Jim Good's Reviews > Hellhound on His Trail: The Stalking of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the International Hunt for His Assassin

Hellhound on His Trail by Hampton Sides
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's review
Jun 16, 10

bookshelves: non-fiction, history
Read from June 07 to 09, 2010

Covers James Earl Ray’s assassination of Martin Luther King and the ensuing manhunt to capture him. Similar to other books by Sides in that the narrative interweaves multiple isolated events that eventually intersects. Most effective in Ghost Soldiers, but it also works here. At times the style becomes distracting to the story as Ray’s true name is not revealed until the story is almost complete leading me to wonder why a character from Atlas Shrugs was playing the leading role.

The book is at it’s best when describing the era and the nature of Martin Luther King’s leadership of the civil rights movement in that time. I was particularly fascinated with MLK’s leadership circle, their inner workings and jealousies, and his own personal shortcomings. That overlaid on top of the Hoover FBI and Johnson administration’s own internal politics, and Ray’s propensity for aliases make for a story that kept me engaged.

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