In The Devil in the White City, the smoke, romance, and mystery of the Gilded Age come alive as never before. Two men, each handsome and unusually adept at his chosen work, embodied an element of the great dynamic that characterized America’s rush toward the twentieth century. The architect was Daniel Hudson Burnham, the fair’s brilliant director of works and the builder of many of the country’s most important structures, including the Flatiron Building in New York and Union Station in Washington, D.C. The murderer was Henry H. Holmes, a young doctor who, in a malign parody of the White City, built his “World’s Fair Hotel” just west of the fairgrounds—a torture palace complete with dissection table, gas chamber, and 3,000-degree crematorium. Burnham overcame tremendous obstacles and tragedies as he organized the talents of Frederick Law Olmsted, Charles McKim, Louis Sullivan, and others to transform swampy Jackson Park into the White City, while Holmes used the attraction of the great fair and his own satanic charms to lure scores of young women to their deaths. What makes the story all the more chilling is that Holmes really lived, walking the grounds of that dream city by the lake. The Devil in the White City draws the reader into a time of magic and majesty, made all the more appealing by a supporting cast of real-life characters, including Buffalo Bill, Theodore Dreiser, Susan B. Anthony, Thomas Edison, Archduke Francis Ferdinand, and others. Erik Larson’s gifts as a storyteller are magnificently displayed in this rich narrative of the master builder, the killer, and the great fair that obsessed them both. To find out more about this book, go to http://www.DevilInTheWhiteCity.com.
The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson | Summary & Analysis Preview: The Devil in the White City is a book by Erik Larson that takes a close look at The World’s Columbian Exposition, the world’s fair that Chicago hosted in 1893, held in celebration of the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ discovery of America. The fair was tainted by deaths, a serial killer, and an assassination. The lead architect, Daniel Burnham, and the serial killer, Henry Howard Holmes, play pivotal roles in the events that unfolded before, during, and after the fair. In the late nineteenth century, Chicago was a raw city, growing fast, but it was horribly polluted. Fourteen million animals went to their deaths each year in the stockyards. Garbage and manure piled up and typhus, cholera, and other diseases raged. Train and carriage accidents killed several people daily. Fires were even more deadly. The city tallied 800 murders in just the first half of one year… PLEASE NOTE: This is a summary and analysis of the book and NOT the original book. Inside this Instaread Summary & Analysis of The Devil in the White City • Summary of book • Introduction to the Important People in the book • Analysis of the Themes and Author’s Style
Tells the parallel stories of Daniel Burnham, the main architect of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, and serial killer Henry H. Holmes, discussing the challenges Burnham faced in creating the hugely successful White City, and looking at how Holmes used the opportunities afforded by the fair to lure victims to their deaths.
So much to read, so little time? This brief overview of The Devil in the White City tells you what you need to know—before or after you read Erik Larsons book. Crafted and edited with care, Worth Books set the standard for quality and give you the tools you need to be a well-informed reader. This short summary and analysis of The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson includes: Historical context Chapter-by-chapter summaries Detailed timeline of key events Important quotes Fascinating trivia Glossary of terms Supporting material to enhance your understanding of the original work About The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson: The Devil in the White City is the electrifying true story of the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago—and the serial killer who used it as his hunting ground. Meticulously researched and brimming with fascinating historical details, Larson’s bestselling book is a powerful amalgam of historical narrative and a true crime thriller. The summary and analysis in this ebook are intended to complement your reading experience and bring you closer to a great work of nonfiction.
The remarkable true story of the uncompromising and relentless detective who investigated one of America's first serial killers, the man known as the 'Devil in the White City,' H. H. Holmes, and others like him. This extraordinary historical biography provides a chronological account of Frank Geyer’s life and features murder cases that made national headlines and the history of one of America's largest police departments, complete with 95 rare illustrations and photos! “History like never before!” Who was the world’s famous detective who outsmarted criminals from the Gilded Age and whose wife and daughter never died in a fire, like scholars claimed? Featuring: Geyer's incredible investigation of H. H. Holmes, death of Benjamin Pitezel, the horrific discovery of the missing Pitezel children, Holmes' trial, and a 'Devil in Him' chapter Mary Hannah Tabbs and the gruesome torso murder Modern Borgia killer, Sarah Jane Whiteling, the first woman hung in Philadelphia White Chapel Row Mrs. Annie Gaskin and the killer cat Top secret search in Rio de Janeiro Fake highwaymen murder for insurance, and plot to kill Detective Geyer Law enforcement and Philadelphia history Reuben Geyer in the Civil War, President Franklin Pierce, and Franks' hometown Truth about Geyer's wife and daughter with Sources, List of Illustrations and Credits, Bibliography, Notes, and Index 95 rare historical illustrations and photos, restored
Berlin,1933. William E. Dodd, a mild-mannered academic from Chicago, has to his own and everyone else's surprise, become America's first ambassador to Hitler's Germany, in a year that proves to be a turning point in history. Dodd and his family, notably his vivacious daughter, Martha, observe at first-hand the many changes - some subtle, some disturbing, and some horrifically violent - that signal Hitler's consolidation of power. Dodd has little choice but to associate with key figures in the Nazi party, his increasingly concerned cables make little impact on an indifferent U.S. State Department, while Martha is drawn to the Nazis and their vision of a 'New Germany' and has a succession of affairs with senior party players, including first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels. But as the year darkens, Dodd and his daughter find their lives transformed and any last illusion they might have about Hitler are shattered by the violence of the 'Night of the Long Knives' in the summer of 1934 that established him as supreme dictator. Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the times, and with brilliant portraits of Hitler, Goebbels, Goering and Himmler amongst others, Erik Larson's new book sheds unique light on events as they unfold, resulting in an unforgettable, addictively readable work of narrative history.
In 1910, Edwardian England was scandalized by a murder. It seems mild-mannered American Hawley Crippen had killed his wife, buried her remains in the cellar of their North London home and then gone on the run with his young mistress, his secretary Ethel Le Neve. A Scotland Yard inspector, already famous for his part in the Ripper investigation, discovered the murder and launched an international hunt for Crippen that climaxed in a trans-Atlantic chase between two ocean liners. The chase itself was novel, but what captured the imagination was the role played by a new and little understood technology: the wireless. Thanks to its inventor Marconi's obsessive fight to perfect his machine, the world was able to learn of events occurring in the middle of the Atlantic as they unfolded - something previously unthinkable. Commentators of the time all agreed that if not for Marconi, Crippen would have escaped. But Marconi had struggled to gain acceptance for his invention (some viewed it as a supernatural device, while distrust of foreigners remained prevalent in England and America). It was the Crippen case that helped convince the world of the potential of Marconi's miracle technology, so accelerating the revolution that eventually produced the modern means of communication we take for granted today. With its cast of captivating characters, Thunderstruck is Erik Larson doing what he does brilliantly well: bringing together seemingly disparate yet inextricably linked lives to paint a fascinating and exciting portrait of an extraordinary age of cultural, social and technological change while evoking the darker side of human nature.
America's first and most notorious serial killer and his diabolical killing spree during the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago. H. H. Holmes: The True History of the White City Devil is the first truly comprehensive book examining the life and career of a murderer who has become one of America’s great supervillains. It reveals not only the true story but how the legend evolved, taking advantage of hundreds of primary sources that have never been examined before, including legal documents, letters, articles, and records that have been buried in archives for more than a century. Though Holmes has become just as famous now as he was in 1895, a deep analysis of contemporary materials makes very clear how much of the story as we know came from reporters who were nowhere near the action, a dangerously unqualified new police chief, and, not least, lies invented by Holmes himself. Selzer has unearthed tons of stunning new data about Holmes, weaving together turn-of-the-century America, the killer’s background, and the wild cast of characters who circulated in and about the famous “castle” building. This book will be the first truly accurate account of what really happened in Holmes’s castle of horror. Exhaustively researched and painstakingly brought to life, H. H. Holmes will be an invaluable companion to the upcoming Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio movie about Holmes’s murder spree based on Erik Larson’s The Devil in the White City.
This story set in Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., San Francisco, New York, and London in the summer of 1888 is based on the true story of and facts uncovered by the author's investigation of the life of his great-great grandfather, Herman Webster Mudgett, aka H.H. Holmes.
What came to be known as the World's Columbian Exposition was planned to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's 1492 landfall in the New World. Chicago beat out New York City, St. Louis, Missouri, and Washington, DC, in its bid as host--a coup for the Windy City. The site finally selected for the fair was Jackson Park, originally designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, a marshy area covered with dense, wild vegetation. Daniel H. Burnham and John W. Root were selected as chief architects, creating the famous White City. The fair featured several different thematic areas: the Great Buildings, Foreign Buildings, State Buildings, and the Midway Plaisance, a nearly mile-long area that featured exotic exhibits. The exposition also showcased the world's first Ferris Wheel and introduced fairgoers to new sensations like Cracker Jack, Pabst Beer, and ragtime music. The World's Columbian Exposition, covering 633 acres, opened on May 1, 1893. Admission prices were 50¢ for adults, 25¢ for children under 12 years of age, and free for children under six. Unfortunately, by 1896, most of the fair's buildings had been removed or destroyed, but this collection takes readers on a tour of the grounds as they looked in 1893.
Ten years ago, four people were brutally murdered. One girl lived. No one believes her story. The police think she's crazy. Her therapist thinks she's suicidal. Everyone else thinks she's a dangerous drunk. They're all right-but did she see the killer? As the anniversary of the murders approaches, Faith Winters is released from the psychiatric hospital and yanked back to the last spot on earth she wants to be-her hometown where the slayings took place. Wracked by the lingering echoes of survivor's guilt, Faith spirals into a black hole of alcoholism and wanton self-destruction. Finding no solace at the bottom of a bottle, Faith decides to track down her sister's killer-and then discovers that she's the one being hunted. How can one woman uncover the truth when everyone's a suspect-including herself? From the mind of Wall Street Journal bestselling author Christopher Greyson comes a story with twists and turns that take the reader to the edge of madness. The Girl Who Lived should come with a warning label: once you start reading, you won't be able to stop. Not since Girl on the Train and Gone Girl has a psychological thriller kept readers so addicted-and guessing right until the last page. Praise for Christopher Greyson's The Girl Who Lived Gold Medal Winner for Best Mystery/Thriller eBook of the Year - 2018 Independent Publisher Book Awards Winner Best Thriller - 2018 National Indie Excellence Awards Winner Best Thriller - 2018 Silver Falchion Award Killer Nashville Voted Most Loved Cover - NetGalley Readers Grab your copy of this highly-acclaimed thriller today!" Christopher Greyson has created a thriller on par with The Girl on the Train, only with more suspects, more danger, and more agony for the young heroine." - Killer Nashville "The plot turns come fast and furious... Sharp characters enmeshed in a mystery that, particularly in its final lap, is a gleefully dizzy ride." - Kirkus Reviews
ARE YOU LISTENING? I AM CLOSING THE DOOR TO YESTERDAY IF I DON'T IT'S NOBODY'S FAULT BUT MINE. I DON'T KNOW WHEN, I DON'T KNOW HOW, I JUST KNOW THAT "MY FATHER'S" DELAY IS NOT A DENIAL.
It is the year of our lord, 1893. The crackle of electricity's first sparks, the mechanical whine of Ferris's wheel, the tinkling of crystal from the majestic city atop the hill--the sounds of a new era pervade the air as the century's last World's Fair commences in Chicago. But darkness lurks beneath the metropolis so austere it has been dubbed the White City. Strikes loom on the horizon, racism runs rampant, and a murderer unlike any America has ever seen before is on the loose, terrorizing the city. His crimes are so brutal, newspapers have christened him the Husker. Hiding behind the cloak of a city in chaos, he taunts his pursuers, littering the grounds of the fair with the corpses of children as he slips through the shadows. Dr. Elizabeth Handley, the first forensic psychologist of her kind, has been called in to capture the killer, but when the son of prominent architect William Rockland goes missing, the case takes on an entirely new urgency. In this city of bombastic politics and cutthroat egos, everyone has his own agenda, but time is running out. As she races to save the boy, Dr. Handley fights to maintain her sanity as the line between captor and quarry blurs, and violence casts its spell. From the depths of the seediest brothels to the pristine enclaves of the elite, The White City is a strange, beguiling first novel by Alec Michod, a thriller that masterfully blends fact and fiction. An exhilarating voyeur's glimpse at Chicago in all its glory, it also probes the dark side that was never far from its core.
Death in the City of Light is the gripping, true story of a brutal serial killer who unleashed his own reign of terror in Nazi-Occupied Paris. As decapitated heads and dismembered body parts surfaced in the Seine, Commissaire Georges-Victor Massu, head of the Brigade Criminelle, was tasked with tracking down the elusive murderer in a twilight world of Gestapo, gangsters, resistance fighters, pimps, prostitutes, spies, and other shadowy figures of the Parisian underworld. The main suspect was Dr. Marcel Petiot, a handsome, charming physician with remarkable charisma. He was the “People’s Doctor,” known for his many acts of kindness and generosity, not least in providing free medical care for the poor. Petiot, however, would soon be charged with twenty-seven murders, though authorities suspected the total was considerably higher, perhaps even as many as 150. Who was being slaughtered, and why? Was Petiot a sexual sadist, as the press suggested, killing for thrills? Was he allied with the Gestapo, or, on the contrary, the French Resistance? Or did he work for no one other than himself? Trying to solve the many mysteries of the case, Massu would unravel a plot of unspeakable deviousness. When Petiot was finally arrested, the French police hoped for answers. But the trial soon became a circus. Attempting to try all twenty-seven cases at once, the prosecution stumbled in its marathon cross-examinations, and Petiot, enjoying the spotlight, responded with astonishing ease. His attorney, René Floriot, a rising star in the world of criminal defense, also effectively, if aggressively, countered the charges. Soon, despite a team of prosecuting attorneys, dozens of witnesses, and over one ton of evidence, Petiot’s brilliance and wit threatened to win the day. Drawing extensively on many new sources, including the massive, classified French police file on Dr. Petiot, Death in the City of Light is a brilliant evocation of Nazi-Occupied Paris and a harrowing exploration of murder, betrayal, and evil of staggering proportions. From the Hardcover edition.
WINNER OF THE 2015 GOODREADS CHOICE AWARDS ‘BEST HISTORY AND BIOGRAPHY’ From the #1 New York Times bestselling author and master of narrative non-fiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania, published to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the disaster On May 1 1915, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were anxious. Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone, and for months, its U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era's great transatlantic 'Greyhounds' and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. He knew, moreover, that his ship — the fastest then in service — could outrun any threat. Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger's U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small — hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more — all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history. It is a story that many of us think we know but don't, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour, mystery, and real-life suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope Riddle to President Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love. Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster that helped place America on the road to war. PRAISE FOR ERIK LARSON ‘Larson is one of the modern masters of popular narrative nonfiction … a resourceful reporter and a subtle stylist who understands the tricky art of Edward Scissorhands-ing narrative strands into a pleasing story … An entertaining book about a great subject, and it will do much to make this seismic event resonate for new generations of readers.’ The New York Tmes ‘[Larson is] a superb storyteller and a relentless research hound’ Time
During the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, G. Gordon Gregg, a handsome physician, rents rooms in his newly constructed castle to young, beautiful, and wealthy women who mysteriously vanish. Reprint.
Documents the efforts of the first American ambassador to Hitler's Germany, William E. Dodd, to acclimate to a residence in an increasingly violent city where he is forced to associate with the Nazis while his daughter pursues a relationship with Gestapochief Rudolf Diels.
At the dawn of the twentieth century, a great confidence suffused America. Isaac Cline was one of the era's new men, a scientist who believed he knew all there was to know about the motion of clouds and the behavior of storms. The idea that a hurricane could damage the city of Galveston, Texas, where he was based, was to him preposterous, "an absurd delusion." It was 1900, a year when America felt bigger and stronger than ever before. Nothing in nature could hobble the gleaming city of Galveston, then a magical place that seemed destined to become the New York of the Gulf. That August, a strange, prolonged heat wave gripped the nation and killed scores of people in New York and Chicago. Odd things seemed to happen everywhere: A plague of crickets engulfed Waco. The Bering Glacier began to shrink. Rain fell on Galveston with greater intensity than anyone could remember. Far away, in Africa, immense thunderstorms blossomed over the city of Dakar, and great currents of wind converged. A wave of atmospheric turbulence slipped from the coast of western Africa. Most such waves faded quickly. This one did not. In Cuba, America's overconfidence was made all too obvious by the Weather Bureau's obsession with controlling hurricane forecasts, even though Cuba's indigenous weathermen had pioneered hurricane science. As the bureau's forecasters assured the nation that all was calm in the Caribbean, Cuba's own weathermen fretted about ominous signs in the sky. A curious stillness gripped Antigua. Only a few unlucky sea captains discovered that the storm had achieved an intensity no man alive had ever experienced. In Galveston, reassured by Cline's belief that no hurricane could seriously damage the city, there was celebration. Children played in the rising water. Hundreds of people gathered at the beach to marvel at the fantastically tall waves and gorgeous pink sky, until the surf began ripping the city's beloved beachfront apart. Within the next few hours Galveston would endure a hurricane that to this day remains the nation's deadliest natural disaster. In Galveston alone at least 6,000 people, possibly as many as 10,000, would lose their lives, a number far greater than the combined death toll of the Johnstown Flood and 1906 San Francisco Earthquake. And Isaac Cline would experience his own unbearable loss. Meticulously researched and vividly written, Isaac's Storm is based on Cline's own letters, telegrams, and reports, the testimony of scores of survivors, and our latest understanding of the hows and whys of great storms. Ultimately, however, it is the story of what can happen when human arrogance meets nature's last great uncontrollable force. As such, Isaac's Storm carries a warning for our time. From the Hardcover edition.
The Holmes-Pitezel case a history of the greatest crime of the century and of the search for the missing Pitezel children. By detective Frank P. Geyer of the bureau of police, department of public safety, of the city of Philadelphia. A true detective story. By permission of the District Attorney and Mayor of the City of Philadelphia. Fully illustrated.