Real-life criminalogist HANNS GROSS and fictional attorney/private investigator KARL WERTHEN are the heroes of a series of intricately plotted historical mysteries by author J. Sydney Jones set in early 20th century Vienna.
Often referred to as "the father of criminology," Doktor Hanns Gustav Adolf Gross (1847-1915) was an Austrian criminal jurist and examining magistrate who also taught at Chernivtsi University, Prague University and the University of Graz, and whose 1893 book Handbuch fûr Untersuchungsrichter, Polizeibeamte, Gendarmen (aka "The Handbook for Coroners, Police Officials, Military Policemen") is seen as a pivotal work in the study of criminalistics, demonstrating how the integration of various fields, such as psychology, photography and science, could be combined to investigate crime. In 1912, Gross founded the Institute of Criminalistics, as part of the University of Graz' Law School.
Meanwhile, Karl Werthen is a successful attorney, an ambitious and restless man bored to tears with civil law; a happily married and wealthy man who nonetheless feels he must hide his Jewish roots.
But Gross isn't the only real-life historical figure to pop into Karl's life in this series. Also along for the ride are such notables as the painter Gustav Klimt, conductor Gustav Mahler, sexologist Richard Freiherr von Krafft-Ebing, industrialist Karl Wittgenstein, Zionist founder Theodor Herzl, playright Arthur Schnitzler and even visiting American author Mark Twain.
Reespectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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