Publication Date: 06/07/2023 ISBN: 9781804710395 Category:

Life Sentence

Mark Bowden

Publisher: Atlantic Books
Publication Date: 06/07/2023 ISBN: 9781804710395 Category:
Paperback / Softback


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Sandtown is one of the deadliest neighbourhoods in the world; it earned Baltimore its nickname Bodymore, Murderland, and was made notorious by ‘The Wire.’ Drug deals dominate street corners and ruthless, casual violence abounds.

Montana Barronette grew up in the centre of it all. The leader of the gang ‘Trained to Go,’ or TTG, when he was finally arrested, he had been nicknamed ‘Baltimore’s Number One Trigger Puller.’ Under Tana’s reign, TTG dominated Sandtown. When a string of murders were linked to TTG, each with dozens of witnesses too intimidated to testify, three detectives set out to put Tana in prison for life. For them, this was never about drugs: It was about serial murder.

Acclaimed journalist Mark Bowden, who spent his youth in the white suburbs of Baltimore, returns to the city with exclusive access to the FBI files and unprecedented insight into one of the city’s deadliest gangs and its notorious leader. As he traces the rise and fall of TTG, Bowden uses wiretaps, police interviews, trial transcripts and his own ongoing conversations with Tana’s family and community to create the most in-depth account of an inner-city gang ever written.

With his signature precision and propulsive narrative, Mark Bowden positions Tana – as a boy, a gang leader, a killer, and now a prisoner – in the context of Baltimore and America, illuminating his path for what it really was: a life sentence.

Publisher Review

Gripping and revealing...A powerful, nuanced depiction of gang violence in America that makes a strong case for meaningful reform * Kirkus Reviews (starred review) * A scorching true-crime narrative. . . Bowden pulls no punches in his indictment of the ways in which the richest country in the world has allowed Black children for decades to be born into blighted urban neighborhoods, and saddled them with burdens that they must struggle to surmount to lead meaningful lives. This account of 'young men growing up in a place where murderous violence has become a way of life' will haunt readers long after they finish it * Publishers Weekly (starred review) * A masterpiece, right up there with Black Hawk Down and Guests of the Ayatollah. It's gripping, it's fast, it's deeply insightful and empathetic, and it's brilliantly and exhaustively reported. People should read it. -- Matt Bai, author of ALL THE TRUTH IS OUT [Bowden is] a Woodward that outdoes even Woodward. -- Malcolm Gladwell * New Yorker * Bowden turns his masterful storytelling talent to chronicling the gang's reign of terror and law enforcement's Herculean efforts to end it * Booklist *

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