The only thing I know about the infamous crime couple Bonnie and Clyde is what I have seen in old gangster coffee table books of my youth and a vague remembrance of the Warren Beatty – Faye Dunaway film Bonnie and Clyde.
When I saw the audiobook, Go Down Together: The True Untold Story of Bonnie and Clyde by Jeff Guinn, I figured, “what the heck… I’ll see if it is any good.” It is.
The book kept me interested throughout and really gave me a better understanding not only of the criminals as real people, but of the yellow journalism that created their legend.
I knew Bonnie and Clyde had a connection to Texas but had no idea that most of what they did was actually here in the Lone Star State. I learned so many new things about Clyde – who is nothing like Warren Beatty and also about Bonnie – who may have been a bit of a femme fatal ala Dunaway, but wasn’t anything like the glamorous portrayals of Hollywood.
The only real knock I have on the book is Guinn’s insistence on saying “Clyde and Bonnie” instead of “Bonnie and Clyde.” I didn’t dislike that because I had been used to hearing B&C, instead, it was because the author wouldn’t stray from it at all. I get that he wanted to be clear that Clyde was in charge, but his dogged insistence on C&B just stood out each time. Feel free to mix in a “the dangerous couple,” “wanted lovers,” “Barrow and Parker,” or even a single “Bonnie and Clyde.” The publisher must have been the one that insisted it be B&C in the subtitle.
by Chris Doelle