A History Lesson On The Prohibition
4 out of 5 stars
I don’t know if I’ve ever read a book that was better researched than Al Capone’s Beer Wars. Seriously, I think that Binder might be one of the best at pulling facts from the fiction and separating out what you want to know and what you should know.
Beer Wars doesn’t get as much into the “beer” side of things as I expected (what can I say, I’m a beer dork – I wanna know about the kinds of beer and why they chose that). But it did get into the bootlegging and transporting deeply.
This is one of those books that I’m glad that I read. I feel like I know a lot more about history during this period than I did before. A sign of a good non-fiction book for sure.
I’ve seen a few documentaries and features on bootlegging during the Prohibition but this one seems to knock them out of the water. A good book if you want an in-depth look at Capone like you’ve never seen him before.
Al Capone's Beer Wars: A Complete History of Organized Crime in Chicago during Prohibition by John J. Binder
Narrator: David Colacci
Length: 11 hrs and 8 mins
Published by Tantor Audio on November 21st 2017
Genres: Beer, History, Non-Fiction
Although much has been written about Al Capone, there has not been-until now-a complete history of organized crime in Chicago during Prohibition. This exhaustively researched book covers the entire period from 1920 to 1933. Author John J. Binder, a recognized authority on the history of organized crime in Chicago, discusses all the important bootlegging gangs in the city and the suburbs and also examines the other major rackets, such as prostitution, gambling, labor and business racketeering, and narcotics.
A major focus is how the Capone gang-one of 12 major bootlegging mobs in Chicago at the start of Prohibition-gained a virtual monopoly over organized crime in northern Illinois and beyond. Binder also describes the fight by federal and local authorities, as well as citizens' groups, against organized crime. In the process, he refutes numerous myths and misconceptions related to the Capone gang, other criminal groups, the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, and gangland killings.
What emerges is a big picture of how Chicago's underworld evolved during this period. This broad perspective goes well beyond Capone and specific acts of violence and brings to light what was happening elsewhere in Chicagoland and after Capone went to jail.
I received this book for free. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.