Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Journey Into Darkness” as Want to Read:
Journey Into Darkness
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Journey Into Darkness (Mindhunter #2)

4.06  ·  Rating Details ·  2,507 Ratings  ·  100 Reviews
In the #1 New York Times bestseller Mindhunter, John Douglas, who headed the FBI's elite Investigative Support Unit, told the story of his brilliant and terrifying career tracking down some of the most heinous criminals in history. Now, in Journey into Darkness, Douglas profiles vicious serial killers, rapists, and child molesters. He is straightforward, blunt, often irrev ...more
ebook, 400 pages
Published September 1st 1997 by Pocket Books (first published January 1st 1997)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Journey Into Darkness, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Journey Into Darkness

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jan 22, 2008 Nitsa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Makes you think twice about walking alone at night. Or ever. Contemplating a large investment in a barbed fence, a pit bull and a mote after reading about some of the heinous crimes he's profiled.
Heartbreaking and gripping. John Douglas recounts several horrific murder cases he helped investigate, focusing on the victims and their families. They're haunting stories, both in the impact of the killings on the families and then in the stress and grief accompanying the convoluted legal processes that sometimes followed, including a series of technical appeals, in a case cinched both by massive physical evidence and by a detailed confession, that had lasted - at the time of writing - more tha ...more
Mar 03, 2010 Shawna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
What I didn't like about this book was Douglas's tendancy to reference stories that he already explored in his first book. Like the offensive ploy he claims he used that got Richard Speck to finally speak to authorities. He also reiterated the medical condition that downed him during the Green River Killer investigation. (Way to go on that case man, you guys finally nailed him after what 20 years?)

Douglas did write about some interesting cases that I hadn't read about before, and the book held
Aug 08, 2008 Maureen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
There is no question that John Douglas was good at his job as a profiler at the FBI, and he helped develop a methodology for interviewing serial killers that has provided valuable data. That being said, I have a few points of contention. One is that there has been such an emphasis on serial killers, that everyone who murders someone is liable to be viewed in the same way. Most murderers kill people they know, and much of the time alcohol or illegal substances are involved, or mental illness, or ...more
Apr 22, 2007 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I've always been pretty intrigued by Serial Killers and the people who track them down. If there was a way to get a job tracking them without going through lower law enforcement and the possibility of being stuck in Robbery or Vice or another department I would have made that my career choice.

All told, this is a fascinating book... not for the faint of heart, some of the material is graphic and hard to read.

It is about as close to looking in the face of evil as most people would want to go.
Feb 25, 2010 April rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I skimmed most of this because the author can sort of go on and on but it was still interesting to a crime/FBI/profiling freak such as me. Plus I now see where Criminal Minds gets 99% of its storylines from!
Feb 15, 2010 Trudy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is interesting to see what makes criminals tick. I like to think I learned ways to protect myself and the people I care about. I choose not to be a victim.
Jul 23, 2008 Laurie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Don't read too much of these, you will start seeing these traits in the most unlikely places... and people...
May 26, 2009 Shad rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I liked Mindhunter better because the author stuck to what he knew and kept to a tighter structure. This work was less organized and was all over the map on subject matter and purpose.
Jun 05, 2016 Susan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Rather boring around the middle
Nayden Kostov
Dec 07, 2016 Nayden Kostov rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is an amazing read. I learned so much about deviant behaviour. Maybe a bit too much...
S Sean
Sep 18, 2012 S Sean rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Journey Into Darkness sort of reads like a B-sides compilation of leftovers from Mindhunter, which Douglas/Olshaker published just a couple years earlier. This is not necessarily a bad thing, since Mindhunter was such a groundbreaking and damned interesting book.

The first few chapters of the book are in the Mindhunter mold, with Douglas at times sharing a rapid-fire accounting of the interesting details from many of the serial criminal cases on which he consulted during his storied career, punct
Jan 03, 2015 Maria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Любите ли вы сериал Criminal Minds, так люблю его я? А я его, признаюсь, очень люблю.
Прекрасно снятый сериал, с замечательными актерами, да еще и про маньяков и серийных убийц! Прелесть!
Речь в нем идет о команде агентов ФБР- профайлеров, которые охотятся на серийных убийц, насильников и других мерзопакостных персонажей, пытаясь проникнуть в мысли убийцы, понять его действия и предугадать его последующие шаги.
Естественно, я не могла пройти мимо книги, написанной Джоном Дугласом - реальным проф
Sarra Lord
Rehash of much of the information from Mindhunter. Otherwise focused on crimes against children and victim's rights.
Being a devoted viewer or shows like CSI & Criminal Minds I thought this book would be interesting since it's written by one of the original Criminal Mind profilers for the FBI. Of course it was more hard to follow these crimes since you know from the start they are real cases. I did question whether I should let myself into that mind set or not. I did like how the author would go back & retrace where perhaps earlier efforts form law enforcement may have missed clues or signs on these cr ...more
Nov 21, 2013 Quin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
John Douglas and Mark Olshaker's Journey Into Darkness is a great book. The book does not really have a theme due to the fact that is is non-fiction. However, believe the point of the book is to give the reader insight into the mind of a criminal profiler. As a person who is very interested in serial killers and profiling, this is a must read in my mind. The authors use a style of writing that is very informative yet makes the reader feel like the authors are talking directly to them. Douglas us ...more
Sep 17, 2016 Sean rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Journey Into Darkness by John E. Douglas is a riveting view into the darkness our society can hide. As A parent myself, it feels as though it holds a heavier grasp than those that don't as a lot of the criminals he talks about did stuff to children. The brazen truths, the in-depth experience from the actual profiler that did these cases, to the relatedness one can feel as he's a family man too would merit this book a 5 stars in my opinion. What holds this at 4 stars is the last few chapters. Thi ...more
Dec 30, 2009 Danesh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
avid watchers of id discovery and ci network will want to read this book. the stories can get one on edge or push one towards paranoia given the sometimes random nature of the crimes, but the author does a good job of presenting the numbers as tools against this kind of thinking (one should focus more on the probability of a crime occurring and the type of victim/situation/etc.). i enjoyed the social psychological aspect that the author implemented, but it seemed superficial and chastising at ti ...more
Jan 18, 2016 Abby rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very interesting read for anyone interested in criminology or psychology. Douglas helped to pioneer the FBI's Behavioral Analysis Unit, whose members work to profile serial killers and kidnappers, among other criminals, in order to assist in the arrest and sentencing of these individuals. Douglas not only gives overviews of the many, many cases he has worked as part of that unit, but also adds a personal touch by including bits about his personal life and advice for those reading the b ...more
Robert Finnan
Feb 05, 2016 Robert Finnan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
John Douglas may or may not be a great profiler, he certainly seems to think he is and doesn't mind telling the reader so ad nauseum.
But whatever his merits as a profiler are, his ability to author a coherent, interesting book is nil.
He constantly loses focus and goes off on tangents completely irrelevant to the subject at hand.
Three long and boring chapters are devoted to one murder, that of a female Marine.
He goes into excruciating detail of her family's history in the most stultifying prose i
Rebecca Brae
Feb 26, 2013 Rebecca Brae rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in Forensic Behavior Profiling
Shelves: reference
I wanted to read a book about behavior profiling and this was a good one. The author's writing style was conversational, so it was a very easy read. Although the cases were older, I felt the author picked interesting ones and went step by step through his analysis process in a logical and well defined order. Each chapter goes through different kinds of crimes/criminals (except a few in the middle that deal exclusively with child predators and one dedicated to the the family of a victim). The aut ...more
As one famous quote states: “Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” But what if you choose to do so? Fight the monsters and take alook into the abyss of human mind.

Very intense and gripping book on real murder cases. And maybe the worst kind of killers - serial killers. How do they think? Do they have certain traits of character? Do they have some experiences in common? And how do people like Mr Douglas feel while hunti
Apr 12, 2014 Alice rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
An interesting book about how the role of criminal profilers has evolved and effected results in fighting violent crime in the United States, but ultimately this book falls flat of the high benchmark John Douglas has set in some of his other books, such as Mind Hunters. I got the distinct impression that despite the title of the book, the author was not clear about what he was trying to achieve in writing it. There were lengthy passages devoted to the author's personal opinions on dealing with t ...more
Jan 21, 2014 Michelle rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed starting out with this book, but was quickly bored by the minutiae of each case. If I want that, I can read the full-length paperback on the crime. The authors know their stuff, but the insights, traits, gems of knowledge and other elements that would have enhanced my understanding and enjoyment of murder mysteries are almost completely buried under a ton of detail. It's like listening to that exciting story about the war that your grandpa tells, except you can't get him back on track wh ...more
Sheila Myers
"Enjoy" is a word most people probably wouldn't use to describe how they felt about a book of this type, but it's how I feel. There's a lot of interesting information presented in "Journey Into Darkness" and, even though I've done a lot of research for my novels, there's a lot in the book that's new to me. Instead of focusing only on the crime and the criminal like a lot of true crime books, I liked the way John Douglas also discusses how criminal profiling started and how it's used, along with ...more
Jul 30, 2014 Kelly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
A long book but full of information on a range of different cases.
Became a bit tedious when detailed more of the 'how to protect' chapters, simply because it broke the flow of the book.
Felt slightly odd reading it, as if he was one if those authors taking advantage of his position to become famous with a book (or 2), though I'm sure this is not the case.
Greatly disliked the final chapter on O.J. Simpson case because of the 'if I had done it, he would have been find guilty'style. the what if w
Jun 14, 2014 Lina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was eye-opening book, even though it had some serious technical flaws. Those who say the stories were graphic are simply turning away from facts. These are real events and people are really murdered that way. It's not author's fault, he didn't invent them, that's how hideous some humans are. People better open their eyes and stop acting surprised when something horrible happens. Especially, people should pay careful attention to the fact that some of criminals are results of shitty parenting. ...more
Mar 07, 2008 Annette rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Serial Killers and those who love them
Recommended to Annette by: Matt
My husband gave me this to read when I was 3/4 crippled (right leg, left leg and dominate right hand all encased in various enclosures). I read the part about the married Canadian couple who lured young girls into their home and kept them and raped them/tortured them until they had their fill and then killed them.

I had nightmares for about 3 days straight and thought a serial killer would see me in my walker on the stoop, follow me inside and pull a Kathy Bates/Misery on me. Scared the crap out
Kara Hunter
Feb 09, 2015 Kara Hunter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read and great perspectives

For anyone interested in criminal investigation and criminal profiling this is a great read. Douglas really takes you on a journey into the FBI profiling from its very early days to current. How could it have helped in previous cases, why it was or wasn't the persecuted felons etc. He also offers parents the tools needed to empower young children who can be victims of violent and/or sexual crimes. I learned quite more than I expected and it was a very enter
Finished this on the anniversary of the murder of Kitty Genovese. That seems fitting. I picked this one up because I found out the authors discussed Ron Bailey, a local serial killer. But there is so very much more in here. I came away understanding better how the experts read and interpret crime scenes and I learned about a number of other books I want to seek out. I can warmly recommend this one, although it's far from a smiley read.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Dark Dreams: Sexual Violence, Homicide And The Criminal Mind
  • I Have Lived in the Monster: Inside the Minds of the World's Most Notorious Serial Killers
  • The Evil That Men Do: FBI Profiler Roy Hazelwood's Journey into the Minds of Serial Killers
  • The Unknown Darkness: Profiling the Predators Among Us
  • Inside the Criminal Mind
  • Signature Killers
  • Bones: A Forensic Detective's Casebook
  • The Casebook of Forensic Detection: How Science Solved 100 of the World's Most Baffling Crimes
  • Dead Reckoning: The New Science of Catching Killers
  • Guilty by Reason of Insanity: A Psychiatrist Explores the Minds of Killers
  • Killing for Sport: Inside the Minds of Serial Killers
  • Special Agent: My Life On the Front Lines as a Woman in the FBI
  • The Want-Ad Killer
  • Serial Murderers and Their Victims
  • True Stories of Law & Order: SVU
  • Zodiac Unmasked: The Identity of America's Most Elusive Serial Killer Revealed
  • The FBI
  • The Last Victim: A True-Life Journey into the Mind of the Serial Killer
John Edward Douglas is a former United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent, one of the first criminal profilers, and criminal psychology author. He also wrote four horror novels in the mid 1990s.

More about John E. Douglas...

Other Books in the Series

Mindhunter (2 books)
  • Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit

Share This Book

“There are certain crimes that are simply too cruel, too sadistic, too hideous to be forgiven.” 20 likes
“When rehabilitation works, there is no question that it is the best and most productive use of the correctional system. It stands to reason: if we can take a bad guy and turn him into a good guy and then let him out, then that’s one fewer bad guy to harm us. . . .

Where I do not think there is much hope. . .is when we deal with serial killers and sexual predators, the people I have spent most of my career hunting and studying. These people do what they do. . .because it feels good, because they want to, because it gives
them satisfaction. You can certainly make the argument, and I will agree with you, that many of them are compensating for bad jobs, poor self-image, mistreatment by parents, any number of things. But that doesn’t mean we’re going to be able to rehabilitate them.”
More quotes…