Jonathan Oates is an accredited historian and Archivist for the London Borough of Ealing. He also has an interesting sideline in murder. In the nicest possible way.
John Reginald Halliday Christie.
Last year he published the first dedicated biography of the serial killer John Reginald Halliday Christie. The paperback edition was published early this year. Currently he has no fewer than 3 books in the pipeline: transcriptions of the Duke of Cumberland’s correspondence for 1745-1748 to be published in 2015; A Concise History Of Ealing; and a biography of the serial killer John George Haigh.
If you are not familiar with Haigh, you will find an excellent documentary about the man known as the acid bath murderer on YouTube.
The biography by Dr Oates, when it is published, is likely to go into incredible detail, certainly if his book on Christie is anything to go by. If you are not familiar with Christie either, you will likewise find documentary material on YouTube, but most such material whether on video or paper peddles the line that Christie was also responsible for the murder of Beryl Evans and her baby daughter. Today, that is the perceived wisdom but many people who have studied the evidence agree with Dr Oates that it is not the case. A review of John Christie Of Rillington Place...can be found on Amazon at this url:
From here you can link to other books by Dr Oates. Which brings us to A Concise History Of Ealing. The first question to ask is, why would anyone want to read a history of the London Borough of Ealing? Well, for one thing, it may not be Hollywood, but did you know there has been a film studio at Ealing for more than a hundred years? He has already published Ealing Through The Ages, which he co-wrote with Paul Lang, and if his other popular books are anything to go by, this one will probably contain a murder or two. Such is life.
[The above article was published originally December 26, 2013. The archived version of the original article can be found here].
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