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Son

3.97  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,979 Ratings  ·  81 Reviews
A classic from “the dean of true crime” (The Washington Post)—now with a new foreword—this 1983 masterpiece tells the incredible story of a Spokane, Washington serial rapist who was exposed as the handsome, privileged son of one of the city’s most elite families.

For more than two years, a rapist prowled the night streets of the homey, All-American city of Spokane, Washing
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Paperback, 544 pages
Published April 1st 1985 by Dell (first published 1983)
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Henning Bauer Westbye This is one of the simplest answers to find... Just head to Amazon and search for the book. If you couldn't find one, there were none. Crime Rant…moreThis is one of the simplest answers to find... Just head to Amazon and search for the book. If you couldn't find one, there were none. Crime Rant Books published a Kindlke version in September 2015; it's ASIN is B015NDMBAK.(less)
In Cold Blood by Truman CapoteHelter Skelter by Vincent BugliosiThe Devil in the White City by Erik LarsonThe Stranger Beside Me by Ann RuleTrue Hollywood Noir by Dina Di Mambro
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In Cold Blood by Truman CapoteHelter Skelter by Vincent BugliosiThe Stranger Beside Me by Ann RuleThe Devil in the White City by Erik LarsonTrue Hollywood Noir by Dina Di Mambro
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Ami E. Bowen
Oct 29, 2014 Ami E. Bowen marked it as to-read
I am not sure I want to read this book. It might be too triggering for my PTSD to read as his M.O. strikes way too close to the way I was attacked in Spokane, Wa in my bedroom late one night when I was around 11 years old between 1984 and 1985 by a fairly good-looking, fair-skinned white male in his thirties with light brown hair. My attacker wore a jean jacket. I can't remember what other clothing he wore. I know that Mr. Coe was released on bail for that year so it could have been him or someo ...more
Lady♥Belleza★✰
Spokane had a reputation as a old-fashioned town, "the All-American City". The newspapers downplayed violent crimes like rape. This thinking was described as inward and backward and such comments where shushed, after all Spokane was "a safe and pure place in an unsafe, impure world." That was before Fred and Ruth Coe, Spokane would never be the same.

After reading this book, all I can say is WOW. The Coe's redefine dysfunctional family. Jack Olsen covers everything in this book. Background of the
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Anna Janelle
There hasn't been a mother-son dynamic this disturbing since the fictional one portrayed in Psycho; however, unlike Norman Bates, Freddie Kevin Coe isn't figment of the page or silver screen. He's a real, living, breathing nightmare, who terrorized the city of Spokane, Washington in the 1980s, raping countless women joggers and bus passengers while maintaining a carefully crafted (and entirely untrue) persona for the benefit of his girlfriends and family. The rerelease of Jack Olsen's true crime ...more
Violet
Sep 24, 2008 Violet rated it liked it
Recommends it for: prophets
Recommended to Violet by: the library
No matter what problems you have with your mother-in-law, she is going to seem like Julie Andrews by the time you're through reading about the bejeweled harpy who rules this true-crime wonder. The "son" of the title is her slick, creepy offspring, Kevin "Fred" Coe, who's not only a real estate agent, he's a serial rapist! The best parts of this book are the inane nicknames Coe and his mother have for one another and the details about the book Coe himself wrote, supposedly a satirical comedy, abo ...more
The Behrg
Dec 05, 2015 The Behrg rated it really liked it
A glimpse into the mind of a psychopath? Sign me up.

Son tell the story of Frederick Harland Coe, a serial rapist and psychopath who haunted Spokane Washington in the 80's. The author takes his time in delivering a realistic account of not only the multiple occurrences but also in providing the backdrop of the time and town in which these crimes were committed. F.H. Coe is one of those characters so eccentric ("don't call me eccentric!") and psychotic that it's difficult to comprehend he's not f
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Linda Strong
Jul 18, 2015 Linda Strong rated it really liked it
This is a true crime novel about a serial rapist in the 1980s in Spokane, Washington. I don't normally read true crime, but I was taken by the cover art. I also have a personal interest as my youngest son and his family live in Spokane and have since about 2000. The author paints a much different Spokane as it was back then.

This is an older book ... first published in 1983. The author has since passed away. However, it's been re-published with a new Forward .. written by another author a lot of
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Mary Ronan Drew
Jun 28, 2011 Mary Ronan Drew rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-book
In 1980 there were 127 rapes in the city of Spokane. In 1978 there had been 49. Most of these crimes were being committed in the neighborhood where I now live and they bore certain similarities. The rapist was reported by many victims to have jammed his hand, covered with an oven mitt, into their mouth so that they couldn’t scream. Most of them were attacked while out running or after getting off a bus. Spokane was the victim of The South Hill Rapist.

In 1981 Spokane police arrested Kevin Coe, fr
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Della Scott
Aug 12, 2012 Della Scott rated it it was amazing
No need to recommend--I read it and it's one of my all-time favorite true-crime books. Though Kevin Coe never killed anybody(though since his attacks were escalating in violence, I I think that he might have if he had not been caught), he seemed similar to Ted Bundy to me in some ways. Both operated in Washington state, both were charming, smart, good looking and talented,and could have had great futures going straight, and both were almost certainly classic sociopaths. Coe had more advantages i ...more
Nikmaack
Nov 14, 2015 Nikmaack rated it it was amazing
I was in Mexico, and I'd run out of things to read. Amazon suggested this classic true crime book. While I want to like true crime, most of those books are trashy and sad. This book? Wow. A classic, for sure.

If I'd known going in that it was a book about a serial rapist, I probably would have said no thanks. But I'm glad I didn't know, as this book was stellar. Simply written, clear, concise, fact based, nothing fancy. Pure journalism.

All true crime books should be this cleanly written.
Rebecca McNutt
Incredibly creepy, I found myself thinking back to several low budget horror films while reading this! It was certainly well-written and detailed, but very disturbing and weird.
Samyann
Jul 11, 2016 Samyann rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Written by Jack Olsen, a long audiobook at close to twenty-three hours of listening, and narrated by Kevin Pierce. Son, originally published in 1983, is an accounting of a serial rapist in Spokane, WA in the late 1970s, early 1980s.

An update to the true crime of this story, information not included in the book. The saga of Fred Coe continued for a few years after the release of the book with appeals, convictions overturned, etc., but fortunately, enough stuck to this predator to keep him locked
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Alisi ☆ wants to read too many books ☆
Bizarre book. Bizarre man.

I can't believe he had any semblance of a life. It seemed like all he did was follow the bus to find women to rape. How did he live? How did he keep his friends?

It's so strange because, you know, if I rambled on about all the money I'm going to make doing this or that people would shout out about me living in a fantasy. Yet this man said this to everyone and they all believed it. It's just so weird, you know?

And then it turns out that he raped an humongous amount of w
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Michelle Bouchor
Apr 24, 2008 Michelle Bouchor rated it it was amazing
I was living in Spokane when this happened. I remember women getting escorted to their car from the grocery store, in broad daylight. The thing that really creeped me out when I was young is that they had red stamps throughout the city that said, "A woman was raped here."
Ola
Jun 27, 2015 Ola rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
this book was given to me for an honest review
this book talks about a case of rapist ,his crimes , his arrest , and his court.
with a lot of details, characters , and psychological analyzing jack Olsen tell us the story of a society who face a serial rapist , the reaction of people , the stigma against raped women ,and how people with gathered huge efforts could face a crisis .
Kevin Pierce’s performance was great ,his voice volume was very steady and calm ,yet it delivered the events in reality
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Dorrie
Jan 05, 2016 Dorrie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent Read!

I found myself staying up well into the night, unable to put this down. I just had to see what happened next. I enjoyed the way Olsen included writings from Coe, and others at the start of each chapter. Very good book, very well written
Jlsimon
Feb 03, 2016 Jlsimon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audible, true-crime
This book was very well researched, and very well written. It was a bit long, but not belabored as so many books that exceed 400 pages seem to be. The story itself is dark. True crime novels usually are dark, but this one went deeper into the dark side and gave quotes from Fredrick (Kevin) Coe that showed him to be deeply disturbed.

After reading this book I felt compelled to Google the whereabouts of Mr. Coe and verify that the system has not failed society in allowing this monster back onto th
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Donna
Jul 29, 2015 Donna rated it really liked it
All I can really say after reading this book is this: I looked him up on Wikipedia afterwards and discovered that he has served his full sentence and subsequently been moved to a facility that houses other people considered too dangerous to be allowed back into society, and I agree whole-heartedly with the decision.
Nancy
Nov 10, 2011 Nancy rated it liked it
It was well written and while it is based on fact, it is not dry or boring. I grew up near Spokane and was in college there while the South Hill Rapist was at large. It was interesting to get the background story on him and the weird upbringing by his looney tune mother. I have often told people about this case and the yellow cellophane he used to make his license plates look like vanity plates. One strange story and it makes this book a real page-turner!
The Grand World of Books
Oct 13, 2015 The Grand World of Books rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: True crime fans
Shelves: netgalley, 2015

I would like to thank Scribner and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book.

This is a reread for me, but it has been over a decade since I read it, so I had forgotten just how sick and twisted the Coe family is in this book. There were times I was horribly disgusted by the things I read in this book...but that is no different an experience from any other well-written true crime book that I have ever read.

Fred "Kevin" Coe and his parents Ruth and Gordon are really pieces of work. Probably
...more
Angela Andrewes
Aug 04, 2015 Angela Andrewes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is true crime at its utterly compelling best! I read 600 pages in 2 days! I couldn't believe it. It is written with veuve and compassion. The research is thorough and convincing. If you're not a true-crime fan, but you would like to pick up a compelling example of the genre, this is it. What is terrifying is that this book reads like something very contemporary - we still see some of the examples in the way the police and press talk about rape today. Readers will be shocked and horrified by ...more
Sabrina Rutter
May 18, 2009 Sabrina Rutter rated it it was amazing
Shelves: true-crime
I personally thought this was a bit graphic, but it's very scary.
Ciska
Oct 23, 2015 Ciska rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2015
*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in return for an honest review*

This book was originally released in 1984 but will be newly released with a special foreword.
It took me a whole week to read this book. Though with 600 pages it is a big one it was not the size that slowed me down. It was the story. Picking up Fred Coe in the end of 1978 when he is leaving his wife and starting a relationship with Gini. At this point there are other stories too that start and are c
...more
Charlene Lewis- Estornell
This is true crime at its best. I chose this book in audio format and listened while I worked out. Made the time fly! Jack Olsen is a superb crime author. Not too long ago I read a true crime book by Jerry Bledsoe. It was so sensational that it made me not want to keep reading. The case Bledsoe reviewed was interesting and could have easily held my interest, but the author's depiction of the individuals involved was so over the top, it ruined the book. Olsen, on the other hand, has a style that ...more
Charmaine Elliott
Dec 08, 2015 Charmaine Elliott rated it it was amazing
The family dynamics, interaction and influences in this book were exceptional - credible, rich and fascinating. The pressure cooker effect of a demanding, imperial, pretentious mother shines through. The way that Son's anti social behavior plays out is chilling. Great characterization and a compelling story with many unintended victims of a dysfunctional family. Rather too real. Would feel more comfortable if I could file this in my 'fiction' box. I can't...
Jenni Snider
Feb 14, 2016 Jenni Snider rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very detailed and very disturbing, but probably one of the best written True Crime novels I have read. Its a long book and goes into a lot of detail about the case, the victims, the perpetrator and all the players involved in his capture. One sick guy who needs to stay in prison for the rest of his life. Don't read it if you're squeamish or have a problem with language because its all in here.
Mary
Oct 08, 2015 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting story, weird people

I remember hearing that a mother had hired hit men to get the people who won the case against her rapist son. I never knew the story, which turns out to be filled with strange and fascinating characters. I'm glad I happened on this reprint so I could read about the case. It had the city of Spokane in turmoil for years.

Coe did awful things to so many women. I'm sure if they hadn't caught him when they did, he would have killed. His behavior at trial reads like that
...more
Jennifer
Oct 24, 2015 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
Psychopaths are fascinating because by exploring their psyche we explore what it means to be human. This is a harrowing account of a rapist who got away with 30+ rapes in the '80s because the technology just wasn't there to convict him or prove his guilt. Olsen does a great job getting to know the victims and even Kevin Coe, tangentially. Recommended to any true crime fans.
A.r.
Jan 20, 2016 A.r. rated it liked it
This is about a serial rapist. It's not usually what I read about (usually murder), however I found this a very interesting character study of a really crazy, horrible psycopath (Fred Coe). The writing is a bit long-winded, and I think the author has used a lot of artistic licence. I found the writing style not the best of Olsens.
Amber
Dec 04, 2015 Amber added it
True story of the South Hill rapist in Spokane, Washington n the early 80's. Since we have lived in Spokane, I've read a couple books about Fred Coe. This one was by far the best. Curious peek into the mind of a sexual psychopath. A tad upsetting to read...wouldn't recommend this to just anyone.
Heather
It's hard to give a book a fair shake when you hate absolutely every character in it. Well, aside from the victims, obviously. Every single one of the people profiled in this book baffle and/or disgust me. But I guess it's well written for a true crime indulgence.
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“There are very definite aspects to our culture pattern which give psychopaths encouragement. In America we put great value on the acquisition of material gain, prestige, power, personal ascendance, and the competitive massing of goods. —William Krasner, The Psychopath in Our Society, Neurotica II, 1948 Thursday” 0 likes
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