Award-winning investigative reporter Robert Kolker delivers a haunting and humanizing account of the true-life search for a serial killer still at large on Long Island, in a compelling tale of unsolved murder and Internet prostitution. One late spring evening in 2010, Shannan Gilbert, after running through the oceanfront community of Oak Beach screaming for her life, went missing. No one who had heard of her disappearance thought much about what had happened to the twenty-four-year-old: she was a Craigslist prostitute who had been fleeing a scene—of what, no one could be sure. The Suffolk County Police, too, seemed to have paid little attention—until seven months later, when an unexpected discovery in a bramble alongside a nearby highway turned up four bodies, all evenly spaced, all wrapped in burlap. But none of them Shannan's. There was Maureen Brainard-Barnes, last seen at Penn Station in Manhattan three years earlier, and Melissa Barthelemy, last seen in the Bronx in 2009. There was Megan Waterman, last seen leaving a hotel in Hauppage, Long Island, just a month after Shannan's disappearance in 2010, and Amber Lynn Costello, last seen leaving a house in West Babylon a few months later that same year. Like Shannan, all four women were petite and in their twenties, they all came from out of town to work as escorts, and they all advertised on Craigslist and its competitor, Backpage. In a triumph of reporting—and in a riveting narrative—Robert Kolker presents the first detailed look at the shadow world of escorts in the Internet age, where making a living is easier than ever and the dangers remain all too real. He has talked exhaustively with the friends and family of each woman to reveal the three-dimensional truths about their lives, the struggling towns they came from, and the dreams they chased. And he has gained unique access to the Oak Beach neighborhood that has found itself the focus of national media scrutiny—where the police have flailed, the body count has risen, and the neighbors have begun pointing fingers at one another. There, in a remote community, out of sight of the beaches and marinas scattered along the South Shore barrier islands, the women's stories come together in death and dark mystery. Lost Girls is a portrait not just of five women, but of unsolved murder in an idyllic part of America, of the underside of the Internet, and of the secrets we keep without admitting to ourselves that we keep them.
A Publishers Weekly Top Ten Book of 2013 Award-winning investigative reporter Robert Kolker delivers a humanizing account of the true-life search for a serial killer still at large on Long Island, and presents the first detailed look at the shadow world of online escorts, where making a living is easier than ever and the dangers remain all too real. A triumph of reporting, a riveting narrative, and "a lashing critique of how society and the police let five young women down" (Dwight Garner, New York Times), Lost Girls is a portrait of unsolved murders in an idyllic part of America, of the underside of the Internet, and of the secrets we keep without admitting to ourselves that we keep them.
Author: Robert Kolker
Release Date: 2013-07-09
Genre: Family & Relationships
"A literary account of the lives and presumed serial killings of five "Craigslist" prostitutes, whose bodies were found on the same Long Island beach in 2010. Based on the New York Magazine cover story"--
Praise for Caitlin Rother and her true-life thrillers "Will keep you on the edge of your seat."--Aphrodite Jones "An exciting page-turner."--M. William Phelps Chelsea King was a popular high school senior, an outstanding achiever determined to make a difference. Fourteen-year-old Amber Dubois loved books and poured her heart into the animals she cared for. Treasured by their families and friends, both girls disappeared in San Diego County, just eight miles and one year apart. The community's desperate search led authorities to John Albert Gardner, a brutal predator hiding in plain sight. Now Pulitzer-nominated author Caitlin Rother delivers an incisive, heartbreaking true-life thriller that touches our deepest fears. "Rother is one of the best storytellers in true crime." --Steve Jackson Includes dramatic photos
Yesterday, Rachel went to sleep listening to Taylor Swift, curled up in her grammy’s quilt, worrying about geometry. Today, she woke up in a ditch, bloodied, bruised, and missing a year of her life. She doesn’t recognize the person she’s become: She’s popular. She wears nothing but black. Black to cover the blood. And she can fight. Tell no one. She’s not the only girl to go missing within the last year...but she’s the only girl to come back. She desperately wants to unravel what happened to her, to try and recover the rest of the Lost Girls. But the more she discovers, the more her memories return. And as much as her new life scares her, it calls to her. Seductively. The good girl gone bad: sex, drugs, and raves, and something darker...something she still craves. The rush of the fight, the thrill of the win—something she can’t resist, that might still get her killed...
From the author of Crossed Over, another masterful account of a horrible crime: the murder of four girls, countless other ruined lives, and the evolving complications of the justice system that frustrated the massive attempts--for twenty-five years now--to find and punish those who committed it. The facts are brutally straightforward. On December 6, 1991, the naked, bound-and-gagged bodies of the four girls--each one shot in the head--were found in an I Can't Believe It's Yogurt! shop in Austin, Texas. Grief, shock, and horror spread out from their families and friends to overtake the city itself. Though all branches of law enforcement were brought to bear, the investigation was often misdirected and after eight years only two men (then teenagers) were tried; moreover, their subsequent convictions were eventually overturned, and Austin PD detectives are still working on what is now a very cold case. Over the decades, the story has grown to include DNA technology, false confessions, and other developments facing crime and punishment in contemporary life. But this story belongs to the scores of people involved, and from them Lowry has fashioned a riveting saga that reads like a Russian novel, comprehensive and thoroughly engrossing.
Author: Worth Books
Publisher: Open Road Media
Release Date: 2017-03-21
Genre: True Crime
So much to read, so little time? This brief overview of Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery tells you what you need to know—before or after you read Robert Kolker’s book. Crafted and edited with care, Worth Books set the standard for quality and give you the tools you need to be a well-informed reader. This short summary and analysis of Lost Girls includes: Chapter-by-chapter overviews Character profiles Detailed timeline of events Important quotes and analysis Fascinating trivia Glossary of terms Supporting material to enhance your understanding of the original work About Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery by Robert Kolker: In December 2010, the remains of four missing women were found just outside a secluded community on the south shore of Long Island. As more bodies were uncovered, Suffolk County police began to suspect that a serial killer was targeting prostitutes online. The ensuing investigation pitted families against police, and neighbor against neighbor, as the authorities struggled with an increasingly unwieldy case. Lost Girls gives a detailed account of the victims, the investigators, and the community. Relying on exhaustive interviews with those who knew and loved the victims, Kolker creates a sensitive portrait of each woman. He offers insight into how prostitution has changed in the Internet age, and the high costs we continue to pay by ignoring the sex workers who take part in a ubiquitous, if unseen, profession. The summary and analysis in this ebook are intended to complement your reading experience and bring you closer to a great work of nonfiction.
When an eleven year old James Renner fell in love with Amy Mihaljevic, the missing girl seen on posters all over his neighborhood, it was the beginning of a lifelong obsession with true crime. That obsession leads James to a successful career as an investigative journalist. It also gave him PTSD. In 2011, James began researching the strange disappearance of Maura Murray, a UMass student who went missing after wrecking her car in rural New Hampshire in 2004. Over the course of his investigation, he uncovers numerous important and shocking new clues about what may have happened to Maura, but also finds himself in increasingly dangerous situations with little regard for his own well-being. As his quest to find Maura deepens, the case starts taking a toll on his personal life, which begins to spiral out of control. The result is an absorbing dual investigation of the complicated story of the All-American girl who went missing and James's own equally complicated true crime addiction. James Renner's True Crime Addict is the story of his spellbinding investigation of the missing person's case of Maura Murray, which has taken on a life of its own for armchair sleuths across the web. In the spirit of David Fincher's Zodiac, it is a fascinating look at a case that has eluded authorities and one man's obsessive quest for the answers.
Author: Troy Taylor
Publisher: Whitechapel Productions
Release Date: 2015-11-18
THE TWO LOST GIRLS THE MYSTERY OF THE GRIMES SISTERS A "DEAD MEN DO TELL TALES" BOOK BY TROY TAYLOR On a cold night in December 1956, two young girls mysteriously vanished after a night at the movies on the Southwest Side of Chicago, beginning one of the greatest searches to ever take place in the history of the city. Three weeks later, the bodies of the two lost girls, Barbara and Patricia Grimes, were found on the side of a secluded, snow-covered road, miles from where they disappeared. The discovery of their battered corpses created one of the greatest unsolved mysteries to ever baffle post-war America. Where had the girls been for the past three weeks? Who had killed them? Why could no one determine their actual cause of death? The discovery of the two lost girls began a criminal investigation of epic proportions, involving hundreds of police officers and detectives, embattled coroners, thousands of potential suspects, eerie confessions, psychics, and puzzling questions that no one seemed able to answer. The authorities believed that the girls had died on the night they went missing, but how could they account for the scores of sightings of them that occurred days and even weeks later? What of the reliable witnesses that saw them or spoke to them in person, or during late-night phone calls? And the biggest question of all - why could no one find their killer? In this chilling entry in the "Dead Men Do Tell Tales" Series, author Troy Taylor explores this horrifying case and takes readers step-by-step through the case, pursuing the suspects, and exploring the links between other crimes that may have been committed by the same unknown killer who murdered the Grimes sisters and was never caught. This may be the most unsettling book from Troy Taylor that you've ever read!
“Extraordinarily suspenseful and truly gut-wrenching. . . . A must-read.”—Gillian Flynn, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Gone Girl In this superb work of literary true crime—a spellbinding combination of memoir and psychological suspense—a female journalist chronicles her unusual connection with a convicted serial killer and her search to understand the darkness inside us. "Well, well, Claudia. Can I call you Claudia? I’ll have to give it to you, when confronted at least you’re honest, as honest as any reporter. . . . You want to go into the depths of my mind and into my past. I want a peek into yours. It is only fair, isn’t it?"—Kendall Francois In September 1998, young reporter Claudia Rowe was working as a stringer for the New York Times in Poughkeepsie, New York, when local police discovered the bodies of eight women stashed in the attic and basement of the small colonial home that Kendall Francois, a painfully polite twenty-seven-year-old community college student, shared with his parents and sister. Growing up amid the safe, bourgeois affluence of New York City, Rowe had always been secretly fascinated by the darkness, and soon became obsessed with the story and with Francois. She was consumed with the desire to understand just how a man could abduct and strangle eight women—and how a family could live for two years, seemingly unaware, in a house with the victims’ rotting corpses. She also hoped to uncover what humanity, if any, a murderer could maintain in the wake of such monstrous evil. Reaching out after Francois was arrested, Rowe and the serial killer began a dizzying four-year conversation about cruelty, compassion, and control; an unusual and provocative relationship that would eventually lead her to the abyss, forcing her to clearly see herself and her own past—and why she was drawn to danger.
Author: Richard Lloyd Parry
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: 2012-09-30
Genre: True Crime
In the summer of 2000, Jane Steare received the phone call every mother dreads. Her daughter Lucie Blackman - tall, blonde, and twenty-one years old - had stepped into the vastness of a Tokyo summer and disappeared forever. That winter, her dismembered remains were found buried in a desolate seaside cave. Her disappearance was mystifying. Had Lucie been abducted by a religious cult? Who was the mysterious man she had gone to meet? What did her work, as a 'hostess' in the notorious Roppongi district of Tokyo, really involve? And could Lucie's fate be linked to the disappearance of another girl some ten years earlier? Over the course of a decade, Richard Lloyd Parry has travelled to four continents to interview those caught up in the story and been given unprecedented access to Lucie's bitterly divided family to reveal the astonishing truth about Lucie and her fate.
From growing up on the tough streets of Queens NY as a child to struggling with the realities of growing into an adult on Long Island NY, this story is about the trials and tribulations of a young man who tried to do the right thing in life but due to unlucky circumstances, chose a life of crime, drugs and violence. This story chronicles the life of a man who lived in the fast lane for over twenty years and would eventually be led into one of the biggest unsolved multiple murder controversies that our country has ever endured. This is a high paced, gripping story that will not only keep you page turning, but will have you thinking long after you finish the book. W
Author: Ken Corbett
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Release Date: 2016-03-01
Genre: Social Science
The New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice A psychologist's gripping, troubling, and moving exploration of the brutal murder of a possibly transgender middle school student by an eighth grade classmate On Feb. 12, 2008, at E. O. Green Junior High in Oxnard, CA, 14-year-old Brandon McInerney shot and killed his classmate, Larry King, who had recently begun to call himself "Leticia" and wear makeup and jewelry to school. Profoundly shaken by the news, and unsettled by media coverage that sidestepped the issues of gender identity and of race integral to the case, psychologist Ken Corbett traveled to LA to attend the trial. As visions of victim and perpetrator were woven and unwoven in the theater of the courtroom, a haunting picture emerged not only of the two young teenagers, but also of spectators altered by an atrocity and of a community that had unwittingly gestated a murder. Drawing on firsthand observations, extensive interviews and research, as well as on his decades of academic work on gender and sexuality, Corbett holds each murky facet of this case up to the light, exploring the fault lines of memory and the lacunae of uncertainty behind facts. Deeply compassionate, and brimming with wit and acute insight, A Murder Over a Girl is a riveting and stranger-than-fiction drama of the human psyche.
I’ll Give You the Sun meets True Detective in this brilliant YA debut about saints, sisters, and learning to let go. Tess da Costa is a saint—a hand-to-god, miracle-producing saint. At least that’s what the people in her hometown of New Avon, Massachusetts, seem to believe. And when Tess suddenly and tragically passes away, her small city begins feverishly petitioning the Pope to make Tess’s sainthood official. Tess’s mother is ecstatic over the fervor, while her sister Callie, the one who knew Tess best, is disgusted—overcome with the feeling that her sister is being stolen from her all over again. The fervor for Tess’s sainthood only grows when Ana Langone, a local girl who’s been missing for six months, is found alive at the foot of one of Tess’s shrines. It’s the final straw for Callie. With the help of Tess’s secret boyfriend Danny, Callie’s determined to prove that Tess was something far more important than a saint; she was her sister, her best friend and a girl in love with a boy. But Callie’s investigation uncovers much more than she bargained for—a hidden diary, old family secrets, and even the disturbing truth behind Ana’s kidnapping. Told in alternating perspectives, A Psalm for Lost Girls is at once funny, creepy and soulful—an impressive debut from a rising literary star. From the Hardcover edition.
'...aside from the murders , Charles Cullen might have been a pretty good nurse...' The true story of the most prolific serial killer in US history, The Good Nurse is 'a stunning book... that should and does bring to mind In Cold Blood' New York Times After his December 2003 arrest, registered nurse Charlie Cullen was quickly dubbed 'The Angel of Death' by the media. But Cullen was no mercy killer, nor was he a simple monster. He was a favourite son, husband, beloved father, best friend, and celebrated caregiver. Implicated in the deaths of as many as 300 patients, he was also perhaps the most prolific serial killer in American history. Cullen's murderous career in the world's most trusted profession spanned sixteen years and nine hospitals across New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Investigative journalist Charles Graeber's portrait of Cullen depicts a surprisingly intelligent and complicated young man whose promising career was overwhelmed by his compulsion to kill, and whose shy demeanor masked a twisted interior life hidden even to his family and friends. Were it not for the hardboiled, unrelenting work of two former Newark homicide detectives racing to put together the pieces of Cullen's professional past, and a fellow nurse willing to put everything at risk, including her job and the safety of her children, there's no telling how many more lives could have been lost. In the tradition of In Cold Blood, The Good Nurse does more than chronicle Cullen's deadly career and the breathless efforts to stop him; it paints an incredibly vivid portrait of madness and offers an urgent, terrifying tale of murder, friendship and betrayal.