This biography of the Ugandan dictator Idi Amin sifts through the many myths and fictitious claims that have long shaped public understanding of his early life and his later rule as president of Uganda from 1971 to 1979. In so doing, it reaches a more nuanced assessment of the man than previously available. Born around 1925 in Koboko, in the northwestern hinterlands of British-controlled Uganda, Amin rose through the ranks of the British colonial army despite possessing only a rudimentary formal education. He proved adept enough at navigating complex ethnic politics to end up as head of the Ugandan army in 1965, just three years after the country won its independence from the United Kingdom. When his alliance with President Milton Obote soured, he orchestrated a coup. Amin’s rule saw significant political repression and the ruthless assassination of political opponents, as well as disastrous economic policies and erratic swings in international diplomacy that would lead the United Kingdom and the United States to terminate diplomatic relations with Uganda. Amin was deposed following the mutiny of his army and a Tanzanian invasion. Leopold’s narrative is sometimes repetitive but well informed and suitably skeptical of the entirely monstrous image that has long surrounded the dictator. After all, Leopold points out, the dour Obote, who is today mostly unknown in the West, would return to power in 1980 and be responsible for even greater political repression and more civilian deaths.