Keith Giammanco the Boonie Hat Bandit

Review of Bank Notes: The True Story of the Boonie Hat Bandit written by Keith and Caroline Giammanco Rating **** I have written extensively about the criminal justice system on this site. Most of the time I am writing about wrongful convictions. This story is unlike any of the others that I have covered. That’s […]

Review of The Inconsequential Child

Review of The Inconsequential Child by Anthony Martino Rating **1/2 I don’t normally read this type of book. I seldom review self help books. But I was approached by someone representing the author (who used a pseudonym to write the book) to take a look. So after finishing the book I was faced with a […]

Review of Prisoner in the Kitchen

Review of Prisoner in the Kitchen: The Car Thief, the Murderer, and the Man Hired to Feed Them by William Bonham Rating **** This short book won an award for memoir writing. I learned about it through AARP magazine, one of the sponsors of the award. It’s the story of a man hired to work […]

True Story book vs film

True Story by Michael Finkel Rating ***** True Story directed by Rupert Goold, screenplay by Rupert Goold and David Kaiganich Rating *** 1/2   Over the years I have covered a number of book and film adaptations. There’s something about reading a book and then being able to watch a dramatization of that story immediately after. […]

Review of Floodpath by Jon Wilkman

Review of Floodpath by Jon Wilkman Rating **** This story is about a dam collapse in 1928 and the aftermath. The disaster and subsequent investigation are well told and will keep you engaged. I did, however, find some of the background material a little slow. I’m not knocking the book for that. In nonfiction, background […]

Review of Collision Course

Review of Collision Course by Alvin Moscow Rating **** The appeal of disaster stories lies in the details of the how and why but also in learning about the people who are affected. Who was at fault? What steps could have been taken to avert tragedy? What were the consequences? Alvin Moscow attempts to answer […]

Review of 13,760 feet

Review of 13,760 feet: My Personal Hole in the Sky by Mark L. Berry Rating ***** On July 17, 1996, TWA 800 experienced a center fuel tank explosion at 13,760 feet during its climb out of New York’s JFK airport. On board the flight was the author’s fiancé Susanne Jensen. Mark is also a pilot and […]

Review of The Witch of Lime Street

Review of The Witch of Lime Street: Séance, Seduction and Houdini in the Spirit World by David Jaher Rating *** 1/2 If you know anything about the life of Harry Houdini, then you know about his personal crusade to unmask those who claimed to be able to communicate with the dead. What I didn’t know, […]

Review of Just Mercy

Review of Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson Rating ***** At the center of this story is the wrongful conviction of Walter McMillian and the author’s attempts to free him. Interspersed between that story are other stories of wrongful convictions and sad accounts of a broken justice system. Along the way the author touches on a number […]

Review of The Wright Brothers

Review of The Wright Brothers by David McCullough Rating ***** I took my first airplane ride at age fourteen and have been hooked on flying ever since. Now imagine taking your first airplane ride and being the only person in the world to have had that experience. This book takes the reader on a fascinating […]

Michael Morton’s Modern Day Classic

Review of Getting Life by Michael Morton Rating ***** I am a huge fan of shows like 60 Minutes, 48 Hours, 20/20, and Dateline. I never pass up an opportunity to watch one of these shows when they’re on. Such was the case when I happened upon the story of Michael Morton. Michael Morton was […]

Review of Missoula

Review of Missoula: Rape and the justice system in a college town By John Krakauer Rating **** As the subtitle suggests, this book is about rape on college campuses, specifically the University of Montana. Krakauer focuses on this particular college because of a rash of incidents that occurred over a short period of time, but […]

Review of Dead Wake

Review of Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson Rating ***** The term “dead wake” refers to the disturbance left in the water after a passing ship or torpedo. I’m guessing Erik Larson latched on to that phrase as his title as soon as he came across it. It’s a great […]

Review of In The Kingdom of Ice

Review of In The Kingdom of Ice: The grand and terrible polar voyage of the USS Jeannette by Hampton Sides Rating ***** Anyone familiar with the Shackleton story will feel right at home with this equally compelling story of exploration and survival. Hampton Sides knows how to tell a good story. This book is every […]