American Lightning: Terror, Mystery, Movie-making, and the Crime of the Century

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Thorndike Press, 2009 - History - 509 pages
14 Reviews
An unforgettable tale of murder, deceit, celebrity, media manipulation, and film as propaganda, when the bombing of the Los Angeles Times building exposed the deadly "national dynamite plot" by trade unionists to terrorize America with one-hundred bombings in a doomed attempt to force capitalism to its knees. The relentless pursuit, capture, trial, and punishment of the bombers made a national hero of America's Sherlock Holmes, master detective Billy Burns, and entangled crusading defense lawyer Clarence Darrow in a reckless, nearly career-ending scheme to bribe witnesses and jurors and throttle justice.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - retropelocin - LibraryThing

The Players: William "Billy" Burns: destined to be the first director of the FBI. Clarence Darrow: destined to be known as, possibly, the greatest trial lawyer in American history. D.W. Griffith ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Lemeritus - LibraryThing

If history is "the record of encounters between character and circumstance", this book has characters and circumstances galore. Still, this telling of the personalities and events surrounding the ... Read full review

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About the author (2009)

Howard Blum (born in 1948) is an American author and journalist. Blum earned his undergraduate degree from Stanford University, where he also received an M.A. in government in 1970. He was formerly a reporter for the The Village Voice and The New York Times, where he earned two Pulitzer Prize nominations. Since 1994 he has been a contributing editor at Vanity Fair. Blum has also authored several non-fiction books, including the New York Times bestseller and Edgar Award winner: American Lightning: Terror, Mystery, the Birth of Hollywood, and the Crime of the Century.

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