A Sniper in the Tower: The Charles Whitman Murders

( 3 )

Overview


On August 1, 1966, Charles Whitman ascended the University of Texas Tower and committed what was then the largest simultaneous mass murder in American history. He gunned down forty-five people inside and around the Tower before he was killed by two Austin police officers. In addition to promoting the rise of S.W.A.T. teams to respond to future crises, the murders spawned debates over issues which still plague America today: domestic violence, child abuse, drug abuse, military indoctrination, the insanity ...
See more details below
Paperback
$18.95
BN.com price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (7) from $3.15   
  • New (2) from $11.81   
  • Used (5) from $0.00   
A Sniper in the Tower: The Charles Whitman Murders

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$9.99
BN.com price
(Save 34%)$15.16 List Price

Overview


On August 1, 1966, Charles Whitman ascended the University of Texas Tower and committed what was then the largest simultaneous mass murder in American history. He gunned down forty-five people inside and around the Tower before he was killed by two Austin police officers. In addition to promoting the rise of S.W.A.T. teams to respond to future crises, the murders spawned debates over issues which still plague America today: domestic violence, child abuse, drug abuse, military indoctrination, the insanity defense, and the delicate balance between civil liberties and public safety.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Through painstaking research and exhaustive analysis, Lavergne recreates the tragic and gripping circumstances that led "all-American" 25-year-old Charles Whitman to gun down 45 people from the University of Texas Tower in 1966. Lavergne homes in on the workings of Whitman's mind, finding that despite his middle-class upbringing, piano lessons, his scouting accomplishments (Whitman was among the youngest Eagle Scouts in history) and his Marine training, Whitman was tormented by his competitive, dictatorial father. Drawing from news accounts, interviews and Whitman's own writings, Lavergne argues that Whitman didn't suddenly snap, as has been previously thought, but descended slowly into madness. He "became a killer," Lavergne concludes, "because he did not respect or admire himself." At times, Lavergne gets bogged down in his quest to have the last word on Whitman, as when he dwells on such minutiae as whether Whitman's slayer, Officer Ramiro Martinez, enjoyed a pork steak or "piece of meat," before being summoned to campus. But as the events of August 1, 1966, unfold, Lavergne's fastidious approach generates substantial tension. Lavergne doesn't claim, as others have, that authorities should have anticipated violence from Whitman, especially given his confession to a psychiatrist some weeks before his pillage that he had thoughts "about going up on the Tower with a deer rifle and shooting people." Instead, Lavergne argues that the failure to recognize the warning signs testifies to how, in a state of innocence, "a nation discovered mass murder." This is the first book-length study of Whitman, and given the thoroughness of Lavergne's work, it may well remain the only one. Photos and maps. (May)
Library Journal
In the summer of 1966, America lost its innocence when two mass murders were committed. In Chicago Richard Speck murdered eight student nurses, and 19 days later, on August 1, Charles Whitman gunned down people from the tower at the University of Texas at Austin, killing 16 and wounding 31. Lavergne, director of admissions and guidance services of the College Board's Southwest Regional Office, attempts to answer this question by writing the first full historical analysis of the event. Using primary sources and photographs, the author has done an excellent job of describing Whitman's murdering rampage. Was it caused by his domineering father, a brain tumor found during an autopsy, or both of the above? Lavergne examines these explanations and others as to why Whitman committed such a terrible deed. A good choice for true-crime collections.Michael Sawyer, Clinton P.L., Iowa
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781574410297
  • Publisher: University of North Texas Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1997
  • Pages: 324
  • Sales rank: 643,346
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 9.55 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Meet the Author


Gary M. Lavergne earned degrees from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and McNeese University. He divides his time between Cedar Park and Austin, Texas, where he is a Senior Assessment Associate for a major educational testing company. His articles have appeared in regional and national historical journals.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2008

    Job Well Done!

    Gary Lavergne has done an outstanding job in writing this book. Unlike most true crime books, 'A Sniper In The Tower' is meticulously well researched and attention is given to detail and logic. Qualities all too rare in this genre. Those qualities make this book a must read. I for one look forward to seeing more books by Gary Lavergne. Keep up the good work sir!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 5, 2013

    Gary Lavergne did an outstanding job researching and conveying t

    Gary Lavergne did an outstanding job researching and conveying the story at hand. Job well done!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Good Case Study, Not Told Well

    Mr. Lavergne has done quite a bit of research into Charles Whitman and the tower shootings. Unfortunately, he does not tell the story very well. The first half of the book is repetitive, as the author tries to point out the All-American attributes of Whitman, which we learn is a facade. Whitman failed at whatever he did, detested his father, and a couple of times even hinted at shooting people from the college tower. Lavergne keeps repeating these facts over and over, perhaps as a way to build tension, but it doesn't work. You keep hoping he'll move on.
    Finally, we get to Whitman making his preparations and beginning his murder spree, and this is where Lavergne gets better. His descriptions of Whitman murdering his wife and mother are chilling. The down to the second narrative of where the victims were when they were shot, brief biographical info on the victims, the police officers who responded and what they experienced is as fascinating as it is thorough. Along the way you learn interesting and somewhat sad tidbits of info (Whitman's two brothers died young). There's even a chapter on the made-for-TV movie about the event which proves that the words "based on a true story" doesn't mean you're getting the facts.
    One other note, the photographs in the book are of poor quality, at least in my copy.
    Overall, not as good as could it have been. Lavergne's top-notch research deserved writing skills to match.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)