The Poisoner's Handbook

The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York ($10) is one of those fascinating reads that proves real life can be just as dramatic and entertaining as fiction. With chapters highlighting different types of toxic chemicals, from chloroform to arsenic, author Deborah Blum explores the emergence of forensic science and some of New York City's most famous twentieth-century murders-by-poison. The book has been so popular that PBS has already turned it into an American Experience Series film.

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Posted on 02.14.14 at 2:57 PM

I am astounded someone is recommending this book (and it makes me wonder if the recommender has read the entire book). It is awful. This is literally one of the worst books I've ever come across-- and I read voraciously (and cross-genre). The topic and premise are fascinating, it's the execution that is awful. It's repetitive, dry, dull. The author harps on small points while bypassing major ones, and uses the same sentence structure ad nauseum. I cannot dissuade *every* *single* *person* from reading this as much possible.

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