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Book Reviews for July 2018

What I'm Reading


Morgan's Magic MoonMorgan's Magic Moon by Christopher Parry
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Fiction, 2016. A sweet wholesome story that flows easily and really lends itself to young readers following along. Check out my full review post HERE.



Man-Eater: The Life and Legend of an American CannibalMan-Eater: The Life and Legend of an American Cannibal by Harold Schechter
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2015. I found this one a bit of a slog. It's a very - perhaps overly - detailed account of the trials of and mythos surrounding 'Alferd' Packer, possible multiple murderer and certain cannibal.




The Golden and Ghoulish Age of the Gibbet in BritainThe Golden and Ghoulish Age of the Gibbet in Britain by Sarah Tarlow
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2015. Fascinating subject and written in a very accessible manner.





Wicked Children: Murderous Tales from HistoryWicked Children: Murderous Tales from History by Karen Maitland
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2016. Interesting but very short essay on 'wicked children', followed by excerpts of research and writing from Maitland's novel.




Inside Broadmoor: Secrets of the Criminally Insane - Revealed by the Chief AttendantInside Broadmoor: Secrets of the Criminally Insane - Revealed by the Chief Attendant by Kim Forester
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2016. Fascinating insight into the Broadmoor of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, built around recently rediscovered contemporary diaries and documents.




Memphis Vice, 1863: Sex for Sale and the Scandal that Rocked a Civil War CityMemphis Vice, 1863: Sex for Sale and the Scandal that Rocked a Civil War City by Tobin T Buhk
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2016. Interesting case studies of vice prosecutions in civil war era Memphis.




KrayologyKrayology by John Bennett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2016. Well written and balanced account of the rise and fall of the Krays. Bennett approached the task as a historian, and the neutral academic approach to the available sources makes for a very detailed and non-sensationalist book.




The Havant Boy Ripper: The Murder of Percy Knight SearleThe Havant Boy Ripper: The Murder of Percy Knight Searle by David Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2018. Impressively researched and well written account of the 1888 murder of 8-year-old Percy Searle - and the subsequent murder trial of Robert Husband, aged just 11.




Hell's Princess: The Mystery of Belle Gunness, Butcher of MenHell's Princess: The Mystery of Belle Gunness, Butcher of Men by Harold Schechter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2018. This was the first I'd heard of Belle Gunness, but I felt this was a well researched and comprehensive introduction to the case and the rumours surrounding it. I was especially impressed with the attractive way it was laid out for Kindle.



The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed AmericaThe Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Non-Fiction, 2004. Really enjoyable interweaving of two events - the Chicago world's fair and the series of murders committed by the infamous H. H. Holmes. Although I picked it up for the true crime element, it was the story of the fair which really captured my imagination.




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