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Killing the Dream: James Earl Ray and the Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  142 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
In the three decades since April 4, 1968, when Martin Luther King, Jr., was shot to death in Memphis, scores of books and articles have questioned whether James Earl Ray, King's killer, acted alone or was part of a larger conspiracy. Now, based on explosive new interviews, confidential files, and previously undisclosed evidence, bestselling author Gerald Posner finally res ...more
Paperback, 464 pages
Published April 4th 1999 by Mariner Books (first published 1998)
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David Bales
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013
Gerald Posner previously wrote a book debunking the Kennedy assassination conspiracy theories and this one completely shatters any the myth of any conspiracy surrounding the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968. In retrospect it's hard to understand how anyone could have ever harbored any doubts about James Earl Ray's solo complicity in the murder but the poison of the era doubtlessly contributed to cynicism over the "official view." Posner does an excellent job reporting the nuts an ...more
Howard Olsen
Sep 08, 2007 rated it really liked it
As far as I know, this is the most comprehensive and rational history of the MLK assassination available. I would argue that Americans have learned more than enough about the death of JFK (much of it wrong), while remaining truly ignorant about the death of MLK, which was an equally incalcuable loss. Why that may be is beyond the scope of this little post, but anyone who cares about american history, politics, civil rights, race relations, or sociology will find plenty of fascinating information ...more
Jo Stafford
Mar 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In this exhaustive and thorough examination of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jnr, Gerald Posner concludes without a shadow of a doubt that James Earl Ray was the assassin. Posner tracks Ray's movements both before and after the assassination and persuasively debunks the various conspiracy theories that gained traction in the decades following King's murder.

Posner's reconstruction of Ray's early life is compelling reading. It would be an understatement to describe the Ray family as dys
John Gurney
Jul 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Excellent research and cogent writing about a fascinating topic make Killing The Dream hard to put down. Author Gerald Posner conducts his own research to help dispel various conspiracy theories. He takes us through James Earl Ray's history, exposing the man's overt racism, loner nature, and severe criminal past. Ray was an constant liar in all facets of his life, meaning the assassin's words are of little value. Gerald Posner relies on physical evidence and others' statements to understand what ...more
May 14, 2015 added it
The book I choose is killing the dream by the author Gerald Posner. This story takes place in Memphis where Dr. king was killed. I have chosen this book because it's a big topic we are going over in my English class and we have to read Dr. king famous " I have a dream speech." Also I choose this book because it was sitting at home on the shelve for stowaway a year before I even picked it up so why not read about something that can help me write about a great leader like Dr. King. Also I wanted t ...more
Sep 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Posner is the definitive author on assassinations and their related conspiracy theories. Posner’s other book on the topic Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK was even better than this one. While not quite as good or as extensive, this book still contains a wealth of detail on what happened during Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination, what came before (from James Earl Ray’s biography to how he prepared for the assassination), and what came after (how Ray eluded capture ...more
Matthew Kresal
Jul 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gerald Posner manages to do for the MLK assassination what he failed to do for the JFK assassination: disprove conspiracy. Posner disproves every conspiracy theory by showing Ray’s lies, the flaws in the “Raoul” story, and the flaws in the many theories. While he leaves the door opened for Ray to have done it for a $50,000 bounty, he proves that Ray and Ray alone killed MLK. This book should be the final word on the MLK assassination.
Jan 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
A nice piece of journalistic detective work on the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., this book seeks to refute conspiracy theories that suggest it wasn't James Earl Ray. The author's case is very convincing, though it is an controversy that I, frankly, hadn't been aware of until I read this.
Sep 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Investigative journalism at its best. A great read.
Nov 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biographical, history
A very thorough examination of MLK's assassination. I found the footnotes (on every page) to be distracting, but maybe it's just my habit of insisting on reading everything on the page.
Aug 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
James Earl Ray was a smart cookie for a lifetime loser! Gerald Posner did a lot better job with MLK's murder than his JFK's Case Closed.
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Gerald Posner is an award winning journalist, bestselling author and attorney. The Los Angeles Times dubs him "a classic-style investigative journalist." "His work is painstakingly honest journalism" concluded The Washington Post. The New York Times lauded his "exhaustive research techniques" and The Boston Globe talked of Posner's "thorough and hard-edge investigation." "A meticulous and serious ...more
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