The Crime of the Century

  • by Dennis L. Breo, William J. Martin
  • Narrated by Christina Delaine
  • 18 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

On July 14th, 1966, Richard Franklin Speck swept through a quiet Chicago townhouse like a summer tornado and stabbed, strangled, and killed eight young nurses in a violent sexual rampage. By morning, only one nurse, Corazon Amurao, had miraculously survived, and her scream of terror was heard around the world.
As the eight bodies were carried out of the small building, the coroner, who had seen the carnage up close, told a gathering crowd: "It is the crime of the century!"
Now, the prosecutor who put Speck in prison for life (William J. Martin) and the author and journalist who won an award for his coverage of the crime (Dennis L. Breo) have teamed up to recreate the blood-soaked night that opened a new chapter in the history of American crime: mass murder.
Corazon Amurao, the nurse the killer left behind, confronted Speck at trial and told jurors, "This is the man!" Richard Speck was spared execution by Supreme Court rulings and here is the inside story of how he confessed to the murders in a sordid prison video made three years before his death of a heart attack in 1991. And here is the life today of the nurse who survived the crime that murdered American innocence.


What the Critics Say

"Former prosecutor Martin and Chicago journalist Breo present a fast-paced, solid reconstruction of Martin's biggest case: the fatal stabbing, strangling, and sexual assault of eight young nurses by drifter Richard Speck in Chicago in 1966." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

master class in trial procedure and strategy

Fascinating story of horrible crime and trial sensitively told. The story captures the innocence that preceded an unimaginable crime and the aftermath of the crime. Be warned, Speck brutally raped and murdered 8 nurses in their home and the description of that crime is horrific. But this is more than a true crime story. The book provides an inside look at the trial preparation and the conduct of the trial and provides a great explanation of how lawyers handle a high profile, high stakes hard-fought criminal trial. You get a master class in trial strategy and handling of witnesses provided by a top notch attorney. The story is told with great compassion for the victims and their families and with the colorful flavor of a bygone time. My only complaint is that the narrator, who did a great job with Speck's Texas drawl, lacked a Chicago accent. The city is very much a part of the story but I didn't hear Chicago's distinctive voice. Otherwise it was terrific.
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- cj

Worst narration I have ever heard. couldn't finish

The narrator (a woman) tried to imitate Specks drawl but she couldn't sound lile a man and her drawl was so lifeless and drawn out, I would find myself drifting off. It was painful to listen to. Story was boring and lifeless as well.
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- Mary Kay Buratto

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-31-2017
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio