For the first time Gacy’s lawyer and confidant tells his chilling tale of how he defended an American serial killer.
“Sam, could you do me a favor?”
Thus begins a story that has now become part of America's true-crime hall of fame. It is a gory, grotesque tale befitting a Stephen King novel. It is also a David and Goliath saga - the story of a young lawyer fresh from the public defender's office whose first client in private practice turns out to be the worst serial killer in our nation's history. This is a gripping true crime narrative that reenacts the gruesome killings and the famous trial that shocked a nation.
©2012 Sam L. Amirante and Danny Broderick (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
This audiobook ultimately rated 4 stars, although I did have some issues with it. However for the most part I was enthralled by the narrative of Gacy's defense lawyer's quest to give his client a fair trial. Most of it was extremely well written, and both interesting and engaging, even for someone familiar with this case. I found myself more interested in the defense lawyer's experiences than I would have expected. It is a bit of a shame that only a couple of murders were dealt with in any detail, although one senses that the authors wanted to refrain from repeating what had been written many times before. The book could have done with some editing most notably the last 2 hours which almost exclusively dealt with the closing arguments of both defense and prosecution. This entire section could have been cut, and made me less enthusiastic about a full star review. Another point I found irritating was the constant repetition of the author's argument that Gacy deserved a fair trial. I thought that the authors made a rather convincing and elegant argument in the introduction, based on the American Constitution's insurance of a fair trial for everyone, no matter how repugnant (as Gacy was). But the authors return again and again to re-word this argument and it beleaguered the point. I couldn't help thinking: Sir, thou doth protest too much! However the absolute BEST thing about this audiobook was the standout performance given by Robin Bloodworth. His portrayal of Gacy's confession to his lawyers was outstanding and riveting. He must surely have studied Gacy's affectations as he nailed it perfectly. On the whole this was an excellent book, and well worth the listen. Recommended!
I thought this would go into more detail about the legal process, but it kind of skimmed over the trial. The book mainly talked about JWG's quirks and personality problems, which was interesting enough. It didn't get too much into the gory details, which I appreciated.
One thing I didn't like, the attorney writing this often paused to wrap himself in the American Flag and rhapsodize about the right to a fair trial- A sentiment I wholeheartedly agree with, but he didn't need to beat it into the ground.
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