Richard Nordin Releases 'The Iron Fist'
Author Richard Nordin believes J.B. Leonis' colorful family history, the city story of Vernon as well as his entrepreneurial savvy are needed to be told. It prompted Nordin in writing "The Iron Fist: The Immigrant Journey of J. B. Leonis to Riches and Power in Southern California" (published by Xlibris).
In 1889, Jean Baptiste Leonis received a letter from his powerful uncle in California to come join him and quickly agrees. His uncle, a man referred to as The King of Calabasas for his control of thousands of acres, needs an heir. Unfortunately for the young man, his uncle was killed shortly after his nephew's arrival. The young man was left without any benefit of his uncle's estate and must start again in a land of strangers. Fifteen years later, now known as J.B., he started the unique city of Vernon. He rose to power in 20th-century California, but the riches that came with his hard work and vision were met with praise, attacks and family scandal. Despite everything, he remained stubbornly true to his vision till his last breath.
"This is a classic American immigrant story, only with more local color," Nordin says. "It is about one man's effort to build his dream and control his and his family's destiny after easy opportunity slipped away from him."
The journey of Leonis is a story of success out of tragedy. It reflects the drive and determination of one man to build his dream and not caring much about what others thought of him.
"The Iron Fist"
By Richard Nordin
Hardcover | 6x 9in | 226 pages | ISBN 9781524570446
Softcover | 6 x 9in | 226 pages | ISBN 9781524570453
E-Book | 226 pages | ISBN 9781524570460
Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble
About the Author
Richard Nordin is a Midwesterner by birth and an Angeleno by choice. As historian for the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, the oldest and largest civic organization in Los Angeles, he played a critical role in their 125th anniversary in 2013. He has served as a speaker and on the luncheon committee of the Los Angeles First Century Families-a group whose relatives arrived in LA before 1881. He also has had a successful 40-year career in fundraising at local and national institutions, including USC, UCLA and Cal Poly Pomona. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California.
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