Giveaways

History That Reads Like Fiction:
Empire of Sin

Have you read Erik Larson's bestseller The Devil in the White City (or another work of history that reads like fiction)? Share in the comments!

From bestselling author Gary Krist, Empire of Sin is a vibrant and immersive account of New Orleans’ other civil war, at a time when commercialized vice, jazz culture, and endemic crime defined the battlegrounds of the Crescent City.

Empire of Sin re-creates the remarkable story of New Orleans’ thirty-years war against itself, pitting the city’s elite “better half” against its powerful and long-entrenched underworld of vice, perversity, and crime.

This early-20th-century battle centers on one man: Tom Anderson, the undisputed czar of the city’s Storyville vice district, who fights desperately to keep his empire intact as it faces onslaughts from all sides.

Surrounding him are the stories of flamboyant prostitutes, crusading moral reformers, dissolute jazzmen, ruthless Mafiosi, venal politicians, and one extremely violent serial killer, all battling for primacy in a wild and wicked city unlike any other in the world.

“Focusing on the battle for (and against) morality in “the Sodom of the South” from the 1890s to the early 20th century, Krist’s hard-to-put-down read recounts a volatile time for vice in a town built on it.”
Where New Orleans

Congrats to Angelica D., Catherine S., Rita N., Elyse S., Lana L., and 95 other members of the Read It Forward community! Their entries were selected at random to win an Advance Reader’s Copy of Empire of Sin by Gary Krist.

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About the Author

GARY KRIST has written for the New York Times, Esquire, Salon, the Washington Post Book World, and elsewhere. He is the author of the bestselling City of Scoundrels and the acclaimed The White Cascade, as well as several works of fiction. He has been the recipient of the Stephen Crane Award, the Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Lowell Thomas Gold Medal for Travel Journalism, and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.
  • Vickie Ehlers Cyr

    Can’t wait to get my copy. Sounds like a great read.

    I read Eric Larson’s “Devil in the White City” and loved it. I really like nonfiction and especially the books that read like fiction. Simon Winchester’s historical books read easy like that also.

  • Dr Ley

    I so look forward to reading this.

  • librarypat

    I am looking forward to reading this. I will have to check my shelves to see if I have his other book. Thanks.

  • Bookbug

    I was lucky enough to receive this book from my friends at Read it Forward and I’m really appreciative of the opportunity to read and review. It is a fascinating, raucous romp through the history of the Big Easy from 1890 to about 1930!! New Orleans has a fascinating, infamous past and this book covers it all. From the violence orchestrated by organized crime against the chief of police, the birth of what would became known as jazz and the establishment of Storyville, the Reformers attempt to limit prostitution, gambling and alcohol, this book covers it all with an unsolved murder mystery thrown in.

    The author does a superb job of bringing all the elements together in a logical sequential order. The story is easy to read and follow. There are enough details to understand what is going on but you are not buried in confusing facts. All the components are bound together in an interesting narrative that keeps you turning pages.

    Even if you only have a passing curiosity in the history of New Orleans, pick this book up, you won’t be disappointed. Although this is non-fiction, it reads like a novel and you won’t want to put it down. Today, New Orleans is a city like no other and this book is as unique as the town.