My true-crime book, The Darkest Glare: A True Story of Murder, Blackmail and Real Estate Greed in 1979 Los Angeles, comes out on March 9. In that spirit, I’m listing — cuz everyone adores lists as much as parfaits and stretchy pants — my favorite works in the genre.

In no particular order, they are:

1) The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America by Erik Larson
2) The Darkest Night: Two Sisters, a Brutal Murder, and the Los of Innocence in a Small Town by Ron Franscell
3) Black Dahlia Avenger: A Genius for Murder: The True Story by Steve Hodel
4) Twentynine Palms: A True Story of Murder, Marines, and the Mojave by Deanne Stillman
5) Shot in the Heart by Mikal Gilmore
6) In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
7) Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil: A Savannah Story by John Berendt.

To make the cut, a true-crime book can’t just be a surgical recitation of blood, facts, police investigations, and courtroom wrangling. They have to be sharply written and sociological in viewpoints, with unexpected heroics and a sociologists’ eye for cultures that foster good and evil.