Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Murder Room: The Heirs of Sherlock Holmes Gather to Solve the World's Most Perplexing Cold Cases by Michael Capuzzo

The Vidocq Society, a group made up of the top profilers, detectives, pathologists and other types of law enforcement from across the world meet once a month in Philadelphia to discuss a cold case to see if they can provide any insight or help with the investigation. The case must have been cold for at least 2 years for the society to even consider taking it on. The group was founded by William Fleischer, former Philadelphia Police Officer, FBI Special Agent who later became the Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Customs Service in Philadelphia; Frank Bender, a talented sculptor and forensic reconstructionist who's bust of John List helped lead to his eventual capture; and Richard Walter, forensic psychologist for the State of Michigan prison system and a crime scene analyst/profiler. The group is now compromised of over 150 men and women from around the globe who gather to try to solve the world's most perplexing crimes.

This was an audio book for me. I think if I had read it, I never would have been able to finish it. The stories are very interesting, the members of the Vidocq are incredibly interesting and I enjoyed reading about all of them, however the problem I had with the book that it seems most people have had is that it jumps all over the place. A case that is brought up in the first chapter doesn't show up again until the end of the book, so I think it would be hard to follow if you read it; at least for me. Otherwise, I found it fascinating. The narrator was enjoyable, and his narration of the crime of John List was so intense I stopped what I was doing as I listened to devote my full attention to what he was saying.

4 stars