Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Devil in the White City: 5 Stars

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

Originally I thought it was a historical fiction, but it's actually a nonfiction written as a narrative. If I had not read the category of this book online, I would have never believed it was nonfiction. The book is all about the events surrounding the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. Once again, my interest in serial killers was peaked with the tale of H.H. Holmes, a serial killer masquerading as a doctor. He showed up in a city where young girls would come out on their own for the first time, disappear, and there just weren't enough cops to look for them. He built a hotel and added some serial killer luxuries like gas chambers. He often told men that the hotel was full, saving room for the single women.

The book also tells of Burnham's challenge in creating and pulling off the Worlds Fair. During the time to prepare, his partner died, and many other things. The fair ended up being wildly successful and had several celebrity appearances including Wild Bill Cody and even Walt Disney's father.

This book was incredibly well written and very educational. I knew very little about the World's Fair. I don't even know much about the World's Fair in Spokane and that's where I am from. Chicago was filled with incredible designs and acts, and devastating tragedies. 

I highly recommend this book.


  1. I don't read a lot of non-fiction but this one sounds pretty darn cool. Thanks for the recommendation. :)

  2. The fact that all that really happened still blows my mind.