Sunday, March 18, 2007

Murder in Greenwich

Mark Fuhrman is more of a cop than a writer and this book has few pretensions, but that’s one reason Murder in Greenwich makes a good read. And even though it is based on a sensational case that is generally well-known by followers of political and-or celebrity gossip, it delves into details in a way that keeps a reader with the story page by page. It also has cautionary value. Parents of some of the victim’s friends knew better than to trust the likely killer or killers. Parents be warned --- trust your inclinations.

All of that said, this is a lightweight book about people who have more money than sense and the problem of insular small town police departments. Like John Grisham’s The Innocent Man, the story can disgust you enough to put the book down wondering “what is wrong with these people?”

In the end, Fuhrman’s work is noteworthy because it deserves some credit for making a strong circumstantial case that Michael Skakel --- of the extended Kennedy family --- was involved in the murder. After it was published by Harper Collins in 1998, Skakel was brought to trial and ultimately convicted of the murder. While the victim’s family has credited the police work of Connecticut law enforcement, it remains an open question whether anyone would have followed through with an indictment if Fuhrman had not put together a compelling case.

In sum, there is not a lot of texture to enjoy in this book, there is more than a little drive to the narrative.


24 Days --- How two Wall Street Journal reporters uncovered the lies that destroyed faith in corporate America, Devil in the White City, and my truly obscure find, True Tales from the Annals of Crime and Rascality.

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