RachelAnne's Reviews > The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York

The Poisoner's Handbook by Deborah Blum
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Jun 05, 10

bookshelves: non-fiction, historical, healthdisease, mysteries
Recommended for: fans of Agatha Christie and/or medical thrillers.
Read from June 01 to 03, 2010

This book was SO COOL! It's the sort of book that you just cannot read silently; I was continually groaning, cringing, reading bits aloud and murmuring "Oooh...wow." Chronicling the emergence of forensic medicine in NYC from just before the US joined WWI to the early forties, Blum presents a thorough, accurate historical, medical, chemical and legal overview of her subject in a way that doesn't lose any of the tabloid-headline punch of a thriller. The historical characters are colorful and articulate enough to speak for themselves, and Blum presents a glorious counter-argument to anyone with enough hubris to claim that "today's youth" have lower moral standards than those of yesteryear. I need to own a copy of this book.

Anyone want to come over for tea? I feel like baking!
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