Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Axeman of New Orleans: The True Story


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Today's nonfiction is on The Axeman of New Orleans: The True Story by Miriam C. Davis. It is 320 pages long and is published by Chicago Review Press. The cover is black and purple street view of New Orleans. The intended reader is someone who likes true crime, unsolved mysteries, and historical accounts. There is mild foul language, no sex, and descriptions of violence in this book. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the dust jacket- From 1910 to 1919, New Orleans suffered at the hands of its very own Jack the Ripper–style killer. The story has been the subject of websites, short stories, novels, a graphic novel, and most recently the FX television series American Horror Story. But the full story of gruesome murders, sympathetic victims, accused innocents, public panic, the New Orleans Mafia, and a mysterious killer has never been written. Until now.
The Axeman repeatedly broke into the homes of Italian grocers in the dead of night, leaving his victims in a pool of blood. Iorlando Jordano, an innocent Italian grocer, and his teenaged son Frank were wrongly accused of one of those murders; corrupt officials convicted them with coerced testimony. Miriam C. Davis here expertly tells the story of the search for the Axeman and of the eventual exoneration of the innocent Jordanos. She proves that the person mostly widely suspected of being the Axeman was not the killer. She also shows what few have suspected—that the Axeman continued killing after leaving New Orleans in 1919.
Only thirty years after Jack the Ripper stalked the streets of Whitechapel, the Axeman of New Orleans held an American city hostage. This book tells that story.


Review-  This is a true crime book written by a historian. Davis comes into this story without any preconceptions, she just tells the story of the Axeman of New Orleans. She does not say who the Axeman was or even who she thinks he was. The story is very twisted with lots of confusion, bad police, and no leads. Davis tried her best to untwist the threads of this story and help the reader understand what happen almost 100 years ago. That said at the end of the book I have no idea who did these horrible murders. It can be a little dry reading but the over all narrative is very interesting.

I give this book Four out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.