The Murder Of The Century by Paul Collins



June 26, 1897, New York.  A farmer in Long Island is startled when he finds that his duck pond, and his ducks are red with blood.  Meanwhile, two boys playing on a pier on the Lower East Side discover a human floating torso wrapped in oil cloth.  In Harlem, blueberry pickers find neatly severed limbs in a ditch. 

Who was this mystery man?  No witnesses… no suspects, and there was no head.

In the midst of this hideous crime two of the big media moguls Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph’s went after the media side of the case without holding back.  The headlines battled one another, reporters lurked around looking for suspects, awards were posted for the finding of the head and even children took to the streets for a chance at winning the loot.

Considering this is based on a true crime… truth really can be staggering than fiction.

In the end, what is discovered is beyond imagination for the time….



Why did I read this?  Honestly… I do not know.  I found I had downloaded it from in September and I can not recall if it was on a recommendation, a sale audio…. or what drew me too it.  But too it… I was. 

Murder of The Century was interesting.  I had not considered before what newspapers went through to get the big scoop and in this read you discover that not too much is off-limits, including one part where the one newspaper company sends all of its reporters out to cut the lines on the phone booths so when the other newspaper got there to call in their notes, they would not be able to.

As the murder unfolds and people come forward a trial starts that is also quiet interesting and eventually a solution to the crime that is both surprising and through provoking. 

My only complaint is that somewhere int he middle it bogged down…. suddenly the audio felt long and I was waiting to get interested again, which I did… but not a big fan of books or audio that drag out. 

Fans of true crime I think will enjoy this for the amazing story and a gruesome crime that is unthinkable and when you hear the motive behind it….


10 thoughts on “The Murder Of The Century by Paul Collins

  1. Once or twice a year I enjoy taking a small break from reading novels and will turn to true crime. Since you said the ending/motivation had the WOW factor, then I’ll have to add this to my list!

  2. Sometimes I am thankful I chose the audio when the middle starts to drag – I always think it too easy to put a print book down, but an audio is easier to keep going. Not sure if this book is my thing, but still looks interesting! As always, thank you for the honesty!

    1. Me too Alison (this one I did listen to on audio) i start to fade out of it and then wait for it to get interesting again, but you are right – I give more time to an audio where as in a book I would skip a few pages looking to see if it gets better and if not I would move on to something else.

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