cornerofmadness (cornerofmadness) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

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Book 28

There But for the Grace of God: Survivors of the 20th Century's Infamous Serial KillersThere But for the Grace of God: Survivors of the 20th Century's Infamous Serial Killers by Fred Rosen

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I almost never give one stars. I try to find something good in a book but no, this one deserves it. I've read others by Mr. Rosen and they were nearly equally bad. Honestly, I think he's in the true crime genre merely to bash the police and FBI because everything I've read by him reads that way.

This could have been either very good, giving the survivors of serial killers a voice, to take the focus off the monsters that hurt them (which if you think about it is rather lurid and some of the more recent mass murderers have stated that they did what they did in part because the media would insure their names are remembered) or it could have been salacious and exploitative.

It was neither. It was still mostly about the killers and occasionally people he met that had nothing to do with anything (like people in a diner) but mostly it's about how much Rosen hates the police and the FBI. Here are a few samples.

"The big shots told the small town cop that the FBI had come in with one of their profiles and, by gum, it had to be right because it was the FBI."

"Showing the kind of stupidity even a memoir writer can't make up."

"In this case, and others, blatant racism built in the FBI response to a serial killer running amuck."

"The feds advice, as in all such cases, was absolutely worthless."

About the only blatant prejudice you'll see in this book is Rosen's own. He hates cops but he'll give their 'duh moments' (he actually had the cops going duh in one spot but rereading this for quotes is painful) a pass if he can blame the FBI. This book was written for one reason, as a mental masturbation exercise on the author's part. Not sure why he has a hard on for the FBI but his disdain is more than obvious and some of what he has here isn't just his opinion but an outright lie. Unless of course you prescribe to the idea that all proof that the FBI profiles have helped solve some cases is a lie (and all those dozens of books out there about those cases are just bull).

There are a lot of good crime writers out there. Go read one of them. Don't make my mistake and buy this laughable piece of work. Don't even get it out of the library. You can do better.

View all my reviews

Tags: true crime

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