In this fascinating, in-depth account of the hunt for serial killers, Colin Wilson, one of the world's leading authorities on the subject, examines the ways they can be tracked down and caught, from the tried-and-true methods of the early 20th century to the high-tech processes in use today. Wilson examines such areas as psychological profiling, genetic fingerprinting, and the launch of the Behavioral Science Unit. He delves into the importance of fantasy to serial killers, the urge to keep on killing, the desire to become notorious, and murder as an addictive drug. He includes his own correspondence with serial killers and follows the career of FBI Special Agent Robert Ressler, the man who coined the term "serial killer" in 1977.
Including the worst murderers in Britain and America, such as Peter Sutcliffe, Fred and Rosemary West, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Paul Bernardo, this book is essential for true-crime enthusiasts. This book will appeal to anyone morbidly fascinated by these gruesome murders but especially by the techniques used to bring those responsible to justice.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Facts are wrong
He gives Tex Watson’s name as Paul (Charles is his name). The Yorkshire ripper started killing in 1985!!! I’m only 2 hours in. Thank goodness I only paid 12 bucks. Idk if this was a writer mistake or a narrator but cmon man
Most of this is a laundry list of killers and their victims, as in "Killer A killed Victim A, then a few months later killed Victim B. then a couple of months after that killed Victim C" etc., etc. This book doesn't provide much insight that is very interesting or impressive about profilers, either. Mostly, it's the usual "the killer is a young-to-middle aged white male who has a rotten mother and mental problems" profile that doesn't do much to actually catch the guy. It just allows the profilers to say I Told You So when they finally do catch him with actual physical evidence or when he makes a mistake. The author also puts forth questionable theories about what makes a serial killer (e.g., having certain body types, being possessed by a demon [come on... seriously?] and getting hit on the head. If that last one made somebody a serial killer, boxers, hockey players, and entire football teams would be kidnapping and torturing people with wild abandon). Victims in this book are little more than bare names to be ticked off a checklist and sometimes even blamed for what happens to them. Towards the end, he talks about a young woman who was kidnapped from her own yard where she was sunbathing and murdered, then goes on to say that it wouldn't have happened if she had been wearing a full-length Victorian dress. That's funny... Victorian dresses sure didn't deter Jack the Ripper. After listening to this book, whatever respect I had for profilers pretty much went out the window.
As real as it gets. Parts will make you queasy, but all is worth it because you will have a general understanding of serial killer profiling.