Friday, May 1, 2009

Jerry Bledsoe Books

Jerry Bledsoe grew up in Thomasville, NC. An only child, Bledsoe lost his father early in life and lived with his mother.He was a journalist for 21 years with stints at newspapers in Kannapolis, Greensboro, Charlotte, Louisville and with Esquire magazine.
Bledsoe established a niche writing true-crime books whose grizzly murders envelop North Carolina families and communities. His true crime books include Bitter Blood, Blood Games, Before He Wakes, and Death Sentence. He took the profits from his bestselling books and established Down Home Press to publish books by and for Carolinians.
"Death by Journalism" is Bledsoe's stinging account of the imperfect storm of media, race and politics at Randolph Community College.When asked why he wrote the book, Bledsoe said, "truth matters".

I am absolutely disappointed that I cannot find any other books by Jerry Bledsoe on my local online bookstore apart from Bitter Blood which I have read and done a review on already.Jerry Bledsoe is an absolutely brilliant writer and if Bitter Blood is anything to go by I would buy all his books in a heartbeat.What I have done instead, is post a request on Amazon to get the Jerry Bledsoe books on Kindle as I am now waiting for delivery of my Kindle 2.I have decided to list below all the books written by Jerry Bledsoe for readers who can buy them through Amazon or who might want to access reviews on these books as I am unable to post any reviews on them.(hopefully just for the time being)

Before He Wakes
ISBN 978-0451406095
In 1988, high school coach Russ Stager of Durham, N.C., was "accidentally" killed by his wife, Barbara, shot with a loaded gun he allegedly kept under his pillow. A seemingly happy and popular couple, both active in their church, the two were compulsive overspenders,and she was a sexual overachiever with a string of extramarital affairs. As the case developed, it became clear she was a liar and a thief as well. Then detectives discovered that exactly 10 years earlier Barbara's first husband, Larry Ford, had died in an identical fashion but police had done nothing about their reservations concerning that "accident."
Before He Wakes: A True Story of Money, Marriage, Sex and Murder

Death Sentence

ISBN 978-0451407559
In 1978, 52-year-old grandmother Velma Barfield admitted to poisoning four people, including her own mother. While she would be convicted of only one murder,that of her fiance, Stuart Taylor,it would be enough for her to die by lethal injection in 1984, the first woman to be executed in the U.S. after the reinstatement of capital punishment in 1974.
Death Sentence: The True Story of Velma Barfield's Life, Crimes, and Punishment

Blood Games

ISBN 978-0525933694
On the surface this is an account of the plot conceived by Chris Pritchard to murder his mother and stepfather, Bonnie and Lieth Von Stein, to inherit a large sum of money; the crime involved two of his friends, James Upchurch, the actual killer of the stepfather and wounder of the mother, and Neal Henderson, the driver of the car which took them to the Von Stein home in Washington, N.C., on July 25, 1988. All three, from middle-class families, were college students of exceptionally high intelligence. They were also players of Dungeons and Dragons, a game which, according to Bledsoe, teaches the philosophy of selfishness. The book is far more than a true-crime study: it is a devastating and profounly disturbing portrait of a certain kind of family life. Here people marry casually, have children, move on to another incompatible marriage. The children of these broken homes are adversely affected, often find school no challenge and squander their youth on addiction, whether to alcohol, drugs, sex or fantasy games, until the groundwork is laid for tragedy.
Blood Games: 2A True Account of Family Murder

Death By Journalism
ISBN 978-1-878086-93-8
Jerry Bledsoe's interview on this book

When Rhonda Winters, director of the Archdale campus of Randolph Community College, decided to offer an adult, community outreach course on the Civil War in North Carolina, she couldn't have imagined the storm of political correctness she was setting into motion and the nightmare it would bring.
The course was almost finished, and the students were enjoying it immensely, when a controversy-seeking reporter for the News & Record of Greensboro, who had entered the class without permission, clashed with instructors and students and wrote an article falsely claiming that the course was teaching that slaves in the South were happy.
Picked up by the Associated Press and reprinted worldwide, the article brought a barrage of vituperative news coverage and vilification to the college. Although students, instructors and college officials protested that the newspaper's sensational claims never happened, News & Record editors insisted that its articles were fair and accurate--even after evidence indicated otherwise.
The articles resulted in branding the college, students and instructors as racist, and brought about an investigation by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and the cancellation of the course.
In this engrossing, moving, and frightening account, national award-winning journalist and New York Times #1 bestselling author Jerry Bledsoe takes readers into the class to show what actually happened and behind the scenes as college officials, students, and instructors attempted to deal with the crisis. But more than that, it tells the story of an honorable man, Jack Perdue, the course instructor, a local historian and preservationist, who died during the controversy. A man whom family, friends and students believe was destroyed by the news media.
Death by Journalism? raises important questions about free speech, academic freedom, political correctness, racial politics, and integrity of the news media. It should be required reading for journalism students.
Death by Journalism: One Teacher's Fateful Encounter With Political Correctness

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