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Precious Victims

Penguin True Crime
Narrated by: Kevin Pierce
Length: 15 hrs and 42 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

This is a New York Times best-selling true crime book considered by many to be a classic of the genre.

The police in Jersey County, Illinois, accepted Paula Sims' story of a masked kidnapper who snatched her baby girl, Lorelei, from her bassinet. Three years later, her second newborn daughter suffered an identical fate - and this time the police were unable to stop searching until they had discovered the whole horrifying truth. This is the full terrifying story of twisted sexuality and hate seething below the surface of a seemingly normal family and of the massive investigation and nerve-shattering trial that made the unthinkable a reality. Written by the lawyer who won the case and the reporter who covered its entirety, the listener is given a unique close-up of the riveting drama that unfolds, painting a dark picture of the depraved family who lived with a murderous secret.

©2015 Charles Bosworth, Jr., Don Weber (P)2015 Charles Bosworth, Jr.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Coudnt believe it!

I had never heard of this story, as in the 80's I was quite young. Listening to this account of this event was heartbreaking, for the two lost little girls.
At times, I was in disbelief as I listened to the mothers rendition of how her babies were "stolen".
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book. The court proceedings were very well detailed. A MUST listen!

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I can't recommend this book.

This was a hard one for me to give a negative review simply because it is just absolutely so absurd a tale. Like helter skelter where you ask yourself all the time "there is just no way there can be people like this, right?", precious victims is such a tale. The narrator is also quite decent. That, however, is about it and where things start bugging me. I won't spoil anything, but the book repeats itself a lot, while still being confusing. I think it was a better book than audiobook. There are two characters named Don, and some times they are referred by last name, and other times "Don did this while Don looked on bemused". Not quite that far but certain times if you aren't paying close enough attention something will happen and you have to try and figure out which Don is happy about it. There is a sizeable cat so I don't think it would have hurt to help keep people aware who is who.

There are a bunch of little things that I didn't care for overall but one of the biggest was the repetition. I have listened to audiobooks with interrogations written in and they have a good pace. "We did this and then tried this and he fell for it". This book goes more like "we said this and she looked sad but said nothing, then we said more and she looked sadder but said nothing so we said more and she looked sadder but said nothing" and dragging it out to either no or little payoff. It just all felt clumsy. Overly padded while shortening the scene but keeping the facts would have been much better. I would say you could probably trim 4 to 6 hours off the book and be the better for it.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • N
  • 2015-12-28

Great listen

This kept me wanting more. Great detail and a great ending. I listened to this book on a long car trip home e for the holiday even when I arrived I didn't not want to turn it off because I was waiting for an answer. I live true crime shows and books and I highly recommend this book.

25 people found this helpful

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  • E F
  • 2015-11-10

A true life story of human evil!

This book gripped me from the start!

The person whom the book centers around, Paula Sims, is one of the strangest and hardest to understand people I could imagine. Her actions are beyond the comprehension of most people (I would hope). The book mainly discusses her prosecution, but also gives a background story of her and her family. There is some speculation, especially as the case is built against her, but in the end, you find out the truth. It is an appropriately horrifying end to a tragic story of human evil!

This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast.

24 people found this helpful

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  • Chrissy
  • 2016-04-24

Well written True Crime

The crimes this book are based on are truly heart wrenching. I was worried about listening to a book which involved murdered children; I thought maybe it would be too emotional for me, but it was really a wonderful read. I really liked that this book had a great balance of describing the events without overly focusing on the horrific nature of the crime. The authors really take you on a ride from the crimes committed to after trial confessions which give you a real since of closure at the end.
Wonderfully well written book and Kevin Pierce is a great narrator. If you enjoy true crime, I highly suggest giving this one a listen!

20 people found this helpful

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  • Brandy
  • 2015-11-24

A must listen!

This book is very well written and very well narrated. Kevin Pierce is by far my favorite narrator. He really brings out the emotion and sincerity in the authors work. I especially liked that this book is co-authored by the prosecuting attorney in the case... It lends a deeper level of personal touch and honesty to the story. I think Don Webber might have a "fall back" career if the DDA gig doesn't pan out. I will definitely be keeping my eye open for the next one. This is a very tragic, heartbreaking story that I wish was a work of fiction... Thankfully Susan Simms decided to let her "Rumplestilskin" out in Don Webber's jurisdiction.

18 people found this helpful

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  • A. LeBlanc
  • 2016-01-27

Tragic story but very well written

What did you love best about Precious Victims?

I loved the determination of the prosecutor and detectives to make sure the killer paid for her crimes.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Precious Victims?

When the prosecutor got the call that there was a second "kidnapping."

What does Kevin Pierce bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

His voice is amazing- soothing but will NOT put you to sleep. He does an amazing job. I search for books narrated by him.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes- it was very hard to take off my earbuds!!

Any additional comments?

Charles Bosworth Jr is an amazing writer- he's able to give you lots of details without being boring or repetitive.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Mary
  • 2015-12-12

I couldn't stop listening!

This real crime book read like a novel. I would sit in my car at my destination to hear what cane next.

17 people found this helpful

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  • IndyMcDuff
  • 2016-03-20

Well worth the listen!

Well written and well read. The outrageous behavior of both Paula and Robert Sims is one for the history books of evil people.

For myself, listening to true crime audio books takes the monotony out of the same 4 mile walk I've done thousands of times. BUT...there are crimes and then there are crimes so heinous that I found myself wanting to personally wring Paula's neck, and Robert's as well.

It is well worth the listen. I do not for a moment believe Robert Sims was innocent, but I'd be interested to learn what others think after hearing this book.

After listening (and some chapters I listened to more than once), I Googled to see what Paula was up to and found out that both Randy and Robert were killed at the same time by a drunk driver, in December 2015. Randy truly believed his father was innocent, but I think he had to make himself believe that because the father was all he had.

Wait until you hear how she got Heather out of sight. ARGH!

7 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2018-05-10

Courtroom scenes become tedious

I feel like about half the book is description of courtroom testimony and proceedings, which became monotonous and boring very quickly for me. I enjoy thick descriptions within true crime books but the author goes over the same points again and again, getting lost in minutiae. It's also very clear that one of the authors was the lead prosecutor in the case because the story ends up focusing on him, his personal life, and his "brilliant" legal tactics way more than it should.

The best part was Kevin Pierce's narration. I've enjoyed several true crime books with this narrator.

6 people found this helpful

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  • L. B. Rouse
  • 2016-06-30

Fascinating story.

This is a very interesting story, the deaths of 2 baby girls years apart, quite a mystery...
I always liked true stories such as this, and particularly enjoyed learning the attorney's strategies and thought process as he presented the prosecution's case.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Julia
  • 2017-09-12

This Is How A Crime Book Should Be Written

'Precious Victims' grips you from page one. Heavy in details however totally lacking in monotony taking you on a journey that will make you scratch your head and get you asking yourself 'Is it me or are some people born without a soul?'

This is a detailed account of the true and devastating story of a woman who reported that her baby daughter was kidnapped from the marital home. Sadly the child was found deceased shortly after. Her statement sounded wholly implausible however the police just closed the case and did not pursue it further. You would think that would be 'It' but no there was more. Three years later another daughter was born and another abduction occurred.

Totally unbelievable tale but it really did happen. Don W. Weber and Charles Bosworth are faultless in the recounting of this case from the beginning right through to the epilogue in 2015. Does not leave you wondering what they are doing now.

Kevin Pierce, as usual gives us another brilliant performance. However I doubt if he would know how to give less as he is always superb.

5 people found this helpful