From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. There is much to praise in this authorized biography of Rene Boxer Enriquez, penned by Peabody Award–winning journalist Blatchford (Three Dog Nightmare
). While this is a superb cautionary tale about the dangers of youth falling into senseless gang violence, it also rates as a probing, redemptive story of Enriquez, a vicious, heroin-addicted killer for Los Angeles's largest criminal street gang, with 20,000 members involved in extortion, drug-dealing, vice and murder. Blatchford explores with grim accuracy Enriquez's criminal past, prison killings, turf wars and contract eliminations around the West Coast. But the book also reveals Enriquez and his crew's total commitment to hoodlum honor, the cost in lives and status, and the betrayals and intrigues both behind bars and out in society. This is a savvy account of Enriquez's arduous self-education and personal transformation from cold killer to a man who, in his own words, educates law enforcement and the public about a prison and criminal subculture that should scare the hell out of them. (Sept.)
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“Blatchford is well-suited to tell this story . . . he captures the nuances and nihilism of the prison world . . . The narrative is interspersed with fascinating prison arcana.” (Los Angeles Times)
“A gripping, powerful, chilling inside look at a criminal organization that is changing the organized crime landscape. This is a mob classic.” (Dominick Dunne)
“A fascinating, vivid and unforgettable insider’s look at the bloody, secret and deadly Mexican Mafia. Chris Blatchford’s compulsively readable wake-up call spares no one and names everyone, including the politicians who aid and abet this dangerous criminal organization, through corruption, maddening naiveté, or political correctness.” (Joseph Wambaugh)
“A courageous and well-written exposé on one of the most ruthless and powerful gangs of all, the Mexican Mafia. Chris Blatchford reaffirms his position as being among Americans greatest investigative reporters.” (Vincent Bugliosi, author of Helter Skelter)
“Chris Blatchford has hit a grand slam. The Black Hand is an important page turning book that will take you into a frightening dark world that shouldn’t exist… but it does. It’s riveting, and when you finish the book, you’ll get up and lock your doors. Highly recommended.” (William "Billy" Queen, retired special agent ATF and bestselling author of Under and Alone)
“A fascinating look at the world of the Mexican Mafia, more ruthless than the LCN. A must read for law enforcement and a tribute to the courage of ‘dropout’ Rene ‘Boxer’ Enriquez.” (Joe Pistone, aka Donnie Brasco)