copyright 2010; The Penguin Press publishers, New York; hardbound with purple and black boards and gilt lettering on cover and spine; very good condition, appears unread; dust jacket very good.
The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York is a New York Times best-selling non-fiction book by Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Deborah Blum that was released by Penguin Press in 2010.
In 1918, New York City appointed Charles Norris, Bellevue Hospital's chief pathologist, as its first scientifically trained medical examiner. The book, about Norris and Alexander Gettler, the city's first toxicologist, describes the Jazz Age's poisoning cases. Before the two began working in the medical examiner's office, Blum pointed out in her book, poisoners could get away with murder.
The book covers the years from 1915 to 1936, which Blum described as a "coming-of-age" for forensic toxicology. "Under (Norris's) direction, the New York City medical examiner's office would become a department that set forensic standards for the rest of the country," Blum wrote.
While a guest on National Public Radio’s "Talk of the Nation/Science Friday" to discuss the book, Blum told host Ira Flatow that she wrote the book because, "I've always been interested in poison. I wanted to write about the mystery of how (poisons) kill us.”