*The first volume of Ann Rule's Crime Files anthologies - a benchmark in true crime writing.
Ann Rule wrote thirty-five New York Times bestsellers. Her first bestseller was The Stranger Beside Me, about her personal relationship with infamous serial killer Ted Bundy. A former Seattle police officer, she used her firsthand expertise in all her books. For more than three decades, she was a powerful advocate for victims of violent crime. She lived near Seattle and passed away in 2015.
Rule is this country's premier true crime author as well as one of its most prolific. She maintains her position with this first volume in a projected five-volume series. This book contains one long piece (a book in itself) and five shorter pieces, all dealing with male killers of women in the Northeast, Rule's home turf. The title piece focuses on a modern-day Bluebeard, Randy Roth, who murdered his second wife for insurance, claiming that her death was a mountaineering accident; tried to murder his third wife; ditched a promising marriage prospect when he discovered her to be uninsurable; and then murdered his fourth wife, this time explaining her death as an accidental drowning. Although there was no hard evidence in any of the cases, the cumulative circumstantial evidence was enough to convict him. Rule's ability to depict both criminals and victims as believable human beings is perfectly embodied in this sad, fascinating account. Indeed, all her accounts present the female victims as real people who deserve compassionate treatment. For all popular true crime collections.-- Ben Harrison, East Orange P.L., N.J.
'No writer in America has ever probed the dark heart of a killer so deeply' Edna Buchanan 'Master of the true-crime genre' CHICAGO TRIBUNE 'Ann Rule is simply the best.' Carla Norton, co-author of PERFECT VISION 'Fascinating... Each page is a gripper. Ann Rule is truly a master crime writer.' REAL CRIME BOOK DIGEST 'Ann Rule's account of a man acting on his own obsessions and how the authorities tried to stop his is vividly detailed and absolutely compelling.' DRIFFIELD POST 'This along with five other chilling cases shows why Ann Rile is one of the most highly-commended and successful writers of true-crime stories.' TORQUAY HERALD EXPRESS
The centerpiece of this chilling collection is the history of Randy Roth, a ``modern-day Bluebeard'' who specialized in marrying women and then killing them for insurance and Social Security benefits. Rule ( Everything She Ever Wanted ) traces Roth's crimes thoroughly and does an equally complete job of providing information on the investigative side of the story, such as the difficulties of being a female prosecutor. The remaining shorter cases come from Rule's ``archives'': a rapist returns after eight years in prison to kill the woman who put him there along with her daughter and a neighbor; a jilted husband hires a female ``hit person'' to kill his estranged wife; a 13-year-old girl disappears after tending to the mobile home of a friend on vacation; a sadistic killer murders a woman, chops her up and disposes of her dismembered body in a slough; and a young, single woman is strangled by a neighbor pretending to be her protector. In a brief introduction to each, Rule discusses the effect of the individual case on her feelings about capital punishment and other issues, and her unwavering voice presents even the most gruesome details rationally. (Aug).