“Every newspaper, from the first line to the last, is nothing but a tissue of horrors. Wars, crimes, thefts, licentiousness, torture, crimes of princes, crimes of nations, crimes of ordinary individuals, an intoxicating brew of universal atrocity.

“And it is this disgusting aperitif that the civilized man takes with his morning meal. Everything in this world oozes crime: the newspaper, the street wall, and the human countenance.

“I cannot comprehend how an unsullied hand could touch a newspaper without a convulsion of disgust.”

–Charles Baudelaire, as quoted in the frontispiece of Murder City: The Bloody History of Chicago in the Twenties“>Murder City: The Bloody History of Chicago in the Twenties by Michael Lesy (Wisconsin Death Trip (Wisconsin)“>Wisconsin Death Trip), an entertainingly anachronistic series of profiles of early 20th century murders and murderers. Think Calvin Trillin’s Killings“>Killings for history junkies.