Little Slaughterhouse On the Prairie by Harold Schechter, Narrated by Steven Weber

Little Slaughterhouse On the Prairie shares the story of the Bender family, contemporaries of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s family in Kansas during the late 1800s. A family of serial killers operating an inn in the remote, seemingly endless fields and plains of Kansas, the Benders were responsible for an unknown number of missing persons.
Like something out of the fictional Splatter Western tales published by Death’s Head Press, the Benders were a monstrous family. Inviting guests into their inn for dinner and sleeping accommodations, those guests would frequently be greeted with a sledgehammer to the head before being further mutilated, robbed, and disposed of on their sprawling homestead. Men, women, and children alike fell victim to the predations of the Bender clan.
The mystery of where the Benders disappeared, and what might have happened to them as they evaded justice was the primary focus of this narrative. Unfortunately, Schechter doesn’t seem to have any answers, even after all of his research. Ultimately, we’re left with more questions as multiple theories are proposed, some more appealing than others.
Steven Weber’s narration is, again, fantastic. His delivery of these gruesome, historical details is satisfying and articulate.


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