In 1967 Donna Banion, wife of a wealthy black Chicago obstetrician/gynecologist, was murdered in their apartment. Mystery novelist D'Amato ( Hardball ) has done an outstanding job of re-creating the era and locale to explain what happened and why. John Banion was European-educated and spoke four languages; his wife was the daughter of one of the wealthiest African American families in the Windy City. His lifestyle was flamboyant, featuring a mistress, a boat, thoroughbred horses and auto racing. Although Dr. Banion was found guilty of his wife's murder, D'Amato argues convincingly that he was innocent. Banion fled to Africa, where he spent 12 years before he was returned to Illinois to serve his 20-to-30-year sentence. Appeals filed in state and federal courts failed as his health deteriorated, until he was finally given a pardon a few weeks before he died in prison in 1990. A well-told, horrifying story. (July)
Reviewed on: 03/02/1992 Release date: 03/01/1992 Genre: Nonfiction
During the Covid-19 crisis, Publishers Weekly is providing free digital access to our magazine, archive, and website. To receive the access to the latest issue delivered to your inbox free each week, enter your email below.