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White Hot Hate: A True Story of Domestic Terrorism in America’s Heartland

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For fans of I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, the thrilling true story of a would-be terrorist attack against a Kansas farming town’s immigrant community, and the FBI informant who exposed it. In the spring of 2016, as immigration debates rocked the United States, three men in a militia group known as the Crusaders grew aggravated over one Kansas town’s growing Somali community. T For fans of I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, the thrilling true story of a would-be terrorist attack against a Kansas farming town’s immigrant community, and the FBI informant who exposed it. In the spring of 2016, as immigration debates rocked the United States, three men in a militia group known as the Crusaders grew aggravated over one Kansas town’s growing Somali community. They decided that complaining about their new neighbors and threatening them directly wasn’t enough. The men plotted to bomb a mosque, aiming to kill hundreds and inspire other attacks against Muslims in America. But they would wait until after the presidential election so that their actions wouldn’t hurt Donald Trump’s chances of winning. An FBI informant befriended the three men, acting as law enforcement’s eyes and ears for eight months. His secretly taped conversations with the militia were pivotal in obstructing their plans and were a linchpin in the resulting trial and convictions for conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction. White Hot Hate tells the riveting true story of an averted case of domestic terrorism in one of the most remote towns in the U.S., not far from the infamous town where Capote’s In Cold Blood was set. In the gripping details of this foiled scheme, the chilling, immediate threat of domestic terrorism—and racist anxiety in America— is writ large.  


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For fans of I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, the thrilling true story of a would-be terrorist attack against a Kansas farming town’s immigrant community, and the FBI informant who exposed it. In the spring of 2016, as immigration debates rocked the United States, three men in a militia group known as the Crusaders grew aggravated over one Kansas town’s growing Somali community. T For fans of I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, the thrilling true story of a would-be terrorist attack against a Kansas farming town’s immigrant community, and the FBI informant who exposed it. In the spring of 2016, as immigration debates rocked the United States, three men in a militia group known as the Crusaders grew aggravated over one Kansas town’s growing Somali community. They decided that complaining about their new neighbors and threatening them directly wasn’t enough. The men plotted to bomb a mosque, aiming to kill hundreds and inspire other attacks against Muslims in America. But they would wait until after the presidential election so that their actions wouldn’t hurt Donald Trump’s chances of winning. An FBI informant befriended the three men, acting as law enforcement’s eyes and ears for eight months. His secretly taped conversations with the militia were pivotal in obstructing their plans and were a linchpin in the resulting trial and convictions for conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction. White Hot Hate tells the riveting true story of an averted case of domestic terrorism in one of the most remote towns in the U.S., not far from the infamous town where Capote’s In Cold Blood was set. In the gripping details of this foiled scheme, the chilling, immediate threat of domestic terrorism—and racist anxiety in America— is writ large.  

30 review for White Hot Hate: A True Story of Domestic Terrorism in America’s Heartland

  1. 4 out of 5

    Rachel the Page-Turner

    This true story all starts with a cookout. Danny Day’s buddy said that he was having a little get-together for pro-gun Christians, and that sounded right up Dan’s alley. However, when he got there, he was introduced to men who were pro-gun but definitely not pro-gun-safety, and who were “Trump Christians”, not “Jesus Christians”. While Dan is with this group of men, talk starts to turn towards people of the Muslim faith, specifically a large Somali population in Garden City, Kansas. It is not lov This true story all starts with a cookout. Danny Day’s buddy said that he was having a little get-together for pro-gun Christians, and that sounded right up Dan’s alley. However, when he got there, he was introduced to men who were pro-gun but definitely not pro-gun-safety, and who were “Trump Christians”, not “Jesus Christians”. While Dan is with this group of men, talk starts to turn towards people of the Muslim faith, specifically a large Somali population in Garden City, Kansas. It is not loving talk. The Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando had just happened, and the anti-Islamic rhetoric is in full swing. (I don’t think they cared about the gay community, they just cared that a Muslim was the shooter.) As Dan sits through this cookout-turned-white-supremacy-meeting, he starts to realize that these people are serious about their hatred, and very serious about causing harm to the town’s Muslim population. Long story short, he becomes an informant for the FBI, and begins recording his conversations with these men. I don’t think most people know that many small Midwestern towns have relatively large refugee populations. Garden City was once a predominantly white town, but the low cost of living and availability of jobs at meatpacking plants brought refugees and immigrants from all over. By the time Trump is starting his run for president, the town’s people of color are now the majority. Most people are fine with this, but there is this group who have a major problem with the Somali population, and Muslims in general. They see themselves as Crusaders, on a mission for Jesus. They hype each other up, harass people of color in town, stalk the store where people shop for African merchandise and even talk freely about the desire to kill Muslim children. For almost a year, Dan attended meetings, joined militia groups and gathered all the information he could. As long as he pretended to have the same fervent hate as everyone else, and he didn’t entrap anyone, he was golden - these are his friends. Well, they WERE his friends, until he got a good look at their hearts. Once Trump came on the political scene, it really put this group into action … they wanted to do something big. Something to inspire others across the country. Something Trump would approve of. These men revered men like Alex Jones. They wanted a religious war, and they were going to start with bombing the two mosques and if possible, any apartment buildings in town that rent to Somalis. They were waiting until Trump was elected so they wouldn’t hurt his chances, but they spent their time gathering munitions and learning about explosives. Soon, another FBI informant named “Brian” is brought in as the Muslim-hating explosives expert willing to trade explosives for meth. Along with Dan, they gather enough evidence to thwart this plot. They were successful, as you know if you remember this happening, and they saved hundreds of lives with their bravery and integrity. This book goes through that first informal cookout, then through all the meetings and things that were said in them. It goes through the FBI’s entire investigation, and everything that leads up to the arrests. Then it goes through their trials and how each member of the group ended up (one was also found with child porn - the cherry on top of the pile of shit.) It’s horrifyingly fascinating to read actual things these men talk about. I think they really did believe that they were making their country better and making God proud. You see these types at Trump rallies, you see them in YouTube videos taken by people of color being harassed, and all you can see in their eyes is anger. HATE. Rage. This book even talks about the insurrection on January 6; these were just three men taken down. How many more are there? (Turns out the “Q-Anon Shaman” wasn’t the first to blame his actions on Trump’s speeches - these guys tried that too. And also failed.) This book is great. There is no commentary outside of the author’s opening note. These are all the actual recordings, texts, etc., that were gathered by Dan and used as evidence in court. There are also pictures of all involved, along with pictures of important locations and events. My only complaint is that it’s very long (kind of like my review? 😬) … I don’t mind a long book, but this was wordy and some things could have been left out without changing the impact of the story. I’m giving this 4.5 stars, rounded down for that and a bit of dryness, but make no mistake - I highly recommend this true crime story as a frank and up-close look at racism in America. (Thank you to Mariner Books, Dick Lehr and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my review.)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Randal White

    I have an alternative title for this book. "Morons in Motion". It's the story of three guys (the morons), who are infected with an incredible hatred of people who are not like them. In this case, the Somali residents of a small Kansas town. They band together and join a local "militia" group. Together the three wind themselves up, reinforcing each others prejudices and hatreds, until they decide that, in the name of "patriotism" something has to be done. They decide what better way to become fam I have an alternative title for this book. "Morons in Motion". It's the story of three guys (the morons), who are infected with an incredible hatred of people who are not like them. In this case, the Somali residents of a small Kansas town. They band together and join a local "militia" group. Together the three wind themselves up, reinforcing each others prejudices and hatreds, until they decide that, in the name of "patriotism" something has to be done. They decide what better way to become famous (infamous?) than to use a bomb to blow up Somali men, women, and children. The book is told through the use of an undercover citizen who infiltrates the Morons and keeps the FBI abreast of their plans. Thank goodness for this citizen, or else who knows what may have happened. The planning of the Morons would be comical, if it was not so dangerous. Talk about leaving a trail of bread crumbs to be followed, these guys couldn't hide their intentions at all. The book leads one to ponder on the "militias" currently operating in the United States. To me, it seems to be a bunch of unhappy white guys, disappointed that they have not "made it big". Rather than try to improve themselves through education, work, etc., they decide it is much easier to blame "others" for their plight. The "others" being blacks, latinos, any foreigners, bankers, educated people, or basically anyone not like them. I guess these people have always been amongst us, take Archie Bunker for one. The difference today is that they have social media to connect with each other, and to ramp up and reinforce their prejudices. It's frightening, the collective power they develop amongst themselves. All under the guise of patriotism and freedom. We have been fortunate that most of these groups are incompetent, and can't seem to get out of their own way. We're very fortunate that there are brave citizens, like the main character of this book, to help our law enforcement take these losers down before they act. I really enjoyed this book. I know these militias are out there, but it was refreshing to read how utterly stupid they can be. Let's hope that continues to be the case.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jen Juenke

    My review is going to be in sections. The first 30% of this book, I could NOT put it down. I was so intrigued on what was happening, how the town of Garden CIty Kansas got many Somali refugees, and being introduced to the main players of the terrorism plot, how they got involved etc. It was riveting. I loved that the author took the time to give background information on the main players and included some of the intended victims to make a more human story. From 30% to 90% of the book completed was My review is going to be in sections. The first 30% of this book, I could NOT put it down. I was so intrigued on what was happening, how the town of Garden CIty Kansas got many Somali refugees, and being introduced to the main players of the terrorism plot, how they got involved etc. It was riveting. I loved that the author took the time to give background information on the main players and included some of the intended victims to make a more human story. From 30% to 90% of the book completed was a big mess of meetings, guns, talk, explosives, guns, meetings, meetings, meetings. I felt that it got very repetitious and needed to be edited. The last 10% of the book was another almost overview of everything that had happened and the judgments against the terrorists. Overall the book had a great subject but was bogged down in too many meetings, details that were irrelevant, and bit characters that ultimately played no role in the story. Thanks to netgalley and to the publisher for allowing me access to this ARC in exchange for this honest review.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jess Rodgers

    White Hot Hate is the story of Dan Day, an average Joe turned FBI informant and eventual hero after accidentally infiltrating a dangerous militia known as the Kansas Security Force. This is also the story of how many people set out to embrace the Muslim people in their midst, and how a community was formed between two different cultures in a small southern town, thanks to Adan Keynan, Benjamin Anderson, John Birky, Ifrah Hamed, and Halima Farah. Immediately after the Pulse Nightclub massacre, a g White Hot Hate is the story of Dan Day, an average Joe turned FBI informant and eventual hero after accidentally infiltrating a dangerous militia known as the Kansas Security Force. This is also the story of how many people set out to embrace the Muslim people in their midst, and how a community was formed between two different cultures in a small southern town, thanks to Adan Keynan, Benjamin Anderson, John Birky, Ifrah Hamed, and Halima Farah. Immediately after the Pulse Nightclub massacre, a group of three men- Patrick Stein, Curtis Allen, Gavin Wright- began planning a deadly retaliation on all Muslims and any associates, with Dan Day taping conversations and participating in order to help convict the three men that wanted to “eradicate” all Muslim people. Dick Lehr’s writing is smooth, beautiful, and despite how difficult it would be to chronicle the many moving parts of this story, he does a remarkable job making it an extremely interesting and easy to follow non-fiction read. This is not for the faint of heart; while there are severa chapters that will give your heart hope, there’s also a lot of ugliness and so much hatred. It was gut-wrenching to read some of the passages about Stein, Allen, and Green’s plans for the Muslim community. I highly recommend White Hot Hate as it seems to be a fair and very well-written account of three men with far too much hatred and bigotry in their hearts- but also the heroes that community needed. Thanks to NetGalley and HMH Books for this arc in exchange for a fair and honest review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Eunice R

    We always think of terrorists as being those nasty people from somewhere foreign; not our own home-grown kind. Notwithstanding, the USA seems to have a growing number of violent militia groups with members of the white supremacist breed; "hate, violence and exterminate," their tag lines. You no doubt witnessed such behavior before, during and in the aftermath of the failed Donald J. Trump re-election campaign of November 2020. In this story, White Hot Hate by Dick Lehr, you will bump into such i We always think of terrorists as being those nasty people from somewhere foreign; not our own home-grown kind. Notwithstanding, the USA seems to have a growing number of violent militia groups with members of the white supremacist breed; "hate, violence and exterminate," their tag lines. You no doubt witnessed such behavior before, during and in the aftermath of the failed Donald J. Trump re-election campaign of November 2020. In this story, White Hot Hate by Dick Lehr, you will bump into such in monstrous, literal reality. This is NOT fiction, folks. Lehr delineates such a horrrific story that will take you aback in traumatic shock. Dan Day, the great man of courage hero, becomes an unwitting informant among the Kansas Security Force (KSP), Crusaders on behalf of the FBI. The build from "only talk" to action over the months was captured on multiple lengthy recordings of Zello phone conversations and in-person confabs on a specialized recording device. These were firsthand inner sanctum talks to which Day was privy. As the four-man insider group of KSP, (Dan Day being one of the four) laid their wicked plans to decimate the Somalis Refugee community in Garden City, the talk often became volitale and full of foul language. Day's heart was often in his throat not to give himself away, but also for wisdom to know how to cool the heat. The inclusion of such language comes from all those hours of taped evidence of raw conversations, not only of their plans but of the non-fiction epitaphs of hatred which constantly spewed forth from the men's souls and pores. The old adage, "Truth is often stranger than fiction" rings really clearly in this report. It was an exceedingly stressful operation for a non-professional undercover man who also had to overcome fallout such as sleepless nights and if he did get to sleep, nightmares. The stress, the secrecy and so on, on his family, who thankfully, did support him, and see him through, took its toll as well. Dan Day is one of those people who were born and placed into a position for "just such a time as this," I believe. He was equal to the task as he plunged, neck-deep or more, into militia extremism. Thank God for such people! It's great to know there are still such counter-balances yet. However, I'd say, we'd do well to be aware of such undercurrents and maybe even pray against such evilness on our own homefronts. ~Eunice C., Reviewer/Blogger~ September 2021 Disclaimer: This is my honest opinion based on the review copy sent by the publisher.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

    My plan was to skim this book for tidbits about my husband's hometown in Southwest Kansas, where this true story of domestic terrorism took place in 2016. But I quickly got sucked into the detailed and suspenseful story about how the plot to kill hundreds of Somali refugee immigrants by bombing the apartment complex where they live, was planned and foiled, plus the stories of the main characters (the three ill-informed racists who probably still consider themselves crusading patriots) and a loca My plan was to skim this book for tidbits about my husband's hometown in Southwest Kansas, where this true story of domestic terrorism took place in 2016. But I quickly got sucked into the detailed and suspenseful story about how the plot to kill hundreds of Somali refugee immigrants by bombing the apartment complex where they live, was planned and foiled, plus the stories of the main characters (the three ill-informed racists who probably still consider themselves crusading patriots) and a local yokel who went from half-hearted militia member to all-in informant for the FBI, at great personal risk and little overt gain, unless you count the satisfaction of saving many lives. The story also turned out to be more timely than expected, given the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection (these terrorists would have been there) and the continuing presence of the former president who shamelessly eggs on violent guys with his racist anti-Muslim rhetoric. I did find it comforting to know that the FBI foiled this plot (and no doubt others) and interesting to see what that involves, the danger, uncertainty and anxiety involved. Because I know the area well, I caught little errors - Wright, Ks. (pop 160) does not have a school, contrary to a throw-away line in the book designed to add local color. (The small Catholic school, which my husband attended, is long closed.) And it's "cattle feedlot" not "cattle feed" to describe a place where cattle are fattened before slaughter. (My brother-in-law works at one.) I also was familiar with the mother of the most odious of the three bombers - a pleasant-looking woman who sang in the tiny church choir during the many Christmas Eve masses I attended. (My husband's sister babysat the odious bomber when he was a kid.) It was a reminder that these alarming plots are being planned right under our noses, a threat to us all but particularly to minorities and immigrants, and we need to remain vigilant.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    If you're a fan of true crime books, this will hold your attention through the very end. A riveting story of a good man turned FBI informant when he discovers a plot to kill Somali refugees in his small Kansas town. I'd read about this town previously and how there had been such an influx of refugees to work there. And it seems a small minority of residents didn't like the changes in their population. The book meticulously follows their meetings and plans to bomb the apartment buildings where the If you're a fan of true crime books, this will hold your attention through the very end. A riveting story of a good man turned FBI informant when he discovers a plot to kill Somali refugees in his small Kansas town. I'd read about this town previously and how there had been such an influx of refugees to work there. And it seems a small minority of residents didn't like the changes in their population. The book meticulously follows their meetings and plans to bomb the apartment buildings where the refugees reside. There is plenty of detail in the telling of this story but it doesn't bog down at all and you'll find yourself eagerly turning pages to see how it resolves.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Christina Nunyas

    A riveting look inside rural hate and domestic terrorism. Based on actual first hand recordings and testimony, this follows the actual plot in the words of its conspirators, as opposed to a lot of the academic non-fiction. Because it follows bumbling idiots, at times it drags; real life does not have convenient plot twists.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Josh

    Many thanks to NetGalley for this ARC! This is a fantastic true crime book. Lehr does an amazing job telling the chain of events, providing enough backstory, and keeping the reader on the edge of their seat. This is probably going to be a top 5 non-fiction book this year. The topic is highly important in today’s world and Lehr made it extremely engrossing.

  10. 5 out of 5

    J Earl

    White Hot Hate by Dick Lehr is a fascinating yet disturbing look at the ever growing presence of domestic terrorism through the lens of one foiled plot of mass murder and destruction. One of the strengths of the book for me was the way Lehr introduced us to the various people, especially the citizen who served as an informant, but also the other would-be terrorists and some of those who were their intended victims. Once this foundation is established we move into the planning and almost endless m White Hot Hate by Dick Lehr is a fascinating yet disturbing look at the ever growing presence of domestic terrorism through the lens of one foiled plot of mass murder and destruction. One of the strengths of the book for me was the way Lehr introduced us to the various people, especially the citizen who served as an informant, but also the other would-be terrorists and some of those who were their intended victims. Once this foundation is established we move into the planning and almost endless meetings. While some may find this section repetitive or unnecessary it serves several functions. One is that it eliminates those who side with the terrorists from claiming that things were omitted that might have shown them in a better light. Second, it highlights that this was not a quick, almost spur of the moment thing that these people came up with in a moment of anger (aside from the fact these types of people are so full of hate that they are always angry). Third, I think that looking at how this particular group of guys went about planning their attack might register with a reader about an acquaintance or family member's recent activities that could be for similar reasons Hopefully if that happens the reader will intervene in some way, both for the sake of the intended victims and their friend or family member. Finally, seeing and hearing the extent and depth of hatred that drives people like this offers some insight into how we might be able to change the course of someone we know who is becoming radicalized under the guise of patriotism. I wasn't bothered by the brief recap of the trial and sentencing, this was about, for me, the attempted crime, not the courtroom aspects. If you read true crime for the courtroom scenes and not the crimes themselves, then you may be a little disappointed. I would recommend this to both true crime readers as well as those who are curious about the how and why people can be so consumed by hate that they will throw reason out the window and believe total nonsense. Reviewed from a copy made available by the publisher via NetGalley.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Paul Cochrun

    Dick Lehr’s White Hot Hate is a testament to “doing the right thing.” Dan Day is a law-abiding Midwesterner who believes in his right to bear arms and that a small government is a good government, but he in no way buys into the racism and Islamophobia of the far-right. When he becomes an informant for the FBI he’s taken it upon himself to do his patriotic duty and inform on a group of extremists in Garden City, Kansas set on attacking a group of Somali refugees. The book excels in many ways, as a Dick Lehr’s White Hot Hate is a testament to “doing the right thing.” Dan Day is a law-abiding Midwesterner who believes in his right to bear arms and that a small government is a good government, but he in no way buys into the racism and Islamophobia of the far-right. When he becomes an informant for the FBI he’s taken it upon himself to do his patriotic duty and inform on a group of extremists in Garden City, Kansas set on attacking a group of Somali refugees. The book excels in many ways, as a piece of true crime and a sociological investigation into American politics. Lehr achieves this through researched details and a focus on context. A writer could easily jot down the timeline of actions, but the focus of this White Hot Hate is the WHY? What is happening in the United States that creates this climate of anger and suspicion? Lehr connects these actions to other crimes and extremist groups to show how widespread this hate is in our nation. The presidential election was heating up in early 2016 and anti-immigrant rhetoric, especially against Muslims, was being heard from many candidates but Donald Trump was the loudest. And for many of these men and women, he was the opposite of the Democrat currently in the White House. Trump and the extremists he irresponsibly endorsed brought this hate to the forefront of conversations all over the dark corners of the internet. Hulu has even turned the story into a documentary that is currently streaming. Check out the trailer. My only criticism is that parts of the book become a bit repetitious as Day follows the routine of meeting with the milia members and then with his handlers… back and forth… White Hot Hate is a book that covers so much ground about right-wing xenophobia in its 400 pages. An objective view of radicalization… and the small community of Somali refugees who are almost victims of this hate. 4 out of 5 stars. Thank you to NetGalley, Mariner Books, and the author for an advanced copy for review.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Julia Dickinson-Smith

    Thank you, NetGalley and Dick Lehr for this arc in exchange for an honest review. White Hot Hate captured my attention because my husband is a Kansas native. He often talks about his life in western Kansas and his experience with Garden City. He was deeply shaken by the events involved in this book and I wanted to learn more about it. Through this book, we follow the true story of Dan Day, an everyday-kind-of-guy who is just trying to get by. Dan is fatefully enlisted by his neighbors into a loca Thank you, NetGalley and Dick Lehr for this arc in exchange for an honest review. White Hot Hate captured my attention because my husband is a Kansas native. He often talks about his life in western Kansas and his experience with Garden City. He was deeply shaken by the events involved in this book and I wanted to learn more about it. Through this book, we follow the true story of Dan Day, an everyday-kind-of-guy who is just trying to get by. Dan is fatefully enlisted by his neighbors into a local militia through a BBQ, The group is known as The Three Percenters. Dan believes in the second amendment, and he doesn't trust his government. He isn't so sure about the derogatory language and their vocal desire to harm Muslims. But, he is the kind of guy who keeps to himself and doesn't have much to say. That is until he's enlisted by the FBI as an informant. It's a thrilling book that dissects the would-be domestic terrorism in an important way. It brings attention to the issues surrounding racism and white supremacy and highlights how the actions of one person can change the outcome of events. I'll definitely be looking for Dick Lehr's name in the future.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Karen Bullock

    4 stars for this true crime piece about the dangers of an ongoing problem with the growing numbers of militia groups forming. Patriots set out to defend the American soil they grew up on and sometimes destroy lives in the process. What happens when an angry group has hostile feelings towards a race other than Caucasian? What happens when more than one member shows extreme agitation in the direction of another race? Another religion that is different than theirs? This informative piece explains th 4 stars for this true crime piece about the dangers of an ongoing problem with the growing numbers of militia groups forming. Patriots set out to defend the American soil they grew up on and sometimes destroy lives in the process. What happens when an angry group has hostile feelings towards a race other than Caucasian? What happens when more than one member shows extreme agitation in the direction of another race? Another religion that is different than theirs? This informative piece explains the answers. Based on an actual event that almost ended hundreds of lives back in 2016, in Kansas. A group that formed and then branched out and then added on involving what appears to be several assumptions rather than solid facts, this unfolds the story of one man’s belief to openly agree to become an FBI informant and put a stop to the extreme hatred in his small community. Informative, insightful and shocking this book gives more than a birds eye view into the inner workings of this deadly group and their intentions. This is a wake up call that you should read if you follow government, politics and domestic terrorism.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Carl

    Thanks to Goodreads and the publisher for a giveaway copy; if I had gotten this from the library, I might have put it aside pretty quickly. Why? Initially it seemed to go too deeply into background detail, before really getting into the heart of the story. As it was, the entire story was presented in great detail, from day-to-day actions of the principal players, to extensive quotes taken from recordings (with multiply repeated f-words and racist rants). Eventually I got caught up in the drama a Thanks to Goodreads and the publisher for a giveaway copy; if I had gotten this from the library, I might have put it aside pretty quickly. Why? Initially it seemed to go too deeply into background detail, before really getting into the heart of the story. As it was, the entire story was presented in great detail, from day-to-day actions of the principal players, to extensive quotes taken from recordings (with multiply repeated f-words and racist rants). Eventually I got caught up in the drama and suspense, but it took a while. It could probably have been edited into a great, long magazine article. As it stands, it’s a good read for one with the time and interest in following this one story (out of how many? that are out there, some probably untold) from our current atmosphere of hate and potential violence. It shows how a potentially deadly conspiracy began, grew, and was fortunately thwarted, mostly thanks to an unlikely hero, who had a sense of right and wrong, and did something about it.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This book was everything you need in a real-life hero narrative. Good versus evil, right versus wrong. The visceral hatred that came across in the pages was so real I had to put down the book more than once and remind myself that this act of terrorism was prevented and no one was injured. While the goal of the book is to tell the tale of a plot disrupted, it still brings to light the feelings and thoughts of thousands of Americans who firmly believe that those seeking a better life don’t deserve This book was everything you need in a real-life hero narrative. Good versus evil, right versus wrong. The visceral hatred that came across in the pages was so real I had to put down the book more than once and remind myself that this act of terrorism was prevented and no one was injured. While the goal of the book is to tell the tale of a plot disrupted, it still brings to light the feelings and thoughts of thousands of Americans who firmly believe that those seeking a better life don’t deserve to find it in the United States. It was a humbling read to understand that the statements portrayed by newscasters are believed as absolute truths by so many. This book is a testament that America has a ways to go in rebuilding our nation as one of inclusion. There was a good outcome, but there were so many ways it could have ended differently with dozens dead. Whatever your political leaning, violence is not the answer, and this book makes that very clear.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    This book was well written but hard to read. It is about the 2015 case in southwest Kansas where a group of domestic terrorists plotted to build a bomb to blow up apartment complexes where people from Somalia lived and the FBI informant that helped to thwart the plan. My parents grew up in that area and, as a child, I spent a lot of time in the Liberal area. It is hard to think about the kind of people who are so consumed by prejudice and hatred living out there now. The book is a well researched This book was well written but hard to read. It is about the 2015 case in southwest Kansas where a group of domestic terrorists plotted to build a bomb to blow up apartment complexes where people from Somalia lived and the FBI informant that helped to thwart the plan. My parents grew up in that area and, as a child, I spent a lot of time in the Liberal area. It is hard to think about the kind of people who are so consumed by prejudice and hatred living out there now. The book is a well researched rendering of the case. I had to quit reading it several times because it was hard to stomach the conversations that these men had. It's hard to imagine how the FBI informant stood up to it all as he collected his intelligence and the toll it must have taken on his family. Read it. Despicable as the story is, it's important to understand how some people in these groups are blinded so much by hate that they get the whole story wrong.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Star Gater

    Enough. At 23% I was done. From the beginning the book reads like a textbook. I settled into that mind set. I had hoped for a story, not a lesson. I was hearing blah, blah, blah with all the facts and at one point laughed imagining my college days and note taking. I expected racial slurs and uncomfortable explanations given the topic. However, the tirade of profanity was my breaking point. Between 21-23%, on my Kindle, the profanity and the use of God and F made me queasy. The story is important Enough. At 23% I was done. From the beginning the book reads like a textbook. I settled into that mind set. I had hoped for a story, not a lesson. I was hearing blah, blah, blah with all the facts and at one point laughed imagining my college days and note taking. I expected racial slurs and uncomfortable explanations given the topic. However, the tirade of profanity was my breaking point. Between 21-23%, on my Kindle, the profanity and the use of God and F made me queasy. The story is important, it happened on US soil. Given the nature of the book and the author's tirade so early on, I'm throwing in the towel. I don't see the need nor do I believe the author will cease. I can't imagine picking this nonfiction book up in an attempt to learn, and no warnings on the language. Thank you NetGalley for accepting my request to read and review White Hot Hate. I am disappointed there isn't a better outcome. #NetGalley #DickLehr #WhiteHotHate

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jeni

    White Hot Hate tells the story of three men who plot to target a large Somali immigrant population in their small town. Luckily, this group had a fourth member, an FBI informant, who actively works to prevent this tragedy and to gather evidence against these three men. This book gives a glimpse into the far-right extremist movement in the United States and the devastating results of having not acknowledged the true danger it poses to American citizens and those who immigrate in search of a bette White Hot Hate tells the story of three men who plot to target a large Somali immigrant population in their small town. Luckily, this group had a fourth member, an FBI informant, who actively works to prevent this tragedy and to gather evidence against these three men. This book gives a glimpse into the far-right extremist movement in the United States and the devastating results of having not acknowledged the true danger it poses to American citizens and those who immigrate in search of a better life and safety. While it is disturbing and draining to be an eavesdropper on these conversations and plans, it is necessary for us to put ourselves in this situation in order to be more ready to acknowledge the threat that is simmering across our country. This was expertly reported with data derived from many first hand documents and sources.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Meaghan Babin

    This book is extremely important and a good read! Thank you for giving me an ARC review of this book. I feel as though in a age where white supremacy has the gall to rear its ugly head, White Hot Hate is a beacon of light that exposes the dangers of this way of thinking. This book is recommended if you love I'll Be Gone in the Dark and that's super accurate because as a lover of this book and I'll Be Gone in the Dark it fits. This book is truly thrilling and tackles would-be domestic terrorism o This book is extremely important and a good read! Thank you for giving me an ARC review of this book. I feel as though in a age where white supremacy has the gall to rear its ugly head, White Hot Hate is a beacon of light that exposes the dangers of this way of thinking. This book is recommended if you love I'll Be Gone in the Dark and that's super accurate because as a lover of this book and I'll Be Gone in the Dark it fits. This book is truly thrilling and tackles would-be domestic terrorism on a farming community's immigrant population in a really excellent way. White Hot Hate keeps you on your toes but also highlights the dangers of white supremacy and domestic terrorism. This book is a a must for lovers of true crime! I wish I could read it for the first time again.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Britt.and.Lit Book Reviews

    Incredible new nonfiction by Dick Lehr that spells out the heinous plots of the hate-fueled militant group known as the Crusaders. They are based out of Kansas and planned on inflicting terror and carnage on a Somali community in 2016. These militant groups seem to have been grown exponentially upon the election of Donald Trump- and his constant presence seemed to just inspire once closeted racists to be more vocal in their hate and vitriol. Thanks to an informant-and subsequent investigation- t Incredible new nonfiction by Dick Lehr that spells out the heinous plots of the hate-fueled militant group known as the Crusaders. They are based out of Kansas and planned on inflicting terror and carnage on a Somali community in 2016. These militant groups seem to have been grown exponentially upon the election of Donald Trump- and his constant presence seemed to just inspire once closeted racists to be more vocal in their hate and vitriol. Thanks to an informant-and subsequent investigation- thank goodness their plot was upended. The author writes in a compelling way- almost like a true crime author. This is an important read that takes a look at just one of the dangerous militant groups in the United States that could have taken the lives of many.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Schuerman

    Exceptional. So good I read this in two days--which, given my usual slothful reading style, is saying a lot. So much great detail drawn from undercover FBI recordings of a right-wing extremist cell in Kansas whose members seek to "exterminate" a budding community of Somali refugees who have been mysteriously relocated to this rural area. At the center of the story is Dan Day, an ordinary middle-aged white guy--unemployed, gun-toting--whom one would not expect to be a hero in any sense of the ter Exceptional. So good I read this in two days--which, given my usual slothful reading style, is saying a lot. So much great detail drawn from undercover FBI recordings of a right-wing extremist cell in Kansas whose members seek to "exterminate" a budding community of Somali refugees who have been mysteriously relocated to this rural area. At the center of the story is Dan Day, an ordinary middle-aged white guy--unemployed, gun-toting--whom one would not expect to be a hero in any sense of the term. But he rises to the occasion, persistently playing his role as a gung-ho member of this cell while recording everything for the FBI. It is people like Day who give me hope for this country.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Trudy Ackerblade

    I received a copy of White Hot Hate: A True Story of Domestic Terrorism in America’s Heartland from Goodreads giveaway program. This was a very hard book to read, not because it was written poorly but because the subject matter was so abhorrent. It is the story of a group of racists who decide to bomb an apartment building in Garden City, Kansas to "exterminate" Muslims who lived and worshipped there. The hate that these racists hold in their hearts is repellent to read about. Thanks to one man' I received a copy of White Hot Hate: A True Story of Domestic Terrorism in America’s Heartland from Goodreads giveaway program. This was a very hard book to read, not because it was written poorly but because the subject matter was so abhorrent. It is the story of a group of racists who decide to bomb an apartment building in Garden City, Kansas to "exterminate" Muslims who lived and worshipped there. The hate that these racists hold in their hearts is repellent to read about. Thanks to one man's will to protect the lives of these people the FBI were able to thwart the attack so no one was injured. I mourn for the United States of America.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Melissa B

    I received this through GoodReads First Reads. For me, this was a slow starter - but only because there were so many characters and details to keep straight in my mind. It was an extremely interesting and detailed account of a domestic terroristic cell in Kansas. These white-supremacists, right-wing terrorists were stopped in their tracks by the actions of a single citizen working undercover with the FBI for several months, thereby saving innumerable lives. It is an eye-opening revelation into th I received this through GoodReads First Reads. For me, this was a slow starter - but only because there were so many characters and details to keep straight in my mind. It was an extremely interesting and detailed account of a domestic terroristic cell in Kansas. These white-supremacists, right-wing terrorists were stopped in their tracks by the actions of a single citizen working undercover with the FBI for several months, thereby saving innumerable lives. It is an eye-opening revelation into the minds of those people, much like the ones at the Capitol Insurrection of January 6, 2021. Scary individuals thwarted by a moral person.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Pratley

    A riveting account of what happens when those holding extreme views seek to take them to the next stage. The story in question comes from Kansas. It is from the near present, 2016. It is about a group of white middle aged men full of hate & loathing who nearly kill hundreds of Somali residents in Garden City right in the heart of the Mid West. Dick Lehr in his excellent & highly readable account allows the reader to enter into the minds of these twisted men. He also chronicles the story of an or A riveting account of what happens when those holding extreme views seek to take them to the next stage. The story in question comes from Kansas. It is from the near present, 2016. It is about a group of white middle aged men full of hate & loathing who nearly kill hundreds of Somali residents in Garden City right in the heart of the Mid West. Dick Lehr in his excellent & highly readable account allows the reader to enter into the minds of these twisted men. He also chronicles the story of an ordinary man who does extraordinary things in order to stop them. Nothing goes to plan quite often in this story but the right result was arrived at the end, thankfully. Talk about a near miss.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Rhonda Duncan

    Quite interesting and informative. It gives great insight into why many oppose our borders being open to just anyone and also shows just how evil people really can be based solely on one's skin color. Terrorism and racism go hand in hand. It is a rather large read and is a bit wordy in places. For those of you that live day to day without a thought of something horrific going on around you, grab this and become quickly educated. Doesn't get much quieter and peaceful than a farming community, but Quite interesting and informative. It gives great insight into why many oppose our borders being open to just anyone and also shows just how evil people really can be based solely on one's skin color. Terrorism and racism go hand in hand. It is a rather large read and is a bit wordy in places. For those of you that live day to day without a thought of something horrific going on around you, grab this and become quickly educated. Doesn't get much quieter and peaceful than a farming community, but even they aren't immune to the evil that goes on daily right under our own noses. Well written, gripping and educational.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    Living in Kansas, I remember this story and I remember being shocked by it. But after reading about how the militias slowly started building - how some had been around for decades and how unorganized and chaotic they are, is really unsettling. And especially after the last 4-5 years of social instability and then the Jan 6th insurrection all thanks to a sycophant stoking hatred and division in our country. It was gratifying to read that the community came together afterwards to assure the Somali Living in Kansas, I remember this story and I remember being shocked by it. But after reading about how the militias slowly started building - how some had been around for decades and how unorganized and chaotic they are, is really unsettling. And especially after the last 4-5 years of social instability and then the Jan 6th insurrection all thanks to a sycophant stoking hatred and division in our country. It was gratifying to read that the community came together afterwards to assure the Somali and immigrant community that the rest of the town DOES want them there and that they were not in danger if they stayed. Though, I really fear for the future of democracy in America.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    This book thoroughly blew me away. I will say that I won it on Goodreads and then became fascinated with the back story. Once I started it, I read it in three days. The night I finished it I couldn't sleep because my heart was pounding due to how the story unfolded. The writing was impressive. Obviously the content was intriguing too. I was sickened and saddened that people are filled with this much hate, for no reason. But I applaud Dan Day and his family for doing the right thing for the great This book thoroughly blew me away. I will say that I won it on Goodreads and then became fascinated with the back story. Once I started it, I read it in three days. The night I finished it I couldn't sleep because my heart was pounding due to how the story unfolded. The writing was impressive. Obviously the content was intriguing too. I was sickened and saddened that people are filled with this much hate, for no reason. But I applaud Dan Day and his family for doing the right thing for the greater good.

  28. 5 out of 5

    MTS

    Right wing propagandists & politicians whip up hate & dehumanize other human beings to the point of wars, genocides, & in this case a plan to kill several hundred Somalis. We’ve seen this happen elsewhere: Nazi Germany & Bosnian Serbs under Milosevic in the 1990’s (Read “Love Thy Neighbor’ by Peter Maass) subjecting Muslims in that country to ethnic cleansing & genocide. Yes the United States is on a dangerous path. And this foiled attempt occurred pre-Trump. The hate in 2016 was white hot. I im Right wing propagandists & politicians whip up hate & dehumanize other human beings to the point of wars, genocides, & in this case a plan to kill several hundred Somalis. We’ve seen this happen elsewhere: Nazi Germany & Bosnian Serbs under Milosevic in the 1990’s (Read “Love Thy Neighbor’ by Peter Maass) subjecting Muslims in that country to ethnic cleansing & genocide. Yes the United States is on a dangerous path. And this foiled attempt occurred pre-Trump. The hate in 2016 was white hot. I imagine it’s even worse now in 2022.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Carol Ann

    The story of an ordinary guy who becomes a key informant for the FBI in an effort to stop anti-Muslim domestic terrorists from killing innocent people in small town Kansas. I didn't remember this story which is a sad testament to the news cycle in recent years. I think the book might have benefitted from some engagement with the scholarly literature on what makes people help/upstandership but it is a compelling and accessible read. #NetGalley #ARC The story of an ordinary guy who becomes a key informant for the FBI in an effort to stop anti-Muslim domestic terrorists from killing innocent people in small town Kansas. I didn't remember this story which is a sad testament to the news cycle in recent years. I think the book might have benefitted from some engagement with the scholarly literature on what makes people help/upstandership but it is a compelling and accessible read. #NetGalley #ARC

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kokie

    Fascinating look into the white supremacy hatred in America. Very matter-of-fact retelling of the planning of a domestic terrorist attack and the FBI investigation and subsequent take-down of those involved. This was hard to get through at times, but I think it's important to examine these ideas and threats to better understand the ideologies we need to fight in today's America. This is a book to read in an effort to start conversations about what it means to be American and a "patriot". Fascinating look into the white supremacy hatred in America. Very matter-of-fact retelling of the planning of a domestic terrorist attack and the FBI investigation and subsequent take-down of those involved. This was hard to get through at times, but I think it's important to examine these ideas and threats to better understand the ideologies we need to fight in today's America. This is a book to read in an effort to start conversations about what it means to be American and a "patriot".

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