Writing Echoes

Delijah's Writing Blog

Research Book Review: Murder One

Book: MURDER ONE: a writer’s guide to homicide.
Authors: Mauro V. Corvasce & Joseph R. Paglio.

This book belongs to the Howdunit Series (a pun of the whodunit way of calling crime books), basically a reference for writers. I honestly can say I loved it, it was… horridly fascinating. I gotta admit it has rather ruined most cop shows for me too XD

It covers:

  • Business and Financial Murders
  • Narcotics Murders
  • Gang Murders
  • Organized Crime Murders
  • Contract murders
  • Familial Murders
  • Stranger and Familiar Stranger Murders
  • Crime-of-Passion Murders
  • Thrill/Lust Murders
  • Sexual Murders
  • Mass Murders
  • Serial Murders
  • Vehicular Murders
  • Bizarre Murders

The writing style is not fancy, at all. It’s mostly conference-like put to paper, but as mentioned before the book is strangely captivating. The authors are old-time detectives in New Jersey, and they know what they are talking about: the book is also sprinkled with real-life cases they investigated in the past.

I got the book on Amazon, second hand, and was really worth the $10 I paid for it. Was a good informational book, and fun read. However I’m not really sure it helps to build a murderer character from scratch, although I am sure it will help creating a reasonable scenario for a cop to find after the murder itself has been committed.

I bought the book with the hope it would help me get into the mind of my current bad guy, and somehow I think I succeeded in a general way. I had an idea of him which evolved while I was reading Murder One, taking a few key points under consideration.

All in all, this was a fun book to read and I don’t regret buying and reading, although if I had been a desperate author in search of a how-to, I would have been disappointed (I think that is what happened to the previous owner, who underlined a few things, but was obviously not happy with it since they sold it XD). We’ll see how Armed and Dangerous, from the same series, turns out to be ^^


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