-- National Public Radio Book Concierge
-- Michigan Library Association
-- Foreword Magazine INDIES Award
-- Spitball Magazine's Casey Award
A 'HEAD-TURNING TALE'
-- US News and World Report
-- SABR's Seymour Medal
-- Great Lakes Independent Booksellers
In the mid-1930s, Detroit reigned as the City of Champions. Within a six-month span, the Tigers, Lions, and Red Wings won a World Series, NFL title, and Stanley Cup -- a major-sports trifecta achieved by no other American city before or since -- and it happened as undefeated local boxer Joe Louis was becoming a national sensation. As the successes mounted, the national media made heroes of the city's sports stars, and Detroit grew almost delirious, the string of victories
providing a sweet diversion from the Great Depression.
But beneath the jubilance, a nefarious plague was spreading unchecked. A wave of mysterious crimes had police baffled: bodies dumped along roadsides, suspicious suicides, bombings of homes and halls, flogging victims who refused to speak, assassination plots. All were the work of the Black Legion, a secret terrorist organization that flourished in Detroit until the summer of 1936, when one murder (and the loose lips of a gunman) led to its unraveling.
In Terror in the City of Champions, author Tom Stanton tells for the first time the riveting, intersecting tales of the frightening rise and fall of the Black Legion and the magnificent athletic ascension of Detroit. The hardcover and audio editions are available now. A softcover edition will be released in August 2017.
“With the racist Black Legion spreading evil and the rambunctious Detroit Tigers bringing joy, Detroit’s seemingly eternal forces of darkness and light coexist in this captivating slice of American history.”
—DAVID MARANISS, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of Once in a Great City: A Detroit Story
“Today, Detroit is a shadow of its former self. This fascinating book reveals what an astonishing place it formerly was. Eight decades ago, it was a boiling cauldron of social extremism, extravagant criminality, and athletic excellence. Readers of this book have a new understanding of the city and the Thirties.”
—GEORGE F. WILL, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of Men at Work
“Glittering triumphs cover up a sordid racist conspiracy in this lively vignette of the Motor City in its heyday. ... A vivid portrait of Depression-stricken Detroit.”
“Once in a blue moon, a city bears witness to the best and the worst of times. Such was Detroit's fate more than a generation ago as the Tigers, Lions and Red Wings reached new sports heights while the Black Legion too often ruled the night. It's a great tale and Tom Stanton has done a marvelous job telling it.”
—TIM WENDEL, author of Summer of '68 and High Heat
“Stanton has deftly recreated one of the most farfetched episodes of the Motor City's never-dull past.”
—RICHARD BAK, author of Detroitland and Joe Louis: The Great Black Hope
"Baseball books rarely reach the heights of Stanton's."
The Chicago Tribune
"Stanton is part Charles Kuralt, part W.P. Kinsella."
"A marvelous writer who can tell a story."