Public Enemies: The True Story of America's Greatest Crime Wave by Bryan Burrough
In the summer of 1933 an amazing group of chancers, misfits and psychopaths took to the American road. Fuelled by the Depression, fast cars and cheap guns, these freelance gangsters terrorized a vast swathe of banks and drugstores across the Midwest. Bonnie and Clyde, Dillinger, Machine Gun Kelly, Baby Face Nelson, the Barker gang, Pretty Boy Floyd and others went on a crime spree that turned them into legends in their own - generally quite brief - lifetimes. As they tore across state lines, mocking the police and amassing fortunes, the gangsters had no idea that in Washington their nemesis was forming: J. Edgar Hoover's FBI. Public Enemies is the sensational story of the outlaws whose exploits became folklore, and the savage, myth-making response of those who hunted them down.