It's been ages since I've shared a Thursday thirteen, and since I'm not energetic enough to write about the book I just finished (will save that for the weekend), I thought it would be fun to share a list. It's inspired by Litlove who mentioned she has several books she'd like to read later this summer and has invited other readers to join in. I'm a pushover for readalongs, particularly when I have the books on my shelves eagerly awaiting a little attention. One of the books is Truman Capote's In Cold Blood, which is a book I should have read ages ago, but I'll do it this summer instead.
I don't read true crime stories per se, unless they have a more historical slant. I have quite a few of those types of books, however. I've read a number of these--some so long ago that the details have gone hazy. A few more like the Capote need a little attention.
1. Lost Love: A True Story of Passion, Murder and Justice in Old New York by George Cooper - "Physically abused for years by her alcoholic husband, Daniel McFarland, Abby Sage took their two children and left him in 1867. Supporting herself by acting, she fell in love with Albert Deane Richardson, a noted Civil War journalist, who asked her to marry him. After the divorce was granted, an enraged and jealous McFarland shot and killed Richardson in the lobby of the New York Tribune in 1869. Cooper posits that McFarland's subsequent acquittal--the jury determined that he was insane when he shot Richardson--was due to prevailing societal regard for the sanctity of marriage and hostility to the emerging women's rights movement."
2. And the Sea Will Tell by Vincent Bugliosi - You won't want to be stranded on a desert island if you read this book. Bugliosi knows how to tell a gripping story of two couples who cross paths on a remote South Pacific Island--one couple wealthy and middle class, the other an ex-convict and his hippie girlfriend. I don't think both bodies were ever found (only one set of bones), but the yacht came to be in the possession of the ex-con and his girlfriend.
3. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote - Very famous book about the murder of a Kansas family in 1959.
4. My Dark Places by James Ellroy - Ellroy writes about his mother who was murdered in 1958. How's that for writing about a harrowing episode from your own life.
5. The Trials of Maria Barbella: The True Story of 19th-Century Crime of Passion by Idanna Pucci - Barbella was the first woman sentenced to be killed in the electric chair in New York after she was convicted of the murder of her lover.
6. The Burning of Bridget Cleary: A True Story by Angela Bourke - This is the story of the murder of an Irish woman who was murdered in 1895 as she was believed to be a changeling. It sounds like an interesting look into the folklore of the country.
7. American Eve: Evelyn Nesbit, Stanford White - The Birth of the "It" Girl and the Crime of the Century by Paula Uruburu - Nesbit was the first "It" girl--beautiful, famous--she had it all. She was part of a love triangle that led to murder.
8. Unwise Passions: A True Story of a Remarkable Woman and the First Great Scandal of Eighteenth-Century America by Alan Pell Crawford - I found this at a library sale some time back. Eighteen-year old Nancy Randolph is said to have given birth to a baby that was supposedly fathered by her brother in law and then murdered by him.
9. The Murder of Helen Jewett by Patricia Cline Cohen - This is the story of a young prostitute in New York City in 1836 and the ensuing trial of her lover.
10. The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher: A Shocking Murder and the Undoing of a Great Victorian Detective by Kate Summerscale - This is the only one I've read (and wrote about) during my blogging days. See my post here.
11. The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson - This is the only book I don't own but after a coworker raved about it I will be buying or borrowing it. During the Chicago World's Fair in 1893 a serial killer was hard at work. This is filled with lots of fascinating period detail I'm told.
12. The Irish Game: A True Story of Crime and Art by Matthew Hart - This is an interesting look at how stolen art gets caught up in the drug trade using the theft of a Vermeer from an Irish estate in the 1970s to illustrate his premise.
13. The Crimes of Paris: A True Story of Murder, Theft and Detection by Dorothy and Thomas Hoobler - The theft of the Mona Lisa in 1911 is the springboard from which the Hooblers write about crime in Belle Epoque Paris.
Lots of nasty business here, I admit, but still reading crime stories can be a fascinating look into a society.