New York Times Bestseller: The “astonishing” true story of the notorious “black widow” who preyed on her husband and daughter and faked her own death (The Washington Post Book World).
Pretty, smart, and pampered, Audrey Marie Hilley grew up in a small Alabama town believing she was entitled to the best of everything. But marriage to her high school sweetheart, a cushy secretarial job, and motherhood were not enough to satisfy Marie, and she soon began to act out in troubling ways. Only when her husband, Frank, became sick with a mysterious illness, did it seem that she was ready to put someone else’s needs ahead of her own. The truth was far more disturbing.
Four years after Frank died, Marie’s daughter, Carol, began to experience debilitating stomach pains. The young woman was near death when the horrifying reality finally emerged: Marie had poisoned her husband with arsenic and was attempting to do the same to her daughter. It was the first in a series of shocking twists that exposed Marie Hilley as a cold-blooded chameleon capable of the most sinister of crimes. From Alabama to Florida to New Hampshire, her trail of death and deceit included multiple identities, a second marriage, a false kidnapping, a fake death, several dramatic escapes, and a final act of desperation that brought the whole sordid saga to an astonishing end.
A mesmerizing portrait of an American murderess with “a genius for deception,” Poisoned Blood is “one of the most riveting true-crime stories in memory” (Publishers Weekly).
About the author
Philip E. Ginsburg enjoyed several careers, sacrificing the advantages of continuity and seniority for the pleasures of new challenges and a variety of experience and learning. The common thread was writing, and each profession fed his curiosity about individual lives and how they fit together in a mosaic of politics and culture.
Ginsburg started writing before he was a teenager as a reporter for a short-lived summer camp newspaper. After college and a term in the Peace Corps, he worked as a newspaper reporter, a college professor teaching comparative and Chinese politics, and executive director of the New Hampshire Humanities Council. On a sabbatical from the Council, he turned what was intended to be a magazine article harking back to his journalism days into a book, Poisoned Blood, which became a New York Times bestseller. His subsequent career as a freelance writer produced histories, brochures and other materials—mostly for nonprofit organizations—and a second true crime work, The Shadow of Death. Since retiring as a writer, Ginsburg has worked as a volunteer advisor/mediator at the New Hampshire Consumer Protection Bureau and a court guardian for children in abuse and neglect cases. He also served in the New Hampshire House of Representatives.
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