The Brides in the Bath Case & The Penge Mystery luridly describes two famous murder trials from the 19th and 20th centuries that horrified England.
George Joseph Smith has been called "the worst criminal ever known in Britain" - though Jack the Ripper might disagree - and was put on trial in 1915 for the murder of three women; their butchered bodies senselessly found in their bathtubs. This became known as the "Brides in the Bath Murders".
In 1877, Harriet Staunton's gold-digging husband and four others were accused of holding her in captivity and starving her to death. It scandalized Victorian England and attending the trial became a twisted kind of viewing party for upper society. Performed ominously, like a brooding Sherlock Holmes, by Edward Lustgarten.
The Penge Mystery
In 1877, four people were accused of a particularly horrifying murder. But the events following the verdict were even more remarkable than the trial itself.
© and (P)1976 Ivan and Inge Berg
Edgar Lustgarten is a new favorite of mine, and I've enjoyed all this site's audiobooks he has authored and narrated. This audiobook was one of the first I found, and it is very well-done.
Both of the true-crime stories it contains are expertly told. Though I'm not a writer, I can imagine that it would be extremely difficult to give an account of a real-life crime and trial, even a historical one. However, Lustgarten is one of those writers who is very skillful at describing these real human beings. He is very good at getting the listener to visualize the criminal and the victim in terms of their moral character and what events they took part in that led up a horrific murder.
Wonderful storytelling. Lustgarten is great.
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