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TRUE CRIME BOOKS BLOG

FROM AUTHOR HARRY N. MACLEAN

Washington Post Review of "Starkweather"

Imagine one day you clicked on your book "Starkweather" on Google and a Washington Post review came up and it read like this:

Starkweather is a story about a different time in a different America . . . [A] grim story, and that grimness is the paradoxical joy of reading MacLean—the raw chill creeping through your veins that feels authentic to the place and the crimes, the lean and vivid sentences rivaling Capote’s In Cold Blood and Mailer’s The Executioner’s Song." —Carl Hoffman, The Washington Post


We were driving back from Lincoln, where I'd had several book signing events. I pulled over, stopped and read the review aloud to my wife. I had to stop every now and then and make sure I was reading it correctly. I got stuck on Capote. In Cold Blood was the true crime writer's bible. You seldom saw any writing compared to it, at least not seriously in a major publication like the Washington Post. And the Executioners Song was every bit as powerful in its own way. Two giants in American literature.


Well, I thought as I drove away, that lets me off the hook for another true crime effort. I'll leave that paragraph to stand untouched over time.


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