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This title in other editions
Other titles in the Treasury of Victorian Murder series:
The Saga of the Bloody Benders: The Infamous Homicidal Family of Labette County, Kansas (Treasury of Victorian Murder)by Rick Geary
A YALSA (Youth Librarians) 2008 Great Graphic Novel
Synopses & Reviews
Now In Paperback! Rick Geary takes us out to the Wild West and the just opened up prairies os Kansas. Out on a deserted stretch of road linking newly forming towns, a mysterious family stakes a claim and builds an inn for weary travelers. Soon, reports multiply of disappearances around that area. Generally, those who disappeared had plenty of cash on them.
A delicious tale of a gruesome family fronted by a beguiling lass who led their victims on...
"Geary's ninth volume in his violent but informative and well-researched series covers the little known tale of the so-called Bloody Benders, a mysterious family of possibly German immigrants who set up a small grocery/hotel catering to travelers along the Osage Trail in southern Kansas in 1870. The townspeople figure out pretty quick that the Benders are an odd lot (the ethereally beautiful daughter holds séances and claims to be a healer, while the ape-like father barely speaks, and the son seems simpleminded). It takes them quite a bit longer to glom on to the fact that too many travelers, especially those with money, are disappearing near the Benders' place. By the time the locals catch on, the Benders have fled, leaving a multitude of gruesome clues behind. Because much about the Benders remains unknown, the story easily lends itself to fantasy and speculation, and Geary recounts theories about who they really were and what happened to them, presented in a quite credible manner, all accompanied by his usual exquisite art. Geary's riveting writing has a journalistic, matter-of-fact tone, making it quite palatable to adult audiences; though the subject matter may make some school librarians think twice." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[A] little gem of a book....This is an engaging comic, by an under-appreciated craftsman, and at the very least worth a pick-up-and-look." The Comics Reporter
"One of the best comics of 2007. Geary is working on a higher plane than just about every other comics creator in the business." The Onion AV Club
"The grisly details and the uncertainty create an intriguing murder mystery that will appeal to graphic novel readers." VOYA
"There's a panel of the murderous Kate Bender, that will haunt my dreams for some time to come. An engrossing, meticulously researched and drawn graphic novel and one of the best in Geary's series so far." Comics Journal
"Hits the spot. Geary's black-and-white drawings are terrific at conveying this deadly slice of Plains history." San Diego Union-Tribune
"All is presented with a sense of dread and an offbeat tone that makes Geary totally unique in the pantheon of great cartoonists. Highly recommended, as are all the other volumes of this wildly entertaining series." Alan David Doane, Comic Book Galaxy
"Another triumphant entry in Geary's Treasury of Victorian Murder series." Booklist
"As ever, Geary's details are well researched and presented in suspenseful, Victorian-like perspective, moody with minimalist detail....True-crime fans will enjoy this book and history teachers may find inspiration for joining research to compelling storytelling." School Library Journal
About the Author
An award-winning cartoonist and illustrator, Rick Geary has worked for Marvel Entertainment Group, DC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, and Heavy Metal, and has contributed to National Lampoon and The New York Times Book Review.
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