143 – Alice Slater & Bookish Murder Vibes

We are paying tribute to the best of us this week. The booksellers. Keepers of the flame, beacons in the night, purveyors of meaning in a cold, dark universe … usually.

Alice Slater used to be a member of that celebrated guild, now she’s written about the light and dark side of the trade in her debut smash, Death of a Bookseller. It pulls back the curtain on an industry we all care deeply about, to reveal the obsession, madness and … murder(?) behind the chai lattes and instagram posts.

In this conversation we cover a lot of ground… from the problems inherent in True Crime, book-fetishization, and the weird empathy we feel for serial killers’ pets. Plus, I get to talk about my favourite things (see: everything mentioned so far) with someone who genuinely once worked in my local bookshop.

This was a blast.

Death of a Bookseller was published on April 25th by Hodder and Scarlet

Other books mentioned:

  • Savage Appetites: True Stories of Women, Crime and Obsession (2019), by Rachel Monroe
  • The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper (2019), by Hallie Rubenhold
  • You (2014), by Caroline Kepnes
  • Gone Girl (2012), by Gillian Flynn
  • The Last House on Needless Street (2021), by Catriona Ward
  • The Sluts (2004), by Dennis Cooper
  • Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke (2021), by Eric LaRocca
  • Echo (2022), by Thomas Olde Heuvelt 

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