My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - 1 day
Pages - 300
Publisher - Mirror Books
Blurb from Goodreads
Published in time for the 70th anniversary of one of the most dramatic trials in British criminal history.
DEATH OF AN ACTRESS is the second in the Cold Case Jury Collection, a unique series of true crime titles. Each case study tells the story of an unsolved crime, or one in which the verdict is open to doubt. Fresh evidence is presented and the reader is invited to deliver their own verdict.
October 1947. A luxury liner steams over the equator off the coast of West Africa and a beautiful actress disappears from her cabin. Suspicion falls on a dashing deck steward with a reputation for entering the cabins of female passengers. When the liner docks at Southampton, the steward is questioned by police. Protesting his innocence, he makes an astonishing admission that shocks everyone, and is charged with murder. His trial at the historic Great Hall in Winchester draws the world's media. He is found guilty and sentenced to hang.
But was the verdict sound?
Many believe not.
Now for the first time, Antony M. Brown has secured unprecedented access to the police file, enabling the definitive story to be told. Included in the file are original court exhibits, including a hairbrush with strands of the actress's red hair. Could a personal effect left behind in her cabin provide clues to how she might have died? Take your seat on the Cold Case Jury...
Blurb from Goodreads
So I do read and watch true crime stuff and was surprised I had never heard of this, apparently it made the news at the time it all happenes. In the 1940s an actress went missing on a luxury liner where she was travelling as a first class passenger. Brown investigates, adds his own thoughts amongst that which he reports. Included in the book is a website you can visit after reading the book to cast your vote on what you think actually happened.
Without giving spoilers, Brown includes all the information that is public so by search you can quickly find the court ruling for this case. Brown also includes unseen evidence, information and statements that hadn't previously been released and how he came to have access to them.
Brown gives accounts of what could have happened given the information available, statements made by passengers, facts and speculation, all of which he highlights which is which. It is an interesting case, no doubt about it and raises questions to why things processed or where omitted in the investigation. Photographs are included in the book, verbatim statements/accounts and descriptions of the actresses quarters as well as a layout of the boat. This is the second book by this author in the cold case files, I enjoyed the writing, the subject matter and him giving thoughts on all possibilities rather than only his opinion on what happened. I also like the fact you can visit the website after, whilst I expected it to be more than what is offered I did find it a good wee add on. The chapters are relatively short which I always like however in this case even more so because when you finish a chapter you can put the book down to read up on that part/facts then go back to it. 3.5/5 stars for me this time, I liked it, this is my first dance with this author, it won't be my last, I have already looked into the first book in the series to buy! If you have read it, what do you think actually happened, which theory do you thinks better?