The Jolly Roger Social Club

The true story of a series of bold killings which took place in a shadowy American ex-pat community in Panama--a tale of greed, political history, and murder

In the remote Bocas del Toro, Panama, William Dathan Holbert, aka "Wild Bill," is awaiting trial for the murder of five fellow American ex-patriots. Holbert's first victims were the Brown family, who lived on a remote island in the area's Darklands. There, Holbert turned their home into the "Jolly Roger Social Club," using drink- and drug-fueled parties to get to know other ex-pats. The club's tagline was: "Over 90% of our members survive." Those odds were not in his victims' favor.

But this is not just a book about what Holbert did and the complex financial and real estate motives behind the killings; it is about why Bocas del Toro turned out to be his perfect hunting ground, and why the community tolerated--even accepted--him for a time. Told through the fascinating history of the country of Panama, a paradise with sinister ties to the political and economic interests of the United States, journalist Nick Foster brings this uniquely bizarre place to life, shedding light on a community where many live under assumed names, desperate to leave their old lives behind--and sometimes people just disappear.

My Review

I briefly remember hearing something about this case. I do like reading true crime and this is why I wanted to check out this book. First off let me start by saying that I did think that Mr. Foster did a good job with all of the details that he was able to obtain in his research of this story.
I know nothing about Panama. Yet after reading this book I know a little more about the "real" Panama. Although, I am not judging that all of Panama is like Boras. Yet, I could see why Wild Bill chose this place to reside and start his Jolly Roger Social Club. It is scary how well Bill was able to trick every one that he met into thinking he was a good guy just out to have fun. Well I take that back as after he was captured there were comments made by people on the fact that after looking back and really thinking about their situations, they did see little cracks in Bills armor and how they were fortunate to have not been the next body. Reading this book though, I never achieved full immerse status into this book or warmed up to Bill first before the terrible events. Although, I do find this book to be an intriguing read.


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