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Summary

There are many myths about serial killers: that they are all dysfunctional loners; all white males; only motivated by sex; that they all travel and operate across a wide area; cannot stop killing; are all insane, or evil geniuses; and that they all want to get caught. 

Of course, there are some serial killers who fit into these categories, but the married Green River Killer was not a dysfunctional loner; there are plenty of female and non-Caucasian serial killers; Dr Harold Shipman was certainly not motivated by sex; many serial killings (such as the Ipswich prostitute murders carried out by Steve Wright) happen within a confined area; and the BTK Killer, Dennis Rader, stopped killing in 1991 but wasn't caught until 14 years later. Many serial killers may have a low animal cunning or be 'street smart', but few of them are Mensa-level geniuses. 

Each of the 30 cases covered here is unusual in some respect, perhaps in the way in which the killer carried out their crimes, the choice of victims, the way in which they were apprehended, or the method of their execution. 

The cases are presented alphabetically by country - from Australia via Colombia, Great Britain, Indonesia, Iran, South Africa and elsewhere to the United States - and then chronologically. They come from across history and from all over the world. The author has gone back as far as possible to contemporary source material - newspaper accounts, trial evidence, interviews with perpetrators or survivors - rather than rely on the increasingly blurred truth to be found online and in far too many collections. 

©2018 Paul Simpson (P)2018 Little, Brown Book Group

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What listeners say about The Serial Killer Files

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Well...

It is hard to say that I have enjoyed the story. it is very heavy subject and I can't imagine a normal person enjoying such things. However it was fascinating from psychological point of view. It must have been a tough job to research for all the information. Well let's summarise the whole thing.
Brilliant writing. Well done piece of macabre reading. Narrating very good. Kept me hooked the whole 12 hrs and 25 min. The story - it is absolutely terrifying to realize that those (for lack of better word)- "things" actually exist and they are the same species as me. I wouldn't call them a monsters or animals because it would be an insult to the latter.

9 people found this helpful

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Superb Reference Book

Well narrated and wonderfully graphic. Great insight into the mind of serial killers.

Only criticism is that it would be better if it showed names rather than chapter numbers so that it was easier to find and revisit your favourite cases

5 people found this helpful

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great presentation

All you ever wanted to know about Serial Killers told in a way that's interesting

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Good narrator, overall meh

It's not a bad book at all but there's not much I hadn't read before somewhere else. Super brief chapters on lots of different killers, done by country. Still a huge preponderance of American and UK killers and some obvious others from around the world missing

2 people found this helpful

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must read

i thought this was a fantastic piece or work by the author. well read and you can tell he has put alot of homework into the individual's involved

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excellent

excellent narrator
great detail in all stories
really helped me with my criminal profiling course.
Thanks!

2 people found this helpful

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Narration and accents off putting

It is hard not to get distracted by the valiant efforts of the narrator in putting the scents on of each country and character.
Book didn’t need it.

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dark and powerful, one you will remember

superb audio book, well narrated by John Banks. difficult to listen to sometimes but a must for any reader interested in true crime

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Entertaining

entertaining but didn't have enough details for my liking. Still worth a listen and the narrator had an engaging voice.

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Cannot listen

Probably a good book. Author reads way too fast have had to stop listening after five minutes.

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  • Lee Dorsey
  • 26-05-21

Loved it!

Wonderful book! A nice overview my country. Some I had never heard of and I’m a huge true crime/serial killer person. It was nice to learn about different people. You won’t be disappointed!!

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  • Jimmy
  • 22-08-19

Good book

If you are looking for a run down in some crazy serial killer s this is the book for you. If you are looking for all the police and trial information on a certain serial killer this book isn't for you. Overall I enjoyed alot thou.