The Waltham Murders: One Woman’s Pursuit To Expose the Truth Behind a Murder and a National Tragedy

Little A. Mar. 2024. 366p. ISBN 9781503903715. $28.99. CRIME
Investigative journalist Zalkind (writer/producer of the Hulu docuseries The Murders Before the Marathon) has spent more than a decade looking into a triple-murder case that took place 18 months before the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013. She was compelled and haunted by the idea that a proper police investigation into the brutal murder of her friend Erik and two others in 2011 may have prevented the bombing. She teases out the connection to Tamerlan Tsarnaev, one of planners of the Boston Marathon bombing, and his life before, during, and after he was suspected of terrorism. Could the triple homicide have helped prevent the 2013 atrocity if Tsarnaev had been questioned by police in relation to that earlier case? This is one of many questions readers will be left to ponder after they finish the book.
VERDICT Readers will be able to visualize Zalkind’s murder board as they take in her meticulous, intriguing summation of her years of research. This is an eloquent book that is part true-crime deep dive and part memoir. It’s a definitive resource on a crime that, while officially unsolved, appears to be littered with conspiracies, corruption, and poor decisions.
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