by Vincent DiMaio
& Ron Franscell
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Released: May 17, 2016
Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.
Book Description, Modified from Goodreads:
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 described cased from among his 40 years of work and more than 9,000 autopsies. Suspenseful stories, revealing anecdotes, and macabre insider details from one of the country's most methodical criminal pathologists.
Morgue is a collection of true crime stories. This book mainly covered eleven cases that occurred between 1969 and 2012 in Dr. Vincent Di Maio's career. In each case, Dr. Di Maio performed the autopsy or was called in as a consultant, but it's not just about what happens in the morgue. Yet we are talking autopsies, so some details were gory, though clinically described.
The cases were described with vivid details, starting with the lives of the people involved and the events leading up to the murder. We're told how murder was suspected or what was known about the murder, the detective work that solved the crime, and details about the court cases. In some of the cases, the facts were distorted by conspiracy theories or the media due to racial controversy. I appreciated having "just the facts." He didn't claim to know the motives, just what the evidence indicated.
He covered cases that showed different aspects of the autopsy (identifying the person and what killed them) and of his job. The stories were well-written and very interesting. While his frustrations with the system do occasionally leak through, he seemed more interested in the truth (is there reasonable doubt?) than in making people think he can solve every crime. I'd recommend this book to people interested in true crime stories.
If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.
Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.