In 1924, University of Chicago students Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb were young, rich, and looking for a thrill. The crime that came next--the brutal, cold-blood murder of 14-year-old Bobby Franks--would come to mesmerize the country, and as the decades have passed, the mythology surrounding the unlikely killers has continued to capture the interest of new generations, spawning numerous books, fictionalizations, and dramatizations. The outgrowth of an exhibit she curated at Northwestern in 2009 called "The Murder That Wouldn't Die," store owner Nina Barrett's new book about the case has been nearly 10 years in the making. In The Leopold and Loeb Files: An Intimate Look at One of America's Most Infamous Crimes, Nina returns to the primary sources--confessions, interrogation transcripts, psychological reports, and more, to tell the story as it originally unfolded and explore the questions that continue to fascinate--issues of morality, sanity, sexuality, religious assimilation, parental grief and responsibility, remorse, and the use of the death penalty. This comprehensive, ephemera-driven history allows the reader to act as a fly on the wall and speaks powerfully to the unsolved mysteries of this unique crime, in which the guilt of the perpetrators was always unambiguous, but almost everything else is open to interpretation.
We invite you to join us for the official book launch of The Leopold and Loeb Files at Bookends & Beginnings, including a talk by Nina and some celebratory refreshments. No tickets are required, but we'd really appreciate an RSVP to the store at email@example.com so we can gauge attendance. And if you want to pre-order online or by calling us at 224-999-7722, we'll have the book ready for pick-up when you get to the signing--no standing in line!