The Grocer Who Sold McCarthyism

The Rise and Fall of Anti-Communist Crusader Laurence A. Johnson

Non-Fiction - Biography
354 Pages
Reviewed on 06/18/2024
Buy on Amazon

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Free Book Program, which is open to all readers and is completely free. The author will provide you with a free copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. You and the author will discuss what sites you will post your review to and what kind of copy of the book you would like to receive (eBook, PDF, Word, paperback, etc.). To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

The Grocer Who Sold McCarthyism: The Rise and Fall of Anti-Communist Crusader Laurence A. Johnson is a work of non-fiction in the American history, biography, and sociocultural writing genres. It is best suited to the general adult reading audience. Penned by author Fred M. Fiske, this fascinating work explores Laurence A. Johnson's fervent campaign against communism in 1950s America, leveraging his supermarket influence to blacklist entertainment figures and shape national discourse. The narrative delves into Johnson's rise to prominence and also explores the broader implications of McCarthyism on freedom of expression and individual liberties in America. In-depth research offers readers a compelling dive into a lesser-known facet of American history, revealing Laurence A. Johnson's surprising impact on the entertainment industry during the Red Scare era.

Johnson's transformation from a local grocer to a powerful figure wielding influence over major corporations and media personalities showcases the chilling power of fear and ideological zeal in shaping public discourse. Fiske's biographical skills are confident and smooth, unraveling Johnson's methods and motivations with a keen sense of psychology, and highlighting the ruthless tactics that affected the careers of numerous artists and entertainers. As I read, I felt a mix of fascination and unease at Johnson's ability to manipulate both economic leverage and public paranoia to enforce his anti-communist agenda. Fred M. Fiske's thorough research and vivid storytelling paint a vivid portrait of an era marked by suspicion and censorship, prompting reflection on the enduring tensions between security and civil liberties in democratic societies. Overall, I would certainly recommend The Grocer Who Sold McCarthyism to anyone interested in culture and sociopolitical dynamics in an accomplished and detailed read.