City of Light, City of Poison: Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris by Holly Tucker

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Read City of Light, City of Poison: Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris Online Free - Appointed to conquer the “crime capital of the world,” the first police chief of Paris faces an epidemic of murder in the late 1600s. Assigned by Louis XIV, Nicolas de La Reynie begins by clearing the streets of filth and installing lanterns throughout Paris, turning it into the City of Light.

The fearless La Reynie pursues criminals through the labyrinthine neighborhoods of the city. He unearths a tightly knit cabal of poisoners, witches, and renegade priests. As he exposes their unholy work, he soon learns that no one is safe from black magic—not even the Sun King. In a world where a royal glance can turn success into disgrace, the distance between the quietly back-stabbing world of the king’s court and the criminal underground proves disturbingly short. Nobles settle scores by employing witches to craft poisons and by hiring priests to perform dark rituals in Paris’s most illustrious churches and cathedrals.

As La Reynie continues his investigations, he is haunted by a single question: Could Louis’s mistresses could be involved in such nefarious plots? The pragmatic and principled La Reynie must decide just how far he will go to protect his king.

From secret courtrooms to torture chambers, City of Light, City of Poison is a gripping true-crime tale of deception and murder. Based on thousands of pages of court transcripts and La Reynie’s compulsive note-taking, as well as on letters and diaries, Tucker’s riveting narrative makes the fascinating, real-life characters breathe on the page.

Title : City of Light, City of Poison: Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 0393355438
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 336 pages


Sean rated it ★★★★☆

May 08, 2017

Imagine the Salem witch trials, only instead of rough woolen homespun, everyone is wearing fancy dresses, ridiculous wigs, and too much rouge, and they’re speaking with French accents (well, and in French)…oh, and instead of charges being completely absurd and totally fabricated, let’s say that o...

Emily rated it ★★★★★

January 02, 2018

THIS IS A NEW FAVORITE!!! I absolutely LOVED this work of historical nonfiction. Tucker's writing is absolutely phenomenal. She truly paints a picture of 17th century France, and at times it feels like you're reading a novel rather than historical nonfiction. It's a page turner, but Tucker is also...

Rachel rated it ★★★☆☆

March 18, 2017

*I received a free advance reading copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I thought this was going to be a history of founding of Parisian law enforcement, similar to the early days of Scotland Yard. It is not. I expected a police procedural history. Instead, what I got were pages upo...

Barbara (The Bibliophage) rated it ★★★★★

July 13, 2017

Full review at Holly Tucker has accomplished a feat of research in creating City of Light, City of Poison: Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris. More than that, Tucker has made the detailed historical events and personages into an incredibly readable story. It’s ex...

Robert rated it ★★★☆☆

April 27, 2017

I struggled between giving this book either 2 or 3 stars. The history was really interesting, but I thought the book was very hard to follow. There were so many characters introduced which I thought were not fully explained or developed that it was sometimes hard to keep everyone straight. The bo...

Annie rated it ★★★★★

June 18, 2017

An intensely well-researched book about a little-known (okay, so it was little-known to me, anyway) and fairly bizarre slice of French history. There are a lot of details. Details outside the main story, details that you miiiiiiiight just not care enough about. So I don't think this is a book for...

Amy rated it ★★★★☆

October 11, 2017

I found this quite fascinating. Set in the days of Louis the XIV, Paris was a shambles, and the first Police Chief La Reynie comes into power, to try to establish order in the area. One of his first tasks to fight crime, is to pull the city from darkness. He establishes street lamps throughout th...

Faith rated it ★★☆☆☆

December 30, 2017

This author did a lot of research, supposedly based on actual historical records, into the more prurient details of French history. This is not a history of the Parisian police. It felt like watching an episode of one of the trashier reality TV programs. There were poisonings, abortions, witchcra...

Sandy rated it ★★★★☆

January 13, 2018

This was an interesting look into the early police procedures in Paris. I was horrified. It's no wonder they had a very bloody revolution.

BAM rated it ★★★☆☆

March 13, 2018

Audio # 28

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