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Tombs and Tomes is Congressional Cemetery’s book club.

We meet every other month on the second Tuesday in our historic Chapel, and we discuss primarily non-fiction books.

Our book selections have no rhyme and reason; however, our choices tend to stray towards the macabre, as is natural for a cemetery book club. Our very first meeting was in September 2013 and we chose to read Stiff, by Mary Roach.

It’s free to join, and mostly free to attend. For each in-person meeting, we simply ask that you bring either a $5 donation or a bit of food or wine to share with the group. Extra points for brownies!

This month:

Selection:

The Angel Makers: Arsenic, a Midwife, and Modern History’s Most Astonishing Murder Ring

by: Patti McCracken

The Angel Makers is a true-crime story like no other–a 1920s midwife who may have been the century’s most prolific killer leading a murder ring of women responsible for the deaths of at least 160 men.

The horror occurred in a rustic farming enclave in modern-day Hungary. To look at the unlikely lineup of murderesses–village wives, mothers, and daughters–was to come to the shocking realization that this could have happened anywhere, and to anyone. At the center of it all was a sharp-minded village midwife, a “smiling Buddha” known as Auntie Suzy, who distilled arsenic from flypaper and distributed it to the women of Nagyrév. “Why are you bothering with him?” Auntie Suzy would ask, as she produced an arsenic-filled vial from her apron pocket

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