We've all heard the gruesome nursery rhyme about Lizzie Borden's infamous murder of her parents. But there is much more to the tale than the poem. Hoffman's book is a fascinating examination of a crime and its aftermath, all the more so because the story is familiar to us all. This book is a historical encyclopedia that attempts to make sense of the confusing array of people who were part of the Lizzie Borden mystery. For the first time, all of those involved in any way with the case have been given a listing that includes his or her biography as well as an explanation of his or her connection to the murders. Each person — over 650 in all — is listed in alphabetical order. Yesterday in Old Fall River also features a subject index that will allow the reader to quickly find a list of all the policemen, lawyers, physicians, and others involved in the Lizzie Borden case.
Many aficionados complain that when they read books about the case, either facts and names are wrong or the author does not adequately identify the person being described. Yesterday in Old Fall River clears up much of this confusion and facilitates comprehension of this fascinating case.