Mega Dose
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Original Essays | September 30, 2014

Benjamin Parzybok: IMG A Brief History of Video Games Played by Mayors, Presidents, and Emperors



Brandon Bartlett, the fictional mayor of Portland in my novel Sherwood Nation, is addicted to playing video games. In a city he's all but lost... Continue »

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$9.95
Used Hardcover
Usually ships in 5 to 7 business days
Add to Wishlist
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
Qty Store Section
1 Remote Warehouse Biography- General

This title in other editions

The Fox and the Flies: The Secret Life of a Grotesque Master Criminal

by

The Fox and the Flies: The Secret Life of a Grotesque Master Criminal Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A masterwork of historical reconstruction—the life and times of an arch criminal who may well have been Jack the Ripper.

 

During the three turbulent decades before World War I, Joseph Silver became the greatest criminal of his time, perfecting his skills as a burglar, gun runner, jewel thief, and ultimately trafficker in prostitution and female slavery across four continents. He was notorious even among his competitors at a time when such business was rampant on both sides of the Atlantic, and he covered his tracks with extraordinary skill. 

 
A chance encounter with Silver's career in South Africa set Charles van Onselen on a twenty five-year obsession: a journey to reconstruct the shadowy life and times of—in some ways to match wits with—a devious master criminal. From Russian Poland in the 1860s, where Silver was born Joseph Lis, to London in the 1880s, turn-of-the-century New York, Argentina, and Africa, van Onselen recaptures the dangerous demimonde of the Atlantic world. Silver's notoriety was found among the most confidential correspondence of a dozen countries; what those in law enforcement kept to themselves, however, was how their officers had attempted to use Silver as an informer to infiltrate syndicates built on vice, only to have him outwit them as he moved in the risky space between police and prostitutes.

Such is the meticulousness of van Onselens research that The Fox and the Flies is as rich in history as it is in the detail and drama of Silver's career, as layer after layer of his life and times are revealed. And it has an extraordinary pay-off, for van Onselen contends that Joseph Silver's darkest secret of all lay in London in the autumn of 1888 when, before he embarked on his legendary life of crime, he was, indeed, Jack the Ripper.

"Award-winning South African historian Van Onselen has crafted a riveting narrative portraying the life and crimes of Joseph (1868-1918), a violent man whose story is almost too improbable to be true. Silver terrorized women on four continents in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, rising from humble Jewish roots in a small Polish town to become a leading trafficker in female slaves. With masterful survival instincts, Silver locked horns with the forces of law and order in England, the U.S. South Africa and Argentina, often corrupting those who pursued him and even, in a jaw-dropping display of chutzpah, serving on occasion as a police officer himself. Despite the overall fascination with Silver, Van Onselen's excellent book will receive more notice for its final chapter, in which he makes a compelling circumstantial case for Silver being Jack the Ripper . . . He deserves credit for identifying a man with a history of violence against prostitutes who apparently lives in the heart of Whitechapel during the 1888 Autumn of Terror, and who matched some eyewitness descriptions of suspicious figures seen with the victims shortly before their deaths."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Review:

"'Award-winning South African historian Van Onselen has crafted a riveting narrative portraying the life and crimes of Joseph Silver (1868 — 1918), a violent man whose story is almost too improbable to be true. Silver terrorized women on four continents in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, rising from humble Jewish roots in a small Polish town to become a leading trafficker in female slaves. With masterful survival instincts, Silver locked horns with the forces of law and order in England, the U.S., South Africa and Argentina, often corrupting those who pursued him and even, in a jaw-dropping display of chutzpah, serving on occasion as a police officer himself. Despite the overall fascination with Silver, Van Onselen's excellent book will receive more notice for its final chapter, in which he makes a compelling circumstantial case for Silver being Jack the Ripper. While the evidence is somewhat more speculative than the author concedes, he deserves credit for identifying a man with a history of violence against prostitutes who apparently lived in the heart of Whitechapel during the 1888 Autumn of Terror, and who matched some eyewitness descriptions of suspicious figures seen with the victims shortly before their deaths. B&w photos, maps. (Sept.)' Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)"

Synopsis:

This masterwork of historical reconstruction recounts the life and times of Joseph Silver, an arch criminal who may well have been Jack the Ripper. A meticulous researcher, Van Onselen offers an account as rich in history as it is in the detail and drama of Silvers career.

Synopsis:

A masterwork of historical reconstruction--the life and times of an arch criminal who may well have been Jack the Ripper.

 

During the three turbulent decades before World War I, Joseph Silver became the greatest criminal of his time, perfecting his skills as a burglar, gun runner, jewel thief, and ultimately trafficker in prostitution and female slavery across four continents. He was notorious even among his competitors at a time when such business was rampant on both sides of the Atlantic, and he covered his tracks with extraordinary skill. 

 
A chance encounter with Silver's career in South Africa set Charles van Onselen on a twenty five-year obsession: a journey to reconstruct the shadowy life and times of--in some ways to match wits with--a devious master criminal. From Russian Poland in the 1860s, where Silver was born Joseph Lis, to London in the 1880s, turn-of-the-century New York, Argentina, and Africa, van Onselen recaptures the dangerous demimonde of the Atlantic world. Silver's notoriety was found among the most confidential correspondence of a dozen countries; what those in law enforcement kept to themselves, however, was how their officers had attempted to use Silver as an informer to infiltrate syndicates built on vice, only to have him outwit them as he moved in the risky space between police and prostitutes.

Such is the meticulousness of van Onselen's research that The Fox and the Flies is as rich in history as it is in the detail and drama of Silver's career, as layer after layer of his life and times are revealed. And it has an extraordinary pay-off, for van Onselen contends that Joseph Silver's darkest secret of all lay in London in the autumn of 1888 when, before he embarked on his legendary life of crime, he was, indeed, Jack the Ripper.

About the Author

Charles van Onselen is an acclaimed biographer who has held visiting fellowships at Cambridge, Oxford, and Yale. His works on the social history of southern Africa have won him, among others, the American African Studies Association's Herskovits Prize, the Institute of Commonwealth Studies' Trevor Reese Memorial Prize, and the Sunday Times' Alan Paton Award for nonfiction. He is currently research professor in the faculty of humanities at the University of Pretoria in South Africa.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780802716415
Subtitle:
The Secret Life of a Grotesque Master Criminal
Author:
Van Onselen, Charles
Author:
Charles van Onselen
Publisher:
Walker & Company
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Murder - Serial Killers
Subject:
TRU002010
Subject:
Criminals & Outlaws
Subject:
Speculative
Subject:
History
Subject:
Sex crimes
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
Serial murders - England - London - History -
Subject:
Silver, Joseph
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20070918
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
30 bandw illus. throughout; 1 photo. ins
Pages:
672
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.13 in

Other books you might like

  1. The Roots of Terrorism (Roots of... New Library Bound $44.50
  2. Integrity: Doing the Right Thing for...
    New Hardcover $34.95
  3. Futurethink : How To Think Clearly... Used Hardcover $15.00
  4. Blood from Stones: The Secret... Used Hardcover $2.98
  5. Prison Diary #03: Heaven
    Used Trade Paper $10.95
  6. Killing Sacred Cows: Overcoming the... Used Hardcover $9.95

Related Subjects

Biography » General
History and Social Science » Crime » General

The Fox and the Flies: The Secret Life of a Grotesque Master Criminal Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 672 pages Walker & Company - English 9780802716415 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "'Award-winning South African historian Van Onselen has crafted a riveting narrative portraying the life and crimes of Joseph Silver (1868 — 1918), a violent man whose story is almost too improbable to be true. Silver terrorized women on four continents in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, rising from humble Jewish roots in a small Polish town to become a leading trafficker in female slaves. With masterful survival instincts, Silver locked horns with the forces of law and order in England, the U.S., South Africa and Argentina, often corrupting those who pursued him and even, in a jaw-dropping display of chutzpah, serving on occasion as a police officer himself. Despite the overall fascination with Silver, Van Onselen's excellent book will receive more notice for its final chapter, in which he makes a compelling circumstantial case for Silver being Jack the Ripper. While the evidence is somewhat more speculative than the author concedes, he deserves credit for identifying a man with a history of violence against prostitutes who apparently lived in the heart of Whitechapel during the 1888 Autumn of Terror, and who matched some eyewitness descriptions of suspicious figures seen with the victims shortly before their deaths. B&w photos, maps. (Sept.)' Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)"
"Synopsis" by , This masterwork of historical reconstruction recounts the life and times of Joseph Silver, an arch criminal who may well have been Jack the Ripper. A meticulous researcher, Van Onselen offers an account as rich in history as it is in the detail and drama of Silvers career.
"Synopsis" by ,
A masterwork of historical reconstruction--the life and times of an arch criminal who may well have been Jack the Ripper.

 

During the three turbulent decades before World War I, Joseph Silver became the greatest criminal of his time, perfecting his skills as a burglar, gun runner, jewel thief, and ultimately trafficker in prostitution and female slavery across four continents. He was notorious even among his competitors at a time when such business was rampant on both sides of the Atlantic, and he covered his tracks with extraordinary skill. 

 
A chance encounter with Silver's career in South Africa set Charles van Onselen on a twenty five-year obsession: a journey to reconstruct the shadowy life and times of--in some ways to match wits with--a devious master criminal. From Russian Poland in the 1860s, where Silver was born Joseph Lis, to London in the 1880s, turn-of-the-century New York, Argentina, and Africa, van Onselen recaptures the dangerous demimonde of the Atlantic world. Silver's notoriety was found among the most confidential correspondence of a dozen countries; what those in law enforcement kept to themselves, however, was how their officers had attempted to use Silver as an informer to infiltrate syndicates built on vice, only to have him outwit them as he moved in the risky space between police and prostitutes.

Such is the meticulousness of van Onselen's research that The Fox and the Flies is as rich in history as it is in the detail and drama of Silver's career, as layer after layer of his life and times are revealed. And it has an extraordinary pay-off, for van Onselen contends that Joseph Silver's darkest secret of all lay in London in the autumn of 1888 when, before he embarked on his legendary life of crime, he was, indeed, Jack the Ripper.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.