An unconventional biography of an unconventional character. Rather than focus on timelines or family trees, Posnanski tries to get at Houdini as a legend, as an historical figure.
One frigid Philadelphia morning, Mr. Poe receives an odd parcel. It’s the third such strange box from an unknown sender. Poe calls upon his friend, and ornithologist Father Keane to help him decipher the meaning of the taxidermied birds, feathers, moss and plants. The clues seem to suggest a sort of warning and very quickly their sender is revealed.
The roadtrip begins with a stop at Bea’s brother’s in Burgundy. Always the schlub of the family, he has been set up as the proprietor of a sagging bed-and-breakfast. In a constant state of (dis)repair, it would seem that Alex has spent more time pretending there have been guests than fixing the place up. The younger generation then prepares for a visit from the parents with dread.
Channelling the likes of Alias Grace and The Unseeing, The Poison Thread tells a terrifying tale of confinement and madness. Dorothea Truelove, a perfectly saccharine name for the Victorian charity do-gooder, is a adherent to the study of phrenology. She visits Ruth Butterham, a teenaged seamstress, in Oakgate Prison and begins to suspect there is more to the girl’s story.
In 1942, an Allied victory was far from certain. Britain was barely holding its own after a battering in the Blitz and America was only just agreeing to enter the war. Using recently declassified files, diaries, interviews and more, Sarah Rose tells the stories of a handful of unlikely spies who paved the way for the Allied invasion.