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American Heiress : The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst
by Jeffrey Toobin and Paul Michael


Overview - From New Yorker staff writer and bestselling author of The Nine and The Run of His Life: The People v. O. J. Simpson , the definitive account of the kidnapping and trial that defined an insane era in American history
On February 4, 1974, Patty Hearst, a sophomore in college and heiress to the Hearst family fortune, was kidnapped by a ragtag group of self-styled revolutionaries calling itself the Symbionese Liberation Army.
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More About American Heiress by Jeffrey Toobin; Paul Michael
 
 
 
Overview
From New Yorker staff writer and bestselling author of The Nine and The Run of His Life: The People v. O. J. Simpson, the definitive account of the kidnapping and trial that defined an insane era in American history
On February 4, 1974, Patty Hearst, a sophomore in college and heiress to the Hearst family fortune, was kidnapped by a ragtag group of self-styled revolutionaries calling itself the Symbionese Liberation Army. The already sensational story took the first of many incredible twists on April 3, when the group released a tape of Patty saying she had joined the SLA and had adopted the nom de guerre "Tania."
The weird turns of the tale are truly astonishing--the Hearst family trying to secure Patty's release by feeding all the people of Oakland and San Francisco for free; the bank security cameras capturing "Tania" wielding a machine gun during a robbery; a cast of characters including everyone from Bill Walton to the Black Panthers to Ronald Reagan to F. Lee Bailey; the largest police shoot-out in American history; the first breaking news event to be broadcast live on television stations across the country; Patty's year on the lam, running from authorities; and her circuslike trial, filled with theatrical courtroom confrontations and a dramatic last-minute reversal, after which the term "Stockholm syndrome" entered the lexicon.
The saga of Patty Hearst highlighted a decade in which America seemed to be suffering a collective nervous breakdown. Based on more than a hundred interviews and thousands of previously secret documents, American Heiress thrillingly recounts the craziness of the times (there were an average of 1,500 terrorist bombings a year in the early 1970s). Toobin portrays the lunacy of the half-baked radicals of the SLA and the toxic mix of sex, politics, and violence that swept up Patty Hearst and re-creates her melodramatic trial. American Heiress examines the life of a young woman who suffered an unimaginable trauma and then made the stunning decision to join her captors' crusade.
Or did she?

From the Hardcover edition.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780449807507
  • ISBN-10: 0449807509
  • Publisher: Random House Audio Publishing Group
  • Publish Date: August 2016
  • Dimensions: 5.9 x 5.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.65 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Biography & Autobiography > Rich & Famous
Books > Biography & Autobiography > Criminals & Outlaws
Books > True Crime > General

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2016-10-03
  • Reviewer: Staff

Audiobook veteran Michael brings his considerable skill to Toobins sprawling biographical narrative tackling one of the most controversial criminal cases in American history. Michael adroitly moves back and forth between Toobins expository elements and the colorful dialogue among the principal players involved. As Patricia Hearst shifts from diffident young heiress to fiery revolutionary to celebrity defendant eager to return to her former life, Michael doesnt miss a beat, consistently maintaining vocal mannerisms and personality quirks in his portrayal of her. Michaels chilling turn as career criminal Donald David DeFreeze leaves a lasting impression. His rendering of crime-scene detailincluding multiple bank robberies and Hearsts infamous sporting-goods store shootoutnever fails to enthrall. Yet he also hits the right notes in undertaking the soap opera elements of Hearst and her captors turned comrades, especially the constantly bickering husband-and-wife team of Bill and Emily Harris. Toobins writing and Michaels performance make for an enthralling listening experience. A Doubleday hardcover. (Aug.)

 
BookPage Reviews

Audio: Exemplary audio gifts

Yes, Commonwealth, Ann Patchett’s brilliant new novel, narrated by Hope Davis, is autobiographical. But it’s her fabulous, fluent storytelling, her understanding of family in all its cumbersome complexity and delicately nuanced affections and animosities that makes this group portrait so appealing. It all begins with a gin-soaked kiss at a christening party in 1960s Los Angeles that leads to divorce, a cross-country move and a blended but never homogenized family forced into intimacies that shift over the decades.

With clarity, smooth prose and a new cache of documents, Jeffrey Toobin tells the still-tantalizing tale that mesmerized a nation in the 1970s in American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst. It’s all here, set in context: how a captive became a bank-robbing comrade, how the jailed Patty became a Hearst again. All read with perfect pacing by Paul Michael.

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Written by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter, Hamilton: The Revolution is an irresistibly moving, revelatory account of the hottest, most heralded Broadway show in a generation. McCarter was in meetings, workshops and dressing rooms during the six years of the play’s development, and he talked with more than 40 people close to the show. He details Miranda’s constant rewriting and reshaping and shows how people from different backgrounds came together to make this stunningly audacious show work so wonderfully. Miranda reads the 300 funny footnotes he added to the libretto (on an accompanying PDF, which includes fabulous photos). 

TOP PICK IN AUDIO
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This article was originally published in the December 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews