The Prince of Paradise: The True Story of a Hotel Heir, His Seductive Wife, and a Ruthless Murder

John Glatt, Author
John Glatt. St. Martin’s, $26.99 (448p) ISBN 978-1-250-03572-1
Reviewed on: 02/11/2013
Release date: 04/16/2013
Mass Market Paperbound - 447 pages - 978-0-312-54920-6
Open Ebook - 448 pages - 978-1-250-03573-8
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From the provocative opening sentence (“When retired police chief James Scarberry heard in July 2009 that Ben Novack Jr. had been brutally murdered, with his eyes gouged out, he was not surprised.”), true-crime veteran Glatt (Love Her to Death) grabs the reader’s attention. With a perfect amount of detail, he traces the sad life of Novack—whose father, Ben Sr., founded Miami Beach’s legendary Fountainebleau Hotel—from an unhappy childhood to his death in 2009 at the age of 53. This is no whodunit—the path that ended with Novack’s savage slaying in a Hilton in Rye, N.Y., was a long one, and he wasn’t the only victim; just months before, Novack’s wife, Narcy, a former stripper determined to take control of the family’s assets (including Novack’s warehouse of valuable Batman memorabilia), orchestrated the brutal killing of his mother, Bernice. In fact, it was a medical examiner’s incredible ruling that the severe head trauma sustained by Bernice was an accident that allowed Narcy to go free long enough to plan her husband’s murder. This gripping account is proof that truth can be stranger—and far more disturbing—than fiction. 8-page b&w photo insert. Agents: Jane Dystel and Miriam Goderich, Dystel & Goderich Literary Management. (Apr.)
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