Each time I begin thinking I've reached bottom vis-à-vis the history of "...original sin from which the country was born..." another sobering account upends my complacency. "Killers Of The Flower Moon: The Osage Murders And The Birth Of The FBI", David Grann's 2017 powerhouse, is destined to join Dee Brown's "Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee" in our national conversation. Though neither of them are pleasant books to read, it's important many of us do so. Grann's book features painstaking research, muscular prose, and a keen sense of narrative to further recommend it.
Grann also manages a neat feat for a work of non-fiction. Many of the surprises the author uncovers in his research are found in Part Three (entitled "The Reporter"). As each new layer of treachery and deception is revealed, this closing technique packs a wallop not unlike the third act from works of classic drama. And he delivers these until-now-untold parts of this sordid story without flourish. It's breathtaking.
"History is a merciless judge. It lays bare our tragic blunders and foolish missteps and exposes our most intimate secrets, wielding the power of hindsight." Add this to the many benefits I've already derived from having my own book club: I can extend my processing of any book by placing it in the queue for my club. Sometime in early 2019, I now know I'll have an opportunity to discuss "Killers Of The Flower Moon" with a group of discerning readers. Such a life.