Thursday, July 31, 2008

The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers by Harold Schechter and David Everitt

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket; Rev Upd edition (July 4, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416521747
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416521747
  • List Price: $16.00
  • I finished this book on July 30
Okay, so I picked this book up at the end of the school year one day, meaning to just peruse it briefly. That, by the way, is the way that many of my students pick it up. It's a great D.E.A.R. book for that reason, because you can read it for 10 to 40 minutes and then put it down and never look at it again.
Anyway, I brought the stupid thing home with me and I've been reading it on and off for weeks. My boyfriend thinks it's morbid, and, of course it is. But it's interesting too. It's especially interesting if you watch as many horror movies as I do (I love 'em!).
It's set up as a traditional encyclopedia with alphabetical entries and 'see alsos' embedded in the topics. What makes it so readable is the lurid and graphic writing style. It's written in dime store novel prose that makes it seem like you're getting gossip from that neighborhood lady who knows too much about (and rejoices in) other people's misfortunes and maybe likes a nip of sherry from time to time. It's also peppered with real life pictures, reproductions of notes, and photos of serial killer trading cards. Yes, that's right, there's serial killer trading cards, showing here:As with most encyclopedias, it's not meant to be read beginning to end, which is mostly what I was doing. It becomes a bit boring and repetitive that way, so I would say just jump around to what interests you. Another reason it becomes boring is because lots of the crimes are the same. Kill some folks, rape 'em, eat 'em. There's apparently lots more necrophilia and cannibalism than I realized. So, you know...yuck. The cool part is that it really goes beyond your Bundys and your Mansons and talks about lots of icky killers that aren't as well known.
Bottom line: is it sick? Yep. But you still know you're a little interested, you dirty bird.
Soundtrack: Psycho Killer by The Talking Heads.
Please enjoy this student-film-tacular video for the song. Oh the things you find on youtube. It's a little cheesy-graphic if you're weak tummied (but if you're weak tummied, why are you reading my blog?). This video reminds me how much I can't wait for my boyfriend Dexter to come back on. Sigh...Michael C. Hall. Yum....Oh, um..yeah, the video:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

if you liked that book you should read "the devil in the white city" by erik larson.its amazing!.chimpdeamon