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I'm writing a story where the main character is trying to take down a very successful, established blackmail ring. I'm looking for some existing good stories about large-scale blackmail to get some character and dialog ideas.

The Big Sleep is an OK example, but since it's about just one incident (that ends pretty poorly for the blackmailer) that's not a perfect fit.

Ideally, I'm looking for a book you'd describe as "The Godfather, if the Corleones were primarily in the business of blackmail."

  • Try the TV series Leverage. Blackmail abounds. – Lauren Ipsum Jul 11 '13 at 20:19
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Well, there's the aptly titled "The Blackmail Ring", a 1932 pulp thriller by Walter B. Gibson. Other than that, searching for fiction about blackmail just seems to turn up a lot of romance novels.

Actually, the fact that it doesn't seem to be a popular novel topic can be in your favor. It won't be a setting that readers are intimately familiar with (unlike, say, the NYPD or the mafia), so as long as your dialogue and characters are well-written and seem appropriate, readers won't have preconceived notions about the speech or people they'll see and won't question what you write.

If you still want to do research, I'd suggest looking for news articles about blackmail. That can be informative too. Past that, you'll just have to be creative!

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