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Little Slaughterhouse on the Prairie

(Bloodlands Collection)

3.55  ·  Rating details ·  2,070 ratings  ·  204 reviews

At a remote little inn not far from the Kansas homestead of Laura Ingalls Wilder lived the Bender family. These pioneers welcomed unwary visitors with jackrabbit stew and a sledgehammer to the skull.

In time, their apple orchard gave up its secrets—a burial ground for their mutilated victims, each stripped of their possessions. The devilish enterprise on “Hell’s Half-Acre”

Kindle Edition, Bloodlands collection, 80 pages
Published June 28th 2018 by Amazon Original Stories
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Lindsay from TrulyBooked I don't know if it will eventually become available, but considering it's a Kindle Exclusive I think you'll only be able to find digital copies. If…moreI don't know if it will eventually become available, but considering it's a Kindle Exclusive I think you'll only be able to find digital copies. If there /is/ a physical copy, you'll probably be able to buy it through Amazon.(less)
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Community Reviews

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3.55  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,070 ratings  ·  204 reviews

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Justin Tate
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I didn't even read the description before starting this. It was an Amazon freebie and only an hour on audio. I thought maybe it was one of those mashup books like Pride & Prejudice & Zombies. It is not. It's actually a well-researched true crime book detailing the Bender family serial killers that took place during the same time period that Laura Ingalls Wilder was having her adventures on the prairie. There are even rumors that Laura's father killed the Bender family after they were exp ...more
True crime light, this is the short tale of a family of serial killers known as the Benders. It recounts their gruesome history in Kansas during the often idyllically portrayed ‘Little House on the Prairie’ period as they butcher numerous lonesome travellers at their seedy inn.

This is short in length, and because of this it’s also rather light in detail. It’s a jaunt down History rather than an in depth character analysis with a broad overview of events told in a sensational way. There’s lots o
Dec 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I grew up reading the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Pa playing his fiddle. Ma sewing. The kids playing in the great outdoors. Jack running behind their covered wagon. A great adventure! But, moving west and settling in mostly unsettled, still wild areas also held many dangers. Not just from weather and animals....from people, too. Little Slaughterhouse on the Prairie tells the story of the Bender family. The Benders ran an inn on the Kansas prairie. They offered travelers hot meals ...more
Montzalee Wittmann
Little Slaughterhouse in the Prairie discusses the crimes of the Benders that lived during the time of Laura Ingals Wilder. The Benders preyed upon single people stopping by and Laura said (outside of her books) that her dad had stopped to get water but didn't go inside, he might have died if he had! Great info in here about the crimes and investigation. It even mentions my little Missouri town of Shelbina!
Narration is spot on!
Jul 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
WOW what a crazy story. And the Ingels of The Little House on the Praire fame lived nearby and actually stopped there to water their horses.
Oct 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Somewhat interesting Kindle Short true crime story about a gruesome family of 19th century Kansas murderers who's legend has somehow become mixed with tale of Laura Ingalls Wilder.
What really happened? Did the Benders really kill line travellers at their ramshackle inn in the 1870's?
Jul 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Kindle Prime offered this series free with audible yesterday, so I snatched up the entire set to borrow. I know I'll be reading these instead of doing any real work this weekend...

The murderous Bender family of the late 19th century are infamous for depraved killings on their homestead in Kansas. Ma and Pa Bender and siblings John Jr. and Katie ran a 'Grocry' and inn, really a one-room house divided into two rooms by a sheet hung down the middle. When a person traveling solo happened upon their
Jul 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
I’ve heard about the Bloody Benders before but this is by far the most detailed account I’ve read.

The book is short but much of that may be due to the fact that the Benders, a family of serial killers who brutally murdered travelers in 1870s Kansas, were never caught. Most of their past is guesswork and where they disappeared to remains a mystery. No one even knows if they were truly related at all.

What is known is that Kate, John Jr., Ma and Pa Bender murdered at least 20 people. Some were kil
Quentin Wallace
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is my favorite volume of the series. This deals with a family of serial killers, the Benders, who ran a primitive inn in Kansas back in the 1870s. The real life Ingalls family, of Little House on the Prairie fame, supposedly even stopped for water at the Inn, which much like HH Holmes hotel years later came to be known as a death house.

The family preyed on travelers, robbing them and murdering them when they stopped for the night, or even just for lunch or purchases in some cases. The case
Sep 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018, history
This is a short story about the true crimes of the Bender family, known serial killers from 1871-1873. The "Bloody Benders" was a family living in Labette County deep in the prairie lands of Kansas. They build a makeshift store and inn for lonely travelers along the Osage trail between Independence, Missouri and Kansas. They would entice these travelers into the inn for dinner and kill them, disposing of their bodies in the night. After a few too many people went missing, loved ones started sear ...more
Stephanie ((Strazzybooks))
Jul 18, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle
Another of Amazon's Bloodlands collection, this told the story of the murderous Bender family who lived on the Kansas prairie. An interesting listen.
April Taylor
Jul 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Like many true crime books, the beginning of this very short history lesson is a bit dry. But once it picks up, it’s a fascinating look at the family that actually predated H.H. Holmes as America’s first serial killers.

The author relies heavily upon original newspaper sources, so there are a lot of quotes from people involved in the case. This may have required less writing, but it takes a deft understanding of true crime story structure to weave everything together into a compelling narrative.
Amber Machado
Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really great short read. The author keeps the story interesting while keeping the facts strait. But, while this does run the conclusion what did happen to the Bender Family? Did they get away with all the murders or did a vigilante group catch them and get Justice for all the murders committed? One may never truly know but its a great read!!
Jul 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle-unlimited
Wonderful writing from an author that knows his stuff. I already love the story behind true crimes so this was right up my alley
Teresa Crawford
Sep 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Another short ebook of the Bloodlands series. Somewhat creepy - a family who kills together, stays together?
Dec 24, 2018 rated it liked it
(rating changes due to what books are my fave, that is how i did decide to make it go, u do what you feel is great??!) I love it when Amazon groups these books all together, would enjoy seeing why and how they decide to do this?? all these are by: Harold Schechter? that is a 1st, right?? don't they usually have book by different authors? i made a list of my most favorite and in which order!! (I apparently did not read them in order, just jumped around and listen/read what i wanted to, that is ho ...more
Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The family that slays together...

I had heard of the horrific crimes of the Bender Family before so this was a refresher for me. Add in the unknown conclusion of their whereabouts and the unconfirmed tales of justice being meted out, the Benders were pioneers in the gruesome world of serial killers.
Ronnie Cramer
Aug 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Another short ebook in Harold Schechter's Bloodlands Collection; this one is about the notorious Bender Family in 19th century Kansas. Their grisly tale has appeared in a number of true crime anthologies, but Schecther is a better researcher and writer than most.
Cyndi  McIntire
Jul 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Who knew

Who knew Charles Ingalls was not all sweet and loving I'm shocked. I had previously read about the Bender family and had no idea they were around the same time and place as Little House on the Prairie. I believe that Colonel York exacted his justice, he just sounds like a person that would do that
Jul 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Interesting Story of Prairie Serial Killers

This was a short true story about the Bender family of Kansas. I was not aware of this prior to reading this book and found it really interesting.
susan howard
Jan 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Quick read

I have read the whole kindle series. This book I would have loved to have had a deeper more articulated back story. It is well written and flows well, but since it is a short story it left me with a number of unanswered questions.
Jul 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: hist-amer
A short history on the events and legends surrounding the Bender family, noted as a family of serial killers living in Kansas in the early 1870s. The family owned a small place that was generously described as an inn at a crossroads for travelers. It was here many men went missing in their travels. It was also near where the Ingalls family lived while in Kansas and made a few stops in their day. While historians have dismissed Laura Ingalls Wilder's claims that her father was in the posse that c ...more
Miltiadis Michalopoulos
A very easy-to-read book. I read it this morning in less than two hours. The story is captivating and well written.
Sep 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting fact filled audiobook. Wouldn't pay to listen to it, but free is my favorite word!
Oct 03, 2018 rated it liked it
2.5 stars
Danielle Bonam
Jul 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: true-crime
Harold Schechter is hands down the greatest True Crime author. His research is all encompassing, I cannot imagine how he finds the time to research every single tid-bit of a crime, but he does and we reap the benefit.

In his latest Amazon Kindle Collection, The Bloodlands, Schechter explores 6(ish) murders of early American history. I say 6(ish) because although each story has a central murder, they all look at other comparable killings and overarching themes when applicable.

The Bloodlands Colle
Although interesting, there’s not much in the way of detail for this true crime story. Worth the read, but ultimately this is a little unsatisfying.
Dec 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime, non-fiction
Harold is a master true-crime author. I am really enjoying these "shorts" that he wrote. I did not know much about the "Bloody Benders". Now I can't wait to read more about the Bender Clan.
Aug 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a really good short true-crime book. It is interesting to hear the opposite of the Ingalls and it connected to the Osage tribe in Kansas.

Beware the Benders.
Wade Gish
Jul 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
First time hearing the story...

I had never heard the story recounted here, but Mr. Scherer does a thorough and masterful job of researching and providing in great detail a fantastic tale. Very pleased!
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Aka Jon A. Harrald (joint pseudonym with Jonna Gormley Semeiks)

Harold Schechter is a true crime writer who specializes in serial killers. He attended the State University of New York in Buffalo, where he obtained a Ph.D. A resident of New York City, Schechter is professor of American literature and popular culture at Queens College of the City University of New York.

Among his nonfiction works are

Other books in the series

Bloodlands Collection (6 books)
  • The Pirate
  • The Pied Piper
  • The Brick Slayer
  • Panic
  • Rampage