I tend to like this local, more specific true crime books. The general true crime anthologies often cover the same cases/criminals so these localised ones reveal the activities of the more obscure criminals.
The book covers 200 years and features murder, manslaughter, abortion (which was illegal until 1967), wife beating, husband slaughter, theft (often of minor items) and more. Most of the accounts are presented well-enough with a bit of history around the case, and the outcomes (most of which were execution, transportation, or imprisonment). Many of the cases are tragic – unmarried mothers trying to dispose of unwanted babies in a time when single-motherhood could ruin a girl and occupations for women were extremely limited. Some of the perpetrators of these crimes were insane, or of diminished responsibility, but until the late 19th Century such matters were barely recognised.
It’s a good account of crime in the area. Although some of the accounts are a little short, and get a bit tedious.
So why the relatively low rating? Now I don’t often mark down a book for typos – but this book had a lot. All the way through. There was a repeated paragraph and mistakes on every other page.