Book Review: Black Klansman

Book Review: Black KlansmanBlack Klansman: Race, Hate, and the Undercover Investigation of a Lifetime
by Ron Stallworth
on June 5, 2018
Pages: 208
Published by Flatiron Books
Genres: Memoir, Non-Fiction
Goodreads

In 1978 the community of Colorado Springs, Colorado experienced a growth of Ku Klux Klan (KKK) membership. One man dared to challenge their effort and thwart attempts to take over the city, Police Detective Ron Stallworth. He launched an undercover investigation into the Klan, gained membership into the organization, briefly served as Duke's bodyguard, and was eventually asked to be the leader of the Colorado Springs chapter. The irony of this investigation was that Stallworth is… A Black man. In the process he battled internal departmental politics to successfully pull off this "sting." Black Klansman explains how he overcame these obstacles and accomplished this almost unbelievable unique achievement.

My Takeaway

Although I appreciated the overall story Ron Stallworth contributed, I did not necessarily love the writing style and flow of Black Klansman. I felt the memoir could have been shorter and less repetitive (perhaps a more beneficial book for younger readers). Regardless, Stallworth’s infiltration into the KKK as a black detective in the 70’s was fascinating and praiseworthy. Through the memoir, I was able to learn more about how the Ku Klux Klan was started – especially in Colorado. My favorite part was when Stallworth was placed as David Duke’s bodyguard (some poetic justice if you ask me). So, even though the book was not a favorite of mine, I could recognize the value and importance of Stallworth’s undercover sting. Oh, and I am excited for the movie (BlacKkKlansman), which was written and directed by Spike Lee and produced by Jordan Peele.

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