Download The Art of the English Murder: From Jack the Ripper and Sherlock Holmes to Agatha Christie and Alfred Hitchcock Audiobook

The Art of the English Murder: From Jack the Ripper and Sherlock Holmes to Agatha Christie and Alfred Hitchcock Audiobook, by Lucy Worsley Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Lucy Worsley Narrator: Anne Flosnik Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2014 ISBN: 9781494574192
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Murder: a dark, shameful deed, the last resort of the desperate or a vile tool of the greedy-and a very strange, very English obsession. But where did this fixation develop? And what does it tell us about ourselves? In The Art of the English Murder, Lucy Worsley explores this phenomenon in forensic detail, revisiting notorious crimes like the Ratcliff Highway Murders, which caused a nationwide panic in the early nineteenth century, and the case of Frederick and Maria Manning, the suburban couple who were hanged after killing Maria's lover and burying him under their kitchen floor. Our fascination with crimes like these became a form of national entertainment, inspiring novels and plays, prose and paintings, poetry and true-crime journalism. The Art of the English Murder is a unique exploration of the art of crime-and a riveting investigation into the English criminal soul. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “Lucy Worsley’s lively book…traces the growth of this industry through some of the era’s most avidly followed killings. Her goal isn’t to provide a history of crime or crime writing but to show how the British enjoyed and consumed the idea of murder…A bonus of The Art of the English Murder is Worsley’s interest in women writers, partly the grandes dames of the 1920s and ‘30s like Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers, but also several whose work has been forgotten.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • Worsley's vivid account excites as much as its sensational subject matter, and edifies, too, thanks to her learned explications. Publishers Weekly Starred Review
  • “Worsley’s book covers a great deal of ground and provides an excellent overview of how the consumption of crime became a dominant part of our cultural landscape.”

    Sunday Times (London)

  • “Worsley captures this bloody love affair very well.”

    Independent (London)

  • “Worsley retells the stories of famous murderers and legendary criminals in delightfully readable language, with sharp, illuminating comments.”

    Literary Review (London)

  • “This book is a delightful romp through the most iconic staples of Victorian life: Sherlock Holmes, Madame Tussaud’s waxworks, and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. I recommend reading this at night with a strong cup of tea. Just keep your lights on, and the doors locked.”

    Sun News (Miami)

  • “A brief, absorbing history lesson on how the UK’s obsession with bloody deeds changed not only methods of law enforcement but fertilized the roots of modern popular culture.”


  • “[A] lively, lucid, and wonderfully lurid history…Worsley’s study takes a literary spin as she traces the emergence of detective fiction from its roots in the mid-Victorian ‘sensation’ novel. She dwells at length on the genre’s ‘golden age’…and subsequently shows how detective fiction gave way to the darker American-style thriller of the Cold War era. Worsley’s vivid account excites as much as its sensational subject matter, and edifies, too, thanks to her learned explications.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “[A]fascinating account…This riveting cultural history will enthrall fans of British crime novels as well as readers of true crime.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “Readers’ initial apprehension that this might be just another list of sensational crimes, trials, and public hangings quickly fades as the author exhibits her exceptional knowledge of social and literary England. Her position as chief curator at Historic Royal Palaces, which manages the Tower of London, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace, and other significant British sites, gives her a broad supply of informative resources. Simply put, murder was the TV of the Victorian era, an escape from everyday woes—of which there were plenty…Worsley ably shows how audiences drove writers, actors, and purveyors of news to satisfy their morbid curiosities.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Anne Flosnik delivers this excellent overview at a distance, standing slightly apart from the sensational crimes she’s recounting. Her dispassionate narration focuses on the Brits’ morbid preoccupation with trials and public executions without exaggerating the melodrama inherent in the theatrical details. An able guide, Flosnik navigates the years from 1800-1946 via gory newspaper items, garish ‘penny dreadfuls’ based on real crimes, and the rise of true-crime journalism. As a bloodthirsty English public clamored for even more, a new genre, mystery/detective fiction, offered opportunities for masters such as Charles Dickens, Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Arthur Conan Doyle.”


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About the Author

Henrietta Meire is a full-time voice-over artist and actress. In addition to narrating audiobooks, she has voiced numerous commercial and charity campaigns, as well as video game and animation characters. As an actress, she has appeared on stage, on television, and in a number of popular films.

About the Narrator

Anne Flosnik, a seasoned audiobook narrator, has over four hundred titles to her credit and several awards and distinctions, including AudioFile Earphones Awards, a USA Today Recommended Listening selection, an AudioFile “Best Narration of the Year” selection in 2009, and the American Library Association’s Special Services to Children Award. She has also been a finalist for the prestigious Audie Award for best narration. She is an award-winning British actress with lead credits on stage, on television, and in commercials and voice-overs.