She Kills Me: The True Stories of History’s Deadliest Women

Abrams Image. Sept. 2021. 176p. ISBN 9781419748462. $19.99. CRIME
Conversations about murderers tend to focus on men—Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, Ed Gein—but author and journalist Wright (We Came First; It Ended Badly) sets the record straight here. She argues that women kill and have killed for millennia and for reasons as varied as those of men who kill. Wright pinpoints 40 women across history and from around the globe who had the means, opportunity, and motive to take out someone (or several someones), including Elizabeth Bathory, a sadistic 16th-century Hungarian noblewoman who preyed on village girls; Ching Shih (1775–1844), a Chinese pirate who punished disobedient followers with death and was even more ruthless with her enemies; and Celia (no surname), an enslaved Black woman in the U.S. who in 1855 killed the man who had enslaved and raped her. Each account is brief, an amuse-bouche for readers interested in crimes perpetrated by women.
VERDICT This book of bite-size essays will appeal to fans of crime podcasts such as My Favorite Murder. Recommended for libraries seeking to diversify their true crime collections.
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