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Empty Promises (Crime Files #7)

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  2,008 Ratings  ·  68 Reviews
In this unnerving collection drawn from her personal crime files, "America's best true-crime writer" (Kirkus Reviews) Ann Rule brilliantly dissects the convoluted love affairs that all too often end in violence.
Expertly analyzing a shocking, headline-making case, Rule unmasks the deadly motives inside a seemingly
ebook, 544 pages
Published March 9th 2001 by Pocket Books (first published January 1st 2001)
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(showing 1-30)
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SheriC (Portable Magic)
Ann Rule’s 7th crime files book is a little heavy on the hyperbole, but there’s an important theme running through these true crime stories that women should pay attention to. There is a pattern of behavior we should be wary of in our intimate relationships. It may be subtle at first, then escalate until we find ourselves trapped in a cycle of damage and self-destruction. It may begin as a masquerade of devotion and protectiveness. But the demands escalate. The control tightens. The isolation is ...more
Abel Reed
Dec 04, 2012 Abel Reed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Pretty good. I've read enough of her books to recognize a specific pattern. The people who've committed the heinous crimes depicted are, well, heinous. But Ann tends to depict the victims as being almost 'too' good. She also gives prodigious praise and goes into a lot of detail about investigators and police officers in the cases - without whom I guess she wouldn't have much of a career. I'm not dismissive of the investigators, but I have a friend who was a fire-fighter/ paramedic for many years ...more
Alexandra Kelly
Jul 31, 2009 Alexandra Kelly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really well written Ann Rule book. Enjoyed it a lot. Steve Sherer deserves to rot in prison for what he did to poor Jami. Most of the stories break your heart.
Nov 03, 2010 Jolie rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Angie crosby
I just don't like the crime file books as much as the full length books. There are some good stories in here, and some boring ones as well.
Not bad. I feel so sorry for the women in these books who fall victims of men who are so obviously wrong for them. I guess hindsight is 20/20, and it's easy to read about a crime and think you'd never fall for it or you'd never believe the criminal's lies, but I guess it's harder to see how someone really is when you're blinded by love. I wouldn't know -- I'm much too cynical for that! But this was a good collection, and one of the stories was about a crime against a gay man, which was a bit unu ...more
Dec 30, 2016 Janeandjerry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I found this book very interesting but disturbing at the same time. I just don't see how people can go out and kill others especially children but here shows just a few that did and I can say Washington state is one that must have a lot of these people in it for this is where all these happened
Jan 17, 2010 Becca rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was an amazingly well-written book. It was very dark at times, but what else can one expect from a book of true murder stories. The feature story completely pulled me in, and I also loved being able to get through the shorter stories in just one evening. I would highly recommend this :)
Michelle Muench
I dont usually read books like this i but really enjoyed it! This book really shows how complicated the mind of human beings really are. I will never understand how some people work no matter how hard i try. I found this book suspenful and exciting. I would deffinatly reccoment it.
Rupesh Goenka
An interesting collection of true crime cases with deep insight into the mind of a predator. FRIGHTFUL...
Aug 25, 2012 Vonnie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Always creepy to read Ann Rule. In another life I plan to be work in criminal justice.
Jun 15, 2010 Nick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: true-crime
Ann Rule is such a talented crime writer that I find it hard to get interested in other books after I've read something she wrote. Excellent collection of former cases.
Nov 20, 2009 Aileen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Eerie true murder stories that women in this century should be aware of. Very quick read that makes me want to take a break from dating.
Oct 13, 2008 Jennie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ann Rule is the best True Crime writer. If you enjoy this will enjoy all her books.
Aug 07, 2011 Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've always enjoyed Ann Rule's true crime stories - this book includes 10 tales from the northwest US and involves some pretty hair raising events...
Sep 14, 2011 Lea rated it really liked it
Loved I do all her books
Karen Thompson
Mar 28, 2010 Karen Thompson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ann Rule does it again - another great one!
May 20, 2017 Preet rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

as always, Anne Rule's books are well-written, exhaustively researched accounts of some shocking true crime cases - I'm so sad she passed away - she was the queen of this genre. "Empty Promises" will not disappoint fans of Ann Rule & true crime.
Katherine Addison
*"Empty Promises": Bellevue WA 1990: murder of Jami Hagel Sherer by her abusive stalker husband Steve
*"Bitter Lake": murder of woman and her toddler son by her stalker ex-boyfriend
*"Young Love": teenage boy threatens ex-girlfriend with bomb, but blows himself up
*"Love and Insurance": gay man murdered by his roommate (lover? close friend?) for a $500,000 insurance policy
*"The Gentler Sex": woman and her girlfriend murder her husband for the insurance money; another woman attempts to hire a hit ma
Mirjam Penning
Jan 22, 2014 Mirjam Penning rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: true-crime
Empty promises and other true cases is part seven of Ann Rule's crime files series. The binding factor of these cases is the victims involved trusted too much, too soon and they got betrayed and lied to or worse.

The main story with the same title as the book is about the life and disappearance of Jami Hagel Sharer. She ended up in a domestic violence marriage before she vanished. There is evidence foul play is involved.
This is also one of these stories that stuck with me. A good woman with pro
Mar 22, 2013 Marilyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Expertly analyzing a shocking, headline-making case, Rule unmasks the deadly motives inside a seemingly idyllic marriage: a beautiful young wife, a rising star in America's top-ranked computer corporation, and a prosperous husband, the scion of a family building business. With an adorable son and a gorgeous home, the couple seemed to have it all. But a furtive evil permeated their days and nights, draggin them into a murky world of drugs, sordid sex, and con operations. In this realm, one of th ...more
Feb 08, 2013 Teresa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ann Rule has made a name for herself, writing stories and novels about true crime. "Empty Promises" is one of her many collections of short stories about murderers and their motives - and in this case, the oft times empty promises used to lure a victim into a crime.

With her experience as both an author AND a policewoman in Washington state, Ann Rule is more than knowledgeable about the subjects of her writing, and her expertise shows yet again.

Unfortunately, given the limitations of the book's f
Laura Leilani
Jul 22, 2016 Laura Leilani rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
10 short true crime stories all revolving around love. Killing because your partner wants to break up, killing because you found someone better. A perfect marriage yet someone dies. All types of relationships, all types of people looking for love. All cautionary tales.
And leave it to Ann to dig this up: a note sent from the defense lawyers to the judge " Inasmuch as domestic violence is a pervasive societal illness and is common in the United States, it is not a crime ( but an) exercise of free
Nick Davies
Dec 08, 2012 Nick Davies rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first Ann Rule book I read, and I very much admired the honest, well-researched and not over-sentimental style. This discussed a number of well-known and lesser-known murder cases, as well as talking about Stockholm Syndrome, and made very interesting reading as a true-crime book. Particularly amusing, however, was the sentence (about the murderer Richard Farley) "Farley persisted, giving her gifts that were inappropriate for a casual acquaintance from the office - a mirror shaped like a hea ...more
Feb 08, 2015 Nancy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: true-crime
I wasn't as crazy about this collection as much as some of Ms. Rule's others. I believe that all of the stories in this edition are pretty elementary domestic violence, he hits, she dies type crimes. It also features the short "Stockholm Syndrome" which I'm sure I've read somewhere else before. Stockholm Syndrome is about a woman who comes back from a camping trip with the man who kidnapped and raped her, killed her husband and dog, and she was brainwashed into believing that her captor was the ...more
Dec 05, 2013 Judy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
One nice thing about Ann Rule is that she is comfortably predictable. She'll dish you up some True Crime Lite without gore or graphic details. You'll feel that it is well researched and that she was invested in the story. The bad thing about Ann Rule is that she is comfortably predictable. You'll read her story/ies and have a niggling suspicion that you've read it before. That said, an Ann Rule tale is just what I was looking for and she served it up well. Maybe I've read this set of stories bef ...more
While not the best of Ann Rule's books, Empty Promises is interesting and insightful. The stories are about love and passion and what happens when these become tainted with darkness. The running themes seems to be betrayal, obsession and innocence lost. One or two of the cases are perhaps lacking in emotion but that may be because they're older and there isn't as many details as the more recent cases.
All in all though, I'd recommend it to true crime and Ann Rule fans.
I'm not sure what prompted me to request this audiobook from the library - I guess something about the description intrigued me. The book chronicles several murders, or attempted murders, most of which took place 30 or more years ago in the Pacific Northwest. I felt the prose was a little over-wrought at times, but really the problem is that crime stories are depressing, especially when you're listening to one after another.

Martie Look
Jun 16, 2013 Martie Look rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes it is hard to start an Ann Rule book because I know what I am going to read is a true story of evil. It is hard to imagine people being so evil!! For some reason I have a fascination or a morbid curiosity with such evilness. Once I have started reading one of her books, it is hard to put it down. Part of me is saying in the back of my head - HaH Hah, you didn't get away with it, evil person!
Sep 19, 2012 Kathy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I actually hadn't read this one; just thought I did 'cause I've read so many of hers. I must say, it was nice to pick up a page-turner requiring so little thought after finishing the challenging Zhivago. I'm sticking with my original review, though (see below)! :)

Totally forgot that I'd read a whole slew of Ann Rule books several years back. Not all of 'em, but enough to realize that even though her stories are true, she's still basically a formulaic hack. Sorry, Ann!
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Ann Rule was a popular American true crime writer. Raised in a law enforcement and criminal justice system environment, she grew up wanting to work in law enforcement herself. She was a former Seattle Policewoman and was well educated in psychology and criminology.

She came to prominence with her first book, The Stranger Beside Me, about the Ted Bundy murders. At the time she started researching th
More about Ann Rule...

Other Books in the Series

Crime Files (1 - 10 of 17 books)
  • A Rose for Her Grave and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #1)
  • You Belong to Me and Other True Crime Cases (Crime Files, # 2)
  • A Fever in the Heart and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #3)
  • In the Name of Love and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #4)
  • The End of the Dream: The Golden Boy Who Never Grew Up (Crime Files, #5)
  • A Rage to Kill and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #6)
  • Last Dance, Last Chance and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #8)
  • Kiss Me, Kill Me and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #9)
  • Worth More Dead and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #10)
  • No Regrets and Other True Cases (Crime Files, #11)

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“. . .three percent of all males are deemed to be antisocial and without conscience, while only one percent of females seem to lack compassion for others. But the icy manipulations of that one percent are utterly fascinating. No one can be crueler than a woman without a conscience.” 56 likes
“He promised his lover a great deal, while all the time he was coldly planning one of the cruelest crimes I’ve ever written about.” 0 likes
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