Item description for Life: The Most Notorious Crimes in American History: Fifty Fascinating Cases from the Files - in Pictures (Life (Life Books)) by Robert Sullivan...
Overview Documents some of America's most famous and appalling crimes with a visual look at each case, the perpetrators, and the justice system at work, in such cases as the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the Oklahoma City bombing.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 0.75" Width: 9.25" Height: 11" Weight: 1.82 lbs.
Release Date Nov 6, 2007
ISBN 1933821086 ISBN13 9781933821085
Reviews - What do customers think about Life: The Most Notorious Crimes in American History: Fifty Fascinating Cases from the Files - in Pictures (Life (Life Books))?
A Cook's Tour of a few dozen of the most sensational crimes in American history Dec 26, 2007
If you are close to or north of 50 years old you likely grew up leafing through the copies of Life and Look magazine that your parents subscribed to. They were large format magazines that relied more on pictures than text to make their points, but the text was still of good to high quality. Their vast library of photographs have been mined for several very nice books and special commemorative issues on various topics such as the Space Race, the Kennedy Assassination, and the war in Vietnam.
This book pulls out photographs published in life on notorious crimes in American history. Obviously, some of the photographs of the Lincoln assassination and the Lizzie Borden murders involve historical photos, but the crimes after the mid-20th Century are from Life's libraries. There are several dozen crimes collected here and they are grouped under politics, passion, profit, and pointless mayhem.
It starts off with the assassination of Lincoln, JFK, the Rosenberg trial and executions, Mississippi Burning, the murders of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy, Watergate, Patty Hearst, the shooting of Ronald Reagan, the Oklahoma City bombing and others.
The Passion section has a number of strange cases, many of which are not famous anymore. But it does cover Pamela Smart, Amy Fisher, OJ, and Laci Peterson.
The Profit section covers Sacco & Vanzetti, various Mob related stories, the Lindbergh baby kidnapping and murder, the story behind Truman Capote's "In Cold Blood", and Enron.
Pointless Mayhem covers Lizzie Borden, Leopold and Loeb, Sam Sheppard, Psycho, The Boston Strangler, Richard Speck, Son of Sam, Ted Bundy, the Beltway Snipers, the murder of John Lennon, and others.
The articles accompanying the pictures are a tad sensationalistic and don't come down as definitely on one side of the case or the other as partisans might wish, but they do honestly capture the facts of the cases, the ambiguities, and are written in an interesting way.
This book makes for interesting reading, especially if you are interested in these crimes and provide some insight to the seamier side of American History. Obviously, in this format you can't expect an exhaustive examination of the various cases. This is meant to be a page-turner and something you talk about with family and friends rather than an intellectual exercise. The pictures are very good to fabulous and many sear themselves into your memory and it is the pictures, after all, that Life magazine was really about.
Reviewed by Craig Matteson, Ann Arbor, MI
Simple but Enjoyable Dec 10, 2007
Review: A very nice piece of "fluff" reading. Each of the crimes are discussed in one to four pages of simple prose and liberal photos. Only the basic facts of the crimes are presented, so if you are looking for hard-hitting, in-depth coverage, you'd best pass this one by. It's a decent coffee table book, as it allows the reader to only read a bit at a time.
A unique and highly recommended volume of American criminal history. Dec 1, 2007
From the assassination of Abraham Lincoln , John F. Kennedy, and Martin Luther King Jr., to the kidnaping of Patty Hearst and the Lindbergh Baby, to the notorious Charles Manson family, to the Saint Valentine's Day Massacre, "The Most Notorious Crimes In American History" is an illustrated history of famous and infamous American crimes and criminals, both historic and contemporary. The murders of Laci Peterson and John Lennon, the unsolved mystery of the Black Dahlia Murder, the nation chilling Oklahoma City Bombing, all these and so many more are showcased and highlighted in a unique and highly recommended volume of American criminal history.
Deviant Behavior Personified Nov 22, 2007
This book rates a solid five stars with me. The book is divided into four parts: crimes involving 1. "Politics" such as political assassinations (the Kennedys, Martin Luther King), the Rosenbergs, and the civil rights workers in Philadelphia, Mississippi. 2. "Passion" such as Pamela Smart case, the O.J. Simpson case, and the shooting of Stanford White. 3. "Profit" such as the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, the Clutter family murders in Kansas, and the Lindbergh baby kidnapping. 4. "Pointless Mayhem" such as Son of Sam, Ted Bundy, Leopold and Loeb, Richard Speck, Charles Manson, and several others. Each case covers two to four pages in length with several photographs many in color. I would have included Austin, Texas, sniper Charles Whitman, the kidnapping and murder of Bobby Greenlease by Carl Hall and Bonnie Heady, and the murders of the Dartmouth professors by Robert Tulloch and James Parker, but I highly recommend this book. Although most of us have no desire to be criminals it is still fascinating to read about the motives of those who take part in infamous activities.