Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book she decided to read based on the opening. Feel free to grab the banner and play along.
My current read is Dancing for the Hangman by Martin Edwards and the first of my 20 Books of Summer 2015 challenge
It is 1910 and Dr Hawley Crippen has been convicted of the murder of his wife Cora. In his cell at Pentonville Prison, Crippen faces the prospect of the gallows. Laying bare his innermost feelings, he looks back at his austere childhood in Coldwater, Michigan, his tempestuous marriage and life on the run with his lover Ethel Le Neve. Yet as he revisits his life, Crippen entreats us to consider his ‘confession’: I am not a murderer.
In Dancing for the Hangman, Martin Edwards reopens the file on one of the most notorious and fascinating cases in criminal history. Edwards blends imaginative insight with detailed and extensive research to bring to life the characters and events of a hundred years ago. As he explores all the known facts of the murder case, Edwards skilfully reveals the many questions surrounding Crippen’s conviction and arrives at a fresh interpretation of the case.
Darkly humorous and highly readable, Dancing for the Hangman is also a strikingly vivid portrait of Crippen himself, drawing the reader deep into the mind of this hapless, baffling and complex figure. Flambard Press
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First Chapter ~ First Paragraph ~ Intro
Note: marked ‘Declan – for your eyes only’, from Chief Government Archivist to the Director of Media Relations, 1 May 2008
A dead man talking.
The sheets of foolscap are yellow and smell of damp, but when I read Crippen’s words, I hear his voice. Soft plaintive, oblivious to irony.
These papers – a memoir in manuscript, scraps from a secret diary, jagged clippings – were meant to make a man’s fortune. Instead they have lain hidden for years. Even now they could embarrass us. They speak of a murder that no-one knew or dreamed of.
Do you want to know more? Have you read this book?
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