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Hello Charlie: Letters from a Serial Killer

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  109 ratings  ·  17 reviews
The 1991 abduction and murder of thirteen-year-old Heather Dawn Church baffled police for three agonizing years, and became one of the most infamous murders the quiet and scenic city of Colorado Springs had ever seen. It was legendary homicide detective Lou Smit who finally broke the case, sending Robert Charles Browne, a forty-three-year-old Louisiana drifter and career c ...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published February 5th 2008 by Atria (first published January 2008)
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Average rating 3.44  · 
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 ·  109 ratings  ·  17 reviews

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Jason Morrison
Mar 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
For me, this book seemed to take an interestingly long time to get down to what the main subject appeared to be. However, that being said, the route in which the author took to finally get there was not a bad one. I did enjoy it and can now understand why the author chose to route the reader the way that he did. It also made me appreciate even more getting to "the good stuff". Once I got more than half way through the book, it became increasingly difficult to put down.

If you are fascinated with
Very interesting book on how some cops tracked down a serial killer.
Jan 16, 2016 rated it liked it
A good read that gives not only a clear idea of what cold-case detectives deal with, but also an idea of what it's like to wheedle tiny pieces of information, year after year, out of a self-pitying egotist who doesn't seem to see the problem with killing people on a whim. Recommended. ...more
Dec 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Hello Charlie: Letters from a Serial Killer tells the story of three detectives that went out of their way to reexamine the murder files that were thrown away due to lack of evidence. Lou Smit, Charlie Hess, and Scott Fischer teamed up to help each other investigate notorious murder cases that lead to only one criminal whose name was Robert Charles Brown. The 1991 abduction and murder of thirteen-year-old Heather Dawn Church confused police for three years, and became one of the most infamous m ...more
Jan 08, 2020 rated it it was ok
I want to have liked this book... but it was not well written and really hard to get through. When it finally, finally got to the integral point of the whole book it wasn’t as much of a pay-off as I would have liked. Interesting, but woefully slow and not very deep.
Jun 15, 2021 rated it liked it
It took forever to get to the point. But overall was a pretty good book. Just have to be patient.
James Burkhardt
Jan 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good read

Worth the time to read. It took me sometime to get into but when I did I finished it quick.
Feb 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
In this chilling account, retired FBI agent Hess details his years of correspondence with serial killer Robert Browne, as he tried to coax out details of Browne's alleged 49 murders. Sentenced to life without parole in 1995 for the first-degree murder of 13-year-old Heather Church in Colorado, Browne began taunting investigators in 2000 with vague hints of other victims. Hess—a former FBI and CIA agent with years of experience as a polygraph analyst—had volunteered to investigate cold cases in C ...more
Jul 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
This true-crime story follows the investigation into the serial killer Robert Charles Browne. It opens with the description of the investigation that first uncovered him as a killer, but the focus of the book is on the time that Browne was in prison. After his conviction in the kidnapping and murder of Heather Dawn Church, Browne began to get bored in prison, and started several taunting correspondences with police officers. Retired detectives Charlie Hess and Lou Smitt took the time to engage B ...more
Angela Kitchen
Jun 01, 2015 rated it it was ok
This book started out somewhat promising but lost its momentum rather quickly. It seemed the author/renegade cop/whatever his title was a bit full of himself. The murderer was no one special and I did not find him particularly smart or charismatic for that matter. He just seemed to be pure evil who should have been caught a lot earlier but luck had always been on his side. I am still trying to figure out what good came of these letters and visits... Robert Browne simply was not interesting enoug ...more
Nov 03, 2009 rated it it was ok
This book started with a bang and I thought I would love it. However, the following chapters were a major let down. I read this book because I thought it would get into the psychoanalysis of a serial killer, instead it was just a lot of meaningless information. A lot of the cop's history and why he felt an emotional connection to this man. Almost nothing about the man himself, until the end. It wasn't absoulutely horrible, that's why I gave it 2 stars instead of 1, I just think the synopsis was ...more
Jacquie Knight
Aug 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
SOOOOOO scary. I can't believe that there are really people out there who can murder so brutally and cruelly and not think twice about it. What a wake-up/ reminder. ICK. But- again, well written and I couldn't put it down. ...more
Dec 16, 2010 rated it it was ok
This was interesting only because the crimes took place in the state I live in. The killer was touted as an intelligent adversary, but never seemed particularly smart or devious. Disappointing.
Dec 07, 2013 rated it liked it
It was an interesting story but too slow at times and I didn't really like the writing style. ...more
Spam philebar
Sep 05, 2009 rated it really liked it
this was a really good read. Very captiivating, also amazing that it really happened.
Jan 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Very good book. Disturbing on many levels. I don't think it was written all that well but the story line made up for the lack of flow. ...more
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