For centuries, it was an Asian custom to “sign” important documents by sealing the paper with a fingerprint. It wasn’t until the late 1880s that several researchers, almost simultaneously, thought of using these unique markings as a means of criminal identification. In 1896, Argentina’s police agency was the first to adopt fingerprinting as a means of identifying criminals.
The first use of fingerprints in literature is in Mark Twain’s memoir Life on the Mississippi (1883), notable mainly for its account of the author’s time on the river, but which also recounts parts of his later life and includes tall tales and stories allegedly told to him. Among these is an involved, melodramatic account of a murder in which the killer is identified by a thumbprint.
Twain’s novel Pudd’nhead Wilson, published in 1893, includes a courtroom drama that turns on fingerprint identification, one of the first uses of the technology in a novel.
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British author Ann Cleeves has an affinity for remote areas and how these isolated regions affect her characters.
“Anyone can play Snow White. It takes real talent to play the Wicked Witch.”
Mystery Scene MISCELLANY
FIRST USE OF FINGERPRINTS
6 NEW WRITERS TO WATCH
The newest entry in my Pittsburgh set series of thrillers is called Panic Attack. It’s the sixth book featuring Daniel Rinaldi, a psychologist and trauma expert who consults with the Pittsburgh Police.
During the pandemic, Ian Rankin stepped away from Rebus and into the shoes of friend and literary hero, the “Godfather of Tartan Noir” William McIlvanney.
Call it The Case of Life Imitating Art.
Thomas Walsh - The Unusual Suspect
Any paternity test on the sub-genre of police procedural will identify the DNA of Ed McBain and Lawrence Treat, as well as the 1948 movie The Naked City and the radio and TV series Dragnet…and of course Thomas Walsh.
In Razorblade Tears, two aging men—one Black, one white, both with criminal pasts—join forces to seek revenge for the murders of their gay sons. The themes of fathers and sons and toxic masculinity will be familar to fans of Cosby’s 2020 breakout Blacktop Wasteland.
VIPER'S NEST OF LIES
A slip of the tongue is a dangerous thing. Not only does it expose indiscretions, it also can lead to murder. The latter especially applies to me.
FLIPPING THE SCRIP
In 2011, tech industry veteran Doug Hirsch launched digital health care marketplace GoodRx with Scott Marlette and Trevor Bezdek. With 20 million people now using it every month to find affordable prescription medications, GoodRx has saved them $30 billion. Hirsch has continued to serve as co-CEO since taking the company public last year. We asked him how he’s kept it healthy through all the changes.
GLOVES ARE OFF IN KALEY DIVORCE
BIG Bang Theory alum Kaley Cuoco’s divorce is blowing up now that estranged hubby Karl Cook is fighting for everything that’s not nailed down, spies say!
TIM & FAITH GET THE LAST LAUGH
Renew vows 25 yrs after doubters said it would never last!
SCOTT DISICK: DESPERATE DAD
JEALOUS OF TRAVIS!
FTC ORDERS COMPANY TO QUIT SURVEILLANCE APP BUSINESS
The Federal Trade Commission has for the first time banned a company that makes so-called stalker were — software used to surreptitiously track a cellphone user’s activities and location — from continuing in the surveillance app business.
ORNAMENTS for Joy
EXPERIENCE ALL THE FUN AND MERRIMENT OF CHRISTMAS KNOWING YOU ARE HELPING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD.
BIDEN BLUNDER SPARK BLACKMAIL TERROR!
Fears Russians can squeeze prez with info from Hunter's THIRD lost laptop
The Big Leap
FIFTEEN MINUTES IN, this lively, endearing but unsentimental drama about the goings-on at a reality TV show called The Big Leap will have you jumping for joy. Here’s the pitch: Amateur dancers are selected by audition, then rehearse to perform a modernized Swan Lake while also letting cameras film them offstage and at home in Detroit. (The series, shot in Chicago, is inspired by an actual 2014 U.K. reality show, Big Ballet.) The underdogs who make the cut all hunger for some kind of second chance, while savvy executive producer Nick Blackburn (Scott Foley) just wants rating gold.
SCOTT AND OBRECHT'S WILD RIDE ON GH
Scott and Obrecht board a plane for her medical conference in St. Lucia, and while his mind is on the fun in the sun they’re poised to have, she’s focused on the bit of business she has to take care of first: killing Peter (for good this time).
The Walking Dead franchise’s big boss, Scott M. Gimple, on everything from the upcoming Rick Grimes films to the episode he keeps rewatching