By David King
Death within the urban of Light is the gripping, precise tale of a brutal serial killer who unleashed his personal reign of terror in Nazi-Occupied Paris. As decapitated heads and dismembered physique elements surfaced within the Seine, Commissaire Georges-Victor Massu, head of the Brigade Criminelle, used to be tasked with monitoring down the elusive assassin in a twilight global of Gestapo, gangsters, resistance opponents, pimps, prostitutes, spies, and different shadowy figures of the Parisian underworld.
The major suspect used to be Dr. Marcel Petiot, a good-looking, captivating medical professional with impressive charisma. He used to be the “People’s Doctor,” recognized for his many acts of kindness and generosity, no longer least in supplying loose therapy for the poor. Petiot, notwithstanding, might quickly be charged with twenty-seven murders, even though experts suspected the complete used to be significantly better, maybe even as many as 150.
Who was once being slaughtered, and why? used to be Petiot a sexual sadist, because the press instructed, killing for thrills? used to be he allied with the Gestapo, or, to the contrary, the French Resistance? Or did he paintings for nobody except himself? attempting to clear up the numerous mysteries of the case, Massu could resolve a plot of unspeakable deviousness. When Petiot was once ultimately arrested, the French police was hoping for answers.
But the trial quickly turned a circus. trying to test all twenty-seven instances without delay, the prosecution stumbled in its marathon cross-examinations, and Petiot, having fun with the highlight, spoke back with outstanding ease. His lawyer, René Floriot, a emerging celebrity on this planet of legal safety, additionally successfully, if aggressively, countered the charges. quickly, regardless of a crew of prosecuting legal professionals, dozens of witnesses, and over one ton of proof, Petiot’s brilliance and wit threatened to win the day.
Drawing broadly on many new resources, together with the big, categorized French police dossier on Dr. Petiot, Death within the urban of Light is a superb evocation of Nazi-Occupied Paris and a harrowing exploration of homicide, betrayal, and evil of magnificent proportions.
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Extra resources for Death in the City of Light: The Serial Killer of Nazi-Occupied Paris
There is but one instinct which generates the impulse to incendiarism,” writes Wilhelm Stekel in his classic work on aberrant behavior. ” True, there are often “secondary motives” behind a pyromaniac’s acts—revenge, for example, like Panzram’s desire to get back at his tormentors. ” Anyone who doubts this has only to read Flora Schreiber’s writings about the New Jersey serial killer Joseph Kallinger, who was thrown into orgasmic raptures by the mere thought of the fires he had caused. In short, serial murderers who enjoy starting fires do so for the same reason that they love to torture and kill.
When his grandfather returned from running errands a short time later, Edmund shot him to death as he walked through the door. He then notified his mother and sat down to wait for the police. ” The murder of his grandpa was, he said, an act of mercy: a way to spare the old man the pain of discovering what had happened to his wife. Diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic, Kemper—not yet sixteen—was committed to Atascadero State Hospital, where he appears to have spent much of his time raptly listening to the fond reminiscences of the various serial rapists he met on his ward.
I see the flames and no longer is a fire just a daydream. It is the reality of heaven on earth! I love the excitement of the power fire gives me . . The mental image is greater than sex! Animal Torture. Juvenile sadism directed at lower life-forms is nothing new. There have always been children and adolescents (usually male) who enjoy hurting small creatures. Certainly Shakespeare knew about such things. ” As disturbing as such behavior is, however, it pales beside the kinds of cruelties perpetrated by budding serial killers.