Nathan's Reviews > The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
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Sep 17, 07

bookshelves: history, history-crime, history-politics
Recommended for: Serial killers with amusement park fetishes.
Read in December, 2004

The Chicago World's Fair in 1894 drew record crowds for attendance and saw the invention of the first Ferris Wheel, revolutions in architecture and foundation construction, and a serial killer. Add to that political battles over planning, strife between the working class who built it and the wealthy who funded it, a planner and painter who died on the Titanic, a castle with a torture chamber and a string of brutal deaths along the way, and you’ve got an intriguing story that deserved to be told. Erik Larson’s brilliant historical account turns history into a modern parable, using prose that flows like the best mystery fiction. Fans of historical mystery should definitely check this out. It was completely engrossing, and easily one of the best books I've read in the last several years. It is the height of an art and exactly why I love nonfiction so much.

NC
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