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The Boys on the Tracks: Death, Denial, and a Mother's Crusade to Bring Her Son's Killers to Justice

4.07  ·  Rating Details ·  165 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
The Boys on the Tracks is the story of a parent's worst nightmare, a quiet woman's confrontation with a world of murder, drugs, and corruption, where legitimate authority is mocked and the public trust is trampled. It is an intensely personal story and a story of national importance. It is a tale of multiple murders and of justice repeatedly denied.

The death of a child is
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published November 23rd 1999 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published November 1999)
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Keith Akers
Aug 19, 2014 Keith Akers rated it really liked it
At the core of the book is a pair of rather grisly murders. Two teenage boys are run over by a train. The plot revolves around the attempt of the mother of one of the two victims to find out the truth of the matter. At first, it’s considered an accident. The boys got stoned, and then fell asleep on the tracks and the train ran over them. But as the plot develops, it’s not an accident; it’s murder, and the boys were already dead, well before the train hit them.

This is unlike the usual crime nove
A.J. Jr.
Jul 28, 2012 A.J. Jr. rated it it was amazing
Must read. True story. I used to live in Arkansas and I'm well acquainted with this.
Jan 31, 2011 Theresa rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
In 1987, two boys, Kevin Ives and Don Henry, in Saline County, Arkansas, are run over by a train. The emergency workers on the scene felt the bodies were wrong and that the boys may have been dead when placed on the tracks. But the state medical examiner ruled their deaths as accidents due to “marijuana intoxication.” Yes, the state medical examiner thought they’d inhaled so much marijuana that they passed out and couldn’t hear the train whistle.

The parents didn’t believe this conclusion and wer
Jun 10, 2008 Susan rated it really liked it
Recommended to Susan by: My wonderful husband
Just started this true-life crime novel. Two teens, Kevin Ives and Don Henry, are killed mysteriously in rural Arkansas. Their parents are completely baffled by the shoddy investigation, so they take matters into their own hands. I'm only 1/5 of the way through it, but the utter disregard for the truth is mind-boggling.

Okay, now I am 1/2 way and the treachery, betrayal, and utter irresponsibility of public officials is mind-boggling. But Linda Ives (mother of Kevin) is a modern-day hero! She st
Dec 10, 2007 BeckyTalbot rated it liked it
The story is riveting, and the depth of Leveritt's reporting is impressive. I thought I'd be reading a story about solving a murder, but what ended up pushing this story forward was the way it was impossible for the family of murder victim Kevin Ives to get the authorities to solve anything-- and even to admit what the overwhelming evidence pointed to-- that a murder had, in fact, taken place. The cover-ups, the homicides of mutliple witnesses in the Ives case, the corrupt drug task force, all o ...more
Vail Joy
Nov 06, 2012 Vail Joy rated it really liked it
Mara Leveritt is extremely thorough in her research and in conveying the perspectives of her subjects. I was intrigued by the initial case, but surprised to learn so much about the Arkansas political and judicial climate of the time. Thought I felt some of the information to be less-than-relevant (some of the detail towards the end of the book) I do understand that in the end, this is less of a study of one woman and her murdered son, and more of a complete, heavily layered butterfly effect. My ...more
Jul 07, 2016 Michele rated it it was amazing
Life truly is stranger than fiction - and much more evil and twisted than I would have imagined. The author did an excellent job of presenting a very complex web of corruption...not too different from what we still see today
Sarah Sally
Jun 25, 2013 Sarah Sally rated it it was amazing
That the prominent political players in this saga are still practicing deceit and slight of hand and remain unhindered by the truths exposed within these leaves; gives proof that a "perfect storm" of cover-ups happened to these two boys & their families. Even more revolting is the fact that in 2013, there are bodies still being unearthed (literally) that have ties to the peripheral players. Well and thoroughly researched- too bad that sheeple are just as easily mislead today as they were the ...more
Kathy Smith
Oct 11, 2013 Kathy Smith rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing. A true story about 2 boys being in the wrong place at the wrong time, end up murdered, and the long-stretching arm of the law that covered up the events leading up to and beyond their deaths. It was mind-boggling how high up the corruption in Saline County, ARK went, as well as to the federal level. A great read, one to take your time with, and many kudos and condolences to Linda Ives, Kevin Ive's mother.
Aug 09, 2016 Peggy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a heart-wrenching, incredible story. It is a complicated true story of a crime in Arkansas, which turns out to be several crimes and corruption that goes all the way to the top. I just finished reading this book before watching James Comey director of the F.B.I. give a news conference about Hillary Clinton's email - not related but makes me wonder if you can trust anybody
Jul 24, 2016 Beth rated it it was ok
This book was interesting at first but really got bogged down toward the end. I only skimmed the last 100 pages.
Mar 19, 2013 Heather rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, crime
I had to pick this up after reading The Devil's Knot by the same author. This was a very interesting look at the drug trade in the 80s and 90s and how it intersected the life of a small-town mother after her son was killed. I enjoyed The Devil's Knot more, but this was still very worthwhile.
Feb 26, 2013 Kim rated it it was ok
just too much detail about political corruption for me. interesting base story of two boys run over by a train but my brain couldn't handle or enjoy the details that followed. The Clinton information (if it is to be believed) was pretty shocking however.
Jun 02, 2010 Slyv rated it liked it
about half-way through I got bogged down in the political tangles of county politics and started skipping pages and reading the first sentence of the paragraph. Makes a good point, though.
Apr 07, 2016 Amy rated it really liked it
Shelves: bio
Very sad that they still don't know to this day who killed these two boys. The politics involved in this story turned my stomach. I am heart broken for the parents.
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Mara Leveritt is an Arkansas reporter best known as the author of Devil’s Knot (Atria 2002) and Dark Spell, (Bird Call Press 2013), the first books of her intended Justice Knot Trilogy about three Cub Scouts who were murdered in West Memphis, Arkansas and the case of the three teenagers who were convicted of the murders and then, 18 years later--and after pleading guilty--were abruptly set free. A ...more
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