Killers of the Flower Moon
By David Grann
324 pp. Vintage. $17.
It’s been sitting on the shelf for a while and, knowing the buzz the movie adaptation is sure to generate when it’s released later this year, I had to get ahead of any spoilers.
I don’t know why I’d been putting this one off. Truly “narrative nonfiction,” in that it reads faster and smarter than most novels, “Killers of the Flower Moon” won David Grann the plaudits he deserved.
It’s not that Grann knows how to weave a captivating tale — though no one who reads this could doubt that — but that he inserts himself into the last third of the story and ends up doing a lot of the investigating that should have, but didn’t, get done when the Osage murders kicked off more than 100 years ago. Grann sheds light on the case that none of the investigators who worked on it back in the 1920s managed to, and manages to just about solve it, despite everyone originally involved being long dead.
To label this as “true crime” feels like it’d be a great disservice to “Killers of the Flowers Moon,” truly one of the most horrifying works of nonfiction I’ve ever read.