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Dead Reckoning

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3.93  ·  Rating details ·  534 ratings  ·  62 reviews
“Rother gives readers compelling insight to an unthink- able American nightmare. A gripping read . . . frank and frightening . . . it sizzles.” —Aphrodite Jones, host of True Crime for Investigation Discovery Network

Tom and Jackie Hawks loved their life in retirement, sailing on their yacht, the Well Deserved. But when the birth of a new grandson called them back to

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Kindle Edition, 445 pages
Published August 27th 2019 by WildBlue Press (first published January 1st 2011)
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Average rating 3.93  · 
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 ·  534 ratings  ·  62 reviews


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Valerity (Val)
First published in 2011, I remember reading this story about Skylar Deleon, former supposed child star and the three murders he was found responsible for and sentenced to death for. But I sure needed this refresher, and the new and updated edition has lots of new information about what’s happened since then, to keep readers in the know. It seems Skylar, a married father of two, is having issues around his gender identity now that he is in prison. This story with the update included has become a ...more
Valerity (Val)
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
First published in 2011, I remember reading this story about Skylar Deleon, former supposed child star and the three murders he was found responsible for and sentenced to death for. But I sure needed this refresher, and the new and updated edition has lots of new information about what’s happened since then, to keep readers in the know. It seems Skylar, a married father of two, is having issues around his gender identity now that he is in prison. This story with the update included has become a ...more
BAM The Bibliomaniac
Probably the stupidest sociopath I've ever read about. His crime was so easily broken apart, I can't believe he found accomplices. And his wife is a greedy hoydon
They deserved what they got

Lenten Buddy Reading Challenge book #8
♥ Marlene♥
This is a case that will haunt me. The way these people were murdered.

I thought I had written a review cause this book stayed with me long after I read it. The way these people were killed, so gruesome, so heartless, I could not stop thinking about it.
Plus one photo of Jackie (the one with the butterfly) reminded me she could be one of my family)

Wish I had written a review when I was done cause I am very forgetful. Well I do know I am recommending this book!
Stephanie
Feb 21, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: true-crime
Always like to read about totally whacked out folks from Southern CA. This was just a strange story, with a couple of really stupid people who were just greedy and evil. I sort of think the sign of a "good" true crime book is if you are compelled to go online and look up the case and pictures etc. -- and I did.
Suzanne Flohr
Jun 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
THIS BOOK WAS OUTSTANDING . CAITLIN MAKES YOU BELIEVE YOU KNOW THE PEOPLE AND ITS NOT CLINICAL. I LOVED THIS BOOK . HIGHLY RECOMMEND.
Cheryl
Oct 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fans of true crime novels will want to read this book. I read the revised version that examined more into Skylar's life and obsession with transitioning to a woman.

While, I am very sorry to the families of Tom and Jackie; I do have to admit that I was fascinated by Skylar. The great lengths and lies that she went through to get the money for her surgery is fascinating. You have to be really motivated and have no compassion to take human lives. The other factor is Jennifer. How she could go
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LORI CASWELL
Mar 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tom and Jackie Hawks were living their dream, retired living on their boat, aptly named Well Deserved, sailing around Southern California and Mexico.



They had started to think about selling their boat when Skylar Deleon and his pregnant wife Jennifer offered cash to purchase the yacht. But the trial voyage was a total nightmare. Tom and Jackie pleaded for their lives as Skylar forced them to not only sign over the boat to him, but their home and bank accounts as well. Believing if they did what
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Micky Lee
Mar 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-ebooks
Very good read. But a very disturbing young man
Charlene
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: true-crime
As far as true crime goes, this was great-- far better than the subjective yarns spun by Ann Rule. Rule drives me crazy because I feel like she not only insults my intelligence, she insults the intelligence of her readers as a group. Very little critical thinking going on. Rule can't live with any ambiguity. This author does a much better job of just providing the story so the reader can think for themselves.

I wasn't sure I would like this book, but I downloaded it in on hoopla because I needed
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Linda Appelbaum
Gruesome, horrifying and hard to read, this book tells of the brutal murder of a seemingly nice, ordinary couple by 2 of the most pathetic people ever to be written about. Skylar, the man, was so horribly abused and mistreated as a child, it was very difficult for me to read. The woman who was his was just dumb as dirt. Neither seemed to have an ounce of humanity. The murdered couple were killed for their yacht...and everything on it. This is a difficult book to read and it will likely haunt ...more
Kathleen Kelly

Dead Reckoning is a book about the murders of Tom and Jackie Hawks, a couple who spent their retirement cruising in their trawler , the Well Deserved. An appropriate title for how they felt about their life. Along comes Skylar and Jennifer to ruin the Hawk's nearly perfect life.


This real story is very well researched and told so professionally that I had a hard time putting this book down. A true story of love, hate, greed and dysfunctional, evil people. This book will appeal to all true crime
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Tara
May 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: true-crime
The murder of Jackie and Tom Hawks will stay with the reader for a very, very long time. Rother did an excellent job telling this horrifying story. She told about the Hawks and their happy life together, she told about the sad childhood of Skylar Deleon and how he eventually meets up with his equally as evil wife, Jennifer. This is a book you will not be able to put down. Highly recommended for every TC reader.
Farrah
As much as I abhor acts of violence, I can’t help but be sucked in to true crime books and movies. I have to say that I find the thinking behind the act and how it’s solved to be fascinating. Rother does an excellent job in retelling the murder of Tom & Jackie Hawks from Skylar & Jennifer Deleon’s side. Talk about an “F’d” up couple!

If you like true crime, be sure to read Dead Reckoning. I believe I’ll be picking up some of her other ones as well.
SenoraG
WOW, what a story. What kind of people are there in this world? Full review can be found on my blog: Reading,Reading&Life It will be posted March 1, 2011 during Pump Up Your Book virtual book tour.
Donna Humble
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting true crime novel with a lot of details and personal touches but, in my opinion the author spent too much time on the whining complaints of the male half of the murderers.
Alex Gleason
This is rather bottom-of-the-barrel true crime. There's nothing egregiously wrong with it, but it makes, for example, Ann Rule look like a real master.
Margaret Tidwell
Oct 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Pump Up Your Book in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Dead Reckoning by Caitlin Rother was an interesting book. I realized while I was reading this book that I had heard of this story before but I am not sure where I heard it from. This was a really well-written book that took me a while to get through because there was so much information
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Dorie
Sep 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dead Reckoning
by Caitlin Rother
2019
WildBlue Press
4.0 / 5.0

Thanks to WildBlue Press for sending this for review.

Tom and Jackie Hawks were successful, healthy, fit and enjoying their life together on their 55 foot yacht, Well Deserved, in Newport Beach, California; around 2004. They lived a comfortable and happy life, loved sailing down the coast to Mexico and were well-liked, fun and very much in love couple.

Deciding to sell the yacht to Skylar Deleon and his wife, Jennifer was a fatal
...more
Becky Baldridge
Oct 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Admittedly, I don't read a lot of true crime stories, and there are a couple of reasons for that. First, we see enough real-life every day when we turn on the news, scroll social media, etc. So, I tend to stick with fiction for my reading time. Second, and probably the biggest reason, is that true crime so often comes across as documentary-ish. Thankfully, I didn't find that here. The author's writing style and storytelling created a pretty compelling read. A gruesome and often shocking story, ...more
Just another reader
This was a truly bone-chilling account of the true story of Skylar Deleon and his sociopathic life. The book, gruesome as it may be, hooks you up from the beginning with its meticulous research and brilliant narration. Rother takes us through the different murders that Deleon had been convicted of, starting from the horrendous yacht murder, where he threw Hawkses out onto the sea alive, after duct-taping them, and weighing them down with the yacht's anchor. The subsequent pages take us through ...more
Heather
Jan 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, true-crime
It seems that all true crime books are disturbing by their very nature, but this one was just pure evil and so sad. The author did a professional job of capturing both the detail and emotions of this story. In fact, it was very difficult for me to read the actual details of the murders as the couple desperately fought for their lives onboard their boat and their subsequent death by being chained to an anchor and thrown overboard...alive. I could not get the disturbing images out of my head.

I
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Amy
Sep 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
A murder driven by a unique motive, the desire for a sex change operation. The author has done a great job of getting at all of the details that make this crime both horrible and fascinating at the same time. She also raises an interesting question about whether the state should pay for a sex change operation, which in this case is part of the motive for the crime in the first place. Should this prisoner sentenced to life without parole be given the very thing he killed for. Is it cruel and ...more
Brandi
Jan 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Heartwrenching!

Ms. Rother took such a horrible tragedy and succinctly detailed all of the information which is amazing since there are so many defendants. She brought the Hawkses to life and made me so sad that I never knew them even though we lived in the same town. God speed to their family.
This is a must read!
As a side note, I really hope CA overturns the taxpayer funded gender reassignment surgery for those incarcerated. Prison isn't a vacation.
natalie
Thanks, Goodreads, for giving me the opportunity to win "Dead Reckoning." It is a really good story, but too many words and unnecessary details, making it very hard to read. It is unbelievable to know that there are cold and evil crazy people out in our world and this true murder story is a very good example of that. 2 very vicious psychopaths.
Dave Chrisstoffels
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pat L
Mar 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Guy Wrenching Double Murder, & Then Some

Caitlin Rother is all over the crimes of Skylar Deleon and Jennifer Henderson, as they spun their murderous get rich quick scheme over affluent Orange County California. Their callous disregard for human life will not likely leave my mind for a long time.
Melissa Rush
Sep 10, 2019 rated it liked it
Decent true crime book

Man this is such an interesting case with so much going on. Overall I felt it was well written with some instances where it was almost overwhelming me with info. Also there were many typos and grammar errors which drive me crazy in published works. Overall good. 3.5 stars!
Pat
Sep 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Too Strange to be True ... But it is

Dead Reckoning by Caitlin Rother may seem to weird to be real but it is true. This true crime book which includes an update is well written, interesting and well researched. I was hooked from the first page. A true crime can will find it impossible to put down.
Mary
Apr 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
True Crime story that may leave you gasping for air

Truly one of the most disturbing murders I've read about in a long time. I do remember reading a small snippet on the internet when this crime occurred. The author gives a concise before, during and after the crime, especially the victims families. I highly recommend this true crime book.
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New York Times bestselling author Caitlin Rother has written or co-authored 12 books, ranging from narrative non-fiction crime to mystery and memoir. Her titles include HUNTING CHARLES MANSON; SECRETS, LIES, AND SHOELACES; LOVE GONE WRONG; DEAD RECKONING; THEN NO ONE CAN HAVE HER; I'LL TAKE CARE OF HER; NAKED ADDICTION; POISONED LOVE; BODY PARTS; TWISTED TRIANGLE; LOST GIRLS; WHERE HOPE BEGINS and ...more
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