a surprising criminal: a charismatic middle-aged grandmother, who from a tiny noodle shop in New York's Chinatown managed a multi-million dollar business smuggling people.

"Reads like a mashup of The Godfather and Chinatown, complete with gun battles, a ruthless kingpin and a mountain of cash. Except that it's all true." --Time

Keefe reveals the inner workings of Sister Ping's complex empire and recounts the decade-long FBI investigation that eventually brought her down. He follows an often incompetent and sometimes corrupt INS as it pursues desperate immigrants risking everything to come to America, and along the way, he paints a stunning portrait of a generation of illegal immigrants and the intricate underground economy that sustains and exploits them. Grand in scope yet propulsive in narrative force, The Snakehead is both a kaleidoscopic crime story and a brilliant exploration of the ironies of immigration in America.