30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Dark and compelling true crime,
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This review is from: Amelia Dyer: Angel Maker: The Woman Who Murdered Babies for Money (Hardcover)
I bought this book after reading a big feature about it in the Daily Mail and I was hooked from the first page. The story is compulsive and chilling, the writing is vivid and evocative, and it has clearly been meticulously researched. I am amazed that no one has written a biography of Dyer before, because it seems she was the biggest serial killer that Britain has ever known - she murdered hundreds of babies during her career as a "Baby Farmer".
It highlights the scale of infanticide in ninteenth-century Britain and opens up an area of this country's social history that has been ignored. If you're interested in true crime and/or popular history then you must read this book because Dyer was more prolific than any other killer in British history - she was a contemporary of Jack the Ripper and her crimes are much worse, but she has been largely forgotten until now.
One of this book's great strengths is the skill with which it thrusts the reader into Dyer's world, the sounds, the smells, the physical descriptions, and there is lots of human interest: Dyer and those with whom she comes into contact are brought vividly to life.
I read a lot of true crime/popular history and it is rare for me to award five stars, but in this case I feel it is well deserved: it is the most entertaining and thought-provoking account I have seen in a long time.