Book Reviews of A Death in Belmont (P.S.)

A Death in Belmont (P.S.)
A Death in Belmont - P.S.
Author: Sebastian Junger
ISBN-13: 9780060742690
ISBN-10: 0060742690
Publication Date: 4/1/2007
Pages: 304
Rating:
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 40

3.6 stars, based on 40 ratings
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

27 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on
Helpful Score: 6
Don't miss this fantastic true crime story. This comes from Junger's own childhood and delves into how a crime impacts his family and relates to a much, much bigger crime spree circa 1960's in his own state of Massachusetts. Written in Junger's minute by minute action style, you can't put this book down. At once almost unbelievable and at the same time completely chilling.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 17 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I thought this would be more of a story, but it is very fact based.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 57 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
This is an interesting account of the author's family's very close brush with the "Boston Strangler," as well as the corresponding conviction of a black man for what could very likely have been one of the infamous stranglings.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 238 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I started reading this book, stopped and read the back cover and deicded I probably wouldn't like it since it is a true account of a real crime (not a fan of those types of books) Decided to give it my mandatory 50 pages - I'm glad I did. While I wouldn't say I'm enjoying the book --can you enjoy reading about a true murder?-- I am glad I decided to read it. Well written account that reads as though you were actually there. Recommended. A little graphic, but not too bad. (position of body and such)
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 184 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This book was just O.K. The true story of how when the author was a small child, a man came to work for them and his name was Al. Little did his mother know that this was the infamous Albert DeSalvo. There had allready been several women murdered, but when one woman was murdered the man who had worked for her was accused and put in prison. The book kind of bogged down with the trials of both Roy Clark and finally Albert DeSalvo. I have read a couple of Junger's books and really liked them, however I didn't think this one was up to his usual speed.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
It's definitely not as good as his prior book, A Perfect Storm. The story about how his family had Albert DeSalvo working in their house when one of the supposed Boston Strangler killings took place in town is fascinating. But, I had the strong feeling that the author didn't have enough for a full book with this story alone, so he added information about the 1960's that I didn't feel was needed.

All in all, I found it interesting, but it will appeal most to those who are very interested in the story surrounding the Boston Strangler. It leaves a lot of questions unanswered, so it is ultimately unfulfilling.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 330 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Though the reviews are quite mixed for this book, I actually enjoyed the book. It is rather refreshing when an author doesn't confuse his opinion with facts. Junger confesses that he himself doesn't know the truth and that the deeper he delves into the possibilities the more confused he became.

Junger a resident of Belmont, Massachusetts relives his own family's brush with infamy when a man that once worked in their home could very well have been the Boston Strangler.

As murders are taking place in the quiet suburb of Belmont the police are hard pressed for a suspect, that is until a black man is seen walking in the area of a recent murder. Roy Smith seems like the most likely candidate, he has a criminal record and was known to have worked in one of the victims homes. Easily convicted, the story seems to end there, that is until a man by the name of Albert DeSalvo enters the picture and the reader and author begin to question if the right man was convicted after all.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 98 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
My husband read this first and suggested it to me. It is amazing that Mr Junger's family had interaction with the Boston Strangler. That would really freak me out! Mr Junger is a wonderful writer- I have read his book War and seen Restrepo (my son was there with the Army and was wounded there). I will read anything that Mr Junger writes or watch anything he produces for TV.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 80 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Sebastian Junger starts this book of his search for the Boston Strangler in Junger's family
home near Boston when he was a child and his mama employed the main character which was later arrested as the Boston Strangler. The other main character is a poor black man and we are allowed to view how he is treated by the people in Massachusetts during this time period. In perfect Junger style he does a superb job developing the character of all the people involved and answers the reader's questions with his quality research. You become so involved you become part of the decision process. I enjoyed it and easily see why this timely book was such a great seller.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on
Helpful Score: 1
Well written and based on factual events, but a bit on the graphic side for my tastes.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 5 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Not Junger's best work.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on
This is a great non fiction acct. of a paticular time in the authors families life and how it affected him later.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 23 more book reviews
Well done crime book by author of The Perfect Storm.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 31 more book reviews
Part fact, part fiction account of the Boston Strangler story. I did feel there was a bit too much detail about the 1960's that weren't relevant to the story.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 52 more book reviews
A quick but far from easy read.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 67 more book reviews
Interesting subject not very interestingly told, I thought.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 49 more book reviews
This book was written by the same man who wrote The Perfect Storm so I was expecting a great read that would hold my interest. I am from New England and remember being very frightened of "The Boston Strangler" as I walked to and from school in the early 60s. Unfortunately the book lost my interest after the beginning chapter when the author told his story of his father hiring a handy man to help with some remodeling at their home. The handy man turned out to be Albert DeSalvo.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 69 more book reviews
interesting account of the strangler and the author's mother's brush with the strangler
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 92 more book reviews
I enjoyed the first chapter of this book and then it lost me. It was just too dry and officious for my taste.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 63 more book reviews
Great book. He's a super writer and researcher.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 410 more book reviews
A satisying, non-fiction account of the Boston Strangler, as well as a man who was falsely imprisoned for one of the the Strangler's murders. It also relates a thumbnail history of the times, including the civil rights movement and the death of JFK.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 51 more book reviews
A well researched review of the familiar Boston Strangler story, but with a different angle, that of another murder that was not attributed to him, but for which another man spent his life in jail, continually protesting his innocence.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on
It was the finding of an odd family photograph that initially led Sebastian Junger to investigate the murder which forms the basis of this extraordinary true story. Actually, it wasn't so much the photograph itself that was strange, but who was photographed with a one-year-old Sebastian and his thirty-four-year-old mother, Ellen. The story behind the taking of this photograph is actually the most horrifying revelation of all, as this information only further highlights just how close the Jungers came to experiencing their own personal tragedy on that particular day in the spring of 1963.

In 1963, residents of the city of Boston were being terrorized by a series of gruesome murders that soon became known as the 'Boston Stranglings'. However, the quiet suburb of Belmont had never experienced the same level of fear until the brutal murder of Bessie Goldberg - which happened only a few blocks from the Junger family home. While Bessie Goldberg's murder bore all the hallmarks of being committed by the Strangler, a young black man by the name of Roy Smith - who had just cleaned the victim's house that day - was arrested, tried, and convicted for her murder. And so, the Strangler continued his reign of terror.

Two years later, Albert DeSalvo - a handyman who was working at the Jungers' home on the day of the Belmont murder - confessed in lurid detail to being the Boston Strangler. Much to the horror of the Jungers, this competent, punctual, and unassuming young man had often spent time alone in their home, as well as with Sebastian and his mother. This disturbing revelation, and the chilling photograph that was taken to commemorate the building of a home studio, opens into a electrifying exploration of race and justice in America during the 1960s. This extraordinary narrative chronicles the multiple lives that collide - and are ultimately destroyed - in the vortex of one of the first and most controversial serial murder cases in America.

I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I found it to be very well-written and thought-provoking, if a little slow in certain parts. Although I felt that the story lost some of its momentum, it still picked up appreciably, and I would certainly give this book a strong A!
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Non-fiction account of the author's relationship to a serial killer-by the writer of The Perfect Storm. Not your average true-crime book.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 41 more book reviews
Very interesting book about rali life events that took place - quitee fascinating
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 239 more book reviews
In 1963, with the city of Boston already terrified by a series of savage crimes known as the Boston Stranglings, a murder occurred in the quiet suburb of Belmont, just a few blocks from the house of Sebastian Junger's family-a murder that seemed to fit exactly the pattern of the Strangler. Roy Smith, a black man who had cleaned the victim's house that day, was arrested, tried, and convicted, but the terror of the Strangler continued.
Two years later, Albert DeSalvo, a handyman who had been working at the Jungers' home on the day of the Belmont murder, and who had lften spent time there alone with Sebastian and his mother, confessed in lurid detail to being the Boston Strangler.
This is the point of entry to Junger's first book-length project since The Perfect Storm: a norrowly averted tragedy for Junger's family opens out into an electrifying exploration of race and justice in America. By turns exciting and subtle, the narrative chronicles three lives that collide-and are ultimately destroyed-in the vortex of one of the first and most controversial serial murder cases in America. The power of the story and the brilliance of Junger's reporting place this book on the short shelf of classics beside In Cold Blood.
reviewed A Death in Belmont (P.S.) on + 13 more book reviews
Based on actual events (I think).