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The Devil's Gentleman
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About the Author

Harold Schechter is a professor of American literature and culture at Queens College, the City University of New York. He is widely celebrated for both fiction and true-crime writing, including The Serial Killer Files. He lives in Brooklyn and Mattituck, Long Island, with his wife, the poet Kimiko Hahn. Visit the author's website at www.haroldschechter.com.

Reviews

True-crime historian Schechter (co-author, The A-Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers) delivers a thrilling account of a murder case that rocked Manhattan at the turn of the 20th century. Roland Molineux, a socially ambitious chemist,was a proud member of the Knickerbocker Athletic Club, where he was considered a talented but snooty sportsman, repeatedly instigating spats with the club's athletic director, Harry Cornish. Pursuing women with the same determination he brought to sports, Roland doggedly wooed Blanche Chesebrough, an equally ambitious young woman with operatic aspirations. But when one of Molineux's romantic competitors, Henry Barnet, died, Cornish was poisoned (he survived) and his landlady died, Roland topped the list of suspects. The ensuing investigation and sensational trial became one of the costliest in New York State history. Schechter expertly weaves a rich historical tapestry-exploring everything from the birth of "yellow" journalism to the history of poison as a murder weapon-without sacrificing a novelistic sense of character, pacing and suspense. The result is a riveting tale of murder, seduction and tabloid journalism run rampant in a New York not so different from today's. B&w photos. (Oct) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

Advance praise for The Devil's Gentleman

"A thrilling account of a murder case that rocked Manhattan at the turn of the 20th century . . . Schechter expertly weaves a rich historical tapestry-exploring everything from the birth of 'yellow' journalism to the history of poison as a murder weapon-without sacrificing a novelistic sense of character, pacing and suspense. The result is a riveting tale of murder, seduction and tabloid journalism run rampant in a New York not so different from today's."
-Publishers Weekly (starred review) Praise for the true-crime books of Harold Schechter "The scholarship is both genuine and fascinating."
-The Boston Book Review, on The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers "Top-drawer true-crime."
-Booklist, on Deviant "Reads like fiction but it's chillingly real."
-The Philadelphia Inquirer, on Deranged "Riveting . . . brilliantly detailed . . . Schechter has done his usual sterling job in resurrecting this amazing tale."
-Caleb Carr, on Depraved

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