The Roaring Twenties is one of our most romanticized eras. We tend to look back on the days of Prohibition as a golden time of freewheeling gangsters and gun-wielding G-men, all of whom really knew how to live. Edward Behr's thorough and comprehensive history of that time labors under no such misconceptions. Prohibition, as Behr so expertly illustrates, was a period of rampant corruption maintained by vicious violence and widespread dishonesty. The central character in Behr's story is bootlegger George Remus, who once recounted to the Senate how he was able to sell massive amounts of whiskey as medicine after purchasing a license from United States Attorney General Harry Daugherty. No reader of Prohibition will ever look back on the 1920s with quite the same naive pleasure.