This book is very interesting! If you are into true crime or just serial killers in general you will not be disappointed. This is a great book written through the eyes of a female psychiatrist back when it was rare to have a women in that field and when the field was not very well respected.
I had expected to end up reading about the stories and details of the serial killers minds, and although there were great details in the interviews that the author shares; I felt that majority of the book (especially the ending) was about her thories on the basis of the crimes that the serial killer minds worked. I enjoyed the book but was slighly disappointed with the ending. Not recommended for the young, some details can be grusome.
I have to agree with the reviews on Amazon that the author of this book is pretentious, arrogant, and not an engaging writer. The work she presents is interesting, but her theory certainly isn't the ONLY one to explain serial killers, although she presents it as dogma. Also, the lack of appropriate use of DSM in the book is disheartening. Psychiatric terms are thrown about in the most ridiculous, inappropriate way, and the appropriate context of terms like, "borderline" and "schizophrenia" aren't explained, so the average reader has no idea how off base the terms are, and what they should represent. And as for her description of her inclusive diagnosis center, where she sees if patients have decreased blood flow and then a surgeon does a bypass, it makes it sound like psychiatric and neurologic illness can be cured with a quick nip and tuck. This is an illustration of how she oversimplifies and is grandiose. There was WAY too much self-disclosure. As somebody trying to keep boundries, and modulate transference with a deadly population of patients, she does a great job of giving them all the information they need, and insight into her character, to cause her harm or distress. I just can't recommend this book for either it's content or the author's insight.
I found this book fascinating. It is written by a psychiatrist who studies serial killers and is now a profiler. This book details her interviews and studies of such infamous serial killers as John Wayne Gacy, Wayne Williams, and Gary Leon Ridgeway. The interviews are like a train-wreck... you are horrified yet somehow intrigued at the same time. If you are a fan of true crime stories or are interested in psychology, you will enjoy this one!
"I've alsways had a thing about eyes. What's the saying-eyes are the window to a persons soul. OK, I don't believe in a soul, but Yes, I think they are a window to the person inside. Its hard to lie or fool someone when they're looking into your eyes. Too weird. Looking into thos girls eyes when they died. None of them looked back into mine very long. Maybe the could see it, that they were going to die. Usually they looked over or just past me. All but Simms. I kept her blindfolded and tried to knock her out first. I didn't want to look at her. I don't know why. Maybe I was afraid she would see it, and I didn't want her to. I didn't want her to know she was dying."
From a letter written by killer Bobby Joe Long to Dr. Helen Morrison