Nothing but the Night by Greg King and Penny Wilson

Posted October 5, 2022 in review Tags: ,

Nothing but the Night by Greg King and Penny WilsonNothing but the Night: Leopold & Loeb and the Truth Behind the Murder That Rocked 1920s America by Greg King, Penny Wilson
Pages: 352

Genres: True Crime
Setting: Chicago, IL
Source: ARC, NetGalley
Narrator: Armando Riesco
Amazon iBooks Audible

Greg King and Penny Wilson turn the original crime of the century on its head in Nothing But the Night, a riveting new exploration of the murder trial of Leopold & Loeb.Nearly a hundred years ago, two wealthy and privileged teenagers—Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb—were charged and convicted in a gruesome crime that would lead to the original “Trial of the Century”. Even in Jazz Age Chicago, the murder was uniquely shocking for the motive of the killers: well-to-do Jewish scions, full of promise, had killed fourteen-year-old Bobby Franks for the thrill of it. The trial was made even more sensational by the revelation of a love affair between the defendants and by defense attorney Clarence Darrow, who delivered one of the most famous defense summations of all time to save the boys from the death penalty. The story of their mad folie à deux, with Loeb portrayed as the psychopathic mastermind and Leopold as his infatuated disciple, has been endlessly repeated and accepted by history as fact. And none of it is true.
Using twenty-first century investigative tools, forensics, and a modern understanding of the psychology of these infamous killers, Nothing but the Night turns history on its head. While Loeb has long been viewed as the architect behind the murders, King and Wilson’s new research points to Leopold as the dominant partner in the deadly relationship, uncovering a dark obsession with violence and sex. Nothing but the Night pulls readers into the troubled world of Leopold and Loeb, revealing a more horrifying tale of passion, obsession, and betrayal than history ever imagined.

Nothing but the Night delves deep into the “crime of the century”-the murder of Bobby Franks in Chicago, IL. It was fascinating! The story is told in a linear style, which works very well for a historical true crime, and especially when you are listening!

First, the author explores the families of all the players-the victim and the two perpetrators. Then they get into all the events that led Leopold and Loeb to the murder, because exploring the psychology of these two was important. There is a lot of psychology to cover, but also a lot of sociology of the time. Understanding the world at the time of the crime really adds to the reader/listener’s understanding. Part two really focuses on the trial and their defense lawyer (the famous Clarence Darrow), and then their time in prison. Overall, the story is surprising in depth for a crime that occurred in the 1920’s!

The authors did a wonderful job of condensing their research into the salient information without being salacious or torrid. The narrator was great and didn’t detract from the story. I highly recommend this to those who are interesting in psychology and sociology of crimes as this book addresses both.

true crime stories like When a Killer Calls by John Douglas, Columbine by Dave Cullen, Murder in the Family by Burl Barer …then you will probably like Nothing But the Night!

Nothing but the Night

ibooks-icon amazon-icon-star


Please follow and like us:
Visit Us
Follow Me
Follow by Email

One response to “Nothing but the Night by Greg King and Penny Wilson

  1. This one sounds so fascinating and I love it when an author can write a story that isn’t super heavy on the research and balances it out well. With the rise of crime podcasts I am sure this will appeal to so many readers!

    Lovely review!

Leave a Reply

Want to include a link to one of your blog posts below your comment? Enter your URL in the website field, then click here to get started.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.