In this clear-eyed, gritty, and enthralling narrative, Dr. Vincent Di Maio and veteran crime writer Ron Franscell guide us behind the morgue doors to tell a fascinating life story through the cases that have made Di Maio famous-from the exhumation of assassin Lee Harvey Oswald to the complex issues in the shooting of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.Read more...
In this clear-eyed, gritty, and enthralling narrative, Dr. Vincent Di Maio and veteran crime writer Ron Franscell guide us behind the morgue doors to tell a fascinating life story through the cases that have made Di Maio famous-from the exhumation of assassin Lee Harvey Oswald to the complex issues in the shooting of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.
Beginning with his street-smart Italian origins in Brooklyn, the book spans 40 years of work and more than 9,000 autopsies, and Di Maio's eventual rise into the pantheon of forensic scientists. One of the country's most methodical and intuitive criminal pathologists will dissect himself, maintaining a nearly continuous flow of suspenseful stories, revealing anecdotes, and enough macabre insider details to rivet the most fervent crime fans.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-03-14
- Reviewer: Staff
In this engrossing look behind the headlines of notorious homicides, Franscell, a veteran crime writer, aids DiMaio, a renowned forensic pathologist, in narrating the career he made of solving some of the most disturbing puzzles of the dead. In 40 years of work, DiMaio has worked on cases that involved the disturbed and infanticidal Martha Woods; the grisly exhumation of J.F.K. assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, whose own mouth debunked a conspiracy theory about his identity; and a deviously wicked nurse, Genene Jones, who was jailed for killing one patient and “deliberately injuring” another, and suspected of being responsible for dozens of other deaths. The often lurid, occasionally sad, and always intriguing details never overpower the drive for justice that fuels DiMaio’s life and work. “Forensic evidence,” he writes, “tells us honestly and candidly what we need to know, even when we want it to say something else.” The killing of teenager Trayvon Martin by neighborhood-watchman George Zimmerman serves as DiMaio’s example of an instance about which, even after the question of homicide was settled, “the bigger questions about humanity” were left unanswered. Di Maio and Franscell deliver a well-paced, thoughtful, and absorbing work that will fascinate crime buffs and scholars alike. (May)