“Not only is this book the best sort of true-crime writing, but it is also a stunning exploration of the concept of manhood in America” (Sebastian Junger, New York Times–bestselling author of War).
Through six detailed accounts of murders involving gay men, American Honor Killings examines the facts of cases that are too often politicized, sensationalized, or simply ignored. David McConnell researched killings from small-town Alabama to San Quentin’s death row, and here recounts both notorious and lesser-known crimes.
We may tend to think these stories involve either the perpetrator’s internal struggle over his own identity or a victim’s fatally miscalculated proposition. They’re almost never that simple. These riveting narratives reveal how different factors played into each case, among them ideas and beliefs about masculinity. Together, they form a secret American history of rage and desire. In each story, victims, murderers, friends, and relatives come breathtakingly alive. The result is a true-crime book of unusual power, depth, and psychological insight—“a journalistic tour de force made all the more impressive by jailhouse interviews” (Publishers Weekly).
“A masterpiece of reportage . . . At turns heartbreaking and terrifying . . . If Truman Capote were alive today, he would die of envy. David McConnell has taken the mantle of great American nonfiction writer.” —Evan Wright, author of Generation Kill