'An irresistible page-turner that reads like the most compelling, sleep defying fiction' TIME OUT One was an architect. The other a serial killer. This is the incredible story of these two men and their realization of the Chicago World's Fair of 1893, and its amazing 'White City'; one of the wonders of the world. The architect was Daniel H. Burnham, the driving force behind the White City, the massive, visionary landscape of white buildings set in a wonderland of canals and gardens. The killer was H. H. Holmes, a handsome doctor with striking blue eyes. He used the attraction of the great fair - and his own devilish charms - to lure scores of young women to their deaths. While Burnham overcame politics, infighting, personality clashes and Chicago's infamous weather to transform the swamps of Jackson Park into the greatest show on Earth, Holmes built his own edifice just west of the fairground. He called it the World's Fair Hotel. In reality it was a torture palace, a gas chamber, a crematorium. These two disparate but driven men are brought to life in this mesmerizing, murderous tale of the legendary Fair that transformed America and set it on course for the twentieth century . . .
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A true story of love, murder, and the end of the world’s “great hush.” In Thunderstruck, Erik Larson tells the interwoven stories of two men—Hawley Crippen, a very unlikely murderer, and Guglielmo Marconi, the obsessive creator of a seemingly supernatural means of communication—whose lives intersect during one of the greatest criminal chases of all time. Set in Edwardian London and on the stormy coasts of Cornwall, Cape Cod, and Nova Scotia, Thunderstruck evokes the dynamism of those years when great shipping companies competed to build the biggest, fastest ocean liners; scientific advances dazzled the public with visions of a world transformed; and the rich outdid one another with ostentatious displays of wealth. Against this background, Marconi races against incredible odds and relentless skepticism to perfect his invention: the wireless, a prime catalyst for the emergence of the world we know today. Meanwhile, Crippen, “the kindest of men,” nearly commits the perfect murder. With his unparalleled narrative skills, Erik Larson guides us through a relentlessly suspenseful chase over the waters of the North Atlantic. Along the way, he tells of a sad and tragic love affair that was described on the front pages of newspapers around the world, a chief inspector who found himself strangely sympathetic to the killer and his lover, and a driven and compelling inventor who transformed the way we communicate.
America's first and most notorious serial killer and his diabolical killing spree during the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago, now updated with a new afterword discussing Holmes' exhumation on American Ripper. H. H. Holmes: The True History of the White City Devil is the first truly comprehensive book examining the life and career of a murderer who has become one of America’s great supervillains. It reveals not only the true story but how the legend evolved, taking advantage of hundreds of primary sources that have never been examined before, including legal documents, letters, articles, and records that have been buried in archives for more than a century. Though Holmes has become just as famous now as he was in 1895, a deep analysis of contemporary materials makes very clear how much of the story as we know came from reporters who were nowhere near the action, a dangerously unqualified new police chief, and, not least, lies invented by Holmes himself. Selzer has unearthed tons of stunning new data about Holmes, weaving together turn-of-the-century America, the killer’s background, and the wild cast of characters who circulated in and about the famous “castle” building. This book will be the first truly accurate account of what really happened in Holmes’s castle of horror, and now includes an afterword detailing the author's participation in Holmes' exhumation on the TV series, American Ripper. Exhaustively researched and painstakingly brought to life, H. H. Holmes will be an invaluable companion to the upcoming Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio movie about Holmes’s murder spree based on Erik Larson’s The Devil in the White City.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the bestselling author and master of narrative nonfiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania “Both terrifying and enthralling.”—Entertainment Weekly “Thrilling, dramatic and powerful.”—NPR “Thoroughly engrossing.”—George R.R. Martin On May 1, 1915, with WWI entering its tenth month, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were surprisingly at ease, even though Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone. For months, German U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era’s great transatlantic “Greyhounds”—the fastest liner then in service—and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger’s U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small—hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more—all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history. It is a story that many of us think we know but don’t, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour and suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope to President Woodrow Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love. Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster whose intimate details and true meaning have long been obscured by history. Finalist for the Washington State Book Award • One of the Best Books of the Year: The Washington Post, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Miami Herald, Library Journal, Kirkus Reviews, LibraryReads, Indigo
In 1893, the year that marked the four hundredth anniversary of the landing of Columbus in the New World, Chicago was host to an exposition to mark the occasion. Although the World's Columbian Exposition was the fifteenth world's fair, it was of vastly greater scope than any of its predecessors. Chicago created a veritable new city. It was not only larger than any previous exposition but also more elaborately designed, more precisely laid out, more fully realized, and more prophetic. It was the first exposition truly to solicit the participation of the entire world. In this study of the White City, David F. Burg shows America at a crossroads in its development. It was in the process of moving from a largely agricultural society to a predominately urban and industrial one. The exposition was an index of American values, achievements, and expectation in this era of profound and complex change. The exposition was an achievement of cooperative endeavor and expertise. It demonstrated that both artistic capacity and technology were available to transform, in agreeable combination, burgeoning industrial cities into well-designed centers of business, culture, and community. Burg places his discussion in the context of the United States and Chicago during the early 1890s. Besides dealing with the multifaceted fair itself -- its architecture, artworks, music, technological achievements -- he discusses the congresses that were held on a variety of subjects, two of the most significant being the Congresses of Women and the World's Parliament of Religions. In the exposition's theme was the potential of fashioning the Kingdom of God on earth in contrast to the chaotic, dirty, industrial cities of the time. Burg finds in the exposition a significant legacy to architecture, city planning, and civic organization. Its most promising aftereffect occurred in the City Beautiful movement; its influence extended also to such ordinary concerns as well-lighted streets, efficient waste disposal, and honest government.
Follows the journey of a handgun, from its manufacture through its violent odyssey into the hands of a disturbed teenager who uses it to kill a teacher, and raises painful questions about the legal and cultural realities of firearms. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.
Need a shortcut to a degree in shipping great software? Successful team leaders must have an extremely broad skill set to find the right product, work through a complex and ever-changing development process, and do it all incredibly quickly. In this guide, Chris Vander Mey provides a simplified, no-BS approach to the entire software lifecycle, distilled from lessons he learned as a manager at Amazon and Google. In the first part of the book, you’ll learn a step-by-step shipping process used by many of the best teams at Google and Amazon. Part II shows you the techniques, best practices, and skills you need to face an array of challenges in product, program, project, and engineering management. Clearly define your product and develop your mission and strategy Assemble your team and understand enough about systems to communicate with them Create a beautiful, intuitive, and simple user experience Track your team’s deliverables and closely manage the testing process Communicate clearly to gracefully handle requests, senior-management interactions, and feedback from various sources Build metrics to track progress, spot problems, and celebrate success Stick to your launch checklist and plan for marketing and PR