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True Crime Read In 2018-19: Post Reviews Here!

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message 1: by Lady ♥ Belleza, Gif Princesa (new)

Lady ♥ Belleza (bella_foxx) | 3348 comments Mod
I was on track to finish Innocent Victims by Brian Karem last year and left the book at work. So instead I finished Escaping the Arroyo so I would meet my challenge for 2017. Will be posting a review as soon as I get a chance.

message 2: by Rita (last edited Jan 13, 2018 04:09PM) (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Paralyzing Summer: The True Story of the Ann Arbor V.A. Hospital Poisonings and Deaths Paralyzing Summer The True Story of the Ann Arbor V.A. Hospital Poisonings and Deaths by S. Martin Lindenauer

The true story of the Ann Arbor V.A. Hospital poisonings and death was as riveting as the bold title on the cover. What was causing patients to stop breathing was a terrifying experience for them and their families. The doctors and nurses were stymied in trying to find the reason for this happening. They struggled to determine the cause of these attacks which led to worry and fear within the hospital as staff workers, victims and their families were in agony. What followed was an alarming number of patients were stricken with this mysterious respiratory failure leaving ten dead and over thirty more clinging to life. These authors present a gripping account of this baffling case and all it's twists and turns.

The ending was quite a surprise which I didn't really think would happen and it left me wanting.

5 Stars

message 3: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Left you wanting what, Rita?

message 4: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Fishface wrote: "Left you wanting what, Rita?"

I think they got away with murder. But, that is just my opinion and probably everyone would disagree.

message 5: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Rita wrote: "Fishface wrote: "Left you wanting what, Rita?"

I think they got away with murder. But, that is just my opinion and probably everyone would disagree."

No, I would say everyone in Ann Arbor -- where I was living when this story went down -- would completely agree with you.

message 6: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Fishface wrote: "Rita wrote: "Fishface wrote: "Left you wanting what, Rita?"

I think they got away with murder. But, that is just my opinion and probably everyone would disagree."

No, I would say everyone in Ann ..."

Oh good Fishface because I thought I would be the only one that disagreed. Thanks so much for posting it. What a great book to read.

message 7: by Fishface (last edited Jan 30, 2018 09:18AM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments The Path of a Psychopath, Alabama's Teenage Serial Killer, Raymond Eugene Brown, Bob Curlee
4 stars!

An informative and thought-provoking treatment of the Gene Brown case -- and what a horrible case it is. Gave me all the information I longed for after reading a couple of paragraphs about Brown's exploits in another book. Curlee's book isn't perfect. There are long stretches when I cannot tell if the author is speculating or quoting a source and telling us facts. For instance, I don't know whether the character identified only as "HE" really existed or, if he did, whether the killer's troubling violence started before or after the sexual assaults. Or if there were any sexual assaults. The author doesn't know the difference between psychopathic and psychotic, among other issues, and admits he doesn't understand why people with antisocial personalities are not considered mentally ill. He also completely misses the likely role alcohol played in all these murders. But leaving all that aside, I was completely gripped by this terrible story. Illustrated throughout with photos, maps, cartoons (!) and even a crime-scene photo.

message 8: by Rita (last edited Jan 27, 2018 07:27PM) (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Evil Angels: The Shocking True Story of a Sensational Crime by John Byson
5 Stars

This is a story about a family in Australia camping out with other families as well setting it up and then settling in for the evening. A dingo approached near them which all Australians are very familiar and a cry in the dark prompted the family baby was not there.

What transpired was a chilling and complex situation which became the most sensational murder trial ever. This author's remarkable book resonates with moral ambiguities and wrenching emotions. Upon the telling of it from shock upon shock from court rooms of Darwin and Alice Springs. The Forensic Laboratories in Australia, England and as far-reaching as the United States. It was complicated and I must admit left my head spinning but fascinating as I read on. More importantly though John Dyson's quiet devestating portrait of the ugly under-current of ignorance and prejudice almost from the beginning.

message 9: by Linda (new)

Linda Strong (linstrong) | 10 comments Anthony Allen Shore was an American serial killer and child molester who was responsible for the slayings of one woman and three girls. He operated from 1986 to 2000, and was known as the "Tourniquet Killer" because of his use of a ligature with either a toothbrush or bamboo stick to tighten or loosen the ligature.

STRANGLER is the story of this serial killer, his victims, the investigation, his confession, his trial.

COMPLETE REVIEW --> https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

message 10: by Lady ♥ Belleza, Gif Princesa (new)

message 11: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Shop of Horrors by Bill G. Cox Shop of Horrors

Michael Durwood Griffith started his career as a law enforcement officer. His courage was recognized when he was named Panama City, Florida's 'Lawman of the Year'. Married three times he was irrisistable to women. He was handsome and charming at the beginning and bestowed them with gifts and candy but those who fell victim to his charm ultimately discovered his terrible secret. He was a sexual psychopath, a Jekyll and Hyde killer who lurked behind the badge of a lawman. House of Horrors is more chilling then any fictional character. Upon reading through the trial I found it a little repetitive but I understood the need to prepare the jurors with everyone that the detectives and officers tracked down and interviewed. A good read.
4 Stars

message 12: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments Monkey on a Stick: Murder, Madness and the Hare Krishnas by John Hubner and Lindsey Grusen
5 stars

In the 60's I remember hearing about the Hare Krishnas but I didn't know a lot about them. I remember the Beatles were big on Hare Krishna and George Harrison is mentioned in this book. This book talks about an unsavory element of the Hare Krishna religion. I dont think it speaks for the whole sect, as most books that single out a religion are not representative of the entire religion. There is a lot of shady characters in this book and it held my interest from beginning to end.

message 13: by Fishface (last edited Feb 11, 2018 08:38AM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments I believe the Hare Krishnas in that book are a weird splinter cult group off the much larger and saner original religion, as the Death Angels described in The Zebra Murders: A Season of Killing, Racial Madness, and Civil Rights was a weird splinter group off the Nation of Islam.

message 14: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Winter of Frozen Dreams by Karl Harter Winter of Frozen Dreams

Every major American city has a dark side - except the immaculate city of Madison, Wisconsin, one of the cleanest, safest places to live in the country. It was Christmas day and everyone was looking forward to sitting down with their families for dinner including the top cop. Unbeknownst to him yet, a very confused and upset man staggered into the police department claiming he just buried a body in the snowbank. From there, what unravelled was an extensive research, interviews which included residence of Madison, reporters from the two daily newspapers, the police, private sources and lawyers. This is a true story of passion, greed and murder in this quiet city.

The sensational trial exposed a world of massage parlors, drugs, sex-for-hire and greedy killers that shocked Madison and the Nation. The Barbara Hoffman case touched all levels of the community and they still talk about it to this day.
4+ Stars

message 15: by Fishface (last edited Feb 11, 2018 08:37AM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Rita wrote: "Winter of Frozen Dreams by Karl HarterWinter of Frozen Dreams

Every major American city has a dark side - except the immaculate city of Madison, Wisconsin, one of the cleanest,..."

I'm sorry to differ with the author of this book, Rita, but the one I'm in the middle of now, Mad City: The True Story of the Campus Murders That America Forgot, makes Madison sound like one big body dump!

message 16: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Fishface wrote: "Rita wrote: "Winter of Frozen Dreams by Karl HarterWinter of Frozen Dreams

Every major American city has a dark side - except the immaculate city of Madison, Wisconsin, one of ..."

Oh really Fishface? Well no worries because now you just gave me another book to read! I am looking forward to it.

message 17: by Fishface (last edited Feb 19, 2018 10:57AM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Mad City: The True Story of the Campus Murders That America Forgot, Michael Arntfield
3 stars

This was a very interesting story -- VERY interesting -- but I couldn't give it more than 3 stars because the writing really needed work. The story was well constructed and edited well, unlike so many books out there today, but nobody's ever told this author about the importance of keeping his sentences short and clear. He seemed intent on cramming as many words as possible into every sentence. The subtitle of this book should really be "When Mixed Metaphors Attack." The way this book reads kept me from knowing until the very end whether this was a novel based on the author's own theories or a true story. (Not a spoiler: This is a true story after all.) None of that stopped me from finishing this book! It's a valuable reminder that talented, determined amateurs are sometimes better at crimebusting than the professionals, and this book could even serve as a bit of a how-to manual.

message 18: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments Grave Accusations: A True Story of Lies, Family Secrets, and Death by Andrea Egger
2 stars

Started out good but the court transcripts took over half the book. Just not a good way to write a True Crime book, as far as I am concerned, by writing word for word grand jury testimony and then rehashing the same information when writing about the actual jury trial. This was a big yawner.

I did get interested again at the end. It does have something different that I wasn't expecting. This is about a cop who was accused of murdering his wife. Was he guilty or innocent? I'm not sure if I agree with the ending.

message 19: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Shattered Justice A Savage Murder and the Death of Three Families' Innocence by John Philpin Shattered Justice: A Savage Murder and the Death of Three Families' Innocence

This was without a doubt a miscarriage of justice. A 12 year old girl was savagely murdered in her bed. The police targeted the family beginning of course with the parents and all the questions. One policeman then focused on the brother of this girl and it mushroomed from there adding two of the brother's friends in on it. It is a riveting and very disturbing true account of a horrific tragedy and the terrible crime that followed - a nightmare of four innocent lives shattered, one by a killer's blade, three by obsession and twisted law. The author wrote a stunning account with further twists and turns right until the end. I recommend this book for all true crime readers.
5 Stars

message 21: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Craig wrote: "Something that belongs on the "true crime" book shelf: The Poisoner's Handbook Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York by Deborah Blum[book:The Poisoner's Handbook: Murd..."

Already on the shelf!

message 22: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Willie Boy: A Desert Manhunt, Harry Lawton
3 enthusiastic stars

This was a really good read, written in that clear, uncluttered style I always associate with books from the 1950s. The author attempts to separate fact from fiction but there is so much fiction surrounding this story, it's hard to know whether or not he did a good job of it. He apologized for only consulting with the surviving white members of the various posses involved in the hunt, and he makes an effort to include the Paiute point of view as well, even if he did tuck it into the very end of the book, as if it were an afterthought. The photo section includes what may be the only extant photos of a sheriff's posse hunting a fugitive. This is a real page-turner that left me with many unanswered questions, but also a large bibliography that may yet lead me to the answers.

message 23: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Death at the Court-House, Winston Coleman, Jr.
3 solid stars

This little book, about a 1920 murder and the events that followed, made the human race as a whole look sorry indeed. The only ray of light came when the victim's brother made a statement to the papers asking the lynch mob to disperse and let the law take its course. Everyone else behaved like a maniac, making even the killer seem pretty composed and reasonable in comparison. This is a great object lesson in how mob violence can distort due process. Curiously, the author never mentioned once that this story unfolded in Kentucky, expecting the reader to know that all the little country towns he mentioned were in that state. But this is the merest quibble. This one is well worth your time.

message 24: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments Cheating Death by Edwin Chen
5 stars

This was super good. There was so much going on here. First the doctor, Richard Boggs, and his history and what he did, then the other 2 guys, Melvin Hanson and John Hawkins, and you're wondering how they tie in with the doctor, but then you find out. The plot has so many twists and turns that there is not any repetition and the courtroom process is only the last 50 pages or so. This crime took place in the late 1980's and the book was written in the early 90's so it is worth googling to find out what happened to the murderers in the end.

message 25: by Fishface (last edited Feb 26, 2019 05:57PM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Gitchie Girl: The Survivor's Inside Story of the Mass Murders that Shocked the Heartland, Sandy and Phil Hamman
3 stars

This was an intriguing, often powerful account of the Gitchie Manitou murders of 1973 and how they changed the life of the only survivor. Another reviewer said she didn't like it because it was an unsolved case, which I don't get because it was cleared by police and all squared away in court. The reasons for the crime were never tidily explained, since the guys who did it seemed too dumb to really have that part figured out, but I also thought there was more than enough information in here to answer that question. What I wanted to know more about was why the whole community treated the title character the way they did, and how she overcame all these trials without becoming hopelessly bitter. Her strength and loving character are the real miracles in this story. The writing was kind of clumsy considering that 2 English teachers wrote the book; it needed a last text edit. Otherwise it comes warmly recommended.

message 26: by Rita (last edited Mar 03, 2018 06:04PM) (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Savage Vengeance by Gary C. King

This is a true story of rage, control and a most horrific murder. A gripping story of a serial rapist turned killer who was born and bred in the beautiful State of Washington. From an early age Charles Campbell and his sister were brought up by his grandparents. As time went by rancor and unrest in the Campbell home became noticeable among the neighbour's. From an early age Charles started his life of crime which drew the attention of the local police. As his record grew so did his crimes. Another criminal that always got a break to let him continue on and led to rape. Thus...his path to destruction shattered three families who lost their loved ones in a shocking brutal crime scene that even the seasoned detectives were brought to their knee's. The battle begins in order to bring justice to these families. Little did they know how long and agonizing it would take. A must-read!
5 Stars

message 27: by Kristin (new)

Kristin (savannahjan) | 62 comments It’s not exactly True Crime, but I just read Working Stiff by Judy Melanik it’s about a woman who wanted to be a surgeon, but became a medical examiner instead. She talks about so many of the bodies she examined. Criminal or natural. It was fascinating. I really enjoyed it.

message 28: by Fishface (last edited Apr 02, 2018 03:52PM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments The Trial of the Stauntons, edited by J.B. Atlay
3 stars

This was an even more horrific read than I expected. The scenario in which Harriet Staunton and her son Tommy wasted away and died was far different from what I've always been led to expect. This treatment of the case takes you through every single scrap of evidence, with some very large, very unsettling omissions. (Why were there no charges brought in Tommy's death? And where in the everlasting blue funk was Dr. Creasey while all this was going on?) The story was thumbnailed in the first 32 pages of text and the rest was made up of attorneys' arguments and reframings of what the evidence added up to -- including the judge's jaw-dropping 10-and-a-half-hour-long summation to the jury. I was tempted not to read after the first section but I'm so glad I did. It's a great object lesson in how many different ways there are to see the same evidence, especially when so many people are facing murder charges. Fascinating in spite of the repetition and the stuffy Victorian phraseology.

Diane in Australia | 640 comments Eugenia by Mark Tedeschi
Author: Mark Tedeschi

3 Stars = I liked the book. I enjoyed it. I'm glad I read it.

Eugenia Falleni was an Australian woman, who felt like she should have been born a man. Therefore, she chose to live as a man, in all areas of life, and did so for several decades. When she was charged with the murder of her 'wife', her private life became public knowledge. The book describes the life of such a woman, trying to exist in a society that would have found her to be 'a monster', if they had known her secrets. It also tells of her murder trial in Sydney in 1920.

The author, Mark Tedeschi, is Senior Crown Prosecutor for New South Wales, Australia, which means he knows all the ins-and-outs of the legal proceedings, and tends to go on about them a bit more than necessary. I did appreciate some of the explanations, but at other times he just made me weary.

If you have any interest in learning about how a transgender person had to live in the late 19th/early 20th centuries, you will enjoy this. Also, if you are interested in legal proceedings in Australia during the early 20th century, you will enjoy this.

message 30: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments Little Girl Fly Away by Gene Stone
3 stars

Technically not a true crime, although I think the beginning of the book would qualify.

For me the back cover was a spoiler. The beginning of the book would have been a lot more interesting if I hadn't read the back cover that told me right away that the person stalking this lady was....herself. After the police figure out who did it the rest was pretty much downhill. Mostly her visits with the psychiatrist. I think this would make a good premise for a one hour cop show on tv where we didn't find out who did it until the end and then skip all the psychiatrist visits. She did have a traumatic childhood (not a spoiler either as it tells us this on the front cover), but I have certainly read about people that had it a lot worse then she did.

message 31: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments Hell's Princess: The Mystery of Belle Gunness, Butcher of Men by Harold Schecter
3 stars
A historical true crime about Belle Gunness. Did Belle kill several men and her children? How did she die? You decide. This takes place at the turn of the 20th century, long before sophisticated methods of investigation were invented. Harold Schecter is one of the masters of the True Crime genre.

message 32: by Kathryn (last edited Jun 19, 2018 02:30AM) (new)

Kathryn Casey | 66 comments Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll read some of these. Deborah Blum is a friend and I know she'd want to thank you for mentioning "The Poisoner's Handbook." It's such a good book.

message 33: by Fishface (last edited Jun 06, 2018 03:43PM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments The Bling Ring: How a Gang of Fame-Obsessed Teens Ripped Off Hollywood and Shocked the World, Nancy Jo Sales

3 stars

This was a fun, lite true-crime read for the monthly challenge (on the subject of organized crime). The writing was very good and the story moved right along, snagging occasionally on the rocks of the characters' inarticulate blathering. Even the attorneys didn't make a lot of sense when they talked and I would have to go back and re-read to puzzle it out. With that said, I enjoyed this one and would recommend it to anyone who is looking for a true-crime case without a lot of gore and massacree. In fact, this was marked "YA" at the library, so dive right in and fear not.

message 34: by K.A. (new)

K.A. Krisko (kakrisko) | 1264 comments I finished Hell's Princess: The Mystery of Belle Gunness, Butcher of Men on the airplane to Ireland & gave it four stars (link: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...)

I had some of the same issues others mentioned in their reviews: odd focus on derogatory descriptions took away from the narrative, much of the book concentrated, in too much detail for my taste, on the trial of the (probably innocent, at least of murder) handyman, and there was no real in-depth analysis of Belle's psychology. But it was well written and edited, covered pretty much all the information there is available on this case, and provides a good picture of the area, environment, and some of the characters in the case(s).

message 35: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer, Michelle McNamara

The wonderfully written account of a maddening series of unsolved crimes. McNamara really captures the way this case took hold of her and seeped into every corner of her life. If you are interested in unsolved serial criminal cases, in how a serial sex offender or killer is investigated, or if you just want to understand why a small army of people would devote all this time and energy to investigating a cold case, this is the book for you. Imagine how wonderful it would have been if the author had lived just a little longer, long enough to see the killer caught. Or just let her live, period, so she could have savored this victory and gone on to solve the Jack the Ripper case...

message 36: by Rita (last edited May 06, 2018 09:03PM) (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Plain Truth Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult

While off the computer I read seven books. Although they were novels, I had to write a review about this one I just finished last night.

From the very beginning this story drew me in because it was appealing and suspenseful. Although having read a true story about murder in Amish Community, Pennsylvania this one was a similiar situation but was written in a far more vivid and chilling way.

A story of family dysfunction, betrayal and redemption. I could not put this book down.

5 Stars

message 37: by Diane in Australia (last edited May 12, 2018 09:29AM) (new)

Diane in Australia | 640 comments Blood Vows by Helen Cummings
Blood Vows
Author: Helen Cummings

4 Stars = It touched my heart, and/or gave me much food for thought.

This book made me thankful, yet again, that I am no longer a single mum living under the shadow of the ex-husband, and the court systems. My daughter is an adult now, happy, and safe, at long last. It is a tragic reminder of how vulnerable mums, and children, often are ... and how the legal system doesn't always help, but hinders.

I felt Helen wrote this in a very down-to-earth, non-sensationalized manner. She is fortunate to be alive, and those who died, are honoured, in some small measure, by her telling of their sad deaths.

Diane in Australia | 640 comments My James by Ralph Bulger
My James
Author: Ralph Bulger

4 Stars = It touched my heart, and/or gave me much food for thought.

Many of us remember the gruesome murder of James Bulger ... inflicted by two 10-year-old boys. His murder devastated not only his parents, but his extended family. James' father has written this book for many reasons, but especially to share with all of us just what a special little boy James was, and how much he meant to him.

Ralph also talks about the numerous legal struggles that he, and other family members, have endured as they desperately tried to see justice done for their little boy. Needless to say, this crime rocked the people of England, and they rallied behind the Bulgers. Unfortunately, I don't believe the same can be said for the justice system.

I read a lot of true crime, but this one ... it really, really sickened me. As a parent, I can't even begin to imagine what the Bulgers went through. Ralph pours out his heart in this book, and in doing so, has honoured precious little James.

message 39: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments I have been meaning to read that one.

*moves it up on TBR list*

message 40: by Rita (last edited May 19, 2018 06:16PM) (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Cause for Concern by Margaret Yorke Cause for Concern

The is a novel about the cruelties that human beings put upon each other. In this case it was domestic abuse by her husband and carried on by her son. As usual neighbours and friends noticed her bruises and excuses but they were very reluctant to speak to her about it and let it slide.

A good read and a delight bringing up the English sayings my own parents used. It wasn't an 'edge of your seat' page-turner
as it was written in such a sedate manner. Nonetheless, it held my interest.

3+ Stars

message 41: by Susan (new)

Susan Tejada (goodreadscomsusan_tejada) | 17 comments Rita wrote: "Evil Angels: The Shocking True Story of a Sensational Crime by John Byson
5 Stars

This is a story about a family in Australia camping out with other families as well setting it up and then settlin..."

"A Cry in the Dark" is the title of the gripping 1988 movie about this case, starring Meryl Streep. I recommend it, if you can find it.

message 42: by Fishface (last edited Jun 06, 2018 03:42PM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments I remember that movie! It was very good.

message 43: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments Southern Fried Crime by Gregg Olsen, Ron Francell
3 stars

Normally I do not like short crime stories as well as I like a whole book, but this one is well written. Some of the murderers I had heard of before and some I did not. I dont remember what I paid for it but I think the e-book was only a couple of dollars.

message 44: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Susan wrote: "Rita wrote: "Evil Angels: The Shocking True Story of a Sensational Crime by John Byson
5 Stars

This is a story about a family in Australia camping out with other families as well setting it up and..."

Oh thank you Susan. I didn't realize Meryl Streep was in that movie. I will try and find it! Thanks again....!!!

message 45: by Rita (new)

Rita (crimesleuthjunkie) | 1078 comments Susan wrote: "Rita wrote: "Evil Angels: The Shocking True Story of a Sensational Crime by John Byson
5 Stars

This is a story about a family in Australia camping out with other families as well setting it up and..."

Susan, I just found it in paperback on Amazon.ca but it is expensive so I put it on my wish list. Thanks so much!!!!

Diane in Australia | 640 comments Mindhunter Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit by John E. Douglas
Mindhunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit
Author: John E. Douglas

3 Stars = I liked the book. I enjoyed it. I'm glad I read it.

John was one of the first agents to put together the skill of 'profiling' a crime in order to aid in catching the criminal that committed it. Very interesting stuff, and logical, too. You would think that cops, and others, would have 'seen' these patterns themselves. Maybe they did. But when the FBI moved the idea from a vague 'voodoo' kind of input to an actual crime solving tool, things began to gel into a fantastic weapon against killers/rapists/etc.

Concise writing made the book easy to read, and comprehend. I'm a true crime junkie, so, I was interested in reading the many excerpts from specific crimes that John had an active role in solving, or at least trying to solve. Some of the murders were solved after this book was first published, such as the BTK murders, and I read elsewhere that the updated editions include that information.

message 47: by Fishface (last edited May 31, 2018 07:00PM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Trail of Blood: A Father, a Son and a Tell-Tale Crime Scene Investigation, Wanda Evans and James Dunn

3 solid stars

This was overall well-written and well-organized, only losing me a couple of times when they strayed too far into word-for-word transcriptions of what got said in the courtroom. The authors always recovered from that well and I was glad to read until the end. The legal outcomes in this trial were, shall we say, really odd and the outcome of the investigation was far from satisfying. I was very happy to find my Vidocq Society crush, Richard Walter, take a central role in this story. I even got to see him do his stuff on the stand, albeit in a way that made me want to sock someone in the jaw. What is the matter with the law in Texas??? This book is well worth your time.

message 48: by Koren (new)

Koren  (koren56) | 1361 comments The Ride: A Shocking Murder and a Bereaved Father's Journey from Rage to Redemption by Brian Macquarrie
4 stars

The Ride A Shocking Murder and a Bereaved Father's Journey from Rage to Redemption by Brian MacQuarrie

A very sad story about an 11 year old boy that was befriended by a couple of thugs who later murdered him. About half the book is about the murder and the other half is about the father and how he handled the death of his son and how he changed his mind about the death penalty. Sister Helen Prejean is mentioned in the book. She has done a lot to change thinking about the death penalty. This is a very heartbreaking book with a lot to think about.

message 49: by Fishface (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Béla Kiss, William Le Queux
3 stars

This was a funny little book, so short I was finished reading it almost before I got it all the way open. It did provide me with some new details about Kiss's case -- a clearer timeline of events, and even the names of some of the victims -- but the whole thing read as if it were badly translated from another language. This was very odd, as Le Queux is an Englishman. He did not cite any sources and there are no photos. This does not stop me from liking it. This would be a better basic introduction to that case than The Lonely Hearts Vampire: The Bizarre and Horrifying True Account of Serial Killer Bela Kiss, if you want to start from scratch on learning about it.

message 50: by Fishface (last edited Jun 16, 2018 08:13PM) (new)

Fishface | 11863 comments Catch Me a Killer: Serial Murders: A Profiler's True Story, Micki Pistorius

3 stars, again

I opened this book quickly to look something up and of course I had to read the whole thing again. Once again I came away astounded at the sheer number of serial killers they have in South Africa. The country is the size of America's big toe and yet they seem to have 10 serial murder cases going at a time, always with 5 new killers warming up in the bullpen. We probably do have more SKs, but they have many more per square foot. The author comes across as a bit floaty-woaty and I'm not surprised she didn't feel understood or accepted by the police even as she rose in their ranks. But she obviously has a ton of empathy and insight and can really do this job with one hand tied behind her back. This one is more than worth your time.

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