Gilbert King’s THE DEVIL IN THE GROVE
Been reading this recent Pulitzer Prize-winning nonfiction book about Thurgood Marshall’s defense of three black men accused of raping a white woman in 1948 Florida. I was skeptical of the book, since it felt a little true-crimeish (although there wasn’t really a crime because the guys were innocent). The book, though, is excellent. It’s so tense and atmospheric, and the behavior of the Florida authorities is so absurd and illegal. It really conveys the sense of terror in that era. The body count might not’ve been high in absolute terms, but the threat of violence was pervasive–any black person could be killed for any reason. I recommend it. The book. Not the terror.