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Der Teufel von Chicago. Ein Architekt, ein Mörder und die… (2003)

von Erik Larson

Weitere Autoren: Siehe Abschnitt Weitere Autoren.

MitgliederRezensionenBeliebtheitDurchschnittliche BewertungDiskussionen / Diskussionen
20,186664181 (4)1 / 980
Two men, each handsome and unusually adept at his chosen work, embodied an element of the great dynamic that characterized America₂s rush toward the twentieth century. The architect was Daniel Hudson Burnham, the fair's brilliant director of works and the builder of many of the country's most important structures, including the Flatiron Building in New York and Union Station in Washington, D.C. The murderer was Henry H. Holmes, a young doctor who, in a malign parody of the White City, built his "World's Fair Hotel" just west of the fairgrounds₇a torture palace complete with dissection table, gas chamber, and 3,000-degree crematorium. Burnham overcame tremendous obstacles and tragedies as he organized the talents of Frederick Law Olmsted, Charles McKim, Louis Sullivan, and others to transform swampy Jackson Park into the White City, while Holmes used the attraction of the great fair and his own satanic charms to lure scores of young women to their deaths. What makes the story all the more chilling is that Holmes really lived, walking the grounds of that dream city by the lake. The Devil in the White City draws the reader into a time of magic and majesty, made all the more appealing by a supporting cast of real-life characters, including Buffalo Bill, Theodore Dreiser, Susan B. Anthony, Thomas Edison, Archduke Francis Ferdinand, and others. In this book the smoke, romance, and mystery of the Gilded Age come alive as never before. Erik Larson's gifts as a storyteller are magnificently displayed in this rich narrative of the master builder, the killer, and the great fair that obsessed them both.… (mehr)
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This book contains multiple threads that are woven together to depict a time of great change for America in the 1890s. This non-fiction book conveys the story of Daniel Burnham, lead architect and operational manager of the Columbian Exhibition aka Chicago World's Fair, nicknamed the White City. It also provides a chilling account of a psychopathic serial killer, Herman Mudgett aka HH Holmes. I found the book an engrossing read. I learned a great deal about this period in U.S. history, along with the extraordinary effort involved in planning for, building and running the Exhibition. I admire the way Larson used his vast research and educated assumptions to weave together these compelling stories. I recommend this book to those interested in history or true crime. ( )
  Castlelass | Oct 30, 2022 |
I believe I first heard about the serial killer who went by the name of Holmes in a series that featured Sherlock Holmes and Houdini as partners in solving mysteries. Anyway, this book is both a history of the making of the Chicago World's Fair in 1893 and the story of a charming man who went by the name of Holmes who built a hotel not too far from the fair, using his own plans, complete with sound proof room and gas lines going directly into certain rooms. Women were gassed and then dissected in his special room. He also had helpers for his diabolical doings, who consequently met with untimely and suspicious deaths when their usefulness had abated. Often he would have life insurance policies made out on people (wives, girlfriends, workers) who then mysteriously disappeared or died. While the making of the World's Fair in Chicago is fascinating and, due to all the obstacles and problems surrounding it, amazing that it ever got off the ground, it is really the story of Holmes that keeps one reading. Sometimes the minutiae relating to the fair tended to slow down the pace of the book. ( )
  Marse | Oct 24, 2022 |
Very much enjoyed reading about the worlds fair but the parts of the book about the nefarious accounts of the serial killer seemed extraneous. ( )
  kevbre | Oct 24, 2022 |
This book is all about the Chicago's World Fair of 1893, and coincides with the story of a mass killer who had his "house of horrors" close to the fairgrounds and used the draw of the fair to multiply the number of his victims. The planning for the world's fair was a disaster that nearly caused the fair to never open. Everything in the planning stages lagged behind, sometimes out of perverseness of different officials involved, and other times because of things that simply could not be helped. "The devil" of the title was H.H.Holmes, a doctor who was a psychopathic serial killer who got away with murder after murder, fraud scheme after fraud scheme, without raising the slightest suspicion from authorities until well after the fair closed. While an interesting read, the book does "plod along" quite a bit at times. ( )
  burritapal | Oct 23, 2022 |
Not as riveting as I'd hoped it would be, The Devil in the White City..." is made up of two stories: a mostly factual and well-researched look at the planning and execution of the Chicago World's Fair of 1893 and a speculative fictional account of the dastardly deeds of one of America's first serial killers, H.H. Holmes, who carried out his murderous spree during the Chicago Fair. As a history buff, I found most of the World's Fair story pretty interesting, albeit tedious at times as it bogged down with too much minutia. The Holmes story seemed incomplete at times because Larson obviously did not have as much primary source material to work with to tell his story. There was a lot of supposition regarding what his victims said and how they felt. I enjoyed learning about a number of the many "firsts" that came out of the World's Fair - including the Ferris Wheel, Shredded Wheat, the introduction of both AC and neon lighting, a rudimentary motion picture process, and even Juicy Fruit gum, Aunt Jemima pancake mix, and Quaker Oats. ( )
  coachtim30 | Oct 19, 2022 |
Mr. Larson has written a dynamic, enveloping book filled with haunting, closely annotated information. And it doesn't hurt that this truth really is stranger than fiction.
hinzugefügt von jlelliott | bearbeitenThe New York Times, Janet Maslin (Feb 10, 2003)
 

» Andere Autoren hinzufügen (15 möglich)

AutorennameRolleArt des AutorsWerk?Status
Erik LarsonHauptautoralle Ausgabenberechnet
Brick, ScottErzählerCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
Goldwyn, TonyErzählerCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
Tézenas, HubertTraductionCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
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Epigraph (Motto/Zitat)
Mach keine kleinen Pläne. Ihnen fehlt der Zauber, der den Menschen ins Blut fährt. - Daniel H. Burnham, Leitender Direktor Weltausstellung 1893
Ich bin mit dem Teufel in mir geboren. Ich konnte nichts dagegen tun, dass ich zum Mörder wurde, so wenig wie ein Dichter etwas dagegen tun kann, dass die Muse ihn um Singen verführt. - Dr. H.H. Holmes, Geständnis, 1896
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Für Chris, Kristen, Lauren und Erin, die es die Mühe wert gemacht haben,
und für Molly, deren Appetit auf Socken uns alle auf den Beinen hielt.
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Es war der 14. April des Jahres 1912, ein schwarzer Tag in der Geschichte der maritimen Schifffahrt, doch das wusste der Mann in der Suite 63-65, Schutzdeck C, natürlich noch nicht.
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"Suddenly New York and St. Louis wanted the fair. Washington laid claim to the honor on the grounds it was the center of government, New York because it was the center of everything. No one cared what St. Louis thought, although the city got a wink for pluck."
"Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood"
"They are blue. Great murderers, like great men in other walks of activity, have blue eyes."
"In all the workforce in the park numbered four thousand. The ranks included a carpenter and furniture-maker named Elias Disney, who in coming years would tell many stories about the construction of this magical realm beside the lake. His son Walt would take note."
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Two men, each handsome and unusually adept at his chosen work, embodied an element of the great dynamic that characterized America₂s rush toward the twentieth century. The architect was Daniel Hudson Burnham, the fair's brilliant director of works and the builder of many of the country's most important structures, including the Flatiron Building in New York and Union Station in Washington, D.C. The murderer was Henry H. Holmes, a young doctor who, in a malign parody of the White City, built his "World's Fair Hotel" just west of the fairgrounds₇a torture palace complete with dissection table, gas chamber, and 3,000-degree crematorium. Burnham overcame tremendous obstacles and tragedies as he organized the talents of Frederick Law Olmsted, Charles McKim, Louis Sullivan, and others to transform swampy Jackson Park into the White City, while Holmes used the attraction of the great fair and his own satanic charms to lure scores of young women to their deaths. What makes the story all the more chilling is that Holmes really lived, walking the grounds of that dream city by the lake. The Devil in the White City draws the reader into a time of magic and majesty, made all the more appealing by a supporting cast of real-life characters, including Buffalo Bill, Theodore Dreiser, Susan B. Anthony, Thomas Edison, Archduke Francis Ferdinand, and others. In this book the smoke, romance, and mystery of the Gilded Age come alive as never before. Erik Larson's gifts as a storyteller are magnificently displayed in this rich narrative of the master builder, the killer, and the great fair that obsessed them both.

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