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Too Pretty to Live Audiobook

Too Pretty to Live: The Catfishing Murders of East Tennessee

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Publisher's Summary

In this stunning true-crime thriller of Facebook, catfishing, and jealousy, a double murder begins with the click of a button.

When Bill Payne and Billie Jean Hayworth began their romance, they unknowingly set in motion a diabolical plot that would end with them murdered in their own home, Hayworth holding their mercifully unharmed infant.

Chris was a CIA agent who was concerned about Jenelle. Seeing the cyberbullying she had endured, and worried for her safety, Chris got in touch with Jenelle's protective parents and her devoted boyfriend, warning them that Payne and Hayworth were a danger to Jenelle. He got especially close with Jenelle's mother, Barbara, who thought of Chris like a son, though she had never met him. Chris claimed that surveillance of Payne and Hayworth revealed that the two of them were planning on harming Jenelle, that it was imminent, and that something needed to be done immediately. Chris promised that he would have their back if they were to act to protect Jenelle. And so they did. Jenelle's father, Buddy, and her boyfriend, Jamie, broke into the home of Payne and Hayworth and murdered them in their own home.

What the police investigation turned up, though, made this crime all the more terrifying. Jenelle had been Chris the entire time, catfishing her family and her boyfriend to act in vengeance on her behalf. Using forensic linguistics and diving through the brambles that Jenelle laid to cover her tracks, police were able to put together a chilling portrait of a sociopath made all the more ruthless by the anonymity of her online life.

Bizarre and unforgettable, Dennis Brooks examines the crime and trial from all angles, bringing his expertise as the lead prosecutor in this strange and disturbing case.

©2016 Dennis Brooks (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (96 )
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4.1 (89 )
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Performance
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  •  
    justin 08-09-16
    justin 08-09-16 Member Since 2016
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    "great true crime"

    I'm always looking for a good new true crime, especially when it's one I haven't heard before. this was a well written, well researched tale written by the prosecutor himself.

    I highly recommend this book to all true crime fans. the story is just too crazy not to be true!

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sara Cundiff 08-26-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Great book, truly a crazy story!"

    I really enjoyed this book, it was written so well, it made me feel I was right there during the whole thing!! One of the best true crime books I've read. This book is defiantly worth a credit. You gave to read it to believe it is all I have to say! Narrator did a great job as well, delivering a very good performance to a already good story, but his voice made it even more entertaining five stars all the way around!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deana Davidson 08-25-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Everything You Want It To Be."
    Would you listen to Too Pretty to Live again? Why?

    I did imagine myself listening to it again during the first time around because there are so many complex details that give you glimpses into the psyche of the characters. I am fascinated by hearing about the mental discrepancies of Janelle and Barbara and Buddy an the only thing that may stop me from it is that its just incredibly sad and frustrating, and most true crime murder stories are.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Examining the individual psyches of the Potter family was very interesting and the author and attorney really delved into some intriguing psychoanalyses. What an amazing job he did.


    Which character – as performed by John Pruden – was your favorite?

    The author the emails and texts in a very deadpan way, which was in order to convey the intelligence and ability of the authors because one of the main points of the entire story was how lack of intelligence, maturity and education contributed to the crime.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me cry not just for the murder victims and the baby but even for Jaime and Buddy to some extent for being fooled. Also it made me examine my own emotional reactions and paranoia, which happen on a much smaller scale, in order to understand the guilty parties. I related some of the characters to people I've known. Doing so was very unsettling. I was most revolted by any similarities I sensed with Janelle because she is quite evil!


    Any additional comments?

    This was so much more complex and compelling than I had imagined it could be. And expertly handled by the author both in handling the case and in describing everything for the book. He made me want to camp out with all of the files for a month and just pour over the details so as to keep looking for little clues into the minds of monsters.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marnie N. Peters 09-30-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Captivating!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this to a friend! I was fascinated by narcissistic narrow minded thinking.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daryl Jarvinen 09-24-16
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    "Too Pretty To Live"

    I thought the story was overly dependent on the email, text and social media aspects of the case. The story line was hard to follow and confusing with the amount of false personas.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim 09-12-16
    Kim 09-12-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Throw this "Catfish" back!"

    The story is a fascinating one. I loved the new wave techno crime idea, and this could have been an awesome read. The problem is the story is hard to follow, it kinda jumps back and forth, repeating itself, slowing down the plot. The person performing the audio did a good job, but I became aggravated with the constant reading of the emails filled with horrible grammar. This is what you will hear for most of the book, and this is what takes away the interest for me. I know it is important to the case and the overdose of this killed the book. Less is more in this case.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mel Johansson Wilmington, NC, United States 09-10-16
    Mel Johansson Wilmington, NC, United States 09-10-16 Member Since 2011

    Reader & all-around literate person

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    "Fascinating story that needed a good editor"

    I'm a huge true crime fan, and this book didn't disappoint. The story is morbidly fascinating, and it's well structured; my interest never flagged. The reader is excellent.

    I especially appreciated the unique point of view that the writer's position as prosecuting attorney in the case brought to the narrative. The thing that kept me from giving this book 5 stars is that the author needed a good editor. He often misuses words ("tout," for instance) and makes rookie mistakes like telling us what the victim--now deceased--was thinking at some point.

    Overall I enjoyed this book very much, but the writing flaws got in the way what was otherwise a ripping good read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    pennylane 09-07-16
    pennylane 09-07-16
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    "Such a strange story that keeps you hooked..."

    This book was so out there but the author and the narrator do an excellent job! Its such a strange story but I was hooked until the very end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    lWeave 09-06-16
    lWeave 09-06-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Not the fault of the author or reader..."

    It was difficult to listen to this audio book as it heavily relied upon poorly written text and Facebook message transcripts. Many of the ramblings of the main characters in written communication are filled with grammatical errors and terrible spelling / misused words. Heavy with cussing and negative language many excerpts were hard to listen to and left you annoyed with having to filter through the ignorant language to understand the story. Maybe it would be easier to read but it was not easy to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle in New York City NYC 09-02-16 Member Since 2010
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    "Kept my attention during a cross country drive"

    I thought this book was written exactly the way an episode of Investigation Discovery would play out. So if you like this type of show then you would like this book. I enjoyed the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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