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Green River, Running Red: The Real Story of the Green River Killer--America's Deadliest Serial Murderer Mass Market Paperback – September 27, 2005
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Top Customer Reviews
The victims also offer some insight into the nature of their killer: a marginalized, banal little man who got his kicks murdering defenseless women desperate enough to get into a vehicle with a total stranger on the mere promise of 30 or 40 dollars. Ann Rule introduces us to him slowly at first with brief snapshot-like depictions of his childhood and early adult years. Then in the second half of the book, readers come face to face with this meaningless individual whose primary interest in life (aside from murder) was collecting and hoarding other people's junk. He is, it turns out, no fiendish genius, no Hannibal Lecter, just an inconsequential man who hates women and can only feel important when he is taking someone's life. I cannot even imagine how the law enforcement officers charged with interrogating him could stand to be in the same room with him.Read more ›
In "Green River Running Red," though, Rule takes her eye off the ball and spends less time (a LOT less time) telling us about Green River Killer Gary Ridgeway than about his dozens of victims. Yes, it's a noble cause to give these young women an identity beyond 'known prostitute' or 'Jane Doe #4.' But in spending literally hundreds of pages on mini biographies, Rule can't help but make them seem, well, boring. As reported in `Green River Running Red,' there's a downbeat, dreary sameness to the lives of the killer's victims. They have, for the most part, unhappy childhoods and incapable parents. They become estranged from their families. They drop out of school. They get into drugs. They hang out with losers and, eventually, fall into prostitution. They're busted a few times. They live in motels. Finally, they meet Gary Ridgeway, and their sad lives come to an abrupt, violent end. Wading through hundreds of pages of "She was a beautiful, intelligent, well-liked girl," you get the feeling that Rule isn't giving you much credit. After all, these women don't HAVE to have been beautiful or well-liked for their lives to have had value. If we have any humanity at all, we're already on their side, and we're horrified by Gary Ridgeway. In spending SO much time telling the victims' stories, Rule simultaneously sugarcoats their lives and underestimates her readers.Read more ›
On the other hand the second part of her book that focused more on Ridgeway, the people in his life and the investigation of the killings was excellent. The latter half of the book was more in keeping with the Ann Rule style I have come to know and love over the years.
I find it refreshing that she focused on the victims, who were for the most part, faceless "hookers" to much of the population while these crimes were happening. I also liked the way the narrative went from crime to killer; weaving time together for the reader. I wanted to read this book precisely because Ms Rule was so involved. I enjoyed the fact that she'd been to the scenes and met the key players. As a true crime reader, I put this near the top of my list.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good but not great. I like that she doesn't go into the gruesome details but gives you the facts and takes you 'there'.Published 6 days ago by Kate G
Entirely too much on the victims. Details of the investigation were interesting. Tidbits of information on investigators added a little pizzas.Published 1 month ago by queenurbie
As a rule of thumb I love Ann Rule books, and this was no exception. This was a good book about a true story about a murder and then a question of innocence. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Judy