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Non Fiction Titles

* Burke and Hare (National Archives Crime Series) June 2007
* Close and Deadly
* So you Want to Write, 1976
*101 Golden Rules for Successful Fiction, 1984

reached Number 4 in Scottish Bestellers list!

Chilling murders in the heart of Edinburgh
(Foreword by Ian Rankin)

Join Alanna Knight on a chilling, unforgettable trip through the damp, shadowy secrets of Edinburgh's streets.

In 1923 Philip Murray went to the gallows for a brutal murder in Jamaica Street, thanks to a local prostitute turning King's evidence.

In the late 1970s two girls went missing from the World's End pub, never to be seen alive again ­ case unsolved.

In 1987, the body of a young woman was found strangled and dumped in a canal ­ case unsolved. These horrendous crimes have one thing in common...

they all happened in Edinburgh.

In centuries past the High Street ran with gore as clansmen battled to the death, and criminals were gruesomely hung, drawn and quartered at the Tolbooth. Lesser known, however, are the terrible crimes that have been committed in the last century.

In 1954 Donald Merrett walked free after cold-bloodedly murdering his mother, only to return in the 1970s under an assumed name and kill again.

A grim pattern followed by Donald Forbes who, acquitted of a terrible murder in 1958, returned to Edinburgh 40 years later to continue his rein of terror in another death.

Close and Deadly offers a fascinating selection of the most notorious and gruesome murders of the last century, committed within a mile radius of Edinburgh's famous Princes Street.

Take a glimpse at the chilling underbelly of Scotland's thriving capital as Alanna Knight scratches the civilised surface of the city, and reveals what lies beneath.

ISBN: 1 902927 39 7 Price: £9.99 (Black & White Publishing) Paperback
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Read the story ofAlanna Knight's research for this book

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So You Want To Write
Price £3 for one or £5 for the two booklets:
(signed copies, post free)
"So You Want To Write" and "101 Golden Rules For Successful Fiction"
Click here for details

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101 Golden Rules for Successful Fiction
Price £3 for one or £5 for the two booklets:
(signed copies, post free)
"So You Want To Write" and "101 Golden Rules For Successful Fiction"
Click here for details

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Burke and
Burke and Hare
Wrongly labelled grave robbers, or body-snatchers,
 they lured derelicts, the old and frail  into their house,
gave them whisky, smothered them and sold their bodies to Dr Knox.

16 corpses in 9 months, they were the first serial killers
only outnumbered by Dr Shipman in this century.

Burke and Hare were infamous suppliers of corpses to the
Edinburgh medical establishment in a reign of terror from 1827-9.
History remembers them as body snatchers,
but there is no proof that the pair ever robbed a grave;
instead they created fresh corpses by suffocating hand-picked victims.

This is just one of the myths exploded by this ‘bloody history’,
which features trial reports, confessions,
prison records and contemporaries’ accounts.
A rich cast of characters includes the pairs’ implicated lovers,
Helen and Margaret; Professor Knox who received the bodies;
and local victims from ‘Daft Jamie’ to ageing prostitute Mary Haldane.

New light is thrown on the bodies trade through
a recent find at the National Archives: a confession from John Bishop
– perhaps a copycat ‘burker’ – who with Thomas Williams
was executed for the murder of the ‘Italian boy’ in 1831.


• Introduction: The Dark Side of Glittering Edinburgh
• A Dangerous Foursome
• A Debt Paid in Blood
• Supply and Demand of Corpses
• Greed, Complacency and Betrayal
• Burke on the Anatomist’s Slab
• Further Reading, Acknowledgements and Index

Buke and HareNational Archives Crime Series
June 2007
ISBN-13: 978-1905615131


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