Kay's Reviews > The Napoleon of Crime: The Life and Times of Adam Worth, Master Thief

The Napoleon of Crime by Ben Macintyre
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's review
Apr 09, 09

bookshelves: biogr-memoir, london, nonfiction, true-crime
Read in March, 2009

What a disappointment! It sounded like a terrific book, and I'd recently read another book by McIntyre that was quite engaging. Briefly, Adam Worth was the man whom Arthur Conan Doyle modeled his fictional Professor Moriarty on. Unfortunately, this book takes an extremely plodding approach to the subject -- it's a bit of a dull-witted bobby, if you will. There's lots of material here on the Pinkertons, a famous stolen painting, lots of double dealing, and a roller-coaster of a life, but it's just not told here with any verve or dash. It sounds like the author did a lot of digging... and then dutifully wrote everything.

I wanted to like this one, really I did. I kept hoping it would get better, but it didn't. I barely managed to finish it, and I pretty much skimmed the last portion. It was that dull.
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