Book Review

AMERICAN SHERLOCK: Murder, Forensics and the Birth of American CSI by Kate Winkler Dawson

Thank you to Putnam Books for the free/gifted book. 

Rating: 3.5 / 5

I received a complimentary copy of AMERICAN SHERLOCK by Kate Winkler Dawson from the publisher, Putnam Books, for an honest review.

AMERICAN SHERLOCK is the nonfiction account of the life and career of Edward Oscar Heinrich, a pioneer in the field of forensics known as the American Sherlock Holmes. The book goes into Heinrich’s history and how he found himself in the field. Lacking a proper high school education, Heinrich was a self-starter who found ways around that to get the advance education he needed. He was naturally inclined to an attention to detail, picking up details and clues missed by others.

This book goes into detail on a few cases Heinrich worked, giving a mixture of biography and true crime which I found interesting. He wasn’t always right, delving into not entirely scientific ideas like handwriting analysis, but he made many advancements in the forensics field. The crimes discussed were at times bloody and violent, so there are trigger warnings here.

This was clearly well researched and it is one I would if you’re a fan of true crime and/or have an interest in the history of forensics as I definitely learned a lot. This was a perfect addition to my shelf in my goal to do more nonfiction reading this year.

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