BookBrowse Reviews Killer Verse by Harold Schechter (editor), Kurt Brown (editor)

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Killer Verse

Poems of Murder and Mayhem

by Harold Schechter (editor), Kurt Brown (editor)

Killer Verse
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  • Published:
    Sep 2011, 256 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Marnie Colton

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A spine-tingling collection of poetry about the disturbing yet compulsively alluring subject of violent death

"...[W]e harbor collectively, / an intent / to harm. Impossible to acknowledge, much less speak," concludes poet Ravi Shankar in "Killers in Letters," an examination of the abyss that lies between fictional murderers and the all-too-real criminals who monopolize headlines and haunt our sleep. Using deceptively colloquial language and even humor, Shankar highlights our nearly universal fascination with violent death, a subject too often either sensationalized or pushed under the rug. Featuring an array of styles, perspectives, forms, and tones, Killer Verse peers into every dark corner of this disturbing yet compulsively alluring crime.

According to the Judeo-Christian tradition, Cain slew his brother Abel, thus causing "the first death on earth, a violent death / that shattered the natural course of things / even before it was established. Violation preceded order..." (Margherita ...



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"Everyman, I will go with thee and be thy guide, in thy most need to go by thy side..."

Everyman cover Killer Verse is just one book in the Everyman's Library, a collection of books founded in 1906 by Joseph Dent, a London bookbinder turned publisher, who sought to produce beautiful, affordable editions of the world's best literature. He wanted "to appeal to every kind of reader: the worker, the student, the cultured man, the child, the man and the woman... for a few shillings the reader may have a whole bookshelf of the immortals; for five pounds... a man may be intellectually rich for life."

Now a part of Random House, Everyman's Library produces old-fashioned, colored cloth hardback books (complete with ribbon markers and sewn bindings) and are able to keep costs low by printing material that is largely in the public domain. And between the delightfully wide array of ...

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