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Mindhunter #1

Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit

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He has hunted some of the most notorious and sadistic criminals of our time: The Trailside Killer in San Francisco, the Atlanta Child murderer. He has confronted, interviewed and researched dozens of serial killers and assassins, including Charles Manson, Richard Speck, John Wayne Gacy, and James Earl Ray - for a landmark study to understand their motives. To get inside their minds. He is Special Agent John Douglas, the model for law enforcement legend Jack Crawford in Thomas Harris's thrillers Red Dragon and The Silence of the Lambs, and the man who ushered in a new age in behavorial science and criminal profiling. Recently retired after twenty-five years of service, John Douglas can finally tell his unique and compelling story.

397 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published October 31, 1995

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About the author

John E. Douglas

44 books2,153 followers
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. -Wikipedia

During his twenty-five year career with the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit, a name he later changed to The Investigative Science Unit (Douglas & Olshaker, 1995), John Douglas became the leading expert on criminal personality profiling and the pioneer of modern criminal investigative analysis. Through his research with serial criminal’s, Douglas learned how criminals think and what makes them do the things that they do, and why. Douglas can determine many personal traits and habits of an offender just by examining the crime scene; it’s evidence and victimology (Douglas & Olshaker, 1995). Interviews John Douglas has conducted hundreds of interviews with some of the world’s most notorious serial offenders, which include: - Charles Manson, and three members of the Manson clan. - Sirhan Sirhan, the assassin of Robert F. Kennedy. - John Wayne Gacy, the serial killer that killed 33 people. - David Berkowitz, the “Son of Sam”. - James Earl Ray, assassin of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. - Ted Bundy - Unsuccessful assassins of Gerald Ford and George Wallace (Douglas & Olshaker, 1995). Captured In addition, Douglas’s profiles aided in numerous arrests of serial offenders, some of which include: - Wayne Williams, the .22 caliber killer. - Carlton Gary, the stalking strangler. - Robert Hanson, the Anchorage Alaska baker who would kidnap, hunt, then kill local prostitutes. These are just a few of the cases that John Douglas aided in throughout his twenty-five year career as a profiler with the Behavioral Science Unit, which he later renamed the Investigative Science Unit (Douglas & Olshaker, 1995). Contributions to Psychology Douglas and his colleagues outlined in an article that explained the goals of a serial offender in the September 1980 issue of the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin. They are as follows: - What leads a person to become a sexual offender and what are the early warning signals? - What serves to encourage or to inhibit the commission of his offense? - What types of responses or coping strategies, by an intended victim are successful with what type of sexual offender in avoiding victimization, and - What are the implications for his dangerousness, prognosis, disposition and mode of treatment (Douglas & Olshaker, 1995)?

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 4,516 reviews
Profile Image for Lightreads.
641 reviews525 followers
October 12, 2012
So John Douglas is great when he’s talking about serial rape and child murder, and then he’s intensely obnoxious when he’s talking about anything else. So I guess it’s a good thing he mostly talks about rape and murder?

And when I say “John Douglas,” by the way, I mean John Douglas or his co/ghost writer, because who knows who wrote what. All I know is when this book talks about crime, it’s focused and intelligent and compassionate. And when it’s talking about anything else – the FBI, his home life, whatever -- I want to go hide under something to get away from the whining and the score-settling and the endless, endless, endless ego-wanking. It’s amazing that a guy whose entire vocation revolves around reading personality from behavior can’t read what he’s putting out in his own damn books.

Oh, and he’s still incoherent about the death penalty, for anyone keeping score.

So basically he needs to talk only and ever about human cannibals and child murder, because that’s way less uncomfortable than anything else he says, let me tell you.
Profile Image for Kemper.
1,390 reviews6,819 followers
November 22, 2017
This review is going to be as much about comparing it to the new Netflix series as it is the book itself. You have been warned.

John Douglas was a FBI agent who spent most of his career working for its Behavioral Science Unit. Along with other agents Douglas interviewed a wide variety of violent offenders including such notorious figures as Charles Manson, Richard Speck, and David Berkowitz, and then he tried to apply what they learned to develop criminal profiles of active unsolved cases. If you’ve ever read the books of Thomas Harris like Red Dragon and The Silence of the Lambs or seen the movies or TV show based on them then you might be familiar with the character of Jack Crawford who was based on Douglas. Over the course of his career he worked on famous cases like the ‘80s Atlanta child murders and the Green River Strangler.

This is your basic true crime stuff written by a law enforcement professional. Douglas gives us his background as a fairly aimless youth who ended up as an FBI agent by pure chance and found that he had a taste and talent for digging into the history of criminals to see what made them tick. The book mixes his war stories of cases he worked along with a fair amount of bitching about the criminal justice system, and a little griping about he sometimes felt ill-treated by the FBI. He sprinkles his story with tidbits of his meetings with serial killers, and brags a fair amount about how accurate his profiles turned out to be for several cases he worked. In fact, you sometimes get the impression that the only reason that there are active killers who haven’t been caught was because someone failed to heed his advice.

In fairness, Douglas does spread a lot of credit around to his fellow agents and local cops he worked with over the years, and he goes out of his way to note that the agents of his department are essentially consultants who don’t catch criminals themselves. The guy did dedicate his professional life to studying the worst of the worst in the hopes of finding better ways to identify and catch them in the future. While that’s obviously a noble calling you do get a sense of smugness and self aggrandizement from him at times. You can tell that he gets a huge kick out of playing Sherlock Holmes and dropping predictions on people that turn out to be right, but there’s a notable absence of him ever being wrong about any of them other than minor discrepancies.

What’s most interesting about this book is how it was adapted into the a TV series. The first season of the show is about the early days of the Behavioral Science Unit when they were still coming up with the terminology and methodology they’d use to research and study violent offenders in prison. Douglas and fellow profiler Robert Ressler have been turned into fictionalized characters, but the killers and their crimes are historically accurate. Many of the scenes and stories are drawn from this book, but using created characters as the leads frees them up to add more drama as well as pick and choose their spots on the non-fiction bits.

So while Douglas certainly has had a colorful career and has many interesting things to say I found it a lot more satisfying as a TV show than a book.

Also, if you’re watching and liking Mindhunter be sure to check out Zodiac which producer/director David Fincher also did.
Profile Image for Johann (jobis89).
643 reviews4,263 followers
September 2, 2019
“Behavior reflects personality. The best indicator of future violence is past violence. To understand the "artist", you must study his "art". The crime must be evaluated in its totality. There is no substitute for experience, and if you want to understand the criminal mind, you must go directly to the source and learn to decipher what he tells you. And, above all: Why + How = Who.”

Special Agent John Douglas is the man who helped usher in a new age in behavioural science and criminal profiling. With 25 years of experience and having hunted some of the most notorious criminals of our time, Douglas has a unique insight into the minds of serial killers.

True crime is my thing. If someone can hold a conversation with me based on murder and serial killers, you are automatically my new best friend. So excitement was at an all-time high starting Mindhunter. I’m not one for binging TV shows, I usually like to prolong my enjoyment for as long as possible, but I just couldn’t help myself with Mindhunter on Netflix. The book had been on my wishlist for a while, but the show was the excuse I needed to finally get my hands on a copy. And the book really delivers!

There’s a lot of murder within these pages. A lot. And no details are spared. Douglas covers a range of different topics related to criminal profiling – whether it be his thoughts on why there aren’t really many female serial killers, or if such monsters can ever really truly be rehabilitated and let back into society. There isn’t really a distinct structure to the book, the first 100 pages are basically a background to his career and how he got to be at the forefront for the initiation of what is now known as the Behavioural Analysis Unit. I mean, I guess the rest of the book is semi-chronological, but he will often discuss similar crimes together.

This brings me to John Douglas himself. He is clearly a genius when it comes to his area, he knows what he’s doing, and I’m pretty sure there aren’t many who have a better insight into the minds of serial killers. However, he is a bit arrogant at times and I found myself rolling my eyes - “yeah John, you’re always right. Uh huh. If you had been involved they would have caught him sooner. Yep. You’re right.” Off the top of my head, I can’t think of any scenario in which Douglas admits he was wrong about something? I discussed this with Matthew and he said about how he read somewhere that often these kinds of people who spend a lot of time in the company of serial killers often begin to take on some of their traits – so perhaps this helps explain his arrogance. Or maybe you just gotta be like that in this line of work – I don’t know, but it was my nitpick for this book.

At the time of writing, BTK and the Unabomber, along with a few others, had yet to be caught, but my edition had a new introduction at the beginning wherein they discuss these arrests and any other relevant updates. So if you’re interested in reading Mindhunter, I’d suggest trying to find an edition with this introduction.

I’m actually surprised at how long it took me to read Mindhunter, I thought I’d just race through it, but it’s definitely the kind of book that you need to savour slowly. There’s a lot of detail and so much that I was trying to take in that I needed to really focus on what I was reading. Ultimately, it was worth it. I have a slight book hangover in that I miss ALL THE MURDERS *cries* but I guess I’ll just get my fix from podcasts for the foreseeable future. 4 stars from me! If you love true crime, this book is a must.
Profile Image for Carol.
322 reviews863 followers
April 3, 2019
If you’re a true crime reader in the US, Mindhunter is a must-read of greatest hits. Be forewarned, though, that Douglas is an almost unbearable horse’s a$$, lacking even the slightest self-awareness, and with a zeal for capitol punishment* (and arrogant dismissal of those who disagree with him) that twice came close to provoking me to throw Mindhunter across the room. Props to his (credited) ghost writer who no doubt toned down some of Douglas’ even more obnoxious takes.

Also note that the utterly fantastic Netflix series is a different experience from the book. I’ve seen it. It's can't-miss-tv. Read the book.

*The Capitol Punishment Rabbit Hole: I am editing this review to be substantially longer than it was in order to provide more context on my CP statement, because it's too important a topic to treat casually or ambiguously. My view on CP isn't relevant to my criticism. What I found offensive about Douglas' ranting on the topic is that he repeatedly insults and demeans anyone who has thoughtfully reached an opposing view from his. And, yes, I would be equally offended if he held the opposing view and was similarly insulting and demeaning to death penalty proponents.

He first describes a Road to Damascus experience with himself, Douglas, in the role of God, converting the previously-labeled "liberal" Scott Glenn, an actor he met while consulting on the Silence of the Lambs film, from death penalty opponent to proponent by spending 30 minutes detailing a series of appalling criminal behaviors to educate Glenn on the bad acts bad guys commit. As if a grown American man in 1995 or so wasn't aware of the crimes committed by Charles Manson, Ted Bundy and others, and as if anecdotal details of specific acts of brutality alone answer the pre-eminent moral, public policy question of our time. Douglas' lip curl rises from the pages later again as he uses the statements of a pair of survivors of an attack - where the husband shot and killed the perpetrator during the event, so no trial occurred and no penalty was ever imposed by a jury -- to support his position, bolstered with a victims-first-and-only mentality. But to double-down on the belief that anyone who opposes the death penalty does so not because of moral repugnance for the death penalty or the overwhelming data of the racial and geographic arbitrariness of the federal death penalty in practice in the US, or even because it causes countries with whom we have extradition treaties to decline to extradite bad guys to the US for trial if their crimes could be subject to the death penalty, but because he or she isn't aware of the details of rape, torture, sodomy, kidnapping, intentional infliction of pain and agony, etc. committed by these perpetrators against children as well as adults? That's a belief unsupported by any data and it defies common sense.

The childish need to insult and demean everyone on the other side of complex, moral issues simply has no defense and is the crutch of the thoughtless. Hence, I found Douglas' approach to CP to be flag-worthy for other readers that it's just part of the Douglas' schtick you have to accept as table stakes for the opportunity to read an otherwise highly-informative, well-written (by true crime standards) book. If it's going to ruin your enjoyment of Mindhunter, read something else. Hopefully, forewarned is forearmed.
April 19, 2019
Ok, this is pure wow. The fact that the author doesn't adopt the 'holier than thou stance' so common with law enforcement makes this an extremely enjoyable as well as worthwhile read.
In high school, I was already six foot two, which I used to my advantage. Talent-wise, we were a so-so team in a good league, and I knew it was up to the pitcher to try to be a field leader and set a winning tone. I had pretty good control for a high schooler, but I decided not to let the opposing batters know this. I wanted to appear reckless, not quite predictable, so the batters wouldn’t dig in at the plate. I wanted them to think that if they did, they risked being brushed back or even worse by this wild man sixty feet away.
Hempstead did have a good football team, for which I was a 188-pound defensive line man. Again, I realized the psychological aspect of the game was what could give us an edge. I figured I could take on the bigger guys if I grunted and groaned and generally acted like a nut. It didn’t take long before I got the rest of the linemen to behave the same way. Later, when I regularly worked on murder trials in which insanity was used as a defense, I already knew from my own experience that the mere fact that someone acts like a maniac does not necessarily mean he doesn’t know exactly what he’s doing.
In 1962, we were playing Wantagh High for the Thorpe Award, the trophy for the best high school football team on Long Island. They outweighed us by about forty pounds a man, and we knew chances were good we were going to get the crap knocked out of us before a full house. So before the game, we worked out a set of warm-up drills whose sole objective was to psych out and intimidate our opponents. We formed up in two lines with the first man in one line tackling—practically decking—the first man in the other line. This was accompanied by all the appropriate grunts and groans and shrieks of pain. We could see from the faces of the Wantagh players that we were having the intended effect. They must have been figuring, "If these jokers are stupid enough to do that to each other, God knows what they’ll do to us."
In fact, the entire episode was carefully choreographed. We prac ticed wres tling throws so we could appear to hit the ground hard, but without getting hurt. And when we got into the actual game, we kept up the general level of craziness to make it appear we’d only been let out of the asylum for this one afternoon and were going straight back as soon as the game was over. The contest was close all the way, but when the dust finally settled, we had won, 14-13, and captured the Thorpe Award for 1962.
We come to St. Rita’s Church together, only she goes in to see the priest by herself first. It reminds me of the police station back when I was in college in Montana, when they separated all of us to check our stories. I’m sure they’re planning the conversion strategy. When they finally call me in, the first thing I say is, "What do you two have in store for the Protestant kid?"
The priest is young and friendly, probably in his early thirties. He asks me these general questions, such as "What is love?" I’m trying to profile him, trying to figure out if there’s a particular right answer. These interviews are like the SATs; you’re never sure if you’ve prepared properly.
We get into birth control, how the kids are going to be raised, that sort of thing. I start asking him how he feels about being a priest—being celibate, not having his own family. The priest seems like a nice guy, but Pam has told me St. Rita’s is a strict, traditional church and he’s uncomfortable around me, maybe because I’m not Catholic; I’m not sure. I think he’s trying to break the ice when he asks me, "Where did you two meet?"
Whenever there has been stress in my life, I’ve always started joking around, trying to relieve the tension. Here’s my opportunity, I think, and I can’t resist it. I slip my chair closer to him. "Well, Father," I begin, "you know I’m an FBI agent. I don’t know if Pam told you her background."
All the while I’m talking I’m getting closer to him, locking in the eye contact I’d already learned to use in interrogations. I just don’t want him to look at Pam because I don’t know how she’s reacting. "We met at a place called Jim’s Garage, which is a topless go-go bar. Pam worked there as a dancer and was quite good. What really got my attention, though, was she was dancing with these tassels on each of her breasts, and she got them spinning in opposite directions. Take my word for it, it was really something to see."
Pam is deathly quiet, not knowing whether to say anything or not. The priest is listening in rapt attention.
"Anyway, Father, she got these tassels spinning in opposite directions with greater and greater velocity, when all of a sudden, one of them flew off into the audience. Everyone grabbed for it. I leaped up and caught it and brought it back to her, and here we are today."
His mouth is gaping open. I’ve got this guy totally believing me when I just break up and start laughing, just as I did for my phony junior high school book report. "You mean this isn’t true?" he asks. By this point Pam has broken up, too. We both just shake our heads. I don’t know whether the priest is relieved or disappointed.
Then there was the Japanese police officer who had dutifully asked one of the other cops the protocol for greeting instructors one holds in high regard. So every time I saw him in the hallway, he would smile, bow respectfully, and greet me with, "Fuck you, Mr. Douglas."
Rather than getting all complicated, I’d bow back, smile, and say, "Fuck you, too."
Profile Image for Maria Espadinha.
1,014 reviews364 followers
January 24, 2022
Os Monstros da Vida Real

Nós os humanos vimos geneticamente apetrechados com uma panóplia de sentimentos ditos negativos, que arruinam a paz alheia, bem como a do próprio que os pratica:
A raiva, a inveja, o ciúme, o ódio e seus acólitos são belicosos e tendem a ser mortais em casos extremos.

Porém, esse grupo de sentimentos malignos, coexiste com um outro constituído apenas por benignos:
O amor, a compaixão, a empatia, a compreensão e seus afins, são os bons que interagem com os maus numa luta intemporal, supervisionada por Sua Majestade, a incansável Rainha Consciência.

E enquanto os fiéis súbditos se submetem humildemente à autoridade da sua majestosa Líder, "reina a paz em Bagdad"...
Porém, se um dos sentimentos ditos maléficos assume uma força tal que abafa os restantes, a Consciência é destronada, e a liderança transmuta para o mau da fita.

Tem então início um reinado de perfídia criminosa, ao qual urge pôr termo com a maior celeridade!
Há que contratar um especialista para o efeito, um herói caçador de vilões, que no caso concreto, dá pelo nome de "criminal profiler".

Todos nós nos revelamos nas nossas acções! Expomo-nos em tudo o que concretizamos! A nossa personalidade está lá e não escapa a um olhar analítico atento.
A obra define o obreiro e o crime não é excepção!
E é absolutamente extraordinário constatar como uma análise minuciosa dum crime (e quanto a mim é esta a componente mais empolgante de toda a narrativa), induz um perfil detalhado do seu praticante:

É maníaco-depressivo? Suicida? Sádico?

Com quem coabita?

Como se relaciona com os outros?

Em que raça se inclui?

É alto? Baixo? Magro? Gordo?

Em que faixa etária se situa?


Ao responder a estas e outras questões, o "criminal profiler" cria um retrato quase fiel do sociopata, prestando um contributo inestimável na sua captura!

"Mindhunter" é uma leitura dura, chocante!...
Contém cenas cuja perfídia requintada superam muitas das retratadas nos thrillers mais macabros.
Os seus autores não são vampiros, zombies, nem lobisomens, mas são igualmente seres aberrantes — iníquos, perversos, brutais... são eles os Monstros da Vida Real!
Vade Retro!!!...
Profile Image for Maria Espadinha.
1,014 reviews364 followers
July 8, 2022
Think Like One and Get Them

What's that "thing" that thinks like a criminal, walks like a criminal, talks like a criminal, but doesn't (hopefully) act like a criminal ?




It's an FBI Criminal Profiler, what else?!... 😜


In a Nutshell:
Outside of a killer, a book is a great friend. Inside of a killer it’s too dark to read (unless, of course, you’ll bump into a match, and… BOOOOOMMMM💀💀💀 (Gosh!... These books bring out the worst in me 😜))

P.S.: As you probably noticed, the "walk like a criminal" and "talk like a criminal" were perfectly superfluous and irrelevant sentences, but they had to be there to make the guessing game a lil bit spicy and challenging 🤪
Profile Image for Wendy'sThoughts.
2,650 reviews3,233 followers
September 4, 2019
9/2/19-UPDATE-Woo Hoo Mindhunter's Second Season Happening Now on Netflix-9 Brand New Episodes!!!! New York Magazine has an interesting article about the Real Take on the Atlanta Murders-https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/mindh...
6/4/2019-UPDATE ‘Mindhunter’ Season 2: Charlize Theron Says August Debut, Plus Son of Sam Confirmed to Appear

Charlize Theron is one of the Executive Producers of Mindhunter and during an interview with Howard Stern, she revealed the second season of Mindhunter was returning on August 2019. Although Netflix has not confirmed any specific date, August 2019 seems to be pretty solid with all of the news updates are using this information.

One of the main focuses will be the Atlanta child murders. There are rumors of other serial killers, however, this series has been very
cagy in not having any photos/articles/teasers out. The two articles below have a bit more information. Will be counting the months till August.
A Heads Up for the New Netflix Series, Mindhunter
* * * * * Spoiler Free-Update- Netflix picked up this series and hopefully will arrive in the first half of 2019.
I am always looking for something to catch my interest... and from the start Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris did it for me back in the day... I read the book and was stunned... and then the movie came out.

It captured the feel of the book for me in so many ways. The all-star cast of Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, and Scott Glen will forever in our minds be the first to talk about and show what a serial killer can be...

There was something about trying to get into the head of these types of killers... trying to see the why... even with all the horror surrounding them. It turns out, the prototype for Thomas Harris' FBI characters came from John E. Douglas.

But like everything in this life... there has to be a start to a process and in the Netflix series, Mindhunter based on this series of books by John E. Douglas, takes us back to the beginning... How the FBI came to discover and then research this new type of killing... nothing predictable, nothing the law enforcement had ever experienced before. It went against all the "Normal Predictors" and also against any of the ways society classified killers.

These Real men (John E. Douglas and Robert Ressler) were treading new and undiscovered territory... learning and making mistakes but also new insights to how these killers came about.

This series is not the flash/ bam, lots of excitement genre... It is a series that builds. The first episode is the setup and has much to lay out- the politics of the times, 1970's... the way the FBI behaves and what it expects from their people. You have the intro of the two men who take this journey into the unknown... one, Holden Ford played by Jonathan Goff , who is feeling his way and knows from his gut, there is something to this researching and talking to these criminals like people... to get them to reveal the whys of their crimes.

The other man is the FBI's Behavioral Guy, Bill Tench played by Holt McCallany, a veteran who goes out across the country and teaches police departments the Who, What, Where of this new concept of the mind and how it is not "Just People Born Bad".

As the series goes on we also learn more about their personal lives, the different decades and how the changes all around them impact everything. After a few entries, we met a Dr. Wendy Carr of Criminal Pathology, played oh, so well by Anna Torv of Fringe. She brings the added understanding of these men are on to something big... and works to develop a standard questionnaire for these killers.

And here is the kicker... we go with these men when they interview these convicted killers. They are real cases...like Ed Kempler and Richard Speck. These exchanges are chilling yet also make one wonder how much is manipulated by these killers and how much is real... just like the characters in this series.

So this is my little shout out to something that might interest you if you like these types of reads...TV Dramas, etc...It is not a fast-paced series... but the details are there, the times of the '70s are there (I can say they held pretty true, as I lived them as a young teen...) and the lure of wanting to see how each of these men survive what they are experiencing.

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Profile Image for Maria Espadinha.
1,014 reviews364 followers
August 29, 2022
How to be a Criminal Profiler

Imagine yourself thinking like a criminal!
The moment you'll start doing it, it's like grabbing the key of the safe where he hides all his secret, devilish plans.
You're gonna know where the hell he's gonna be, and what the f*** he's gonna do. And you could use that valuable information to get near enough to help him burn in his own flames, or, if you prefer a more succint, concise sentence, you'll have all it takes for a quite functional setup.

So the question is, how can you start thinking like a criminal, without being one?
And the answer is: you'll have to learn how to do it!

Who can teach you?

The surprising truth is that the first criminal profilers belong to fiction.
Therefore, I suggest you to start with the full collection of Auguste Dupin stories and later on, part to the legendary Sherlock Holmes.
Edgar Alan Poe and Sir Arthur Connan Doyle, were reality creators. Their stories were intelligent and logical enough to be real, and in that sense, valuable tools to professional criminal profilers.
So... after absorbing as much as you can from those masters of crime fiction, you'll have enough theoretical background to start your own investigations.
Good Luck! ...

By the way, if your middle surname happens to be Holmes, that may be an excellent plus to the process 😉

P.S. : What I just told you, was not a whole product of my imagination. In fact, those were the first steps of the author himself, as a criminal profiler. All the rest came by itself, guided by practice and glimpses of natural talent!...
Profile Image for Bel Rodrigues.
Author 2 books19.3k followers
October 30, 2017
Quando John está falando sobre criminologia e serial killers, ele fala de forma primorosa. Aborda assuntos e explana casos que resolveu enquanto trabalhava para o FBI, ou seja, o cara sabe do que tá falando. O meu problema com a narrativa começou quando ele precisava, em todo caso citado, falar do quão bom ele é (e de como ele mudou a história do FBI), srsly, qual a necessidade de afirmar e REAFIRMAR isso durante boa parte do livro? Qualquer pessoa, lendo o que ele estava escrevendo, notaria a grandiosidade do trabalho dele. Essa autopromoção cansou muito, o que me levou a arrastar a leitura por um tempo.
Segundo, eu não só discordo da opinião dele sobre jovens assassinos como também me admiro por uma pessoa que aparentemente entende tanto desse universo, pensar de forma tão sucinta e superficial: todos os assassinos são monstros por natureza. Como se não existisse uma sociedade doente ao redor deles, pais que os abandonaram, traumas passados, etc. Qualquer pessoa que trabalha com os chamados "delinquentes" sabe muito bem que são casos extremamente raros em que eles nascem assim. Eles merecem punição, sim, mas citar somente a ponta do iceberg me parece raso e um pouco amador. Tirando esses dois fatores, todo o resto do livro é muito, muito bom.
Profile Image for Francesc.
391 reviews193 followers
September 2, 2019
Autobiografía. Narra las peripecias de un agente del FBI experto en ciencia del comportamiento y en la elaboración de perfiles criminales.
Me ha gustado mucho conocer el mundo criminal y como se llega a la detención de los asesinos en serie a través del estudio de sus Crímenes.
Muy instructivo y, a ratos, fascinante. Siendo comprensible, el punto de vista está muy "americanizado", pero ha sido una lectura sorprendente.

Autobiography. It tells the adventures of an FBI agent expert in behavioral science and in the elaboration of criminal profiles.
I liked very much to know the criminal world and how the serial killers are arrested through the study of their crimes.
Very instructive and, at times, fascinating. Understandably, the point of view is very "Americanized", but it has been a surprising reading.
Profile Image for Maede.
275 reviews395 followers
November 18, 2021
شرلوک هولمز دیگه کیه؟

راحت‌ترین توصیف از نویسنده این کتاب و الهام‌بخش کاراکترهایی در سریال مایندهانتر و فیلم سکوت بره‌ها اینه که جان داگلاس شرلوک هلمز واقعی‌ایه. شخصیتی که انگار از لا به لای صفحات این داستان پلیسی قدیمی بیرون کشیده شده تا با نگاه کردن به صحنه جرم و شنیدن جزئیات، به پلیس بگه که باید دنبال یک مرد سفیدپوست سی و خورده‌ای ساله بگردند که لکنت داره و شغلش هم صنعتیه

البته که جان داگلاس با نبوغ شرلوکی به دنیا نیومده. دقت پیش‌بینی‌های این مأمور اف‌بی‌آی و تیمش به خاطر سال‌ها مطالعه و صحبت با بدترین نوع مجرمانه؛ قاتلان سریالی، متجاوزان و افرادی که خواندن جزئیات فانتزی‌های کثیفشون که به صحنه جرم تبدیل شده از روی کاغذ هم حال آدم رو به هم می‌زنه. داگلاس که مثل هر مأمور اف‌بی‌آی دیگری وارد سازمان میشه، کم‌کم علاقه خودش به تحلیل و آنالیز جرم و مجرم رو کشف می‌کنه و توسط افرادی که در نوع خودشون در این کار اولین و بهترین بودند تربیت میشه. واحد «علم رفتارشناسی» در اف‌بی‌آی متولد میشه تا بتونه به درک مجرمین و در نتیجه دستگیری سریع‌ترشون کمک کنه. البته که این واحد هم مثل هر چیز جدید دیگه‌ای دست کم گرفته می‌شه تا زمانی که کمک‌های بی‌نظیری به پلیس می‌کنه

زندگی داگلاس
اولین بخش جالب کتاب خواندن درباره مسیر جان داگلاس و شکل‌گیری این واحده. برام خیلی جالب بود که هیچ‌چیز در زندگی این فرد نشون نمی‌داده که قرار هست به جایی برسه و اتفاقاً به نظر میومده که آینده‌ی درخشانی نداره. اما در طول زندگیش بارها توسط آدم‌های مختلف «دیده شده» و مسیرش شکل گرفته. در دنیایی که انگار همه باید از بیست سالگی بدونن که راهشون چیه و به کجا دارن میرن، خواندن زندگی فردی به این موفقی که به مرور و با تلاش مسیرش رو پیدا کرده واقعا الهام‌بخشه

بخش بعدی که برای هر کسی که عاشق جرم و جرم‌شناسیه فوق‌العاده‌‌ست، بررسی جرم و جزئیات مصاحبه با بعضی از بزرگترین و مخوف‌ترین مجرمان قرن بیستم آمریکا مثل منسون و کمپر هست. چه مثل من که در مورد چندتاشون کتاب‌های کامل جدایی خوانده بودم باهاشون آشنایی داشته باشید و چه نداشته باشید، بررسی پرونده‌هاشون از این دید و گاهی از زبان خودشون تجربه‌ی متفاوتیه. خواندن اینکه کمپر چرا سر مادرش رو قطع کرده و باهاش رابطه داشته و یا اینکه اسپید چرا ناگهان تصمیم گرفته هشت پرستار رو به بدترین شکل بکشه، پنجره‌های جدیدی به روان انسان به روی آدم‌ باز می‌کنه

اما قسمتی از کتاب که فقط منحصر به خودشه، آنالیز جرم و حدس زدن پروفایل نسبتاً کاملی از مجرمه‌. شرح ‌تعدادی از پرونده‌های بیشماری که پلیس برای جان داگلاس و تیمش می‌آورده تا بتونه با دادن مشخصات مجرم اون‌ها رو به حل پرونده نزدیک کنه‌ در این بخش آورده شده. بعضی از این پرونده‌ها مثل قاتل رود سبز یا کودک‌کشی های آتلانتا بسیار معروف هستند و بعضی‌هاشون رو هم برای بار اول می‌خوندم. هربار از دقت پروفایلی که با کمترین اطلاعات از مجرم می‌داد شگفت‌زده می‌شدم، مخصوصاً اینکه با توضیحاتش روال فکریش رو هم توضیح می‌داد

کتاب با تجربه‌ی نزدیک به مرگ خود داگلاس شروع میشه. اتفاقی که نتیجه‌ی کار شبانه‌روزی و برخورد مداوم با کثیف‌ترین و هیولایی‌ترین جنبه‌ی ذات انسانه. روز و شب خیره شدن به عکس جسدهای مثله شده و گذاشتن خودش جای قربانی و مجرم برای درک بهتر جرم، بالاخره کار دستش میده و تا لبه‌ی گور می‌برتش. این بهای سنگین چنین کاریه. کاری که مهمه ولی زندگی خودت رو از بین می‌بره. این شرلوک هلمز واقعی هم در نهایت تنها می‌مونه و آسیب می‌بینه

شاید سریالی که از روی این کتاب اقتباس شده رو دیده باشید که باید بگم با کتاب اصلا قابل مقایسه نیست! کتاب انقدر پر جزئیات و کامله که سریال حتی با همه‌ی جلوه‌های بصریش هیچ شانسی جلوش نداره. البته که شخصیت جک کرافورد «سکوت بره‌ها» هم تا حد زیادی از داگلاس اقتباس شده و حتی بازیگرش چند ساعت با داگلاس در کوانتیکو مقر اف‌بی‌آی صحبت کرده تا دنیا رو کمی از چشم‌هاش ببینه (و خب داغون شده!)

بزرگترین تفاوت این کتاب با همه‌ی کتاب‌های مشابه‌اش اینه که بهت دیدی به درون ذهن این مجرمان و گذشته‌ی پر مشکلشون میده. کتابی که سعی می‌کنه به این سوال تاریخی جواب بده
انسان‌ها مجرم و قاتل به دنیا میان یا بهش تبدیل میشن؟
Nature or nurture?

Profile Image for ✨    jami   ✨.
660 reviews3,882 followers
Want to read
October 21, 2017
the mindhunter tv show on netflix has literally both made and ruined my life
i have so much uni work but all i can do is watch netflix

listen buzzfeed unsolves: true crime JUST ended and mindhunter comes into my life? its like the universe is enabling my true crime interests

naturally i have to further destroy my life and read the book
Profile Image for Steve Kemp.
197 reviews29 followers
June 29, 2013
John Douglas has one hell of an ego on him that is for sure ! He loves to take a lot of credit that is due a different person. Same goes for all of his other books. Usually some good stuff in his books ,but you have to wade through the ocean of bullshit to get to it.
Profile Image for Sara.
1,080 reviews359 followers
November 17, 2017
When I started sixth form college to begin my A levels I had this strange idea that psychology would be amazing, and I'd get to learn all about the criminal mind and my inner self. Funnily enough, after a week I realised it wasn't about this at all and I transferred to Geography instead (wise decision).

I discovered this book, like most people at the moment, via the Netflix show of the same name, which I loved. And this book was similar in that it gave me everything I hoped I'd get out of that class in sixth form. And more. It gives a broad insight into what makes a criminal behave the way they do, and how they'll behave after the crimes. As he describes himself, John Douglas is like a modern day Sherlock Holmes - taking minute details, and insignificant findings, to build a profile on what makes the mind tick. I was particularly compelled by the early sections with Ed Kempur, the differences between MO and signatures, and the sections on the Atlanta child killings and the use of profiling as part of the trial. Everyone has a stressor, and it got me thinking about my own personality in a way I've never done before. What were my stressors? What was my rock?

It wasn't a perfect book by any means. John Douglas is clearly a deeply intelligent, insightful man. When he's talking about serial killers and rapists. When the story diverges slightly, or he's discussing other areas, he comes across as a bit full of himself. It's also a little dated in its discussions of the BTK and Green River Killers. I would have loved an 'update' with some insight from the author since their captures.

Good solid read on an often disturbing topic that doesn't shy away from offering details to help explain behavioural patterns.
Profile Image for Driver.
562 reviews3 followers
August 2, 2018
I found this to be a surprisingly drawn out and narcissistic book.
For the first ca. 100 pages (in my edition) the author continued to talk about his childhood, college years, dating history, his countless brushes with the law and how well he could lie and manipulate others (there's someone you'd trust to be an FBI agent) and all of his more or less impressive achievements. The grandiosity was a bit much to stomach at times and I got the impression he just loves to hear himself talk, especially about his favorite subject: Himself.
I was already considering speed-reading the rest of it when finally the first actual SK case was presented: Ed Kemper!
It was an overall alright read, just included far too much useless information that had little to do with the subject matter. 2.5 stars from me.
Profile Image for Olivia (Stories For Coffee).
593 reviews5,608 followers
February 3, 2021
I really enjoyed my reread of MINDHUNTER, which I picked up on a whim again due to the fact that I'm incapable of remembering any book I've read, so it felt like I was reading this for the first time again. It is absolutely fascinating to read about Douglas' process in profiling serial killers based on their past, crimes, and actions after the fact. I'll never not find it mindblowing that this man, with years upon years of experience in such a dark field, has the skills to pinpoint a killer down to the specific car they use.

I think Douglas is one of the most intelligent people I've read about, simply in the way his mind works and the experiences he has under his belt, but I could 100% do without him constantly pushing the death penalty, and I think it needs to be mentioned how he continually focused on the beauty, innocence, and allure of white (particularly blonde) victims while being very detached while discussing other victims in this book. It just further proves that white female victims are held at a higher degree of importance than other victims of these terrible crimes, which was just grating to read about.

And- I'm not sure how to prove this- but I feel like this new edition of the book has information edited out from the older edition I read initially. Not sure if anyone else felt that while reading this new paperback, but I feel like some of Douglas' thoughts were edited out (or it could simply be my memory playing tricks on me).

An interesting, more in-depth look at the show I love. I loved seeing the similarities between John and Holden, on the show, and how the show writers were influenced by this book. This nonfiction had much more cases explained than in the show, which was really interesting. But, at some points, I skimmed some cases just because they didn’t seem to interest me as much, but overall it was interesting to read more about the behavioral science unit and how it was created and how it was developed throughout the years and it really opened my eyes to a part of history that I didn’t know about.
Profile Image for Gary.
2,614 reviews369 followers
December 24, 2017
I purchased this book recently having read the rave reviews received for the series of the same name on Netflix. I am an avid thriller reader and fascinated by most things related to crime so found this account by John Edward Douglas who is a former United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent and one of the first criminal profilers a very informative read. He recounts some of the cases he has dealt with, many of which are house old names such as Charles Manson and Ted Bundy and gives fascinating insights into the mind of a serial killer.
I found the book actually got better the more I read and I am now looking forward to watching the TV Series.
Profile Image for Lori.
308 reviews100 followers
March 8, 2020
I'm glad that Charlize Theron gave a copy to David Fincher because I like the show. Just make that your doors are locked and that your phone works.
Profile Image for Corban Ford.
275 reviews9 followers
May 21, 2018
Not what I expected, even less of what I wanted. I thought I was going to delve into a fascinating and disturbing insight into behavioral science and how it can be used to profile serial killers and other deviants, instead I got something closer to "The life and times of John Douglas". Sorry, but if I'm reading more of your thoughts and your feelings than the actual cases I thought I was getting, then we have a problem, John.

During my reading Douglas came across as extremely egocentric, less of a professional describing the ins and outs of a career and more of the relative you see at those family dinners who can't do any wrong and is rambling endlessly about his many exploits, without actually going into detail about what those exploits are.

The sad thing is he is/was very good at his job, and the protagonist in "The Silence of the Lambs" is actually based off of him. Unfortunately I can't in good faith recommend this one, it's just not the book you're led to believe it is, and Douglas can't seem to keep his own thoughts and personal feelings from bleeding into everything else over the course of this book. This was as close to a DNF as I've had this year.

It pains me, oh my goodness it pains me to write this, but there's a Netflix series that's based off of this book. Skip the book, watch the series, and call me in the morning.
Profile Image for Lori Krause.
Author 18 books150 followers
September 6, 2020
I thoroughly enjoyed this book; however, it wasn't what I had expected. I wanted to hear all about the top cases that John worked on and not necessarily his biography—saying that it wasn't all about him. It does give insight into his investigations and the minds of the killers he chased and caught. It was well written, and his detailed notes on each of the criminals were fascinating to read. It was compelling and full of suspects I hadn't heard of before. Other than a few that are basically in every book because of their notoriety—Ted Bundy and Charles Manson. Not only was he one of the first FBI profilers, but he was also highly regarded in his field of work.

I got lost within the first several chapters, and before I knew it, I read half the book. It was that intriguing to me, but I have always been fascinated with serial killers, so it wasn't surprising. If you are looking for a factual account of a case after case investigation by a top profiler, then this is your book. I have seen bad reviews and great reviews; I think it depends on the reader whether they will love it not. It may not be for everyone, but it was for me.
Profile Image for Jaya.
435 reviews222 followers
January 21, 2022
This was insanely fascinating. As a kid I used to watch Medical Detectives a series on Discovery channel which would re-enact a few of the true crimes and how the perpetrators were caught owning to forensic proofs and other tactics of solving them, primary among them would be "profiling" the perpetrator (s). The various kinds and number of cases that Douglas discusses in this book is somewhat alarming. If one is to consider the sheer amount crimes that happens across the world on a single day, the world appears to be a dismal place to live! Nevertheless, a renewed respect to all the law and military persons who do what they do, to make us feel safe in our day to day life.

Definitely recommended!
WARNING: Descriptive passages of racial hate crimes, violence, rape, child abuse, physical abuse, foul language etc.

...and now, off I go, to watch the netflix series because the cave I dwell in doesn't really intercept much of what is going on with the rest of the world
Profile Image for TheBookWarren.
413 reviews99 followers
June 13, 2021
4.25 Stars — True crime’s greatest read? Perhaps. However storytelling may be this authors greatest attribute. Written like a first-rate thriller, this one will grab you and suck you in tight, rarely lasting you surface for air.

A annelid of serial killers, sucking detail opposed to blood from the depths of these horrific and dangerous subjects, Serial Killers. Having coined the term serial-killer which May in retrospect seem puzzling in-and-of-itself, this notion goes to the greater skill of this novels author in his skill-set. Here, his approach and the skills within prose on executing a jarring, haunting and detailed work that allows the reader to make no bones about the sheer gravity of these psychopath monsters and the level of abhorrent virtue and grotesque actions. The scale of which, May never truly be known but where yet again the author is able to scale on a much greater sense than anyone else has managed before, in any medium — in respect to several of the killers detailed and their propensity for dishing out experiences that go beyond ones nightmares, and never looks back!

His work with Kemper, is to this day — unparalleled in terms of the ability to evoke motive and raw, intense feeling that most can never claw out of any serial killer especially one like Kemper whom clearly likes to talk a lot without saying anything at all.
Profile Image for Mariah Roze.
1,019 reviews921 followers
April 25, 2019
5 Stars for sure!
This book is great for anyone that likes psychology, true crime, serial killers, etc. This was very eye-opening and definitely different than the Netflix show. If you did or did not enjoy the Netflix show, don't base this book from that. They are very different.

"He has hunted some of the most notorious and sadistic criminals of our time: The Trailside Killer in San Francisco, the Atlanta Child murderer. He has confronted, interviewed and researched dozens of serial killers and assassins, including Charles Manson, Richard Speck, John Wayne Gacy, and James Earl Ray - for a landmark study to understand their motives. To get inside their minds. He is Special Agent John Douglas, the model for law enforcement legend Jack Crawford in Thomas Harris's thrillers Red Dragon and The Silence of the Lambs, and the man who ushered in a new age in behavorial science and criminal profiling. Recently retired after twenty-five years of service, John Douglas can finally tell his unique and compelling story."
Profile Image for Caro the Helmet Lady.
762 reviews345 followers
August 18, 2019
I'm a huge fan of Mindhunter series. I watched first season on one breath and when I saw this book around of course I had to read it. Nonetheless it was stuck on my virtual shelf for more than a year after I purchased it... And shame on me for that, for I enjoyed the book a lot. And right now I can enjoy my second season of series with the peace of mind.

Despite that I rolled my eyes a little bit when reading, because J.E.'s ego was a bit of too much sometimes for my tastes, I found this book very interesting. And actually I can forgive him a lot for his work in FBI and for the progress that was made in the work of police and Bureau thanks to him and his co-workers.
The book tells about how he became an agent himself, how he interviewed most famous serial killers and how he built his methods, how the Serial Crime Unit was created and how it all works. The book is a bit dated right now, since it was out for the first time many things happened and some more killers were caught. The best parts of the book were those of - surprise, surprise! - police procedure. I'd dare say there was not enough of that stuff but then again when it comes to that there's never enough for me. But maybe they didn't want to make it a handbook for criminals, who also like to learn sometimes...

The book is different from series, don't expect the sexy times and witty remarks, and of course they change a lot to be more fun, but this is a real thing and we all understand it. I would definitely read more literature like this.
Profile Image for Book Clubbed.
146 reviews166 followers
August 31, 2021
I almost gave up as I slogged through the first 75 pages of this book. Douglas has a lot of, "and then my buddy Jimmy, one of the sharpest fellas you'll ever meet, blah blah blah. And then I moved in with Kenny, as smart as he was funny, and we were the best of pals."

Great! Sounds fun, John!

However, no one can deny Douglas' credentials, and he quickly cranks the "bonkers dial" up to 11. The man is a walking encyclopedia of serial killers, and has worked the case of or interviewed almost every dark legend that now inhabit our podcast libraries. We devour those true-crime podcasts, documentaries, and movies to experience a passing touch with the extremes of human behaviors. John Douglas has shared rooms with those serial killers, analyzed them, and damn near broke down all of them. It's hard not to be drawn to such a Pied Piper of mayhem and death.

The chapters are typically broken into major cases, with the "lesson" bookending the chapter to show us what he learned. Even his random asides and anecdotes are astonishing, and would qualify as the most exciting moment of a lifetime for the average citizen. Eminently readable, the chapters and overall arc nonetheless have more cohesion in the TV show, which eclipses its source material.
Profile Image for Debbie W..
724 reviews486 followers
November 17, 2019
One of the best books about why serial killers choose certain victims. John Douglas writes a very informative book about the FBI's behavioural science unit. If you are a fan of true crime, this book is a must-have to own and read!
Profile Image for Moha Dem.
165 reviews57 followers
September 26, 2021
I started it right after I finished the series, it is an excellent read but not for the faint of heart, Language as simple as it can ever get, but really horrible scenes and events.
I am looking forward to reading more of what this fantastic author wrote, Peace.
Profile Image for Brittany McCann.
1,646 reviews406 followers
April 26, 2023
I have wanted to read this book for a while, and perhaps the anticipation built it up for me. I didn't even realize it was made into a tv show until recently. I, of course, wanted to read it before I watched the show, and I finally got the chance.

This book hits you in spurts. John E. Douglas goes into fantastical, sometimes excruciatingly boring detail about the backend of the job. Then BAM a new case, and I am totally invested. This lasted throughout the book.

I loved the Montana background, being a native Montanan myself, so that definitely added personal detail to attach to as well. It is apparent that time and research went into this book, and I definitely liked it.

Unfortunately, there wasn't a high re-readability for me, and I didn't love it.

Solid 3.5 Stars for me.
Profile Image for María.
193 reviews79 followers
October 25, 2019
Libro muy interesante pero también muy duro.
Todo lo que en él se describe son casos reales, y ha llegado un momento en que me he sentido tan abrumada por tanto horror que tenido que ir pausando su lectura.
Aun así, es un libro muy recomendable que me ha merecido la pena leer para poder conocer, de primera mano, el trabajo que realizaron estos pioneros en la creación de lo que conocemos como perfiles criminales.
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