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Welcome to our audiobook review for “Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann. In this article, we’ll dive into the intriguing true crime story told in Grann’s audiobook and discuss its highlights and impact on listeners. Grann, a journalist and bestselling author, has gained a reputation for his gripping nonfiction writing in recent years, and “Killers of the Flower Moon” is no exception. Below, we’ll explore its themes, characters, narration, and more to give you a thorough understanding of this audiobook. But before we get started, let’s take a closer look at the author himself.

David Grann is a staff writer for The New Yorker and the author of several critically acclaimed books, including “The Lost City of Z” and “Killers of the Flower Moon.” His writing has been praised for its thorough research, engaging prose, and meticulous attention to detail. In “Killers of the Flower Moon,” Grann brings his trademark style to a historical true crime story, exploring a series of murders that occurred in 1920s Oklahoma. Let’s dive in and see what makes this audiobook worth listening to.

Overview of “Killers of the Flower Moon” Audiobook

“Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann is a gripping, true crime audiobook that offers a fascinating look into one of the most sinister crimes in American history. The audiobook explores the story of the Osage Murders, which shook the nation in the 1920s and resulted in the deaths of numerous Native Americans.

The audiobook provides readers with an in-depth account of the events leading up to the heinous crimes, the investigations that ensued, and the subsequent trials. Through meticulous research and first-hand accounts, Grann paints a vivid picture of the challenging landscape of early-20th-century America, where greed, corruption, and power struggles were all at play.

Overall, “Killers of the Flower Moon” audiobook is a harrowing and thought-provoking tale that examines the dark side of human nature. It offers insights into the complex historical and social factors that precipitated the crimes and invites the listener to consider the implications of these events for modern America.

Plot Summary of “Killers of the Flower Moon”

Set in the early 20th century, “Killers of the Flower Moon” tells the harrowing true story of the Osage Indian tribe, who became incredibly wealthy after oil was discovered on their land in Oklahoma. However, their newfound wealth sparked a deadly conspiracy that took the lives of many Osage members.

The audiobook follows the investigations of Tom White, a former Texas Ranger, who is tasked with unraveling the conspiracy and bringing the killers to justice. Along the way, White teams up with the FBI and discovers a web of corruption and greed that goes deep into the heart of the American government.

As the investigation progresses, tensions rise, and the Osage people are left in constant fear for their lives. The story culminates in a shocking climax, where the true extent of the conspiracy is finally revealed.

David Grann’s masterful storytelling provides a gripping and emotional account of the tragic events that took place, shedding light on an often-overlooked period of American history.

Key Events in “Killers of the Flower Moon”

Event Description
Discovery of oil The Osage tribe becomes incredibly wealthy after oil is discovered on their land
Deaths in the Osage community Several Osage members are killed, sparking an investigation by Tom White
Discovery of conspiracy Tom White and the FBI discover a vast conspiracy involving prominent members of American society
Arrests and trials The killers are brought to trial and face justice for their crimes

Historical Context of the Osage Murders

The Osage Murders, also known as the Reign of Terror, took place in the early 1920s in Osage County, Oklahoma. The murders saw at least 20 Osage Native Americans killed, all of whom were wealthy due to the discovery of oil on their land. In addition to the murders, many more Osage were targeted in orchestrated attempts to swindle them out of their wealth.

These crimes occurred during a time of significant tension between the federal government and Osage Nation. The US government implemented a policy of assimilation through forced schooling and land allotment, which resulted in a loss of tribal sovereignty and control over their land. This vulnerability made the Osage targets for the greed and corruption that was rampant in the region at the time.

The investigation into the Osage Murders became one of the FBI’s first major homicide investigations. It uncovered a vast conspiracy that involved numerous individuals, including prominent community members and officials. The case ultimately resulted in the prosecution of several individuals and led to broader reforms in the way the federal government handled relations with Native American communities.

Main Characters in “Killers of the Flower Moon”

“Killers of the Flower Moon” introduces readers to a range of fascinating characters, each with their own unique role in the gripping true crime story. The book follows the Osage tribe, the wealthiest people per capita in the world, who were targeted by a string of murders in the 1920s. Here are some of the main characters:

Character Name Description
Tom White A former Texas ranger hired to investigate the murders and bring the perpetrators to justice.
Mollie Burkhart An Osage woman whose family is targeted by the killers. She seeks justice for her family and community.
William Hale A former cattleman and local businessman suspected of ordering the murders in order to gain control of the Osage’s valuable oil rights.

These characters, along with others, come to life in David Grann’s vivid retelling of the events. The audiobook’s narration makes it easy to distinguish between these complex figures, as the voice actors bring each character’s unique personality and motivations to the forefront.

Writing Style and Narrative Techniques in “Killers of the Flower Moon”

David Grann’s writing style and narrative techniques in “Killers of the Flower Moon” effectively convey the complexity of the story and its historical background. He employs a non-fiction narrative approach, drawing readers in with vivid descriptions of characters, settings, and events.

Grann incorporates primary sources, interviews, and personal anecdotes to enhance the audiobook’s authenticity. His use of foreshadowing creates tension and suspense, keeping readers engaged throughout the story. Additionally, Grann’s incorporation of Osage culture and language adds depth and richness to the narrative.

The author’s writing style is concise, yet descriptive, enabling readers to visualize events as they unfold. He demonstrates a mastery of pacing, shifting the focus between different characters and events to maintain a sense of intrigue and momentum. Furthermore, Grann’s objective approach enables readers to form their conclusions about the events portrayed in the audiobook.

“Grann’s vivid descriptions transport readers to another time and place, immersing them in the story of the Osage Murders.”

Themes Explored in “Killers of the Flower Moon”

“Killers of the Flower Moon” brilliantly explores a multitude of themes that are relevant to today’s times. David Grann’s meticulous research and compelling storytelling shine a light on the dark realities of American history, raising important questions that continue to resonate today.


One of the primary themes is that of corruption within the American government and law enforcement agencies, as they enabled and even orchestrated the murder and exploitation of the Osage people for the sake of profit and power. The audiobook highlights the inherent flaws and injustices in the country’s political and legal systems, exposing the ways in which authority and wealth can be manipulated and exploited for personal gain.


“Killers of the Flower Moon” also delves into the theme of greed, specifically the greed for oil and money that drove people to commit heinous acts against the Osage people. The audiobook showcases the devastating effects of greed and the ways in which it can manifest and escalate into violence and tragedy.

The Struggle for Justice

Another theme that is prominently featured in the audiobook is the struggle for justice, as the Osage people and their allies fought to bring their oppressors to account and expose the corruption and exploitation that ran rampant within their communities. The audiobook pays homage to those who sought to right the wrongs committed against the Osage people and demonstrates the importance and difficulty of pursuing justice in the face of systemic oppression.

Audiobook Narration and Performance

One of the essential elements of an audiobook is the quality of its narration and performance. In the case of Killers of the Flower Moon, the audiobook’s voice actors do a remarkable job of bringing the story to life.

The narration is clear, concise, and delivered at a pace that allows listeners to fully absorb the details of the story. The voice actors convey the emotions and motivations of the characters, allowing listeners to connect with them on a deeper level.

Moreover, the intonation, tone, and cadence of the actors keep the listeners engaged, making for a dynamic and engaging listening experience. The voice actors’ performance highlights the tension, fear, and sadness that permeate the story, adding an extra layer of depth to the plot.

audiobook narration and performance

Overall, the narration and performance of Killers of the Flower Moon deliver an exceptional listening experience that will keep listeners engrossed until the very end.

Reception and Critical Acclaim of “Killers of the Flower Moon”

The audiobook “Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann has received widespread critical acclaim and positive reception from both readers and reviewers alike. It was a finalist for the National Book Award and has been included in numerous “best of” lists, including The New York Times Book Review’s list of the 10 Best Books of the Year.

The powerful storytelling, meticulous research, and compelling narration have been praised for providing a haunting and insightful look into a little-known event in American history. The audiobook’s ability to shed light on the injustices committed against the Osage people has garnered particular praise, with some critics calling it “a triumph of investigative journalism and historical research.”

Furthermore, the audiobook’s themes of greed, corruption, and violence resonate with audiences of all backgrounds and ages, making it a truly impactful and meaningful work. Its success and acclaim have cemented it as a must-read for true crime fans and history buffs alike.

Comparison with the Book Version

While the audiobook version of “Killers of the Flower Moon” offers a unique listening experience to readers, there are some notable differences from the print version that readers should be aware of. One advantage of the audiobook is the immersive experience it provides, with voice actors bringing the characters and story to life in a way that can be difficult to replicate in print. However, some readers may prefer the print version for its ability to easily reference specific passages or take notes.

Key Differences Between Audiobook and Print Versions

Feature Audiobook Version Print Version
Narration Voice actors bring characters to life with their performances. Readers can imagine their own voices and inflections for the characters.
Ability to take notes Difficult to pause and take notes on specific passages while listening. Easy to reference specific passages and take notes in margins.
Immersion Listeners can be fully immersed in the story and characters through the use of sound effects and voice acting. Readers must use their own imaginations to fully immerse themselves in the story and characters.

Ultimately, whether readers choose the audiobook or print version of “Killers of the Flower Moon” may depend on their personal preferences and reading habits. While the audiobook offers a unique and immersive experience, the print version may be more convenient for those who prefer taking notes or referencing specific passages. Regardless of the format, readers are sure to be captivated by David Grann’s haunting account of one of the most sinister crimes in American history.

Impact and Legacy of “Killers of the Flower Moon”

David Grann’s audiobook “Killers of the Flower Moon” has had a significant impact on the true crime genre and beyond. Through its riveting storytelling and captivating narration, the audiobook sheds light on the tragic events and injustices faced by the Osage Nation in the early 20th century.

The legacy of “Killers of the Flower Moon” is evident in the numerous awards and accolades it has received, including being a finalist for the National Book Award and a New York Times bestseller. Furthermore, the audiobook has prompted renewed interest and discussions about the lasting effects of historical oppression and racism.

In an interview with The Guardian, Grann stated that “it was important to…make sure that this history wasn’t buried.” Through his work, the legacy of the Osage Murders and the struggles of the Osage Nation have been brought to the forefront of public consciousness.

The Societal Impact of “Killers of the Flower Moon”

The audiobook has also had a significant societal impact, particularly in the realm of justice. Following its release, the Osage Nation initiated legal action to bring to justice those responsible for the murders of their people. This resulted in the reopening of investigations and the discovery of new evidence, leading to convictions for some of the perpetrators.

Furthermore, the audiobook has sparked conversations about the need for greater education and awareness of historical injustices against Indigenous peoples. It has brought attention to the ongoing struggles and marginalization faced by Indigenous communities, and the importance of acknowledging and addressing these issues.

“It’s easy to forget the past…but if we don’t confront it, and address it, we’re never going to solve some of these problems. We’re never going to achieve justice.” – David Grann

The impact and legacy of “Killers of the Flower Moon” extends beyond the true crime genre, serving as a testament to the power of storytelling and its ability to bring attention to important social issues.

Analysis of Historical Accuracy

While “Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann is a work of non-fiction, there has been some debate surrounding the historical accuracy of the events portrayed in the audiobook. Some critics have argued that Grann takes certain liberties with the facts in order to create a more compelling narrative.

One of the main points of contention is the portrayal of certain individuals involved in the Osage Murders. Some historians have argued that Grann provides a one-dimensional view of the killers, emphasizing their savagery and bloodlust at the expense of more nuanced characterizations.

Additionally, there are questions around the accuracy of certain details and timelines presented in the audiobook. For example, some historians dispute the claim that the Osage were the wealthiest people per capita in the world during the 1920s. Others have pointed out inaccuracies in the timeline of certain events, arguing that Grann compresses or conflates certain details for the sake of narrative flow.

Despite these concerns, it is worth noting that “Killers of the Flower Moon” remains a highly regarded work of true crime literature. The audiobook has received critical acclaim for its gripping storytelling and incisive analysis of the Osage Murders. While the historical accuracy of the book may be subject to debate, it is nevertheless a powerful and important work that sheds light on a dark chapter in American history.

Similar Audiobooks and Recommendations

If you enjoyed “Killers of the Flower Moon,” here are some similar audiobooks that you might want to check out:

Title Author Description
The Devil in the White City Erik Larson A non-fiction book that explores the story of the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago and a series of murders committed by a serial killer.
Bad Blood John Carreyrou A journalistic book that delves into the rise and fall of Theranos, a Silicon Valley startup that claimed to have a revolutionary blood-testing technology.
In Cold Blood Truman Capote A classic true crime novel that recounts the story of the murder of the Clutter family in Kansas in 1959, and the investigation and trial that followed.

These audiobooks offer similar themes of true crime investigations, historical background, and compelling narratives that keep readers engaged.

Audience and Appropriate Age Range

The target audience for “Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann is true crime enthusiasts, history buffs, and fans of narrative non-fiction. The audiobook is a captivating and informative account of the Osage Murders and the investigation that followed, making it an excellent choice for readers interested in these topics.

Considering the mature and sometimes graphic nature of the subject matter, the appropriate age range for readers may be 18 years and above.

Parents or guardians of younger readers should use their discretion before allowing them to listen to the audiobook, as it contains descriptions of violence, murder, and other disturbing themes that may not be suitable for all audiences.

Please note: Image is for illustrative purposes only and does not reflect the actual audiobook cover.


In conclusion, “Killers of the Flower Moon” is a riveting audiobook that sheds light on an often-overlooked chapter in American history. David Grann’s meticulous research and engaging storytelling make for a compelling listening experience. The book’s exploration of themes such as corruption, greed, and the struggle for justice resonates with readers of all backgrounds and interests.

The narration and performance of the audiobook are top-notch, bringing the characters and events to life. While the book has received critical acclaim and numerous accolades, its true impact lies in its ability to educate and inform audiences about a little-known tragedy in America’s past.

Overall, “Killers of the Flower Moon” is a must-read for true crime fans, history buffs, and anyone who appreciates a well-crafted, thought-provoking story. It is recommended for mature audiences due to its intense subject matter and graphic content.

For those who enjoyed this audiobook, other similar works worth exploring include “The Devil in the White City” by Erik Larson and “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” by John Berendt. Both books delve into real-life crimes and mysteries, weaving together history, culture, and suspense in a fascinating way.

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