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Publisher's Summary

With makeup and an affected Elvis pout, Tucson’s Charlie Schmid was a crude parody of a bad-boy heartthrob. In 1964, he still had a hold on girls who’d follow him anywhere. He murdered three of them.

It was the dawn of the free-love movement - perfect for a magnetic madman who’d also foreshadow its end a few years later in the malignant charisma of Charles Manson. The inspiration for a classic story by Joyce Carol Oates, Schmid, the most bizarre serial killer of any era, was the epitome of a narcissist flattered into believing he could get away with murder.

The Pied Piper is part of Bloodlands, a chilling collection of short addictive historical narratives from bestselling true-crime master Harold Schechter. Spanning a century in our nation’s murderous past, Schechter resurrects nearly forgotten tales of madmen and thrill-killers that dominated the most sensational headlines of their day.

©2018 Harold Schechter (P)2018 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

The Pipes Piper

The Pied Piper
By Harold Schechter
Narrated By Steven Weber
1 Hrs and 5 Mins.
It is a good book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enthralling, sad, and terrifying

Great performance. This story was equal parts captivating and heartbreaking. Schmitty was an absolute monster.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Short True Story

I found it distressing how many people knew about it but didn't notify the police and how easy he manipulated others.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

struggled to finish

I am not sure if the performance impacted my opinion or if it was just a subpar story but I forced myself to finish because it was short. I never did get a clear visual idea of Smitty's face full of make-up even though it was described multiple times. What/why is a "flesh colored bandage on his nose" all of the time? How could a 15 yo girl (or anyone) be attracted to this Joker-looking fellow? I cannot imagine it.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Wow

This one could have used a little more details in my opinion. It was more he said she said than anything. But maybe that's because that was how the case was presented. Who knows? It was a very interesting tale. Makes you wonder what goes through people's heads. I do plan to research not only this but the tales from all six of these stories. As an empath, some of the harsh realities in this series were very hard to stomach and get my head around. I trooped through them anyways. I recommend it to anybody who thinks they can stomach the horrible way humans treat other humans. It's fascinating to discover things that are known today dating so far back.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Genuinely Disturbing. Love It!!

Growing being told about the Mansons, I'm surprised this isn't talked about more. Can't Recommend Enough this whole series!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Dark History

This story gives the reader a very differwnt view of Americas sweetheart period! Great performance!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Admiralu
  • Camarillo, California United States
  • 07-31-18

Superb Narration of a Chilling Tale

This is another excellent chapter in the Bloodlands series. The Pied Piper recounts a series of murders by a psychopath from Arizona. A riveting read and superb listen, it paints a portrait of restless teens led astray and manipulated into trouble. At one time 30 people knew that some of the missing girls were dead and said nothing to authorities about it. Even after the killer was caught and unfortunately spared the death penalty he so richly deserved, he made friends with a professor of poetry. The professor began a thirty year program working with inmates. Killer Schmidt was brutally assaulted and ultimately died of his wounds. Only the killer's mother and the instructor mourned him. I find it distressing that the professor became such good friends with this fiend. A thrilling read and another superb narrative performance by Steven Weber.

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

interesting

very interesting story. a lot better than the others. I cant believe how crazy some people are.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Arizona murders

Pied Piper – 1950’s killer. This story didn’t have an enormous amount of background info but just was interesting in the peculiarities of the murder and his garish obsession with his appearance/make-up.

Bloodlands collection – 6 books The Pirate, Little Slaughterhouse on the Prairie, Brick Slayer, Panic, Pied Piper, Rampage

Crime stories, whether in movies, TV or books always reflect the morality and mortality of humans – as cautionary tales to warn us…me especially. The bigger the human flaws or outsized characters; the villain(s) or defenseless victim(s), the press (broadsheet & tabloid), psychiatrists, police, and/or lawyers the more I gawk...

Note: all the ebooks were tricked out with Kindle in motion special effects. Bumped up the ante to the sensationalism...can’t tell if that’s a shot at the press or not…