Early in the morning of Monday, 8 July 1895, 13-year-old Robert Coombes and his 12-year-old brother, Nattie, set out from their small, yellow-brick terraced house in East London to watch a cricket match at Lord's. Their father had gone to sea the previous Friday, the boys told their neighbours, and their mother was visiting her family in Liverpool. Over the next 10 days, Robert and Nattie spent extravagantly, pawning their parents' valuables to fund trips to the theatre and the seaside.
"Not what I expected from the title"
Richard Stratton was the unlikeliest of kingpins. A clean-cut Wellesley boy who entered outlaw culture on a trip to Mexico, he saw his search for a joint morph into a thrill-filled dope run smuggling two kilos across the border in his car door. He became a member of the Hippie Mafia, traveling the world to keep America high, living the underground life while embracing the hippie credo, rejecting hard drugs in favor of marijuana and hashish.
"Bit boring - hard to follow who is who"
When Caylee Anthony was reported missing in Orlando, Florida, in July 2008, the public spent the next three years following the investigation and the eventual trial of her mother, Casey Anthony. On July 5, 2011, the case that captured headlines worldwide exploded when, against all odds, defense attorney Jose Baez delivered one of the biggest legal upsets in American history: a not-guilty verdict.
In the early 1980s, Brian O'Dea was operating a $100 million a year, 120-man drug smuggling business, and had developed a terrifying cocaine addiction. Under increasing threat from the DEA in 1986 for importing seventy-five tons of marijuana into the United States, he quit the trade - and the drugs - and began working with recovering addicts in Santa Barbara. Despite his life change, the authorities caught up with him years later and O'Dea was arrested, tried, and sentenced to ten years at Terminal Island Federal Penitentiary in Los Angeles Harbor.
Spanning murder cases from the beginning of the 20th century to today, this is a must-hear for fans of true crime and will also be compelling to mystery and thriller listeners. The contributors include Harold Schechter, Katherine Ramsland, Carol Anne Davis, Burl Barer, and other leading writers in this genre. Each of the 17 contributors draws on his or her own strengths, backgrounds, interests, and research skills to describe, in a vivid narrative, not only the facts of each notorious case but also the terrible emotions and macabre circumstances surrounding the crimes.
The definitive portrait of the powerful, corruption-ridden Teamsters union and its legendary president Jimmy Hoffa - organizer, gangster, convict, and conspirator - with a new afterword by the author.
Many people are familiar with the story of Al Capone, the legendary Chicago gangster best known for orchestrating the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. But few are aware that Capone's remarkable story began in the Navy Yard section of Brooklyn, New York. Tutored by the likes of infamous mobsters Johnny Torrio and Frankie Yale, young Capone's disquieting demeanor, combined with the "technical advice" he learned from these shady teachers, contributed to the molding of a brutal criminal....
"The Book is alive"
In June of I985, while her teenage sons held their half sister down, Theresa Cross beat her I9-year-old daughter, Sheila, unconscious and then stuffed her into a 2' x 2' storage locker. After three days, the knocking, kicking, and cries stopped. Theresa and her sons dumped the girl's body in the desolate High Sierras....
This is a work of narrative nonfiction based on the last days of the fugitive Raoul Moat, a Geordie bodybuilder and mechanic who became nationally notorious in Britain one hot summer's week when, after killing his ex-girlfriend's new lover, shooting her in the stomach, and blinding a policeman, he disappeared into the woods of Northumberland, evading discovery for seven days - even when TV tracker Ray Mears was employed by the police to find him.
Shirley Pitts, the eldest of six children, was born upside down on November 24, 1934. Her "career" began by thieving bread off doorsteps and coal from coal carts. Her father's bungled attempts at black marketeering and her dipsomaniac mother's inadequacies made Shirley resolve to be not only a first-class thief but also the best mother her six children could wish for.
January 2, 1972: Men in tuxedos rob the Pierre, a New York hotel. They get away with $11 million worth of cash and jewelry. The police are baffled by how large-scale a heist could go off so smoothly. The answer was in the leader of the thieves, a man by the name of Bobby Comfort. Comfort took to crime from a young age, card sharping, petty theft, and eventually robbery. Taking money from the rich, though, was where he excelled.
Meet Samuel Israel III. Born into one of the world's richest families, he rose to the top of Wall Street in the 1980s amid insider trading, drugs, and vice. Founder of the Bayou Hedge Fund Group, which collapsed in 2005, he became synonymous with one of the largest Ponzi frauds in Wall Street's history. But as his fund faced ruin, his story took an astonishing twist. Based on three years of interviews in prison with Israel, acclaimed Rolling Stone journalist Guy Lawson reveals how the conman was himself conned.
On 14 June 1856, after a scandalous and extremely high-profile trial, Dr William Palmer was hanged for the poisoning of his friend John Parsons Cook. The case was one of the most infamous of its time, and as the twelve-day trial unfolded, accusations of no less than fourteen murders came to light.
On March 24, 2015, Germanwings Flight 9525 crashed into the French Alps. All 144 passengers and six crew members were killed. In the ensuing days, a picture of the flight's harrowing final moments began to emerge. Shortly after reaching cruise altitude, a 27-year-old first officer named Andreas Lubitz locked the captain out of the cockpit, took control of the plane, and deliberately caused its descent.
The man who answered the door was naked and covered with blood. His name was Larry Singleton and police in Tampa, Florida, soon discovered he had brutally murdered prostitute Roxanne Hayes and much worse. He was the mad chopper, who years before had cut off the arms off 15-year-old Mary Vincent outside Modesto, California. Mary survived and testified against him at his trial for killing Hayes.
Madoff with the Money is a deeply disturbing portrait of Bernie Madoff based on dozens of exclusive, news-making interviews. From the values Madoff was taught growing up in the working-class town of Laurelton, Queens, to his high-life on Wall Street and the super-rich enclaves of Palm Beach and the French Riviera, best-selling author Jerry Oppenheimer follows the disgraced money manager's trail as he works his way up the social and economic ladder, and eventually scams his clients in a $50-billion Ponzi scheme.
The Spy with No Name is the unbelievable true story of Erwin van Haarlem, a Cold War secret agent whose stolen identity broke the heart of an innocent woman - who thought she'd found her long-lost son. In 1977, Johanna van Haarlem, 52, finally tracked down the son she had abandoned as a baby, during the Second World War. She was delighted that he had grown into a charming Dutch waiter in London. But Erwin van Haarlem was actually a dangerous Communist spy who had stolen her son's identity to uncover British and American military secrets.
Aaron Iturra was just 18 years old when he was found dead in his bedroom in Eugene, Oregon. Soon, the quiet community would be rocked and shocked by who was behind the killing: Mary Louise Thompson, also known as Gang Mom. An anti-gang activist, she was a modern day deadly Fagin, running her own gang of juveniles who preyed on the unsuspecting city.
James Carr started fighting when he was very young, and never gave up. A child prodigy of crime in the streets of the L.A. ghettos and scourge of half a dozen boys' homes, his career in armed robbery was quickly cut short by arrest. In prison he fought harder than ever, and became one of the most notorious rebels in the seething California Penal System. Linking up with George Jackson in Folsom, they led the notorious Wolf Pack, which quickly fought its way to a position of strength in the prison race war.
David Headley, the American Pakistani also known as Daood Gilani, lived a double life. One day he would stroll through Central Park in his tailored Armani suit as a true New Yorker, and the next he would browse in the bazaar in Lahore wearing traditional Pakistani clothes. One day he would drink champagne at the most extravagant clubs; on another he would prostrate himself in prayer in remote Pakistan and pledge fidelity to Allah.
In the boot were six homemade pipe bombs, all linked to detonate at the same time from a single call on a brand-new pay-as-you-go phone found on the target. Special Branch also found Chinese Type 56 assault rifles with eight full magazines of ammunition. His target was a local school. He planned to attack two coaches of teenagers returning home after a school trip to France. Approximately 60 children, their accompanying teachers and their waiting parents. He was going to kill them all.
"A fascinating insight into another world"
South Africa, 1987. Apartheid. When Leon, a white 19-year-old prison guard working on death row, commits an inexplicable act of violence, killing seven black men in a hail of bullets, the outcome of the trial - and the court's sentence - seems a foregone conclusion. Hotshot lawyer John Weber reluctantly takes on the seemingly unwinnable case. A passionate opponent of the death penalty, John discovers that young Leon worked on death row in the nation's most notorious prison, under traumatic conditions....
As an undercover police officer with the drugs squad, Neil Woods regularly risked his life on the streets, dealing with some of the most violent and unpredictable criminals in Britain. Good Cop, Bad War is a unique story about a man with a striking ability to infiltrate and extinguish drug gangs but who, as the success of his operations grows, becomes disillusioned with the war on drugs, as he sees how it demonizes those who need help whilst empowering the very worst elements in society.
"Not just a good story but a good point well made"
On December 6, 1995, three key members of the infamous Essex Boys gang were lured to a deserted farm track on the pretense of planning a robbery. As the trio sat in their Range Rover, two gunmen approached the open rear door of the vehicle. Moments later, the first shots rang out signaling the start of a swift, yet bloody massacre. When the weapons fell silent, the three men lay dead.
"The narrator made you believe in the story."
With her career, live-in boyfriend and loving family, Piper Kerman barely resembles the rebellious young woman who got mixed up with drug runners and delivered a suitcase of drug money to Europe over a decade ago. But when she least expects it, her reckless past catches up with her; convicted and sentenced to fifteen months at an infamous women's prison in Connecticut, Piper becomes inmate #11187-424.
Vincent "Chin" Gigante. He started out as a professional boxer - until he found his true calling as a ruthless contract killer. His doting mother's pet name for the boy evolved into his famous alias, "Chin", a nickname that struck fear throughout organized crime as he routinely ordered the murders of mobsters who violated the Mafia code. Vincent Gigante was hand-picked by Vito Genovese to run the Genovese Family when Vito was sent to prison. Chin raked in more than $100 million for the Genovese Family, all while evading federal investigators.
American Desperado is possibly the most jaw-dropping, event-filled, adrenaline-soaked criminal autobiography ever written. Like a real-life Scarface Jon was born into the upper levels of the Gambino crime family and witnessed his first murder at age seven. He became a one-man juvenile crime wave before joining an assassination squad in Vietnam.
Among the 34 cases covered are: Pamela Smart, a volunteer at a high school drug awareness program who urged her 15-year-old lover and his friends to kill her husband; Nancy Kissel, an expat American in Hong Kong who served her investment banker husband a strawberry milkshake laced with drugs then clubbed him to death with a statue; and Celeste Beard whose husband was disemboweled by her lesbian lover.
To his neighbors, Anthony Sowell was a friendly and helpful former Marine. But they didn't know about his dark side - or the gruesome secret inside his house. Sowell's secret life was revealed to the nation on October 29, 2009, when a Cleveland Police SWAT team entered his house to arrest him for an alleged rape. They didn't find Sowell, but they encountered a nightmarish scene: two decomposed bodies in his third-floor living room. Eight more bodies were hidden throughout the house and buried in the back yard.
Within a maze of true crime books that tend to provide only minor portions of the whole story, Serial Killers 101 provides a much more detailed and comprehensive insight into the world of some of the most infamous serial killers in American history.
In the 1950s a young Indianapolis minister named Jim Jones preached a curious blend of the Gospel and Marxism. His congregation was racially integrated, and he was a much-lauded leader in the contemporary civil rights movement. Eventually Jones moved his church, Peoples Temple, to Northern California. He became involved in electoral politics and soon was a prominent Bay Area leader.
Killing Pablo is the inside story of the brutal rise and violent fall of Colombian cocaine cartel kingpin Pablo Escobar.
Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar was a devoted family man and a psychopathic killer; a terrible enemy, yet a wonderful friend. While donating millions to the poor, he bombed and tortured his enemies - some had their eyeballs removed with hot spoons. Through ruthless cunning and America's insatiable appetite for cocaine, he became a multi-billionaire, who lived in a $100-million house with its own zoo.
Within the audio of The Trail of Ted Bundy: Digging Up the Untold Stories, you'll hear the voices - many for the first time - of some of Ted Bundy's friends, as they bring to light the secrets of what is was like to know him while he was actively involved in murder. The stories of his victims are here as well, as told by their friends, including the information and anecdotes that didn't make it into the investigative files and are being published here for the first time.
"The great white shark of serial killers"
Frank W. Abagnale was one of the most daring conmen, forgers, imposters, and escape artists in history. In his brief but notorious criminal career, Abagnale donned a pilot's uniform and copiloted a Pan Am jet, masqueraded as the supervising resident of a hospital, practiced law without a license, passed himself off as a college sociology professor, and cashed over $2.5 million in forged checks, all before he was 21. His story is now a film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks.
"Captivating - his audacity is astounding"
Beth is a sweet-natured child who appears to have been well looked after. But it isn't long before Cathy begins to have concerns that the relationship between Beth and her father is not as it should be. Little Beth, aged 7, has been brought up by her father Derek after her mother left when she was a toddler. When Derek is suddenly admitted to hospital with psychiatric problems, Beth is taken into care and arrives at Cathy's.
In perhaps his most important literary feat, Norman Mailer fashions an unprecedented portrait of one of the great villains - and enigmas - in United States history. Here is Lee Harvey Oswald - his family background, troubled marriage, controversial journey to Russia, and return to an "America [waiting] for him like an angry relative whose eyes glare in the heat."
"The best account I have ever read"