A Trio Of Great Non-Fiction Crime Books

Brothers and sisters, I have spent many hours lurking in the shadows of book stores and libraries and thrift stores and rummage sales hunting, stalking and acquiring books. I regret nothing. NOTHING. The halls of our castle are covered with shelves full of books. The largest portion of these books are mystery and crime fiction. It’s my favorite genre, my jam, my go to source for escape.

But brothers and sister, more than mystery do I read and love. Within these walls are books of tales true, biographies, history and pop culture. Books with guidance towards new cooking experiences and books about books.

I love books.

And when I am out on the hunt, skulking through shelves and piles in the places that hold these books awaiting a forever home I look for true crime books. Yes brothers and sisters, true crime!

Not all true crime books get invited to come live with me. Beware my friends because within this genre lurk books of a duplicitous nature. The claim to want to share facts but in reality, they just regurgitate previously known tales and truisms. Books which pander to simply make money off of misfortune. I don’t need yet another book with Black Dahlia pictures I’ve seen 100 times, I don’t need another psychological look at Ted Bundy or the Manson family. NO!

What I want is a book with facts, a book which does not pander or try to capitalize on tragedy. I want true crime which informs and teaches and offers new points of view. And also I want to be entertained without the subject matter being made light of.

As you can imagine given these criteria the amount of True Crime books in my home is smaller than most other collections. It has though recently grown by THREE. Three wonderful new books I urge you to seek out and partake of and yes, even purchase!

THE CRIME BOOK from DK publishing (May 2nd 2017)

Let me start by saying that there is a lot of real estate on our bookshelves filled with books from DK. They do a wonderful job and make great looking books on all sorts of subjects. Their Lego books are phenomenal. This is part of a series and if you dig anything crime related this is for you. The layout is really cool with a box to put the story into context as far as categories and time frame and locations. The article are not super in depth, but cover a lot of ground and even subjects I am well versed in I learned new things. One of these instances was the piece on the Hole In The Wall Gang. The crimes covered are all over from serial killers to gangsters and outlaws to kidnappers and elderly Brit bank robbers.
This is a great book!

THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK OF CRIME Sterling Publishing

This book covers over 166 years of crime stories, all originally published in the New York Times. Reading them now with the context of knowing how things played out is fascinating. Of course the reporting is top notch and having them collected makes for a in depth and engrossing read. There are pictures and a wonderful introduction from Richard Price. The book covers crimes from the Lincoln assassination to OJ and beyond. A must have fro any fan of true crime.

 

 

 

 

MURDER IN THE CITY NEW YORK 1910 – 1920 from Thomas Dunne Books

I own a lot of books of art and photos, and many of those are crime related or at least noir themed. The one on LA that was put together with James Ellroy is great.
This book is amazing. It’s large so the photos stand out. And the photos are the real deal from the New York Police Dept. so there are pictures form murder scenes and crimes. Given the subject matter it is actually not overly graphic, after all these were police photographers, not photographers from the National Enquirer. In addition to the insiders look at crime scenes it is also a wonderful look at the real New York of that period and show things the way they really were not all dressed up for a movie shoot. There are also mug shots and newspaper clipping to go along with the stories for the photos. Not only is this a great book for true crime fans but should actually be a reference book for anyone writing about crime in a city.

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