A Wild Surge of Guilty Passion by Ron Hansen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I picked this up because of my love for narrative true stories. I found the writing to be mediocre, sometimes so condensed and recited, it was like reading a fifth grade book report. Sometimes the narrative showed true imagination, characterization and I was able to get lost in it a time or two. The POV was confused at times. It was disappointing because of the way the story was setup, you knew exactly what was going to happen next (because you'd been told 25 pages before that it was going to happen). I assume this author wrote the story with the assumption that anyone who read it would already be familiar with the story. I think it would have been a better book if he had made the assumption that the reader had no idea of the true life story.
Overall, a fast read that wrapped up neatly. Any liberties taken by the author were well done and fit in with the characters portrayed by facts.
Synopsis: Based on a real case whose lurid details scandalized Americans in 1927 and sold millions of newspapers, acclaimed novelist Ron Hansen's latest work is a tour de force of erotic tension and looming violence.
Trapped in a loveless marriage, Ruth Snyder is a voluptuous, reckless, and altogether irresistible woman who wishes not only to escape her husband but that he die - and the sooner the better. No less miserable in his own tedious marriage is Judd Gray, a dapper corset-and-brassiere salesman who travels the Northeast peddling his wares. He meets Ruth in a Manhattan diner, and soon they are conducting a white-hot affair involving hotel rooms, secret letters, clandestine travels, and above all, Ruth's increasing insistence that Judd kill her husband. Could he do it? Would he?
What follows is a thrilling exposition of a murder plan, a police investigation, the lovers' attempt to escape prosecution, and a final reckoning for both of them that lays bare the horror and sorrow of what they have done.