This riveting combination of true crime and social history examines a dozen cases from the 1800s involving thirteen French and English women charged with murder. Each incident was a” cause celebre, ” and this mixture of scandal and scholarship offers illuminating details of backgrounds, deeds, and trials.
“The real delight is that historian Mary S. Hartman does more than reconstruct twelve famous trials. She has written a piece on the social history of nineteenth-century women from an illuminating perspective: their favorite murders.” — “Time Magazine
“”Noteworthy …. It has several distinctions: its expert prose style, its scholarly authority, and its perceptive analysis of the prevailing attitudes toward women’s roles and domestic relations.”–“Criticism
“”The author would have made a fine detective …. When she observes the women and men in extreme circumstances, she writes with the gift of a novelist and the depth of a scholar.” — “Los Angeles Times
“”Vividly written, meticulously researched.” — “Choice