Deborah Blum’s account of the rash of poisonings in the beginning of the twentieth century is morbidly fascinating. Blum is scientific without being dull or uncomprehensible, and watching these early scientists tirelessly crusade against ignorance, negligence, and of course those scheming assasins is surprisingly interesting. Filled with anecdotes about murderous grandmothers and unkillable men, The Poisoner’s Handbook is a delightfully dangerous concoction.