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An ok read though I often found myself not entirely on board with his analysis. He says things like 'I've interviewed thousands of people, I think I know when someone is lying' and this hurts his credibility. He also does not site his sources. For example, he says there were 20 keys to the Ramsey house floating around and not in their possession- how does he know that? How can we trust that as fact? He tends to remind the reader that he's an 'expert' and that even other 'experts' aren't as good as him. He implies that others should trust his analysis when often it was just his interpretation of what he perceives to be normal behaviour rather than something tangible. It's all very flaky. He says things like 'people don't just change, they don't just start killing, there's always lead up,' but we have cases that belie this idea such as Susan Smith, Darly Routier... All things considered, I only take his opinion as just that, an opinion to be weighed against others.
This is a great true crime read by John Douglas famed FBI profiler. Perfect for those who enjoyed Mindhunter. It examines famous murder cases from a profiler perspective. The recap of Jack The Ripper's bloody rampage was excellent and insightful. It's even interesting when his take is wrong. Authors don''t believe DeSalvo was Boston Strangler whereas DNA evidence post publication points to him. Profilers, like humans, emphasize their hits and downplay their misses. I enjoyed this hard nosed cop approach to famous cases.
Very Interesting read if you like these kinds of books. Much of the same as other John Douglas books but worth the read. It’s very interesting to read what goes through the mind of a profiler when creating their portrait of a criminal.
Very interesting book. There are details (JonBenet case) that I hadn't heard on the news when the stories came out so I learned a little more about the stories. Of course I learned about cases that had happened a long time ago that were very interesting. A must for a true crime enthusiast
There are many 'true crime' books that recount various outrages...But this book gets behind the overt facts. John Douglas, one of the first 'criminal profilers', takes the reader on a dark journey into the minds of the worst and most mysterious criminals...The ones who may never be caught. Devoid of shock and schlock, Douglas avoids the gratuitous and gives the straight goods:What kind of mind wants to commit these crimes, and how they may be caught.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 22, 2019
This is an interesting collection of still-unresolved cases that I enjoyed APART from the bloody awful formatting !! And I paid for this so I am less than impressed. Why can't Amazon get the Kindle transfer sorted out ? It really is most distracting as you attempt to read it. Every single time they wrote sheriff 's it was written thus and the most common errors were with hyphens and spacing problems....notuncommon,poorspelling, breakin, twentyeight, fellowJew, old- fashioned, criminalenterprise, contract--or third-party--killing or an insurance/ inheritance-related, Schwarzkopf 's, selfimportance, twenty-three- yearold, twentyfour, sixyear-old, blue-andwhite, immediate-result-ori-ented manner, garrotestyle, suddenrage-provoked, aroundthe, whyhasn't, subsequentwork, Ramseyschose, implyspecific, Lindysbaby, anaggressive and wouldhave........utter, bloody mess, isn't it ?? There were also apostrophe mistakes, at one point they write feat instead of feet (!!) then of instead of a, creditable instead of credible, be instead of been, bean and not beat.....words were missed from sentences as well, "...and one of things on which they pride themselves..." or "I would have expected him say." Simon & Schuster need a collective kick up the arse thinking this sort of presentation is fine. I did disagree with the odd comments they made or conclusions they reach here but then they're the experts !! A few passages in the Jack The Ripper chapter and the JonBenet case were examples of opinions I disagreed with. However, I've spent so long on this review in pointing out all the mistakes that I'm boring myself now so won't go into them here. I did find it amusing about Lizzie Borden and her sister calling their maid Bridget Maggie !! I think it staggering too that the Ramseys never properly sat down for police interviews till June 1998 which was a whole 18 months after the murder !! Then they wondered why people thought them guilty.....not sure what they expected with all those machinations, needless if they WERE innocent. The authors made mention of their being so confident in their own innocence that they went on national TV BUT it was in May 2000 so 14 years later !! That hardly spells not guilty to me.....(call me cynical). Anyway, in summary, cases are interesting but the presentation isn't anything we should be paying the privilege for. Next time, I'll expect a refund, Simon & Schuster.
I really enjoyed Mindhunter by John Douglas. It was an intelligent and informed account of first steps in offender profiling and very readable.
The Cases That Haunt Us looks in detail at handful of cases including Jack the Ripper, the Boston strangler and Jon Benet. I was particularly interested in the last case, the little girl murder on Christmas Day and immortalised by footage of her pageant appearances. Hers is such a sad and desperate story in that no one has been brought to account for her murder. I was unaware that John Douglas worked on this case so I was keen to learn of his interpretation of events.
Overall the book is interesting but not well written. It’s more journalistic in style than informed as a text. That’s not to say it’s incorrect, but it feels sloppy and knowing that Douglas can write better than this, it’s disappointing. That aside, I found his dissection of the Jon Benet case quite compelling and he swayed my former view. I’ve moved from a definite I’m sure ... did it to maybe someone else was responsible. Given the sway if ‘evidence’ in this case, that’s quite a shift change and for that reason alone, it’s worth reading.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 3, 2018
I wish Douglas had covered more cases in shorter form. As is, I found his style repetitive and turgid. There are some fascinating facts and conjectures here but they are buried under constant rehashing of things already established. I thought I'd die before Douglas finally got around to stating his conclusions. If you are true crime buff, it's worth a speed read but don't spend a lot of money for a copy.
Very detailed insight to several famous cases ranging from Jack the Ripper to the tragic JonBenet Ramsey case. Well written and, in this case, excellently narrated, I was convinced by Mr Douglas' eminently sensible profiles and propositions and the case histories were, to my limited knowledge, accurate, apart from his statement that the pseudo Yorkshire Ripper recordings sent to the Yorkshire Constabulary were eventually found to have been made by a former policeman who held a grudge against the lead investigator.
Certainly a fascinating book if true crime is your area of interest and I'm actively searching for more John Douglas books on MP3.
4.0 out of 5 starsOne of the best true crime books out there
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 25, 2018
The author needs no introduction and his Mindhunter (plus the Netflix show) speak for themselves. This book is an absolutely fascinating and intelligent look into some unsolved crimes from the past - he does a great job of telling the 'story' of the case before breaking down the steps he'd take when profiling and confronting the suspect. It's a little far-flung and egotistical at times, sure, but this guy basically invented modern criminal psychology. I'd be arrogant too. A really enrapturing and fascinating book, recommend to anyone interested in true crime.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 3, 2012
I was nicely surprised by this book where, rather than follow the more common "lurid" approach to compendiums of horrible cases and or reach more or less facile solutions or counter-solutions, the author takes a academic approach to a range of better-known cases from the past to the present. I found his behavioural study of Jack the Ripper particularly interesting. His examination of other cases in which he lays out the facts for the reader to examine and draw his/her own conclusions was also most refreshing.
I couldn't stop reading it until I finished it it was an absolutely brilliant with you of what possibly occurred in the house that night and warm very very similar to what I already believed. A must read
4.0 out of 5 starsA very interesting and insightful book on criminal profiling
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 15, 2017
Another very interesting and insightful book from the writer of Mindhunter. If you are fascinated by criminal profiling and love watching TV shows like Criminal Minds, then this is one of the books for you.
I really, really enjoyed this book. It gave another view on the crimes and the people involved. What we think of as being the general conception of what happened to some of the victims has been turned on it's head by the wonderful logic of John Douglas. I read Mindhunter previously and this is just as interesting a read. I didn't want this one to end!