By Nina Burleigh
The sexually violent homicide of twenty-one-year-old British pupil Meredith Kercher in Perugia, Italy, at the evening of November 1, 2007, turned a global sensation while certainly one of Kercher’s housemates, twenty-year-old Seattle local Amanda Knox, in addition to her Italian boyfriend and a stricken neighborhood guy Knox acknowledged she “vaguely” knew, used to be arrested and charged with the homicide. The deadly present of Beauty is award-winning writer and journalist Nina Burleigh’s spell binding literary research of the homicide, the debatable prosecution, the conviction and twenty-six-year sentence of Knox, the machinations of Italian justice, and the underground depravity and conflict of cultures in a single of principal -Italy’s such a lot liked cities.
while Perugia experts concluded that the homicide used to be a part of a dismal, twisted rite—a “sex game”—led by way of the yankee with an uncanny resemblance to Perugia’s Madonna, they unleashed a media frenzy from Rome to London to manhattan and Seattle. the tale drew a world cult captivated with “Foxy Knoxy,” honor scholar on a junior yr out of the country, who both awakened one morning right into a nightmare of superstition and misogyny—the darkish part of Italy—or participated in anything unspeakable.
The research starts off within the outdated stone cottage overlooking bucolic olive groves the place Kercher’s physique was once present in her locked bed room. It winds in the course of the shadowy, arched alleys of Perugia, a urban of artwork that also is a magnet for tens of millions of scholars who widespread its bars, golf equipment, and drug bazaar at the steps of the Duomo. It climaxes in an up-close account of Italy’s dysfunctional criminal method, because the trial slowly unfolds on the town’s Tribunale, and the prosecution’s thunderous ultimate entice God earlier than the quivering lady defendant resembles a scene from the Inquisition.
to bare what really occurred on that poor evening after Halloween, Nina Burleigh lived in Perugia, attended the trial, and corresponded with the incarcerated defendants. She additionally delved deeply into the historical past, secrets and techniques, and customs of Perugia, well known both for its Etruscan tunnels, early Christian paintings, medieval sorcerers, and pagan roots.
A New York Times bestseller, The deadly present of Beauty is the considerate, compelling exam of an everlasting secret, an old, storied position, and a disquieting side of Italian tradition: an obsession with woman eroticism. By including the genuine tale of Rudy Guede, it's also an acute window into the minds and personalities of the accused killers and of the conservative Italian Justice of the Peace striving to make feel of an inexplicable act of evil. yet at its center is an indelible portrait of Amanda Knox, the unusually childlike, enigmatic good looks, whose photogenic face grew to become the focus of overseas hypothesis concerning the shadow aspect of teenybopper and freedom.
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Additional info for The Fatal Gift of Beauty: The Trials of Amanda Knox
Knox’s leader legal professional Carlo Dalla Vedova’s assistant, Maria Del Grosso, a girlish thirty-five-year-old with attractive darkish hair pulled again right into a ponytail, gave a lively safety, happening for hours attempting to force domestic the inconsistencies within the case. on the finish she pointed to Amanda and implored the jury, “Is this the witch you’re going to burn? ” every one legal professional concluded his or her feedback with appeals to God, as is commonplace in Italian trials, yet relatively they have been speaking to six citizen jurors and one very human guy, the deceptively genial Woody Allen look-alike in the midst of the dais, pass judgement on Giancarlo Massei. “The pass judgement on isn't God,” Sollecito’s attorney Giulia Bongiorno proclaimed. “I wish to discuss with the legislation of the church ahead of you move in and judge the sentence,” Dalla Vedova concluded. “You desire a ethical sure bet to convict. within the Church there's a legislations of ethical walk in the park that has a religious that means, and it truly is appropriate with Italian legislations. you would like an ethical sure bet. on your soul, you wish a tranquillity, and purely then are you able to determine of judgment. ethical sure bet is own. a few have it, a few don’t. ” because the translator repeated his phrases to her in English, Amanda’s mom, Edda, used to be awash in tears. Then the civil legal professional Carlo Pacelli rose. He used to be a tall, brisk guy with a grey staff minimize, representing Patrick Lumumba, the Congolese bar proprietor Amanda had falsely accused of being within the homicide condo. Shouting, he reminded the jury of Amanda’s behavioral anomalies, the outrageous cartwheels on the police station, the kissing of her boyfriend whereas the corpse cooled, the blithe loss of crisis, the fairly woman duplicity on demonstrate earlier than them. “She hasn't ever proven real grief for the dying of Meredith. really, all on the contrary, she might kiss and cuddle joyfully along with her boyfriend. She is going out and buys horny undies at Bubble and talks approximately having mad intercourse with him. So who's Amanda Knox? ” he shrieked. “Is she the angelical Santa Maria Goretti that we see the following at the present time? Or is she the diabolical Luciferina, the explosive focus of intercourse, alcohol, and medication, soiled in her soul, simply as she is soiled at the outdoor? ” Prosecutor Giuliano Mignini received in a number of ultimate phrases: “I were watching the defendants throughout the trial, attempting to be certain if violent acts are in keeping with their characters. i've got had a graphologist examine their handwriting, and that guy proven that Amanda Knox is competitive, narcissistic, manipulative, transgressive, and has no empathy; she likes dominating humans, she doesn’t like humans to disagree along with her, and she’s very negligent total. Her habit within the police station proved this. As for Sollecito, the graphologist says his handwriting shows that he's someone who seeks approval from others. ” as though in depression, he burst out, “If those youngsters have been blameless, how might they take a seat right here and undergo hearing this? “Don’t put out of your mind the sufferer. A sufferer of sexual violence, a tender girl who could pass domestic and stopover at her mom on her birthday, who must have long gone again to London to seem after her mamma rather than being lifeless.