Title: The Jolly Roger Social Club
Author: Nick Foster
Narrator: Donald Corren
Publisher/Date: Blackstone Audio, 07/12/16
The Jolly Roger Social Club is a true crime story that details the murder of five people by William Dathan Holbert. What makes this story so unusual is that the victims were members of the ex-pat community living in the Republic of Panama. They chose Panama because they believed they could live with a higher standard of living than in the United States and they thought they would be safer. Ultimately it was neither.
I first heard of “Wild Bill” Holbert several years ago. When the audiobook came out, I requested it from Audiobook Jukebox because I felt I had a unique perspective as a review, I spent time in the Panama Canal Zone as a child. I am familiar history and culture. It is an important part of the equation as the book does a terrific job detailing.
The story details Holbert as he continuously reinvents himself as he stays one step ahead of the law. When Holbert and his girlfriend Reese arrived in the Darklands area after wandering around Costa Rica and other areas of Northern Panama, they fall in with the ex-pat community whose motto is live and let live. They keep to themselves, do not assimilate into the Panamanian community. The community isolation by culture and geography, most of Darklands is accessible by boat only, is perfect for this con-man.
The book is fascinating cautionary tale. The trail does have a lot of twists and turns which lead to a thrilling conclusion. Donald Corren does a great job narrating. His voice is pleasant to listen to and he enunciates clearly. I would listen to another book he narrated. If you enjoy the true crime genre, I highly suggest The Jolly Roger Social Club. I received a copy of the audiobook from The Audiobook Jukebox in exchange for an honest review.