Charles Manson, the CIA, and a Very Different Side of Helter Skelter

Book review: Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties, by Tom O'Neill with Dan Piepenbring So many years later, Manson’s name still served as a kind of shorthand for a very American form of brutal violence, the kind that erupts seemingly from nowhere and confirms the nation’s darkest fears about... Continue Reading →

Mini Reviews: Two New True Crime Anthologies

The Case of the Vanishing Blonde, by Mark Bowden (Amazon) Unspeakable Acts, edited by Sarah Weinman (Amazon) Two new books of long-form true crime nonfiction are out this month, and they're both pretty good. Let's get into it. First up is gifted narrative nonfiction author Mark Bowden's The Case of the Vanishing Blonde. My introduction... Continue Reading →

The First Book from The Last Podcast on the Left

The Last Book on the Left: Stories of Murder and Mayhem from History's Most Notorious Serial Killers (Amazon / Book Depository) Marcus Parks, Henry Zebrowski, and Ben Kissel of The Last Podcast on the Left, the long-running, make-you-laugh-til-you-cry comedy podcast covering stories of crime, the macabre and supernatural, conspiracy theories, alien abductions, high strangeness and general... Continue Reading →

Amateur Sleuths and the Unidentified

Book review: The Skeleton Crew, by Deborah Halber (Amazon / Book Depository) Chances are good that you or someone you know has at one point stumbled over a dead body. There are shockingly large numbers of them out there. According to the National Institute of Justice, America is home to tens of thousands of unidentified... Continue Reading →

Four Women and their Crime “Obsessions”

Book review: Savage Appetites, by Rachel Monroe (Amazon / Book Depository) For the past few years, as the US murder rate has approached historic lows, stories about murder have become culturally ascendant...whether our tastes tended toward high-end HBO documentaries interrogating the justice system or something more like Investigation Discovery's Swamp Murders. (Or, as was often... Continue Reading →

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