In the 1900s, huge amounts of oil were discovered on the land of the Osage tribe in Oklahoma, netting them millions. Unfortunately, this sudden wealth attracted the attention of various opportunists. This new book by journalist David Grann looks at the fate of one family, in which dozens of members were murdered in a long series of crimes as part of a plot to steal their fortune.
The main focus of this tale is on "persecution and mass murder", but "the cynical greed of the initial oil rush, and the quick money it promised", is an important thread, says Ed Vulliamy in The Guardian. That makes it particularly timely given Donald Trump's decision to approve the Dakota Access Pipeline through sacred Native American tribal lands.
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As well as recounting a horrifying plan "to cream off Osage oil revenue", the book also shows how the subsequent investigations by the fledgling Federal Bureau of Investigation "represented a hinge moment in the history of American law-enforcement", says Ian Thompson in the Financial Times. This "grimly entertaining" story "is a marvel of detective-like research and narrative verve" showcasing the author's "Dashiell Hammett-like gift for suspense".
Matthew graduated from the University of Durham in 2004; he then gained an MSc, followed by a PhD at the London School of Economics.
He has previously written for a wide range of publications, including the Guardian and the Economist, and also helped to run a newsletter on terrorism. He has spent time at Lehman Brothers, Citigroup and the consultancy Lombard Street Research.
Matthew is the author of Superinvestors: Lessons from the greatest investors in history, published by Harriman House, which has been translated into several languages. His second book, Investing Explained: The Accessible Guide to Building an Investment Portfolio, is published by Kogan Page.
As senior writer, he writes the shares and politics & economics pages, as well as weekly Blowing It and Great Frauds in History columns He also writes a fortnightly reviews page and trading tips, as well as regular cover stories and multi-page investment focus features.
Follow Matthew on Twitter: @DrMatthewPartri
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