Weekly Book List: Week 46 (True Crime)

Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders / Vincent Bugliosi

The prosecutor of the Tate-LaBianca trials presents the inside story behind the Manson killings, explaining how Charles Manson was able to make his “family” murder for him, chronicling the investigation, and describing the court trial that brought him and his accomplices to justice. (364.1523 BUG)


In Cold Blood / Truman Capote

On November 15, 1959, in the small town of Holcomb, Kansas, four members of the Clutter family were savagely murdered by blasts from a shotgun held a few inches from their faces. There was no apparent motive for the crime, and there were almost no clues. As Truman Capote reconstructs the murder and the investigation that led to the capture, trial, and execution of the killers, he generates both mesmerizing suspense and astonishing empathy. (364.1523 CAP)

A Murder over a Girl: Justice, Gender, Junior High / Ken Corbett

On Feb. 12, 2008, at E. O. Green Junior High in Oxnard, CA, 14-year-old Brandon McInerney shot and killed his classmate, Larry King, who had recently begun to call himself “Leticia” and wear makeup and jewelry to school. Profoundly shaken by the news, and unsettled by media coverage that sidestepped the issues of gender identity and of race integral to the case, psychologist Ken Corbett traveled to LA to attend the trial. (364.152 COR)

The Stranger She Loved: A Mormon Doctor, his Beautiful Wife, and an Almost Perfect Murder / Shanna Hogan

Recounts the murder of 50-year-old Michele MacNeill at the hands of her husband, a doctor, lawyer and Mormon bishop who, upon further investigation by his daughters, had multiple marital affairs, a past criminal record and conned his way into medical school. (364.1523 HOG)

A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy / Sue Klebold

The mother of one of the two shooters at Columbine High School draws on personal recollections, journal entries and video recordings to piece together what led to her son’s unpredicted breakdown and share insights into how other families might recognize warning signs. (371.782 KLE)


Waiting to Be Heard / Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox’s account of her hard-fought battle to overcome injustice and win the freedom she deserved after spending four years in prison for the murder of Meredith Kercher in Perugia, Italy. (364.152 KNO)


While the City Slept: A Love Lost to Violence and a Young Man’s Descent into Madness / Eli Sanders

A Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter describes our failing mental-health system through the story of Isaiah Kalebu, who invaded the home of an engaged Seattle lesbian couple, raped and cut them both and murdered one of them. (364.152 SAN)

Blind Eye: How the Medical Establishment Let a Doctor Get Away with Murder / James B. Stewart

Traces the path of Michael Swango, a model young doctor whose patients from the United States to Zimbabwe began dying in suspicious circumstances and is now thought by the FBI to be the most successful serial killer in this nation’s history. (364.152 STE)

The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher: A Shocking Murder and the Undoing of a Great Victorian Detective / Kate Summerscale

Traces the 1860 murder of a young child whose death launched a national obsession with detection throughout England, nearly destroyed the career of a top Scotland Yard investigator, and inspired the birth of modern detective fiction. (364.152 SUM)

American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst / Jeffrey Toobin

An account of the sensational 1974 kidnapping and trial of Patty Hearst describes the efforts of her family to secure her release, Hearst’s baffling participation in a bank robbery and the psychological insights that prompted modern understandings about Stockholm syndrome. (364.154 TOO)

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