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The Vendetta: Special Agent Melvin Purvis, John Dillinger, and Hoover's FBI in the Age of Gangsters
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The Vendetta: Special Agent Melvin Purvis, John Dillinger, and Hoover's FBI in the Age of Gangsters

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  51 ratings  ·  9 reviews
His son tells the life story of Melvin Purvis, once an iconic G-man and public hero, who was destroyed not by the famous villains of the 1930s but by the jealousy of his boss, J. Edgar Hoover.
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Published May 5th 2009 by PublicAffairs (first published October 10th 2005)
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Matt
This is a good book. Nice blend of significant events mixed in with an interesting perspective. Does and exemplary job of describing the pursuit and final capture/killing of depression era legends John Dillinger, Pretty Boy Floyd and Baby Face Nelson.

The thrust of the book was a chronicle of the relationship of J. Edger Hoover and his most famous agent Melvin Purvis. Written by Pruvis’ youngest son, this book clearly provides a perspective around the long history of Hoover trying to discredit Pu
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Kurt
I am a huge fan of the Dillinger myth (and the associated stories: the Barker-Karpis Gang, Bonnie and Clyde, etc.), and I love books about that time period of U.S. History. This book, written by a son about his famous father's prominent role in fighting the Public Enemies of the 1930s, does not add all that much to my understanding of the events, but it is fantastic in what it adds to an understanding of the inner workings of Hoover's FBI.

I had a vague sense from other books that Hoover resented
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Elisha Condie
So, my main reason for picking this up was how good Johnny Depp looked in his John Dillinger clothes from the film "Public Enemies". And how good Christian Bale looked tracking him down. There. I said it.

But, this book is really interesting. It's written by the son of Melvin Purvis (the Christian Bale character) to give credit to his late father. It was a great read, although sometimes a little TOO detailed (I don't need to know the name of every agent involved on cases). Poor Melvin Purvis bec
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Kim Mccully-mobley
This book's authors (one of them is the son of former FBI man--Melvin Purvis) did an amazing job of weaving the story amidst the documentation from the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s. The facts reveal a sad and jealous man in power (J. Edgar Hoover) and how jealousy corrupts and corrodes friendships, professional relationships and lives that literally hang in the balance. If you are a history buff and think you already know a lot about John Dillinger, Ma Barker, Baby Face Nelson and Pretty Boy Floyd, th ...more
Bludhaven
Very engaging read. I couldn't put it down.

There are many books about both Dillinger and Hoover. To my knowledge this is the first book about Melvin Purvis who played an elementary part in the young FBI's investigation and was famed to be the one who put down Dillinger.

The book, written by his youngest son Alston Purvis, may not always be 100% objective but is backed up by very solid research. It's an amazing look into the internal workings of the FBI and it's a shocking testament to Hoover's c
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Courtney
Interesting look into the relationship of J. Edgar Hoover and Melvin Purvis and the events that were taking place as they were gaining advancement in the FBI. I don't read a lot of nonfiction but I enjoyed this one, it was written creatively and the details were great.
Carol
Very interesting biography of a great man by his son. This just confirmed my view that J. Edgar Hoover was a manipulative, petty, insecure little man who abused his power.
Vera Hailey
written by purvis' son so maybe not the most objective account. entertaining and confirms that hoover was a jerk.
Lewis Codington
Very well written, fascinating story about the FBI agent who captured John Dillinger.
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