Looking for some of the best real crime books ever written? Why not check out these eight fantastic crime thrillers.
1). In Cold Blood – Truman Capote
In cold blood is one of the best crime books about an actual incident. Truman Capote had a masterpiece with this literary marvel. The book is known to have transformed the true crime genre.
Released in 1966, it is a non-fiction novel about the killings of a family in Kansas in 1959. Capote utilized his literary powers in honouring the slain victims. He had simultaneously empathized with the murderers.
2). The Stranger Beside me – Ann Rule
Ann Rule is the queen of the true-crime genre. She had written numerous books in this genre. However, this true-crime masterpiece stands out among her collection of authentic crime thrillers.
In the book, Ann had described her relationship with a colleague. He was a serial killer – as Ann will discover later. Ted Bundy was charming and handsome. But what Ann was about to unearth was that he was equally a prolific murderer.
3). The Red Parts: Autobiography of a Trial by Maggie Nelson.
Maggie Nelson is known best for her non-fiction works. However, her cross over to true crime brought out the best in her work. Her aunt’s murder had haunted her as a child. With D.N.A. reports pointing an accusing finger to a different suspect, Nelson is not convinced about the veracity of the claims.
4). The People Who Eat Darkness – Richard Lloyd Parry
This real crime thriller by Richard Lloyd Parry describes an accident in Tokyo. A young woman had gone missing in the Japanese capital with no traces. Richard Lloyd Parry had used his book to uncover the justice system of the tiny Asian nation.
The book also explores the underground crime scene of the Japanese capital. The book is quite fantastic and suspense-filled because Tokyo is among the safest place in the world. The thought that a woman would go missing in the city is an irony.
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Sentiments aside, the book provides a detailed walkthrough on several possibilities that may have made the woman disappear. The book covers the crime investigation from every angle.
5). The Blood of Emmett till – Timothy B. Tyson
Before present-day protests on the murder of George Floyd, there had been murders revolving around African Americans in the United States. Tamir Rice, Eric Garner, Michael Brown were some murders motivated by racial bias.
But the story of Emmett Till stands out. This event happened years before the Black Lives Matter movement will get conceived. The Mississippi killing of Emmett Till – a black teenager in the 1950s, will expose the racial prejudices of the American system.
However, this lynching led to the formation of the Civil Rights movement in the United States. However, his murder is beyond a symbol of racial injustice. Timothy B. Tyson brings a new perspective into the short life of Emmett Till.
This thriller is one actual crime book that is a must-read. People knew how he died but never knew how he lived. The author explores the sordid details that led to the death of this young black man in the hands of his killers. The Blood of Emmett Till is a real crime thriller that stands out of the pack.
6). My Dark Places – James Elroy
James Elroy is among the best writers of real crime books. After a personal tragedy unlocked his obsession, he had been unstoppable. At just ten years old, his mother got killed in a gruesome manner that will leave James and the rest of the family traumatized for years.
Later on, in 1994, he tried to find his mother’s killer by teaming up with an officer from the Los Angeles Police department. They worked together to solve the murder that had gone unsolved for years.
However, the plot thickens as the book draws to a conclusion. Despite making positive steps towards the capturing of his mother’s killers, James knew that the psychological injury of the event would never get reversed. My dark places is an adventure on a life of constant mental and emotional turmoil caused by one unfortunate physical event.
7). The Poisoner’s Handbook – Deborah Blum
Before the triumphs of modern medicine in the field of toxicology, serial killers had a field day using chemical toxins as their murder weapon. It was reliable, works pretty fast, accurate, and most exciting of all left behind no traces.
Murderers had a special murder weapon at their disposal and used it at will to target their victims. Numerous homicide through chemicals went unsolved. Cyanide and Arsenic – the most used toxins, left no trace. However, this was about to change in 1918.
The author outlines the history surrounding the formation of the New York city’s Forensic department. Deborah Blum, through this masterpiece, crafts an interrelated piece connecting toxicology and crime. It is a classic real crime thriller that would get any casual fan deeply obsessed with the genre.
8). Murder Rap – The Untold Story – Greg Kading
We have watched countless movies, watched news reruns, and read magazine articles about these two famous murders; the untold story still evaded the people.
Not until Greg Kading, the police detective involved in solving both crimes decided to write down his findings and share with the public. The similar slaying of Tupac Shakur and Christopher Wallace (The Notorious B.I.G.) are two of the most mysterious killings in urban America.
Murder Rap is the best seller in the American music terrain. It reveals the method of operation of the underground crime scene of the music industry. Murder Rap is a must-read for people who are fans of hip hop – the American suburban culture.
Kading grabs the reader by the hand and shows them, from a first-hand point of view, the modus operandi of the corrupted American police and entertainment systems.
Real crime books have always been a staple among book lovers. Besides being real and genuine, most of these authentic life thrillers got written from a first-person perspective.
This point of view means that the events of the crime either happened directly to the authors or they were involved in solving the crime. Irrespective of how the authors are affected by the crime drama, these top selections are a must-read and are timeless classics.