King of Poisons A History of ArsenicBy John Parascandola
For centuries, arsenic's image as a poison has been inextricably tied to images of foul play. Now, medical historian John Parascandola takes readers through the history of this deadly element in King of Poisons. From Dorothy Sayers to Gustave Flaubert, arsenic has long held a place in the literary realm as an instrument of murder and suicide. It was delightfully used as a source of comedy in the famous play Arsenic and Old Lace. But as Parascandola shows, arsenic has had a number of surprising real-world applications. For centuries, it was found in such common items as wallpaper, paint, cosmetics, and even candy, and its use in medical treatments was widespread. From murder to crime fiction, from industrial toxin to chemical warfare, arsenic remains a powerful force in modern life.