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Publisher's Summary

Hollywood's make-believe maniacs like Jason, Freddy, and Hannibal Lecter can't hold a candle to real-life monsters like John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, and scores of others who have terrorized, tortured, and terminated their way across civilization throughout the ages. Now, from the much-acclaimed author of Deviant, Deranged, and Depraved, comes the ultimate resource on the serial killer phenomenon.

Rigorously researched, this innovative and highly compelling compendium covers every aspect of multiple murderers, including psychology, cinema, fetishism, fan clubs, "trophies", and trading cards.

©2003 Harold Schechter (P)2016 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.0 out of 5.0
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ALL THE TRUE CRIME YOU WILL EVER NEED

This is a well-written account of serial killers (with a few thrown in which don't technically fit the mold), from the beginning of time. In addition to the usual "done to death" criminals like Theodore Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, Jack The Ripper, Zodiak, Jeffrey Dahlmer, Lizzie Borden, Ed Gein and Belle Guinness, there are dozens of little-known perps that I never knew existed. The author does a great job of capsulizing each killer's life, motivation, acts and adjudication, if available without a lot of unnecessary minute. As a result, the account flows nicely. A really great book! Well worth the credit!!!!

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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Interesting but repetitive

While the majority of this title is interesting it seems as though this is just a large compilation of many topics, hence the title, I guess. Rather than cover each killer/murder/crime in a long in depth look the book covers a crime then comes around to it a handful of times throughout the book making it seem as though they were running out of material and had to double back on a topic. It's still very fascinating and intriguing to hear some of the stories this book contains.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Informative but a bit repetitive

Accurately researched and written, also performed well. However somewhat repetitive....I realize Albert Fish falls into several categories of mental illness and depravity, just didn't need to rehash his atrocities in full at each reference.
Also lots of horrific murderers missed.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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great dissertation on the act of serial killing

written more like a dissertation than an anthology, using specific individuals as case studies or examples of trends. a little repetitive at times, but still very engaging with extensive coverage.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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creepy serial killers

this book is great in describing the various serial killers and how they chose their victims. the killers were into different ways to kill and creepy sexual assault. I now know how sick and twisted people are in this world.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Exhaustive book on the subject, but repetitive

Excellent and broad ranging. Covers killers and topics not found elsewhere. A solid 4/5.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Fantastic and educational. Definitely a good read.

I love this book. It's very educational, interesting, straight to the point, and overall enjoyable. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is into the study.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Too Many Repeats

Many killers and facts are repeated in each section off the book. Redundant! Confusing and repetitive.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Great for True Crime Fans

Would you consider the audio edition of The Serial Killer Files to be better than the print version?

I'm not reading the Kindle version, I only bought that to lower the price of the audio book.

What about Charles Constant’s performance did you like?

He does a fine job.

Any additional comments?

I love this book. I like just about everything Schechter writes, but this one moves faster than others because there are so many killers to talk about. If you like true crime, I think you'll like this audio book.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Not interesting

This book is peppered with too many very short examples. You never get into the details of any of the murders and I found myself easily distracted because there wasn't a storyline to hold on to.

10 of 14 people found this review helpful

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