Crippen: Book summary and reviews of Crippen by John Boyne

Crippen

A Novel of Murder

by John Boyne

Crippen by John Boyne X
Crippen by John Boyne
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  • Published in USA  Mar 2006
    352 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

July 1910: A gruesome discovery has been made at 39 Hilldrop Crescent, Camden. Chief Inspector Walter Dew of Scotland Yard did not expect the house to be empty. Nor did he expect to find a body in the cellar. Buried under the flagstones are the remains of Cora Crippen, former music-hall singer and wife of Dr. Hawley Crippen. No one would have thought the quiet, unassuming Dr. Crippen capable of murder, yet the doctor and his mistress have disappeared from London, and now a full-scale hunt for them has begun.

An accomplished, intricately plotted novel, Crippen brilliantly reimagines the amazing escape attempt of one of history's most notorious killers and marks the outstanding American debut of one of Ireland's best young novelists.

"Starred Review. Boyne is to be commended for his ability to alternate between Wodehousian humor and Edwardian noir."
"His characters are wonderfully memorable and engaging, and this book will satisfy patrons with a thirst for dramatized true-crime stories. Highly recommended for all popular fiction collections." - Library Journal.
"Boyne's light tone diffuses any seriousness and his late and highly improbable twist to the murder scenario transforms the story, already damaged by its loose attention to period style, into something resembling farce. Unconvincing." - Kirkus.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Various political, social, and economic concerns arise as Cleage juggles story lines that creatively culminate in an eventful conclusion." - Library Journal.
"An unconvincing mishmash of violence, spiritual uplift and Hallmark romance." - Kirkus.

This information about Crippen shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Celia Phillips

True Crime Dramatized
John Boyne has taken a true crime event and imaginatively re-created it.

Dr Harley Crippen existed and was married to a shrew, Cora. He was under her thumb constantly. Crippen worked in a homeopathic medicine pharmacy in London. His assistant was Ethel LaNeve. She existed too. They fell in love.

The publisher's book description tells us that Cora Crippen was murdered and her dismembered body found in the cellar at 39 Hilldrop Crescent, Camden.

Crippen and LaNeve have fled to Canada, voyaging on the SS Montrose captained by H. G. Kendall. Kendall suspects two of his passengers to be Crippen and LaNeve (who are cleverly disguised) and informs Scotland Yard. A chase over the sea ensues.

Supporting this story are some interesting characters also travelling on the Montrose.

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Author Information

John Boyne Author Biography

Photo: Rich Gilligan

Boyne was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1971, and studied English Literature at Trinity College, Dublin, and creative writing at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, where he was awarded the Curtis Brown prize. He now offers a scholarship to Irish students undertaking the MA program at UEA.

He has published 9 novels for adults and five for younger readers, including The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas which was a New York Times No.1 Bestseller and was made into a Miramax feature film. It has sold more than 6 million copies worldwide. He is also the author of the short story collection Beneath The Earth.

He is a regular book reviewer for The Irish Times and has been a judge for both the Hennessy Literary Awards and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, as well as chairing the ...

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Name Pronunciation
John Boyne: BOYn

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