Hey Book Friends, Happy Sunday.
I finished reading “Last Call: A True Story of Love, Lust, and Murder in Queer New York” by Elon Green, and I’m floored.
It’s a true-crime story about a serial killer who targeted gay men in New York City during the 1990s. I’m not the biggest true-crime book reader, but when done right, it’s killer, pun intended.
Synopsis: During the 80s and 90s New York City was plagued with high murder rates and the AIDS epidemic, so when Queer men were “disappearing,” their cases were tossed aside by law enforcement (” it’s just part of the lifestyle” was the attitude). The Townhouse Bar was a common thread, as a place where the victims first encountered the murderer. Finally, police in Philadelphia, New Jersey, Westchester, and New York City realized they each had similar cases when discovering victims.
This book was intensely researched, with Green offering very thoughtful lead-ups for each of the victims of the Last Call Killer. For me, those details provided dignity to those victims.
“Last Call” was a great read about Queer history, laws affecting the community, and how society as a whole failed to respond to them and their needs. If these victims were not members of the Queer community, would their cases have garnered more attention? I think so.
“Last Call” highlights how prejudice the criminal justice system was to members of the LGBTQ+ community. Also, it was a perfect example of how lax law enforcement can be during investigations of marginalized communities.
There’s so much this book offers, and I feel grateful for what some of the information I’ve learned.
I would’ve loved if the author included more information about the trial and final deliberation of Richard Rogers, but still a solid read nonetheless.