Stranger Than Fiction
Monthly true-crime columns by Dean Jobb
THIS MONTH’S COLUMN
by Dean Jobb
There seemed to be little doubt the jury would convict Roy Sloane, an inmate doing a ten-year stretch for auto theft, of hiding a weapon in his cell. Guards at New York State’s Sing Sing prison discovered the turning knob of a radiator valve that had been filed down and fashioned into a set of brass knuckles. And when the case went to trial in a White Plains courtroom in 1927, Sloane fired his court-appointed lawyer. Ignoring the adage that those acting as their own lawyer have a fool for a client, he declared he would conduct his own defense. READ MORE
Delusions of Grandeur: The Scandalous Crime of a Los Angeles Millionaire
The “Human Bomb”: John Thornburg and the Great Chanute Bank Robbery of 1939
Crimes of a Century (Ago)
Witness to an Execution
Murder in the Air? The Mysterious Death of Stunt Pilot B.H. DeLay
True Crime Stories
How Do You Say Murder? When a Dispute Over the Pronunciation of “Newfoundland” Turned Deadly
“I’ve Got a Bridge to Sell You”: The Con Artist Who Peddled the Brooklyn Bridge
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
The realms of crime fiction and true crime have many intersections. Fiction writers often draw on actual investigative techniques, police procedures, and even notorious crime cases in fashioning their stories, and, conversely, fictional sleuths and their methods have occasionally influenced the practices of actual police forces. In this way, the interests of readers of crime fiction and true crime naturally dovetail, yet until 2018 the latter field had never been represented in EQMM. In January of 2018, we launched a new department to remedy that omission. Entitled Stranger Than Fiction, and written by award-winning Canadian author and journalist Dean Jobb, the column was offered free, exclusively here on our website, exploring true crime through reviews of true-crime books and original articles on real-world crimes and criminals. The feature proved so popular online that it was incorporated into the magazine itself (both print and digital editions) as of May/June 2020. In each bimonthly issue of the magazine, readers will now find an original true crime article by Dean Jobb, with supplemental material, including documents and photos, right here on our website, under the Stranger Than Fiction banner. On alternate months (when there is no new issue of the magazine releasing), you’ll still find web-exclusive true crime book reviews by Dean Jobb right here.
A true-crime specialist with more than a half-dozen titles in print, Dean Jobb is the author of one the most notable true-crime works in recent years, Empire of Deception. The story of a master swindler in 1920s Chicago, the book won both the Crime Writers of Canada and Chicago Writers Association awards, and earned rave reviews. The New York Times Book Review called it “intoxicating and impressively researched.” Readers will also want to look for the upcoming Jobb title The Case of the Murderous Dr. Cream (Algonquin Books and HarperCollins Canada, 2021). In addition to pursuing his literary and journalistic careers, Dean Jobb teaches in the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction program at the University of King’s College in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
We hope you’ll continue to enjoy this newest of EQMM’s departments, which has joined the Jury Box and Blog Bytes in EQMM’s long tradition of cutting-edge reviewing and scholarship.
— Janet Hutchings, Editor in Chief