Synopses & Reviews
Drawing on thousands of pages of recently discovered government documents, wiretap transcripts, and Al Caponeand#8217;s handwritten personal letters, andlt;Iandgt;New York Timesandlt;/Iandgt; bestselling author Jonathan Eig tells the dramatic story of the rise and fall of the nationand#8217;s most notorious criminal in rich new detail.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;From the moment he arrived in Chicago in 1920, Capone found himself in a world of limitless opportunity. He was an impetuous, affable young man of average intelligence, ill prepared for fame and fortune, whose most notable characteristic was his scarred left cheek. Yet within a few years, Capone controlled an illegal bootlegging business with annual revenue rivaling that of some of the nationand#8217;s largest corporations. Along the way he corrupted the Chicago police force and local courts while becoming one of the worldand#8217;s first international celebrities.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;A furious President Herbert Hoover insisted that Capone be brought to justice because the criminal was making a mockery of federal law. Legend credits Eliot Ness and his and#8220;Untouchablesand#8221; with apprehending Capone. But it was the U.S. attorney in Chicago and little-known agents working on direct orders from the White House who compromised their ethicsand#8212;and risked their livesand#8212;to get their man.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;The most infamous crime attributed to Capone was the St. Valentineand#8217;s Day Massacre, a crime that Capone insisted he didnand#8217;t commit. Using newly discovered FBI records, Eig offers a surprising explanation for the murders.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;Iandgt;Get Caponeandlt;/Iandgt; explores every aspect of the man called and#8220;Scarface,and#8221; paying particular attention to the myths that have for so long surrounded and obscured him. Capone emerges as a worldly, emotionally complex man, doomed as much by his ego as by his vicious criminality. This is the real Al Capone.
"'Not since the hunt for John Wilkes Booth... had so many sources been brought to bear in an attempt to jail one man,' writes former Chicago magazine editor Eig (Opening Day). But Al Capone eluded them all even J. Edgar Hoover. In a page-turning account, Eig details the chase for the elusive Capone, dissecting both the man and his myth. Born in Brooklyn in 1899, Alphonse Capone came to a booming, bustling, corrupt, and very thirsty Chicago in 1920, just as Prohibition began. Rising swiftly through the underworld ranks, Capone soon headed a crime syndicate he dubbed 'the outfit,' which dealt in bootleg alcohol, racketeering, drugs, and prostitution. Eig traces the largely unsuccessful efforts by various law enforcement agencies to bring him down. He focuses on U.S. Attorney George E.Q. Johnson, who finally saw Capone convicted in 1931 for tax evasion and conspiring to violate Prohibition laws, leading to an 11-year prison sentence. Using previously unreleased IRS files, Johnson's papers, even notes he discovered for a ghostwritten Capone autobiography, Eig presents a multifaceted portrait of a shrewd man who built a criminal empire worth millions. 16 pages of b&w photos." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
“Riveting. . . . Eig's book is full of fascinating details about the Windy City, as well as the rest of America in the 1920s.”
—Elizabeth Bennett, Dallas Morning News
Based on newly released government documents and wiretaps, "Get Capone!" tells how the nation's most-wanted criminal was really caught.
About the Author
andlt;bandgt;Jonathan Eig andlt;/bandgt;is a former writer and editor for the Chicago bureau of andlt;iandgt;The Wall Street Journal andlt;/iandgt;and the former executive editor of andlt;iandgt;Chicago andlt;/iandgt;magazine. He is the author of two highly acclaimed bestsellers, andlt;iandgt;Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig andlt;/iandgt;and andlt;iandgt;Opening Day: The Story of Jackie Robinsonand#8217;s First Season. Luckiest Man andlt;/iandgt;won the Casey Award for best baseball book of 2005, and andlt;iandgt;Opening Day andlt;/iandgt;was selected as one of the best books of 2007 by the andlt;iandgt;Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, andlt;/iandgt;and andlt;iandgt;Sports Illustrated. andlt;/iandgt;Mr. Eig lives in Chicago, half a mile from the site of the St. Valentineand#8217;s Day Massacre, with his family.