Crime, Mysteries & Thrillers discussion

The Stranger Beside Me: Ted Bundy: The Shocking Inside Story
This topic is about The Stranger Beside Me
62 views
Archive - Group Reads > The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule - January 2019

Comments Showing 1-47 of 47 (47 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Gem , Moderator & Admin (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gem  Paullin | 1286 comments Mod
Hello fellow True Crime readers! This discussion is about The Stranger Beside Me: Ted Bundy: The Shocking Inside Story by Ann Rule and your hostess is Sheri.
___________________________________________
The Stranger Beside Me Ted Bundy The Shocking Inside Story by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me Ted Bundy The Classic Story of Seduction and Murder by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me Ted Bundy The Shocking Inside Story by Ann Rule

Ann Rule was a writer working on the biggest story of her life, tracking down a brutal mass-murderer. Little did she know that Ted Bundy, her close friend, was the savage slayer she was hunting.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Hello. I'm Sheri, your hostess, for our discussion about what I consider a jarringly frightening relationship between the author, Ann Rule, and the serial killer, Ted Bundy. Frightening because it could happen to any one of us. We never know what is happening in the lives of our co-workers or intimate friends, for that matter, when we're not with them. We think we would surely know if a monster was among us, worked along side us, appeared to be our friend, but The Stranger Beside Me defies that sort of thinking.

Ann Rule and Ted Bundy became friendly while they worked on a crisis hotline together. In her book Ms. Rule describes her unbelief at first, then her dawning awareness that her kind friend was a serial killer.

It's hard to say I hope you enjoy the book, so let me say, I hope you find it interesting.


message 3: by ˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri •°*”˜.•°*”˜, Moderator (last edited Jan 01, 2019 06:55AM) (new)

˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Hope everyone is wide awake this Happy New Year Day and has started reading our True Crime book for January. This is in the preface of my book and I think it's sort of scary. We never really know a person.

It was to have been a crime reporter's chronicling of a series of inexplicable murders of beautiful young women. By its very nature, it was to have been detached, the result of extensive research. My life, certainly, would be no part of it. It has evolved instead into an intensely personal book, the story of a unique friendship that has somehow transcended the facts that my research produced. As the years passed, I learned that the stranger at the very vortex of an ever-spreading police probe was not a stranger at all; he was my friend. To write a book about an anonymous murder suspect is one thing. To write such a book about someone you have known and cared for ten years is quite another.


Britney (tarheels) | 108 comments I read this book several years ago. What drew me to the book was that Ann Rule used to be his friend & I wanted to see what her perspective was about his crimes & life. Could you imagine hearing that one of your friends is a serial killer? I really enjoyed it.


Donna Schmidt | 141 comments Great timing! I’m watching a special on the BTK killer.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Ted Bundy must have been charismatic beyond belief because almost everyone was taken by him, thinking he was the nicest person every.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
I'm pretty sure Ann Rule wrote, I'll have to see if I can find it, that Ted was one of the rare people who listened attentively. Isn't this what we're all looking for in a friend. Someone who will listen to us without forming comments in their brain just waiting for us to take a breath so they can interject their own thoughts.


Britney (tarheels) | 108 comments It goes to show how well do you really know someone? I like to think that most people could pick up on if someone was truthful or if there is something off about them, but I guess when it comes to someone like Bundy with his charms it never showed.
All the stories I've read said he was a very good looking charming guy.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
I sort of get the impression that the author had a crush on him. Do you agree?


message 10: by Summer (new)

Summer (paradisecity) | 37 comments I don't think I'm going to have time to get to this one this month, unfortunately, but I've lived in different parts of the U.S. and I can absolutely understand how Washington state sees so many serial murderers. I didn't live there during the period Bundy was active so I can't speak to historical accuracy, but there are a lot of factors to consider: significant lack of daylight hours; endless and easily accessible places to dispose of a body; the general speed of living matter decay; the general standoffishness of residents; and at least more recently, a real aversion to curtains/blinds. It definitely felt like a place where you could go missing and it would take ages for people to notice/care/do anything about it and it was a fairly unsettling place.


message 11: by ˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri •°*”˜.•°*”˜, Moderator (last edited Jan 07, 2019 03:31PM) (new)

˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Summer wrote: "I don't think I'm going to have time to get to this one this month, unfortunately, but I've lived in different parts of the U.S. and I can absolutely understand how Washington state sees so many se..."

Thanks for the insight. Sorry you can't join us.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
In 1974 women were killed at 1 every 30 days. Ted Bundy was on the loose and a suspect at this time. The Seattle police didn't think he fit the profile. When he moved to Utah, the Seattle killings stopped but women started disappearing in Utah.

1. If Teddy boy had just laid low, do you think he would have been caught?

2. I read that Ted's psychological diagnosis was personality disorder. This is NOT a diagnosis of insane. What do you think about this diagnosis?

3. Do you think he confessed to everything he did?


message 13: by Gem , Moderator & Admin (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gem  Paullin | 1286 comments Mod
I'm about half-way through right now, I thought I'd be further along by now but then I always think I read faster than I do.

1) From what I've read so far I, I don't know if he could have laid low. I'm thinking his actions were a compulsion for him, a primal drive if you will. That certainly does not excuse him.

2) I read where he had antisocial personality disorder [(those who are often identified as "sociopaths" or "psychopaths"), such as outward charm and charisma with little true personality or genuine insight beneath the facade; the ability to distinguish right from wrong, but with minimal effect on behavior; and an absence of guilt or remorse...] I would think based on the definition that fits the bill. And it's true those who have personality disorders (of whatever type) are not considered insane. In his case, he knew right from wrong but didn't care. He said, "Guilt doesn't solve anything, really. It hurts you ... I guess I am in the enviable position of not having to deal with guilt." That' pretty telling if you ask me.

3) No, I think there are many other victims out there he is responsible for.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
⊱✿Gem✿⊰ wrote: "I'm about half-way through right now, I thought I'd be further along by now but then I always think I read faster than I do.

Hahaha I think faster than I read too.

I like your thoughts. It seems he liked the thrill of killing so he couldn't stop. I do wonder though, if he wasn't a little bit insane to think he could defend himself and be acquitted.



Britney (tarheels) | 108 comments Sheri wrote: "⊱✿Gem✿⊰ wrote: "I'm about half-way through right now, I thought I'd be further along by now but then I always think I read faster than I do.

Hahaha I think faster than I read too.

I like your t..."


To me Sheri that means he`s narcissistic. He believed he was unique & special. Pretty saying that no one could defend him bettef than hisself.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Britney, I think you're right. Do you think Ann Rule had sort of a crush on him? Someone married him while he was in prison and I read there are reports that she had a child by him. It's a puzzle to me why a woman would marry someone who had killed people. He admitted to killing 30 but I wonder if there are more.


message 17: by Gem , Moderator & Admin (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gem  Paullin | 1286 comments Mod
I finished, this book has been on my TBR list for several years.

Sheri wrote: "Do you think Ann Rule had sort of a crush on him?"

I don't think she had a crush on him. He had charismatic personality... with women and I think because she saw him in action at the crisis hotline, she saw the sympathetic, caring side she had a hard time believing the evil side. Also, she lost her brother to suicide and I think he was a bit of a surrogate brother of sorts. They definitely had a connection, but I don't see it as romantic or a crush.

Sheri wrote: "It's a puzzle to me why a woman would marry someone who had killed people."
Unfortunately, this is not unique to Bundy. So many women throw themselves at convicts... I've never understood the attraction.

I think Meg was codependent, that seemed to be a terribly unhealthy relationship. She even took him back after she went to the police. I'm not sure if I had suspicions about a man that I could continue to engage in a relationship with him.


Donna Schmidt | 141 comments That personality and self confidence makes so many of these serial murderers or rapists so scary. They are likeable and so deceptive.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Donna wrote: "That personality and self confidence makes so many of these serial murderers or rapists so scary. They are likeable and so deceptive."

True


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
I won't say this is a good book due to the subject matter but I do think it's well written and does flow. Being written by a friend of his makes it an interesting perspective.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1238 comments I find it very it very slow going. It's interesting enough, it being written by a friend.


message 22: by Gem , Moderator & Admin (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gem  Paullin | 1286 comments Mod
Linda wrote: "I find it very it very slow going."

I thought it was a rather slow book too. I think the personal element, the anecdotes, personal stories, etc., were things we would not have gotten from another writer and it did slow the book down some.


message 23: by Katy (new)

Katy | 0 comments I agree - this book gives insight into the man behind the serial killer. And I may not be popular for bringing this up, but does it bother anyone else when Ms. Rule speculates that she could have gotten him to confess years earlier than he did when he was first picked up in Florida? They may have been friends, but with his sort of personality disorder, it seems vain to think that she would have been able to get any other outcome than the officers interviewing him. I appreciate the inside view of him personally, but I guess I'm somewhat turned off by her implication that she could have changed how this case turned out if she could have been more involved in the actual police investigations.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Katy, to me Ann was a little bit infatuated with him and thought she had more influence with him than probable. She was fortunate that she didn't end up one of his victims.


message 25: by Katy (new)

Katy | 0 comments That makes sense. She sure is fortunate!


message 26: by Gem , Moderator & Admin (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gem  Paullin | 1286 comments Mod
Has anyone watched "Conversations with A Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes" on Netflix?

I just finished the series (four episodes) where a journalist interviews him and many of the players in the book. One of the things they said was that a doctor diagnosed him as manic depressive which they think might have accounted for some of his crazy behavior especially during his trial. It was an interesting watch, especially on the heel of the book.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
⊱✿Gem✿⊰ wrote: "Has anyone watched "Conversations with A Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes" on Netflix?

I just finished the series (four episodes) where a journalist interviews him and many of the players in the book. ..."


I haven't watched it but will. His story was on TV the other night but it was just an hour.

Have you read any of Ann's other books?


Donna Schmidt | 141 comments I read it and did read quickly on some parts. I have a few other Ann Rule books that I want to read. It will be interesting how her other books read since she was “close” to Ted. Made in interesting and creepy thinking how close she was to him. Evidently she was not his “type” to kill. Just like his girlfriends and wife....


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Donna wrote: "I read it and did read quickly on some parts. I have a few other Ann Rule books that I want to read. It will be interesting how her other books read since she was “close” to Ted. Made in interestin..."

Which books do you want to read? Maybe we can read them in this true crime discussion and other people will join. I really like finding out others thoughts on books.


Donna Schmidt | 141 comments I volunteered to lead this discussion for March so...... vote when it comes out in early February....

I can’t remember which channel also has a Ted Bundy series. It is ID or TLC or Oxygen.... when of the true crime favorite channels...


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Donna wrote: "I volunteered to lead this discussion for March so...... vote when it comes out in early February....

I can’t remember which channel also has a Ted Bundy series. It is ID or TLC or Oxygen.... when..."


Oh great. I'll be sure and vote.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Ann Rule died in 2015. Here's an interesting read about Ann's relationship with Ted.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/m...


message 33: by Gem , Moderator & Admin (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gem  Paullin | 1286 comments Mod
Sheri wrote: "Ann Rule died in 2015. Here's an interesting read about Ann's relationship with Ted.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/m......"


Thanks for sharing the article Sheri.


Donna Schmidt | 141 comments That was an interesting addition to the book. Imagine with her training and background how she still viewed Ted or the Ted that she knew. They are scary clever!


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Was it in the book that Ted heard voices telling him to do what he did? I can't remember but I've either read or heard it somewhere. We never know what's going on in peoples heads. My sisters nephew was killed by a total stranger, shot in the back 5 times, who was hearing voices. Scary.


message 36: by Carolyn (new)

Carolyn | 13 comments Thanks for sharing this!

⊱✿Gem✿⊰ wrote: "Sheri wrote: "Ann Rule died in 2015. Here's an interesting read about Ann's relationship with Ted.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/m......"



message 37: by Veda (new)

Veda  (moonchild63) | 101 comments Yes & Sheri, I thank you for the article (& I had blocked Ann's passing!)

As for her latter words (in the article) a good book is

Soul Signs by Rosemary Altea

she has been in the news of late, yet the book and premise of different types of souls is intriguing esp

"the dark spirits,"

which we would deem conscious free, psychopathic etc & even within those

the charming sociopath

who can disarm your sympathetic/parasympathetic "Fight &/or Flight" (innate & internal) alarm system - with their beguiling ways.

Last week they were talking about

Bundy Groupies

& women thinking/calling him "hot!"

I found it interesting that had they 'followed up' on Rule's information- when she first gave his name

how many future victims could have been saved!?

That also seems to be part of this killing machines MO, taunting the police and tips that go un-investigated!


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Veda wrote: "Yes & Sheri, I thank you for the article (& I had blocked Ann's passing!)

"


Bundy Groupies - Oh My - people are just plain crazy.


message 39: by Veda (new)

Veda  (moonchild63) | 101 comments Sheri wrote: "Bundy Groupies - Oh My - people are just plain crazy."

Sheri, I "Say" that Everyday!!!!

What I liked about Rule's style of Common Sense writing. She was an awesome person & will be missed - he on the other hand, I don't know if even studying this type is benefical that Evil seems

Transcendent (& there actually is a psychological condition named for groupies of this nature)

Thanks for the CMT/GoodReads 📙 discussion


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Maybe we can read more of her books in the true crime discussion.


message 41: by Veda (new)

Veda  (moonchild63) | 101 comments Sheri wrote: "Maybe we can read more of her books in the true crime discussion."

That would be re-read for me, I remember the news story before Farrah played the role on one of her most famous books turned movie "Small Sacrifices"

& "Every Breath You Take..." will forever be with me!


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
I would like to read Small Sacrifices and discuss it but my library doesn't even carry it. I do remember the movie but it's been a long time since I've seen it.


Britney (tarheels) | 108 comments I am currntly reading Ann Rule's book on The Green River Killer. Interesting so far


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
Britney wrote: "I am currntly reading Ann Rule's book on The Green River Killer. Interesting so far"

Maybe we can discuss it in the True Crime discussion sometime. I like her books.


message 45: by Veda (new)

Veda  (moonchild63) | 101 comments Sheri wrote: "I would like to read Small Sacrifices and discuss it but my library doesn't even carry it. I do remember the movie but it's been a long time since I've seen it."

Amazon has a copy for $7 (& change), I looked for you, yet they also have a signed copy for

$116.81 - I 💓 her, just not One Hundred & Seventeen dollars worth (I rounded up;)


Donna Schmidt | 141 comments I just bought a copy of Small Sacrifices at my Barnes and Noble.


˜”*°•.˜”*°• Sheri  •°*”˜.•°*”˜ | 1545 comments Mod
I'm with you Veda. I like her writing but not that much. Wow!.

True crime has always fascinated me. I watch the true crime shows on TV all the time. My husband thinks I'm coming up with a plan to get rid of him. I think that's why he won't finish the Honey Do list. 😊


back to top