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Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (book)

9 Ratings: 4.2
A book by John Berendt

John Berendt'sMidnight in the Garden of Good and Evilhas been heralded as a "lyrical work of nonfiction," and the book's extremely graceful prose depictions of some of Savannah, Georgia's most colorful eccentrics--remarkable characters … see full wiki

Author: John Berendt
Genre: History, Nonfiction
Publisher: Vintage
8 reviews about Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil...
review by . February 22
John Berendt’s Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil-a finalist for the 1995 Pulitzer Prize in the category of General Nonfiction-is unlike any true-crime book that I’ve come across. First, the work as a whole, is so polished it reads like an amazing work of American literature rather than a hard-nosed and gruff fact-book that one would normally expect with this kind of subject matter. The clarity of thought and execution of language is on a level that transcends the true-crime genre; …
review by . September 27, 2012
The movie adaption of Berendt's "nonfiction novel", as one back-cover reviewer terms it, is much better known than the original book.  And while I've not yet seen the movie, I can understand why, for both a positive and a negative reason.        Lets start with the positive.  The book reads like the treatment for an atmospheric and slow-moving movie, by turns mysterious, funny, and sexy.  New Yorker Berendt splits time between his native …
review by . September 13, 2011
This is a story about the city of Savannah, its people and history.      "Esquire" writer John Berendt is in Savannah, Georgia, to write a story about the extravagant holiday party that Jim Williams puts on each year.      Williams is an antique dealer and played a major role in the restoration of Savannah's historical district. He lives in the family home of songwriter, Johnny Mercer.      A number of colorful  characters …
review by . January 02, 2011
I'm having a difficult time deciding whether John Berendt set out to make mock of Savannah from the get-go or whether he was trying to write a sincere travelogue/murder story about a city that just happens to be filled to the brim with laughable oddities, eccentricities and a most perverse, inwardly directed, indeed almost incestuous sense of moral rectitude and appropriate behaviour.    Berendt certainly had no shortage of "characters" with which to people his oddball narrative …
Quick Tip by . January 02, 2011
While one might say that MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL is in the same genre - novelized true crime - that's where the resemblance to the likes of IN COLD BLOOD stops. The New York Times Book Review said it far better than I could. This "... might be the first true-crime book that makes the reader want to book a bed and breakfast for an extended weekend at the scene of the crime."
review by . May 14, 2005
As explained by the voodoo priestess Minerva, the magic of her craft is best practiced in a one-hour period between 11:30 PM and 12:30 PM called "dead time."    "The half hour before midnight is for doin' good," she explains. "The half hour after midnight is for doin' evil."    Something of the same dynamic occurs here, in John Berendt's examination of the mores and manners of a backwater Southern city. The book is divided into two parts, the first of which …
review by . February 09, 2005
Some books just have that "It" - charm, humor, style and all the quirks that help make a story memorable. Non-fiction has never been more fun - in fact I had to contiously had to remind myself that this is actually a true story! You wonder how this cast of characters could all exist in one city!    The actual story revolves around a murder and if or if not it was committed. The accuses was prosecuted and convicted several times before he is finally freed. However, the true star …
review by . May 06, 2004
MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL is a piece of nonfiction. However, it's not really a crime story, nor is it a straight biography/memoir. Instead, the book falls somewhere inbetween the two. The story revolves around the author's experiences living in Savannah, Georgia and meeting up with Jim Williams and his trial for murder that ended up being tried four different times over a period of eight years. The murder and the trials are kind of interesting and they are the threads that hold the …
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9 Ratings: +4.2
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