The Holly: Five Bullets, One Gun, and the Struggle to Save an American Neighborhood

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Description

A New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice

An award-winning journalist’s dramatic account of a shooting that shook a community to its core, with important implications for the future

On the last evening of summer in 2013, five shots rang out in a part of northeast Denver known as the Holly. Long a destination for African American families fleeing the Jim Crow South, the area had become an “invisible city” within a historically white metropolis. While shootings there weren’t uncommon, the identity of the shooter that night came as a shock. Terrance Roberts was a revered anti-gang activist. His attempts to bring peace to his community had won the accolades of both his neighbors and the state’s most important power brokers. Why had he just fired a gun?

In The Holly, the award-winning Denver-based journalist Julian Rubinstein reconstructs the events that left a local gang member paralyzed and Roberts facing the possibility of life in prison. Much more than a crime story, The Holly is a multigenerational saga of race and politics that runs from the civil rights movement to Black Lives Matter. With a cast that includes billionaires, elected officials, cops, developers, and street kids, the book explores the porous boundaries between a city’s elites and its most disadvantaged citizens. It also probes the fraught relationships between police, confidential informants, activists, gang members, and ex-gang members as they struggle to put their pasts behind them. In The Holly, we see how well-intentioned efforts to curb violence and improve neighborhoods can go badly awry, and we track the interactions of law enforcement with gang members who conceive of themselves as defenders of a neighborhood. When Roberts goes on trial, the city’s fault lines are fully exposed. In a time of national reckoning over race, policing, and the uses and abuses of power, Rubinstein offers a dramatic and humane illumination of what’s at stake.

ISBN: 9781250849335
Publisher: Picador USA
Pub Date: 05/2022
Format: Paperback
Weight: 0.68lbs
Size: 8.28h x 5.51w x 0.71d

Additional information

Weight 0.68 lbs
Dimensions 8.28 × 5.51 × 0.71 in
format

Paperback