Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers (Pocket Books True Crime)

4 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0671020743
ISBN-10: 0671020749
Why is ISBN important?
ISBN
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Buy used
$7.77
Condition: Used - Good
Condition: Used: Good
Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
58 Used from $0.01
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
More Buying Choices
11 New from $13.05 58 Used from $0.01
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student


Best Books of the Month
See the Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.
click to open popover

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers is a lighthearted but reasonably tasteful collection of information about serial killers, by a respected historian of crime (Harold Schechter) and the author of Human Monsters (David Everitt). It includes individual entries devoted to the most famous killers from all over the world, and amusing sections devoted to such topics as black widows, bluebeards, killer couples, Lustmord, Nazi buffs, power tools, pyromania, and trophies. There are also useful tips for further ventures into art, movies, books, zines, music, and tourist attractions devoted to serial killers. The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers is cross-indexed, with numerous black-and-white illustrations. --Fiona Webster

About the Author

Harold Schechter is a professor of American literature and culture. Renowned for his true-crime writing, he is the author of the nonfiction books Fatal, Fiend, Bestial, Deviant, Deranged, Depraved, and, with David Everitt, The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers. He is also the author of Nevermore and The Hum Bug, the acclaimed historical novels featuring Edgar Allan Poe. He lives in New York State.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE


Product Details

  • Series: Pocket Books True Crime
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket (November 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671020749
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671020743
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #318,492 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Michael Bulger on April 30, 2000
Format: Paperback
A quick caveat for starters: after reading this book in one quick sitting, I feel a little disturbed. If the parade of violence and deviant sexual behavior that this book presents fails to have a similar effect upon you, then you are either jaded or deviant yourself. By themselves, the descriptions of the childhood home lives of most of the killers described within these pages are horrifying beyond belief.
That said, the authors touch on every aspect of serial murder with which I was previously familiar, as well as a great deal more. The only problem is that you will have to read the book cover to cover to find most of it. Juan Corona, for example, is to be found only under the entry "Orchards" (? ), apparently because many of his victims were buried in them. The only other apparent reason for this entry is a murder case, also involving corpse disposal in an orchard, that has nothing whatsoever to do with serial killers. One must look in similarly obscure entries to find the Green River killer (still the most prolific American serial killer in terms of confirmed victims), the notorious 16th-century French nobleman Gilles de Rais, whose behavior parallels that of some modern serial killers quite closely (with the exception of his high position in society), or South America's Pedro Lopez, the "Monster of the Andes."
In short, this is not an encyclopedia that is meant as a real reference work of any sort; the "encyclopedia" aspect is merely a convenient format that the authors use to relate capsule-sized anecdotes and factoids. A distinct bias in the entries is also obvious--the reader is treated to mention of Ed Gein, Albert Fish and H.H.
Read more ›
Comment 29 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
As far as an educational/literary feast is concerned, this isn't much more than a midnight snack. I generally enjoy Schechter's single-subject documentations(i.e.-Bestial, Deviant, Deranged....all very good books), but he laid an egg with this one. It is a valuable source for juvenile cheap thrills, but as a reference guide it is severely lacking. You would be better off checking out M. Newton's Encyclopedia Of Serial Killers or Colin Wilson's Encyclopedia Of Modern Murder. The New Murderer's Who's Who & Human Monsters are also worthwhile, informative & accurate books on serial killers. Don't get me wrong here, this is a fun and entertaining book on the subject. However, if you are getting your information from this kind of book you are going to lose a lot of arguments. There are much better books on the subject of serial murder waiting to join the others on your bookshelf. All this having been said, it should be noted that I am a stickler for details and could be a bit jaded from having read so many better books on serial murder.
Comment 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book, despite its graphic style, is readable and is useful for authors. It is, as its name indicates, structured more for reference than reading (though it can be read straight through-I did). There is an appendix on Cunanan and the Versace slaying. I continue to use it for reference data.
Comment 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
If you are interested in serial killers, I highly reccommend reading this book. It covers more than just serial killers though. It covers anything and everything having to do with serial killers. It doesn't just cover the most famous serial killers, it covers other ones you probably have never heard of and gives chilling details of some of their vicious crimes.
Comment 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The A to Z Encyclopedia of Serial Killers, is not an A-Z guide to the killers as the title implies.

There are no indexes or chapter guides to look up specific killers. Instead it has sections A through Z that list places and things. One would think that the individual killers would be listed under the respective letters such as Ted Bundy in the T section or in the B's under Bundy,Ted. This book rather lists (for example) in section "A" Alligators and then gives a couple paragraphs about which killer and how they were utilized in the crimes.. and in section "B" there are sections on Bathtubs and Body Parts; and yet again with a couple paragraphs each about which killer and how these items were utilized.

While there are a 6-7 killers that have their own sections dedicated under the respective letters, it doesn't really matter because they are already discussed under dozens of different A-Z listings in this book. This book does have good information and fun facts, but the format doesn't allow for reasearch of individual killers.

For the average reader, this is good to read a couple chapters at a time over several weeks, and you can skip around to different chapters and go back to others later. I will give this three stars as it has some good info and light hearted dark humor.
Comment 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
As an avid serial killer fan and generally morbid person, I naturally gravitated to this book, rationalizing the purchase with the fact that even though I possessed every other individual serial killer book and could recite Richard Ramirez's speach at his trial at 3:00 AM, I didn't have an encyclopedia about all, and really, ...it's fairly cheap compared to its rival, 'The Serial Killer Encyclopedia'.... I suppose that's where some could find a problem- true crime fans are notorious collectors (of memorabilia and knowledge both), and I think some of us were disappointed with the brevity of which our faves were discussed, or sometimes downright slandered, as is the case with the Night Stalker himself, whom the authors quite noticably do not appreciate. Tied to that is the fact that I found myself correcting some facts, grammatical and factual. However, I greatly enjoyed reading odd facts and being introduced to lesser-known killers, as well as some critques of appropriate books and movies. I read the thing straight through, all 357 pages of it, but I would discourage others from doing the same, simply because it gets understandably repititive and begins to overlap. This book functions best as a referance piece, to be read sparatically. Nonetheless, I still believe this a good, solid work and a great starting piece for all fans.
Comment 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews