What killed Charles II? Who thought he had discovered the perfect poison? Why did hatters go mad? And what made Victorian floral wallpaper dangerous? John Emsley combines history, chemistry, and true crime in this compelling account of murderous chemical elements. Through vividly told stories of innocent blunders, poisoners of various hues - cold, cunning, desperate - and deaths that remain a mystery, this book uncovers the dark side of the Periodic Table.