Milat

Inside Australia's Biggest Manhunt - a Detective's Story
Narrated by: Peter Hosking
Length: 7 hrs and 27 mins
Categories: Nonfiction, True Crime
3.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A true insider's story of the backpacker murders from the detective who led the team that arrested Ivan Milat.

Milat - the serial killer who preyed on young hitchhikers. The backpackers - the innocent victims of a brutal murderer. Belanglo - a place that became synonymous with pure evil. It was the biggest and most complex manhunt in Australian history, an investigation that gripped a nation. Behind the many false leads and dead ends, precious clues emerged that pointed to one man.

This is the story of how Ivan Milat was caught. Clive Small takes us inside the operation he led as his team painstakingly pieced together the evidence that put Milat behind bars. But questions remain. Did he act alone? Were there other victims? How much did his family know? And what of his great-nephew, who brutally killed a young man in 2010?

Chilling, forensic, compassionate - this is the definitive story that could only be told by someone at the centre of the police operation. It is also a powerful argument for the investigation of more than 100 unsolved murders.

©2014 Clive Small and Tom Gilling (P)2016 Bolinda

What members say

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

A story poorly told.

For such a dramatic story, this was one of the dullest, driest, and least organized.

1 person found this helpful

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Author is writing for his personal benefit

Did not include much about the actual murders. I found the author (a member of the police force involved in capturing him) to be very defensive. Large parts of the book seemed to be his response to people who had criticized his investigation. Also included a lot of material on several other crimes that were only very tangentially related.

I found it difficult to follow and maintain interest in.

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Unusual Progression

True crime stories can take many different directions. I prefer true crime that focuses on the victims' lives and the social and cultural settings of the murder. I don't need a lot of gory crime details or hypotheses about the killer's life. This story takes a different direction entirely. In the first half, the Backpacker crimes are discussed, the evidence against Milat is presented, and Milat is convicted. It is very short. The author, a lead investigator on the team, goes on to talk about the damage caused by another investigating officer he had to remove from the team. In the second half, random crimes are discussed. They start will crimes potentially committed by Milat and then the crimes not connected to Milat at all are presented. It is a little puzzling, but it wasn't a bad story. The narrator was very good.

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  • Adam Webb
  • 01-20-17

Intensely interesting

If you've ever wanted to really know about Milat, then getting it straight from the investigators perspective is a great start. This is a great book. Well worth listening to. Part 1 focuses on Milat and is intensely interesting. Part 2 revolves around a Milat but diverges off into discussions of other unrelated yet noteworthy crimes in NSW. The discussion of those crimes in this book seems out of place.

I recently listened to a podcast where NSW Police were ridiculed for their failure to act when the Paul Onions attack was reported. That criticism is just and accurate. Small brushes it off as though it was inconsequential and unlikely to have diverted Milat from his murderous journey. This is the standard rebuttal of a commissioned NSW Police Officer to criticism and its sad to see that style enter the literature. It does the book no favours.

I would have like to have read more about Milat's motives. Why did he do it? Information from post arrest psychiatric analysis would be a great addition to the book.

Other than this, it's entirely worth reading or listening too

3 people found this helpful

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  • Milena
  • 02-18-17

Fascinating

What made the experience of listening to Milat the most enjoyable?

Well read with fascinating detail and insight into what occurred behind the scenes, behind the headlines that we all read back then. I couldn't put this one down.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Learning about the family involvement.

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

Scared me a little.

Any additional comments?

A gruesome part of Australian history that people should know about. Milat is behind bars forever but I'd be more worried about certain family members.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-29-19

This was not what I was looking for

** 2 stars**
This was not what I was looking for in an Ivan Milat True Crime book

Time taken to read/ listen: 10 Days

I listened to this as an audiobook on Audible, and it is really not what I was looking for from a true crime book.

This book is split into two Parts. Part 1 looks into the police investigation into the Back Packer Murders and Taskforce Air, who were responsible for bringing Ivan Milat to trial. Part 2 looks at the different police techniques that were "discovered" during the investigation and how these have been used to solve various different cold cases.

This read like a bunch of police documents that go through procedure, they do not analyse the case or attempt to understand Milat or his background.

Not the book for me but could work for someone else

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  • Hank
  • 04-14-19

An insider's view ... Great read

Great read ! It's from the perspective of the detective running the task Force investigating the murders and whole sequence of events leading to his arrest and conviction; but also about police procedure and the politics at the time within the task Force in getting the job done. It goes beyond the Milat murders to include how police homicide investigations improved substantially from the systems and procedures put into place; and cites a few examples of solving other cold cases after Milat was jailed. Highly recommend.

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  • Chris
  • 03-03-19

Worth the time

Great book, true information, have a new understanding of how they work. Very well written!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Billy Bunter
  • 04-22-18

clinical and factual

I found this book a little to clinical ,the narrator was a little monotone but I think that is the way the had been written .

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 02-16-18

Fascinating inside look

Very well structured book. The Broader context of the media and an inside look at how a task force works was fantastic. The victims and their families were treated respectfully and I really enjoyed this tale of painstaking police work that bought a serial killer to justice. I enjoyed the performance but in parts the readers delivery is a little flat, a minor complaint though.

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  • Luke
  • 03-20-19

first half of the book was ok

it read more like a timeline rather than telling the story i wasnt a fan

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-02-19

pooly narrated very monotone,

I struggled to concentrate as the narrator was not engaing at all. Too many references to dates times all out sequence makes it hard to keep up.