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Paradise Alley by Kevin Baker
Paradise Alley is a fictional account of the worst riot in U.S. history, which occurred in New York City during the Civil War. A new law allowed for the drafting of men to fight in the war, but draftees could buy their way out for $300. This left the poor and destitute to be the new conscripts and they were shipped out in chains to keep them from escaping. All this boiled over in Manhattan during five days in July, 1863. Kevin Baker has received high praise for his rendering of the horror of the violence as well as the bravery and sacrifice of different men involved. The Christian Science Monitor says "he's lit a fire under American history and made it burn with a roar."
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