In 1935, the Spokane police regularly extorted sex, food, and money from the reluctant hobos (many of them displaced farmers who had fled the midwestern dust bowls), robbed dairies, and engaged in all manner of nefarious crimes, including murder. This history was suppressed until 1989, when former logger, Vietnam vet, and Spokane cop Tony Bamonte discovered a strange 1955 deathbed confession while researching a thesis on local law enforcement history. Bamonte began to probe what had every appearance of widespread police crime and a massive cover-up whose highlight was the unsolved murder of Town Marshall George Conff. The fact that many of those involved, now in their 80s and 90s, were still alive made it imperative that Bamonte unravel this mystery. The result is Breaking Blue, a white-knuckle ride through institutional corruption and cover-up that vividly documents Depression-era Spokane and an extraordinary case that few believed would ever be brought to light.
|Edition description:||Second Edition|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.49(h) x 0.55(d)|
About the Author
Timothy Egan is the Pacific Northwest correspondent for The New York Times and the author of The Good Rain. He lives in Seattle.
Date of Birth:November 8, 1954
Table of Contents
|Part 1||The Last Act of Life, September 1989|
|Part 1||The First Act of Death, Autumn 1935|
|2.||The Need for Butter||12|
|5.||The Night Marshal||38|
|8.||To the River||67|
|Part 3||Psychic Duel, 1989|
|12.||A Family Visit||110|
|13.||Men With Badges||117|
|18.||Men Without Badges||165|
|19.||In Big Sky Country||174|
|Epilogue: May 1990|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Breaking Blue based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
I have read several of Timothy Egan's more recent books, and love his writing style and subjects so much that I went in search of older works. I really enjoyed this one, and I can't believe I hadn't heard of it before. A crime committed by one of the "boys in blue" (an officer in the Spokane Police Dept) during the hard days of the Depression is covered up and goes unsolved. The victim is a cop himself, and his children never learn who killed their father. The retelling of this nonfiction crime is engrossing in itself, but Egan also introduces us to a present day small town sheriff who decides to write his master's thesis on his sheriff predecessors. He learns of the unsolved murder and becomes obsessed with solving it. Revelations of how our upbringing shapes our foibles, how black and white is sometimes gray, and how searching for truth can be alienating and sometimes unrewarding are all themes of this excellently written and engrossing work of nonfiction. What a talented author!
A great book, especially if you are familiar with the area. This gives a great look at the "great depression" . We have lots of material enlightening us about the corruption in law enforcement in cities like Chicago and New York but with this you realize that no place was immune.
If you live in the Northwest, this book will hold some extra fascination. The references made about life during the Depression are educational. A good enough read.
I love reading about small events that have big implications! This story about the murder of a policeman in Spokane, WA in 1935 might make one think, "Who cares!" But the story is so artfully told, and so full of amazing and sad context, that it's easy to see how it could be applied to our time. Another one in this vein is Philp Gourevitch's A Cold Case. Recommended.
Whats wrong carter?
Sits on a tree branch and crys in her hands