Customer Review

8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well written and persuasive, but is he right?, 17 Jan. 2010
This review is from: 10 Rillington Place (Paperback)
The author makes it quite plain at the outset that the purpose of the book is to demonstrate that Evans was innocent of the two murders that he was indicted for. (At trial he was only prosecuted for the murder of his daughter, of course).

There is no pretence here that this is a dispassionate and balanced 'overview' of the case, so those looking for such a thing would need to look elsewhere.

Opinion remains divided as to whether Kennedy has succeeded in his task.

The Brabin Inquiry of 1966 went only so far as saying that Evans 'probably hadn't' killed his daughter but had 'likely' killed his wife. That meant that he had been hanged for a crime that he didn't commit. A pardon was granted but the conviction was never quashed in the Court Of Appeal. (Evans' remains were taken from the confines of Pentonville prison and re-interred in a cemetery in recognition of Brabin's conclusion).

I've read this book many times - more recently in conjunction with other books on the case and the Brabin report - and I have to say that I still don't know.

Ludovic Kennedy does write very well and his arguments are very persuasive; but is he right?

Do get a copy if you possibly can.
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Showing 1-10 of 24 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 May 2011 10:54:39 BDT
Junius says:
Yes, a very murky business indeed. John Eddowes argues equally vehemently with the opposite view, but I'm not certain he's right either. The problem is that many people have rigid views one way or another. The only honest one, in my view, is that we'll never know for certain.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 May 2011 18:38:12 BDT
Barry Ryder says:
Hi Junius,

many thanks for taking the time to comment - it's much appreciated.

Like you, I'm inclined to believe that Evans did murder Beryl, though, as you say, we'll never know for sure.

I've just had a quick 'scoot' through your other book reviews (and comments) on this perplexing case and I see that you have a good grasp on the realities of the events rather than the mythologies.

I enjoyed reading your reviews on the various other 'true crime' books and found them to be level-headed, objective and well-informed, too.

Did you know that the remains of Evans were re-interred in the same cemetery as Mary Jane Kelly's? I believe that Kelly's landlord at the time of her death is also buried there. I live very close to it. It's St. Patrick's catholic cemetery in Leytonstone.

Keep up the good work with your reviews and comments.

Cheers

Barry

In reply to an earlier post on 14 May 2011 16:51:19 BDT
Junius says:
I hope this does not come across as mere self aggrandisement, but I have written a biography of Christie to be published in 2013. I argue that he wasn't all bad, but he was not a victim of anyone but his own desires and that he had the choice that he did not give his victims.Thanks for having taken the time to read my other comments.

Didn't know about the Mary Kelly link, though I did read various Ripper books a while ago while researching chapters on Druitt and the Whitechapel murders of 1889 and 1891 for earlier books. Evans was to be buried in Greenford cemetery, near to where his mother then lived, and near to where I used to live, too (ironically next door to where a double murder occurred in 1941 and the victims buried in the back garden).

In reply to an earlier post on 2 May 2012 02:48:54 BDT
"I argue that he wasnt all bad" ???!!!! Are you SURE? On that basis I suppose,no one is "all bad" no matter how vile their crimes are! Oh,and sorry to spoil the love-in between you both......very sweet.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 May 2012 06:37:35 BDT
Last edited by the author on 2 May 2012 06:37:51 BDT
Barry Ryder says:
Wossup, Tidiman?

Don't you like the idea of two writers having a civilised exchange on the internet?
Does it make you feel `uncomfortable' or `left out'?

Barry

In reply to an earlier post on 3 May 2012 01:49:31 BDT
Um,neither actually,Ryder.Though it does seem I hit a raw nerve,sorry!

In reply to an earlier post on 3 May 2012 06:38:37 BDT
Last edited by the author on 3 May 2012 08:22:25 BDT
Barry Ryder says:
Tidiman,

I see.
So what exactly was it then that compelled you to vent your spleen?
I'm curious to know why such an innocuous exchange of words between two internet correspondents galvanised you to describe the exchange as a `love-in'? which you thought was `very sweet'.

You are right about the `raw nerve'. It is something that I have about people who are negative, unpleasant and who `throw stones from around corners in the dark.

I'm willing to bet that if you happened to overhear such an exchange in a pub between two men, you wouldn't interrupt the conversation in such a way.

The internet - being what it is - has afforded you the opportunity to be unpleasant whilst remaining anonymous and safe. You have grabbed that opportunity with both hands, haven't you?

Why?

Barry

In reply to an earlier post on 4 May 2012 02:35:57 BDT
You do talk a load of old crap dont you Ryder old chap? Um,and I wasnt aware that I had "vented" my spleen.My point was a perfectly valid one about Christie,and wasnt aimed at you anyway! But I was only sorry for hitting a raw nerve because you seem so touchy,which seems to be proved by you well and truly bursting your spleen yourself! Try and stay a little calmer,like I do.Perhaps you could contact your old pal for a bit of a chin-wag,im sure that would make you feel a whole lot better.In the mean time why dont you just go and pester someone else who actually gives a toss what you say Ryder old bean!

In reply to an earlier post on 4 May 2012 07:00:45 BDT
Last edited by the author on 4 May 2012 07:00:56 BDT
Barry Ryder says:
Tidiman,

You wrote, "Oh,and sorry to spoil the love-in between you both......very sweet".

And you think that I, "..talk a load of old crap.."
The excrement is yours, not mine.

"..you seem so touchy.."

When my internet exchanges with people are characterised by third parties as love-ins and `very sweet' I choose to respond. That's not `touchy', Tidiman, that's a very normal and usual response.

Your `point' about Christie isn't relevant. I'm not interested in what you think about the book. I'm concerned with your attitude toward me as an internet user.

Your `love-in' and `very sweet' remarks were most definitely aimed at me.
Perhaps you thought that I'd simply let it pass. Perhaps you feel that you are allowed to skulk around and be offensive with no fear of criticism or challenge.

I'm not pestering you, Tidiman, you're pestering me; - you made the offensive remarks, not me.
It was you who interjected with facile comments, not me.

So, I'll ask again; why did you write what you did?

Barry

In reply to an earlier post on 4 May 2012 22:04:12 BDT
I do not have to justify myself to you Ryder.If you are too dim to understand basic English thats your problem-not mine.Go figure it for yourself,im neither facile,or skulking,but you do seem to be stalking me.So,like I said before,go pester someone who gives a **** what you think or say-Bye bye!
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