A Thousand Pounds of Dynamite (Book Review)

Written by Michelle Watson

June 25, 2024

You’ll love it if
you like your true crime without a side of blood and guts

This book review contains affiliate links. Here’s my disclosure policy.

A Thousand Pounds of Dynamite

By Adam Higginbotham

Writing Craft
Moral Value

There’s a bomb in a casino. Now what?

I’m intrigued by Higginbotham’s new book on the Challenger disaster, so I thought I’d try one of his earlier and shorter true-crime books. This one describes how a dude made a bomb, put it into a casino, and attempted to extort money. Why did he do it? Did he succeed? Did the bomb, you know, go off?

This was a punchy, intriguing read. I listened to the audio narrated by the author, and it was great.

Because the crime happened back in 1980, before the Internet and cell phones and such, it was fascinating to learn how this dysfunctional man (a real piece of work) got the dynamite, rigged the bomb, placed it, and communicated with authorities…back in the Stone Age. 😂

But even MORE interesting are the family dysfunction and interpersonal dynamics at play here. Nobody does this kind of thing JUST for the money. Nor does a person do it alone, with no accomplices or stooges. The WHY behind the crime was most interesting for me.

I do not like grotesque true crime, where children are abused and people are graphically dismembered. This was a great read for someone like me who enjoys exploring the psyche and motives behind crime, but who can’t stomach graphic violence.


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