The Search for Anne Perry: The Hidden Life of a Bestselling Crime Writer
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When Peter Jackson released Heavenly Creatures, based on a famous 1950s matricide committed by two teenage girls in an obsessive relationship, the movie launched his international career and forever changed the life of Anne Perry. Perry had achieved extraordinary success as a crime writer but was now publicly outed as one of the murderers, Juliet Hulme. A new light was cast, not only on her life but also on her novels, which feature gruesome and violent deaths and confront dark issues, including infanticide and incest.
For this biography, Joanne Drayton was given broad access to Anne Perry and her friends, relatives, colleagues, and archives. In a gripping narrative that alternates between the story of Juliet Hulme leading up to the murder and Anne’s life and writing career afterward, Drayton illuminates both parts, while drawing parallels between Perry’s own experiences and her characters and storylines. Drayton also gives a riveting account of the outing and Anne’s response. Anne Perry has sold twenty-six million books worldwide and published in fifteen different languages, yet she will now forever be known as a murderer who became a writer of murder stories.
Skyhorse Publishing, along with our Arcade, Good Books, Sports Publishing, and Yucca imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs. Our list includes biographies on well-known historical figures like Benjamin Franklin, Nelson Mandela, and Alexander Graham Bell, as well as villains from history, such as Heinrich Himmler, John Wayne Gacy, and O. J. Simpson. We have also published survivor stories of World War II, memoirs about overcoming adversity, first-hand tales of adventure, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.
Western Front was strewn with broken bodies; many of them would never be found.’ His mission is to track down the murderer of Major Howard Northrup, a hopelessly incompetent, tyrannical commander who sends men to their deaths just to satisfy his insatiable ego. When he is found shot through the head after a kangaroo court-martial by his own men, one or all must pay. Joseph has already sent his friend Sam Wetherall, guilty of another justified war killing, over the trenches into no man’s land
because they’ve have read what you’ve written.’22 Although Italy was not as big a market for Anne’s books as Germany, France or Spain, from her early days at St. Martin’s her Italian publisher Mondadori had enthusiastically represented her Pitt and Monk books. The experiences from her trip to Naples and Capri began to take shape as an idea for a novel set in Italy between the wars. On her return to Portmahomack, Anne had to adjust to the idea of a new but strategic incursion into her private
early and, as I waited nervously on the red sofa seat in MBA’s reception, I recalled Meg’s preparatory advice: ‘Anne’s been asked extensively—even obsessively—about the murder, and it really upsets her to talk about it, and she feels she’s said every last thing she has to say.’2 If I was going to dredge it all up again, she would probably leave the room. When Meg Davis arrived and introduced herself, she was warmer and less formal than I had imagined. She ushered me up the narrow staircase to
first treatments of tuberculous meningitis (TB) with streptomycin’.52 It was a ‘miracle’ treatment that might in time result in a complete eradication of the disease. In spite of these positive prospects, Juliet’s life at the Christchurch Sanatorium was bleak: Each morning I was woken up in this freezing open-air ward, where the water jugs had ice on top, to enormous pills and a needle in my backside. Sometimes they’d catch a nerve and you couldn’t walk all day.53 In a bed close to Juliet was
supporting evidence and almost every one of his contentions, including his conclusion that there was hereditary insanity in the family because the Riepers had had a blue baby and a Down’s Syndrome child. This was vigorously challenged: [Brown]: Do you not consider you were being unjust to the Riepers when you said on Tuesday: ‘I consider that background raises a query as to the stock from which she came.’ [Medlicott]: No. I don’t think so. [Brown:] Does it not mean that insanity is hereditary?