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Extended Audio Sample The Wilderness of Ruin: A Tale of Madness, Fire, and the Hunt for America’s Youngest Serial Killer, by Roseanne Montillo Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Roseanne Montillo Narrator: Emily Woo Zeller Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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In the early 1870s, local children begin disappearing from the working-class neighborhoods of Boston. Several return home bloody and bruised after being tortured, while others never come back.

With the city on edge, authorities believe the abductions are the handiwork of a psychopath, until they discover that the killer—fourteen-year-old Jesse Pomeroy—is barely older than his victims. The criminal investigation that follows sparks a debate among the world’s most revered medical minds and will have a decades-long impact on the judicial system and medical consciousness.

The Wilderness of Ruin is a riveting tale of gruesome murder and depravity. At its heart is a great American city divided by class—a chasm that widens in the aftermath of the Great Fire of 1872. Roseanne Montillo brings Gilded Age Boston to glorious life—from the genteel cobblestone streets of Beacon Hill to the squalid, overcrowded tenements of Southie.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “With a flair for animating historical detail and an inner compass that orients toward the darker corners of life, Roseanne Montillo seats us close enough to an inferno to singe our eyelashes…The Wilderness of Ruin is improper Boston at its most vivid.”

    Vicki Croke, New York Times bestseller author

  • “A captivating tale of depravity in the Athens of America…masterfully conjures a lost Boston.”

    Mitchell Zuckoff, New York Times bestseller author

  • “A riveting true-crime tale that rivals anything writers in the twenty-first century could concoct…A masterly storyteller, Montillo skillfully evokes the poor and patrician neighborhoods that served as a backdrop for the crimes.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Montillo tells her story, with all the grisly details, in this fascinating book…[with] an effective picture of the metropolis and its influential citizens and institutions in the decades following the Civil War.”

    Library Journal

  • “Narrator Emily Woo Zeller employs a well-measured pace. Her tone is informative yet, when appropriate, full of the foreboding that spread through Boston during the period of the brutal and shocking murders.”

    AudioFile

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About the Author

Roseanne Montillo is the author of The Lady and Her Monsters: A Tale of Dissections, Real-Life Dr. Frankensteins, and the Creation of Mary Shelley’s Masterpiece. She holds an MFA from Emerson College in Massachusetts, where she continues to teach as a professor of literature.