Thursday, January 21, 2016

Hannah Mary Tabbs and the Disembodied Torso by Kali Nicole Gross

Hannah Mary Tabbs and the Disembodied Torso by Kali Nicole GrossIn 1887, a man out for a walk in his neighborhood noticed some unusual packages. When he opened them up, he discovered a torso; no head, no limbs.  It stymied the Philadelphia police force. They couldn't tell even what race the torso was. And race factors into and is woven throughout this entire story. I wish there more about the wider world. The story just dives right in  with little build up or an explanation of what is going on in the wider world.
I got this as an ARC from NetGalley on a whim. I enjoy micro-histories and thought this might provide a nice look at race relations nearing the turn of the century. It was a disappointment to me that there wasn't more of a discussion there, it was mainly "whites were intimidated by the new freedoms black people enjoyed" which is true, but awfully brief. But that may not be an issue for readers who are more interested in the macabre story of a woman who killed in a manner that (according to popular culture at least) isn't usually a female purview.
Three stars
This book comes out Jan. 28, 2016

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