Thursday, June 23, 2011

Review of "The Stranger Beside Me" by Ann Rule

I've worked in prisons most of my adult life. I have looked many killers in the eyes...some who committed crimes as disturbing as Bundy's. You can see it in most of them. The most disturbing thing about Bundy is the fact that most people couldn't see it. Even his friend, Ann Rule, didn't see it.

"The Stranger Beside Me" by Ann Rule is a brilliantly constructed book. It's amazing how she transitions from not knowing anything about the murders to not believing the murders to accepting that her friend, Ted, was a serial killer. It's shocking and interesting to read. This book includes a lot of details that I never heard anywhere until I read Rule's book.

I rank this book as possibly the greatest true crime book ever written. It might be second to "Helter Skelter". I enjoy all of Rule's work, but this one is different. Her personal connection to the subject makes it even more disturbing. It's brilliant. Her very rounded background and relationship with Bundy give a perspective that we'll probably never see again in another book. I recommend it to anyone who likes reading crime books. It reads like a novel, only it's more difficult to stomach. It's real.

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