The Twenty SS20 Issue

News: True Crime

By Jo Phillips

Books on crime are often categorised into two types, crime fiction and real accounts of crime. The latter have become increasingly popular over the past few years. There is something about the literary form that fascinates and draws the reader in. True crime is a literary genre which looks at crimes and the lives of those behind them. Our selection of books are a perfect example of this. These books detail the events that led up to the some of the biggest organised crimes in British history.

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Armed and Dangerous by Wensley Clarkson – In this newly released book, Clarkson details twelve of the biggest heists in Britain. These include the Great Train Robbery, the Securitas depot robbery in 2006 when over £53 million was stolen from the Securitas Cash Management in Kent. Other notable heists include the Brink-Mat’s robbery of 1983 and the Baker Street robbery of 1971. With direct conversations with those behind the crimes and photographic evidence Clarkson provides an intimate look into these crimes and the underground world of robbery. Available 14th July 2016.

The Great Train Robbery: Crime of the Century: The Definitive Account by Nick Russell-Pavier and Stewart Richards – Like Armed and Dangerous, this looks at The Great Train Robbery of 1963 but this is the focus of the book. A Post Office train from Glasgow on direction for London Euston station was hijacked by the now-infamous gang members who stole £2.6 million. Britain, at the time, had not seen anything like this. It shocked the public and stayed a firm fixture in the media outlets for years after. In this book, the authors explore the story behind the ‘Crime of the Century’ including the trial, imprisonment and escape from prison.

Gotcha!: The Untold Story of Britain’s Biggest Cash Robbery by Ronnie Knight, John Knight, Richard Wilton and Pete Sawyer – In 1983, around £6 million was stolen from Security Express in Shoreditch. This book compiles accounts from both sides; the Knight brothers and Richard Wilton, who was in charge of the case following the robbery.