Among the many books crime-writer Nate Hendley has penned, Dutch Schultz: brazen beer baron of New York, is one of the most recent. Factual, gritty, written in a readable, fluid manner, Schultz is now beginning to receive a few accolades.
This is a recent 5-star review from a Goodreads reviewer:
‘I received this as a Goodreads giveaway.
‘This isn’t really a book I would normally go for, but the description piqued my curiosity. I went into this book with very limited knowledge about Prohibition, but walked away with a huge appreciation for how it affected the lives of so many – the public, the mobsters, the cops. But this is certainly not just a history lesson. It is also the personal adventures of Dutch Schultz, and his rise to be one of the top mobsters of the Prohibition era.
‘”January 17, 1920: Prohibition, the government’s greatest gift to the criminal world”
‘Boy, is this ever true!! I had no idea that it enabled so much crime and corruption! And this book tosses you right into the middle of it all. You learn the operations and workings of various well-known mobsters and get to see exactly how they amassed their fame and fortunes. The power and money behind these crime lords is poignantly shown when describing the funeral of one mobster – a 100+ car funeral procession (35 cars just containing flowers!), thousands of attendants, mob bosses clamoring to send the best flower arrangement. At one point, Dutch is pulling in $35,000 A DAY. I’ll let that soak in for a minute. $35,000 A DAY. There are tons of people out there right now that make that much money ANNUALLY! He employed a math whiz who enjoyed a cushy paycheck of $10,000 a week. I’d love that sort of employment opportunity.
‘I also learned that tax evasion is apparently the Achilles heel of mobsters. Who knew? The government may not be able to convict you of any other crimes you’ve committed in your crime career (due to “disappearing” witnesses or tight-lipped detainees, etc), but if you don’t perform your civic duty and pay taxes – they’ll GETCHA! Unless of course, you are Dutch Schultz. In that case you will just breeze through the trial and come off looking like a hero. Twice.
‘This was an enjoyable read. It is one of those rare books that I honestly think would hold any reader’s interest, regardless of their usual choice of genre. The story is interesting and gripping. The “poor kid rises above his past to make something of himself” story is told without coming off as cheesy, and despite Dutch’s apparent lack of compassion for those around him, I still found myself rooting for him throughout the book.’
Dutch Schultz: brazen beer baron of New York is available in both print and eBook formats from online booksellers globally, or directly from Five Rivers.