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The I-5 Killer

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  7,243 ratings  ·  268 reviews
The terrifying true crime story of the I-5 serial killer from Ann Rule, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Stranger Beside Me.

Randall Woodfield had it all. He was an award-winning student and star athlete. he was drafted for pro football by the Green Bay Packers, and chosen by Playgirl as a centerfold candidate. Working in the swinging West Coast bar scene, he
Paperback, Revised, 296 pages
Published March 1st 1984 by Berkley Books
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Emily Elliott Andy Stack was the pseudonym Ann Rule originally wrote under. Her maiden name was Stackhouse.

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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
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 ·  7,243 ratings  ·  268 reviews

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jv poore
Aug 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime, non-fiction, own-it
While it's difficult to try to comprehend Randall Woodfield's deviant criminal tendencies, it is impossible for me to understand what could make some women straight-up lie for him and that is truly terrifying. ...more
May 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
I had to get this book...the first one of Ann Rule's I read...because I knew Randall Woodfield - the infamous "I-5 Killer" which is what the news media dubbed him.

Randall was handsome, nice, accommodating and a good dancer. He was the bouncer at a tavern near my home where I wasted a few brain cells and diminished my quarter reservois on the pool table. Randall and I started to become friends...but not in a romantic way, necessarily. He didn't give me the impression of wanting to have a girlfri
Jul 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tbr-2017, favorites
It's weird growing up as a child in the 80s.

I heard all of these stories about these serial killers that seem to have popped up overnight in the 1980s it seemed. You had Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, and you even had the I-5 killer, Randall Woodfield.

Reading this true crime book by Ann Rule about the I-5 killer was eye-opening.

Unlike with her previous books I think that Rule was a lot stronger in this one because she really did focus on the perpetrator a lot more and the crimes that he committed. T
Jun 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: true-crime
The I-5 killer by Ann Rule is a great insight to the deranged killer Randall Woodfield, there are certain parts which you can skim because it's a little repetitive and it can get a little frustrating as my mind can not wrap around the fact that many women will lie and help him.
Also your left open mouth at how easy he can lie and people of importance believe him, it was also kind of obvious that his crimes were going to escalate from exposing himself to women in public to murder how nobody though
Jessica's Totally Over The Top Book Obsession
I use to love true crime books but books like this freaked me the hell out!
Jun 13, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: true-crime
I finally got around to reading this one. WOW, what a psycho Randy Woodfield is. I've read a lot of true crime in my life, but I can say this book skeeved me out bigtime. This sick, twisted waste of space orally sodomized women as young as 10 year old girls. Yes. My stomach turned when I read the descriptions of his crimes.

He's an interesting case study to read - very handsome, very insecure, yet acts macho and needy concurrently. It would be obvious to an adult woman that something was "off" wi
Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)
2.5 Stars

My fourth Rule book and it’s just as well researched and written as the others, but there was so much focus on the explicit nature of the killer’s sex crimes. I understood he was a very sexually driven killer, but the page after page descriptions of assault and the terrible things he said to his victims made me very uncomfortable.
Eva Marie
Jul 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: b-true-crime
I recommend this and every other book by Ann Rule for any true crime reader who hasn't read her. You will not be disappointed! ...more
Katherine Addison
This is another get in, get it done, get out account of a serial killer, this one Randall Woodfield, the I-5 Killer, who committed robbery, kidnapping, rape, sodomy (which by its legal definition seems to be an umbrella term for any kind of sex that isn't human-penis-in-human-vagina: Woodfield was fond of fellatio), and murder. He was convicted of the murder of Shari Hull and charged but never prosecuted for the murders of Donna Eckard and Jannell Jarvis (after Woodfield was sentenced to life pl ...more
Apr 24, 2012 rated it liked it
Rule may not be the most skilled writer but she surely knows how to pull you into her nonfiction murder accounts. I'd not ever heard of Randy Woodfield, probably b/c I was busy following the rampant stories about Ted Bundy's trails throughout the country around the same time. I picked up this book at a library's 'used' sale, and having read a few of her other books, figured it would be worthwhile. Part of me wishes I'd have passed it by! However, I was hooked immediately and couldn't put it down ...more
Jul 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Like many other people, I have a fascination with true crime and serial killers. My favorite TV shows are those that involve mystery and murder. I moved to Eugene, OR a few years ago and was told by a coworker that there was a serial killer who was caught in Eugene in the early 80's. So of course I had to read more about this local serial killer!

What a disgusting human being Randall Woodfield is. His crimes frightened me to the core. After I finished this the other night, I couldn't fall asleep
One of my guilty pleasures is reading Ann Rule's true-crime books. So when this one went on sale for $2 recently, I bought it. And yesterday, as a change from some delightful historical cozy mysteries I've been bingeing on, I started it and found myself finishing it today. As usual with Ms Rule, it was well-written, well-edited, and I was a bit surprised to find that it wasn't nearly as um, squicky as several of her other books.

The killer is still in prison after 36 years.
The book was good and very detailed, but probably could’ve still been told in half the time.
May 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“He appeared to them as if he were only an observer, not the defendant. He was handsome, he dressed nicely, and he had pretty, well-dressed girlfriends. He didn’t look the way killers are supposed to look. But then, few killers do.”

Read for disturbing break down of one of the lesser known PNW based serial killers.

I’ve driven on the I-5 many a time, but I had never heard of The I-5 Killer until I saw that Ann Rule had written a book about him! And because it was Ann Rule, I didn’t hesitate on b
Marilyn Mcguire
Feb 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
WOW! I live in Oregon and with an ex-father in law, went to some of this sites. Yes it may sound creepy but I have and will always be a true crime buff. At the time of our road trip, we had read a different book on him, it was fucking awesome and amazing. Then I read this one and blown away. I am less than a mile from the gi Joe's was. River road is also close and many other sites. So of course I now want to have another true crime road trip. This book was an huge eye opener on how how this mons ...more
Feb 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
So this is the third Ann Rule book that I have read. I noticed this thing she does when describing people. For example when describing Randy: "He was not just a dumb jock." Then ten pages later: "He had an IQ of 100, it would be difficult for him to finish college with such a below average IQ" (basically describing him as none other than a dumb jock, after explicitly saying that his only skill was in relation to his athletic abilities).

Despite the flip-flopping, this has been my favorite book o
May 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My first Ann Rule book and I loved it. I've been on a true crime obsession for over a year now and this is just fuel to the fire for me! Can't wait to read the rest. ...more
Dec 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, crime, biography
Another page-turner from Ann Rule. I've read "Stranger Beside Me" about Ted Bundy, and she delivered another excellent writing here. The first half of the story covers the murders, rapes, and other crimes committed by Woodfield, and in the latter half she covers prosecution, trials and sentencing of Woodfield following his capture, including the atrocities he continued to commit from prison.

Woodfield is a prime example of when the death penalty is necessary. I am perplexed and angered by the amo
Feb 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is an example of Ann at her very best. She is fabulous, nobody lays out the entire story better, but sometimes she loses me with a little too much boring description. She’ll go off onto a tangent and the next thing you know you’re 5 steps removed form the main characters and your alongside her as she’s describing an elm tree in the guy across the street’s yard and how it’s leaves fall on the windshields of every residents car every autumn. And it’s all for nothing. Lol. This is her at her b ...more
May 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I have read a lot of these and used to evaluate these people. I am somewhat frustrated because everyone I evaluated or saw their data I felt clear about how their histories contributed to their crimes. The way this is presented it doesn't really make sense. I wish I could see test data or get a better history.
Jul 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audio
I absolutely adore Ann Rule. She writes about true crime, but it's not stuffy. Her books feel like you're experiencing the horror along with the survivors. Rule even includes details like the rain drumming on the windows while a girl who was shot twice in the head describes her attacker.

10/10 as always for Mrs. Rule
Abby Morris
Oct 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I’m not sure if this book really deserves 5 stars, but I’m so committed to Ann Rule that I’m beyond a reasonable review! This is a fascinating and complicated case told in the best Ann Rule fashion. She is truly the queen of true crime.
Heather Hill
This one was a slog for being such a short book. Not sure why since I was interested in the case and love true crime, but I had a hard time getting through it. Oh well. Onto the next.
Jim Thomsen
Sep 05, 2009 rated it really liked it
Good lean but tasty tale from the days when Ann Rule, now the unrivaled Queen Of True Crime, had to make her bones in the business by publishing under the name non de plume Andy Stack (as she's explained, publishers of the late 1970s just didn't think that readers would accept hard-boiled true-crime writing from a woman, a mindset that seems beyond bizarre today).

Randy Woodfield was tailor-made for a true-crime book: He was a handsome ladies' man, a star athlete who was drafted into the NFL, an
Mar 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: completed
Ann Rule does another great job of describing the hunt for a killer. This book is a powerful book as it describes the killer, the investigators, the horrific crimes, the victims, the aftermath, the capture, the trials, and even the prison life of the monster.

One of the most interesting things about this book was that Dick Van Dyke's son, Chris, was the District Attorney involved in prosecuting this case. I often wonder about the children of celebrities and what they do with their lives and it w
Jun 18, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: true crime
Shelves: true-crime
I am an avid reader of Ann Rule; this was one of the hardest reads for me to finish regardless of page count, reading level, and print type. The content of this book is not for the faint of heart. Unless you are able to read gruesome, detailed accounts of rape, sodomy, and heavy abuse of women and children, maybe skip this one. Randy Woodfield is not an intelligent criminal, a diabolical mastermind, or a suave gentleman. I starkly believe the only reason his body count is so high is because he a ...more
Jul 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
I found it to be a good book. I have read a few of Ann's books, but can tell that this came from an earlier time. It was a good look into how the technology of forensics has changed in the last thirty years. From going to compare hair fibers and blood type to now being able to DNA. It was somewhat foreign to see the change. It was a good look into the criminals mind and in depth about the crimes. I will be picking up more of her books. I couldn't put the I-5 Killer down. Now that it is finished ...more
Jul 29, 2017 rated it liked it
So many women would remember Randy Woodfield, remember dates and places and things he'd said. In the end, it would be women who would help to trap him, women who could place him in areas where it was dangerous for him to have been remembered. He left his name with them, almost compulsively. He told them too much about himself, never worrying that he might have left a trail for someone to follow

A very solid true-crime read and I can very well see why Ann Rule became such a prominent figure of t
Apr 01, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: True Crime Readers
I don't think that Ann is a very good writer but when she sticks to just giving you the facts of the case then the story gets interesting. I'm always horrified about how long it takes to find and stop these repeat killers/offenders. Seems they get away with anything for years before they are finally found. The I-5 Killer wasn't even all that bright, but by just being so unpredictable he was able to stay way ahead of the detectives. Hopefully there are more modern ways to catch these guys now. Th ...more
Jennifer Trimble
Dec 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction-read
Reading this book makes you think that the same situation could never happen again because we've advanced so much technologically since the 1980s. The perpetrator would have to be a lot smarter than the one in this book but something similar to this could happen even today. That's what makes a book like this relevant even though it was written almost 30 years ago. ...more
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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

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