Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History

Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History

In the spirit of Killers of the Flower Moon and The Onion Field, Norco ?80 is a gripping true crime account of one of the most violent bank heists in US history. Norco ?80 tells the story of how five heavily-armed young men?led by an apocalyptic born-again Christian?attempted a bank robbery that turned into one of the most violent criminal events in U.S. history, forever ch In the spirit of Killers of the Flower Moon and The Onion Field, Norco ?80 is a gripping true crime account...

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Title:Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History
Author:Peter Houlahan
Rating:
Genres:Nonfiction
ISBN:1640092129
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:400 pages pages

Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History Reviews

  • OutlawPoet
    Jun 05, 2019
    Oh, this book was all kinds of amazing! Even though I'm from Southern California, I'd never heard of the Norco bank robbery. I figured it was before my time, but my parents hadn't heard of it either. Reading, this, I don't know how we missed it. This is one exciting read. Whi...
  • Ken Heard
    Jul 06, 2019
    I was bogged down at first by Peter Houlahan's writing style in the first third of the book. He took massive author liberties in assuming what the robbers said and thought while planning their heist and during the actual robbery. There's an eff-load of cursing in their thoughts. Maybe ...
  • Susan (aka Just My Op)
    Jul 28, 2019
    This story of the spectacular and deadly 1980 bank robbery and subsequent chase is certainly interesting. And very detailed ? perhaps a little too detailed for me. While the story was interesting, that didn't keep it from dragging in places. I did like that background was given on...
  • Carmen
    Jul 11, 2019
    My GOD I read this book in one 6 hour sitting. I simply couldn?t...and wouldn?t...put it down. The pace is mind boggling and the author does a great job of keeping the relevant but not getting bogged down during the trial portion (a la Errol Morris) and wraps it up tidily. There...
  • Kristin
    Mar 11, 2019
    Norco ?80 is one hell-raising ride through 1970?s Southern California with an apocalyptic prophet and the prosecutors bent on turning the tables on the policemen involved in the most violent bank heist ever committed on American soil. From the minute you meet the charismatic George...
  • Amanda
    Jul 29, 2019
    4.5 stars rounding up - what a wild story from the robbery all the way through the trial. I had never heard of it before. The writing makes you feel like you?re right there throughout the whole robbery and chase. Really well done. I need a Netflix doc on this!! ...
  • Shannon A
    Mar 03, 2019
    On May 9, 1980, what usually only happens in action-thriller movies came to life in Orange County, California. I don?t usually read true-crime, but Houlahan?s writing pulled me in. While reading this meticulous researched and documented account, I could almost smell the gun powder,...
  • Tom Brennan
    Jul 09, 2019
    Birthed in a distinctively curious milieu of poverty, survivalism, sign gifts, and eschatology, the story told here is all kinds of fascinating. The planning, the robbery, the pursuit, the capture, and the trial are all given full treatment. Along the way, Houlahan not only holds our i...
  • Katie/Doing Dewey
    Jul 08, 2019
    Summary: A well-written account of a dramatic true crime. This is the story of a 1980 bank robbery in Norco, California. Committed by five men almost on a whim, this poorly planned robbery led to a terrifying car chase and fire fight. The chase was made particularly dangerous by th...
  • Thomas Kelley
    Jun 25, 2019
    This follows a group of guys which includes two sets of brothers Norco California, May 1980 who is orchestrated by one George Wayne Smith who is a military veteran who believes that the apocalypse is coming the end of the world and in the aftermath the need to be a survivalist because ...
  • Jan
    Jul 24, 2019
    This is one of the best books of its sort I have ever read. Well done, Peter Houlahan. What a heartbreak. I lived a very unexciting life within ten miles of where all this went down, and I was completely unaware of all of it until now. ...
  • Ashley
    May 29, 2019
    Interesting story, but gets a bit bogged down in the details of the police chase. Overall, very enjoyable ...
  • John Wood
    Jul 09, 2019
    An amazing account of a bank heist that couldn't have gone more wrong. The robbers mixed drinking, doping and apocalyptic survivalist beliefs and came up with a plan. Horrible mix! They were armed for Fort Knox and didn't have any backup plan or checklist to assess whether or not to go...
  • Ben
    Jul 20, 2019
    An interesting true crime story about a bank robbery in California filled the news when the robbers began a shoot with law enforcement officers. The robbers, heavily armed with multiple guns, home-made grenades and nail bombs, started a shoot out that lasted for days and spread into th...
  • Kerri
    Mar 10, 2019
    I received this book as a Goodreads Giveaway. This story provides further proof that truth is stranger than fiction. From the beginning, it engages the reader and doesn't let go; narrative writing at its finest. I lived in the midwest and was in my teens during the time of this crime a...
  • Donna
    Jul 20, 2019
    The jaw-dropping account of how 5 bank robbers armed to the teeth with military grade weapons - automatic weapons, homemade bombs, Molotov cocktails, and a samurai sword robbed a bank in the rural town of Norco (Riverside County) California in 1980 and subsequently led police on a wild...
  • Downward
    Jul 31, 2019
    a book bifurcated by an unbelievably high octane and violent bank robbery and chase and the death penalty trial aftermath, Norco 80 is at its most interesting when it traces the effect of violence on those who engage in it. we watch police officers lives fall apart because of the ptsd ...
  • Lisa Cobb Sabatini
    Feb 19, 2019
    I won an Advance Reading Copy of Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History by Peter Houlahan from Goodreads. Peter Houlahan takes readers step-by-step through the Norco bank robbery of 1980 and it's aftermath in his book, Norco '80: The True ...
  • Brandt
    Jul 01, 2019
    So I realize that I have a kind of hardcore ideal of what "histories" should be about and why they should be written (see my review of The Crowded Hour among other histories I have recently read for an idea of what I am talking about.) So when I read Norco '80: The True Story of the ...
  • Lori
    Jul 05, 2019
    This is a remarkable book, the true story of a bank robbery in Norco, California, in Riverside County by five men, some of them religious Christians convinced the end times were coming. Two lived together in a house in Norco where they were digging trenches and fencing the perimeter of...
  • Megan
    Jun 30, 2019
    AMAZING story - unfortunately, author isn't the best writer. He isn't bad but with such amazing source material that as far as I know about has never really been written about in book-length, he could have been so much better. Parts of the telling of the crime were really boring and re...
  • Scott
    Aug 11, 2019
    "Riverside to all Norco units. 211 in progress at the Security Pacific Bank at Fourth and Hamner." -- the RCSO dispatcher, on page 73 (*211 is California penal and/or police radio code for armed robbery) An absolutely outstanding and suspenseful true crime book, meticulously chronic...
  • J. F.
    Aug 02, 2019
    Short reading notes: Norco '80 by Peter Houlahan Norco '80, the "most spectacular bank robbery in American history" is an event no one has ever heard of but was purportedly a pivotal point in the militarization of police forces in America. When superimposed against, for instance,...
  • Brian Turcich
    Aug 07, 2019
    The first half of the book reads like a gripping action movie, complete with shoot outs, car chases & bullets flying everywhere. The second half goes into a kind of drawn out Law & Order look at the 2 year long court case with at times too much detail into personal lives of the...
  • Kathleen
    Jul 23, 2019
    The blame begins with the huge eruption of Mount St. Helens. George Wayne Smith (age 29) and Chris Haven (age 27) were convinced that the eruption announced the coming rapture as predicted in the Book of Revelations. Their apostolic faith convinced them that the end was near and that t...
  • Brad
    Jul 01, 2019
    Norco ?80 by Peter Houlahan is a nonfiction #BOTM pick. This book tells the story of a bank robbery gone horribly wrong in California in 1980. There is a lot of detail (sometimes too much) about the robbery, the chase and the trial. There is a about the effect on the lives involved, ...
  • Wanda Keith
    Aug 11, 2019
    Fantastic book about a bank robbery by five unlikely guys that turns into one of the most violent crimes in U.S. history. The story takes place at a bank in the small town of Norco, California in 1980. The group is made up a couple of born-again Christians who believe the world is in i...
  • Debbie Rose
    Jun 24, 2019
    Evidence Never Lies Given the evidence available to you, I appreciate you being an impartial writer...WELL DONE. From one who lived it, Debbie Rose Investigator Asst. to Jeanne Painter ...
  • Joe Cosentino
    Jul 06, 2019
    Wow! All in all a really wild ride and I think an important read to provide historical context around timely issues of militarization of police, PTSD and its impact on police efficacy, and gun control more broadly. The first third (~150 pages) recounts a 40 minute bank robbery and ...
  • Chaz
    Jun 26, 2019
    3.5 stars really... Quite a story and one that, like most people, I was completely unfamiliar with. I know there is talk of a movie about this, and there really should be. The book is a good read, although it drags a bit in the trial portion... Then again so did the actual trial....