Review of “Deadly Doses: A Writer’s Guide to Poisons” by Serita Deborah Stevens with Anne Klarner

Hello, I’ve returned.

With a review of a writing book, nonetheless!  This one:


Deadly Doses: a Writer’s Guide to Poisions

By Serita Deborah Stevens with Anne Klarner

It’s part of a series, (The Howdunit Series). but this is the only one I have looked at so far.  It functions more as an encyclopedia than as a readable ~book~, but everything that I’ve thought to look up so far has been inside it.  (Including caffeine!)

A range of deadly substances are covered, ranging from poisonous plants to classic poisons to things you probably have in your house.  You can search for the poison of your choice by symptoms, toxicity, or even by how long they take to start working.

All of this of course for purely writing purposes.  🙂

The entries themselves contain more information than I knew I wanted when I chose this book.  The various names a poison goes by, where it is and what it looks like, what part will kill, symptoms and time, how to treat it (if it can be treated), and additional notes the writers have.

I have found this book fascinating, and recently it has inspired a few murder mystery plot ideas that have been bouncing around in my head.  (Though, if I get around to getting them down in text with as busy as I’ve been, that would be a miracle.)

The detail and accuracy that went into this book is impressive, and actually kind of terrifying.  But I’m sure the “writer” part included in the title makes it okay for me to have … right?

I recommend this book to anyone that thinks they might ever need to write about a character getting poisoned, ever.  I hadn’t considered it yet to be honest, besides an allergy misunderstanding that was central to a plot of mine, but with this thing by my side when I write, who knows how the scene will evolve?  (Okay, I know how the scene will evolve … everyone else will live in mystery.)

But in all seriousness, this book is more helpful than the internet when trying to research poisons.  I don’t know about the rest of the writers out there, but sometimes I can be a little self conscious about my search history.

Because when I want to name characters, I go to baby naming websites and then get ads for baby food … or sometimes you just want to know the various ways in which you could kill off someone … in a book.

Uhh, anyhoo, this is my first book review.  I mean, I probably did some in school, but i don’t remember them at all.  I’ll probably get better at this in the future–and I hope I do.  For now, I hope you enjoyed my best effort! ❤

Thank you and have a lovely day!

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