On the evening of December 3rd, 1957, seven-year-old Maria Ridulph and her eight-year-old friend, Kathy Sigman, were playing in the new fallen snow on a street corner in the sleepy town of Sycamore, Illinois. A stranger approached the girls, introduced himself as "Johnny" and offered them piggyback rides. When Kathy Sigman ran home to get her mittens, she left Maria and Johnny behind on the street corner. Little did she know that she would be the last person to see Maria Ridulph alive.
The FBI was called in and the search for Maria and her kidnapper caught the nation's attention. President Eisenhower and FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover demanded daily reports from the field agents. Nearly six months later, Maria's remains were discovered in a thicket 100 miles away. The search for Maria's killer went on, but all leads were slowly exhausted and finally the case went cold.
A series of events begun by a mother's deathbed confession led to Jack D. McCullough being convicted for the murder of Maria Ridulph 55 years after the crime, making it the oldest cold case in U.S. history ever to be successfully prosecuted. Follow along with the author as he investigates this historic event to discover if justice was truly served, or was another tragedy piled on top of the first, riding piggyback?
©2014 Jeffrey Dean Doty (P)2016 Jeffrey Dean Doty
Although I love true crime, I found this book to be a little dry. I don't know if it was the author or the narrator but I could not get into it. Saying that I found the case and the overall story very interesting.
I was provided this book at no cost by the author narrator or publisher for a honest review
I have to admit that I'm a total Audible junkie. MUST have book going at all times. I may be the subject of a family intervention someday.
About 20 minutes in and I just can't see myself listening to this narrator for the upcoming hours. SO dry and almost inappropriately cheerful sounding - in other words utterly disconnected from the content. The writing sounds fine, like the author may have an interesting perspective on this very interesting case, but I think I'll find a YouTube documentary instead. Returning it.
I haven't read the book, so can not compare.
I did go online after listening to the book for updates and pictures. What a touching and sad story for the family of Maria, but the wrong man was convicted.
The whole story of how the they went after Jack years later. What? Why? There were so many obvious lies and he HAD AN ALIBI! What a misuse of justice there. I was happy to find he has since been released.
He did a great job with this story. I was interested from the start to the finish.
Justice gone so wrong
This audiobook was provided by the author/narrator/publisher free of charge in exchange for an unbiased review.
Piggyback completed the story that the news media only began to tell about the conviction of Jack McCullough. Great investigative work by Jeff Doty.
A good listen makes for an amazing day!
The narration and the story made all the elements of a true crime book
The nature of the case and all the facts which came together many years after the crime.
"I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom."
Jeff Doty's Piggyback was the only publication, book or article, to get it right. Jack McCullough was convicted of a crime he did not commit. John Gully's narration is wonderful. His pleasing, easy to listen to voice gives us a very worthwhile added value to this true crime expose'.
Avid reader who is also a mommy. Audible saved my reading time!
When little Maria Ridulph is taken from a busy neighborhood and murdered, it begins a 55 year old case that culminates in John Tessier (aka Jack McCullough) being arrested for the crime when he is 74 years old. Sounds sensational, no? Except that Tessier was cleared of the crime when it happened and the FBI interviewed him, he passed a lie detector test, and had a pretty airtight alibi. Not to mention that the logistics of his movements that night just would not work with the timeline of what took place and when Maria was taken.
This listen has an interesting twist as the author goes into detail about himself and why he started writing the book and the connections he had with the case. He went out of his way, and became a bit repetitive, detailing his own motivations for writing the book. In my mind, he didn’t need to do this. The evidence itself made no sense and no sane person would think that there was a case against Tessier. My suspicions are more to why the prosecution thought there was a case, why Tessier’s family decided he was the murderer so long after the 1947 disappearance, and why his own sister would accuse him of rape based on regression therapy.
It was a very, very interesting listen with a good narrator that did the material justice. The only thing I would have liked to hear is more about little Maria. The author prefaced everything with the details of the abduction and murder but it really would have been more honest to package it as a vindication story of Tessier. I believe the way the book is packaged now, it leaves out a huge chunk of the tale and leaves the first victim in the story behind.
I received this audiobook for free through Audiobook Boom! in exchange for an honest review.
I would have liked more introduction into the case as it was new to me
Emotions toward the victim plus introduction to the case
In my opinion, the victim was left behind in this book
The author has done an excellent job with his research one can feel how the case has gotten under the skin of the writer I like that. But once again I would have liked more introduction to the case and some emotions toward the victim
This book was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review
All opinions are my own
You can always find my full review on my blog - link in description
Doty did a good job walking us through his investigative step and how he ultimately came to his conclusions.
Yes. This was my first "true crime" book, and he kept my attention until the end.
clear, average, monotone
The criminal justice system has more power than I realized.
I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom.
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