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Watch Mommy Die [Kindle Edition]

Michael Benson
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)

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Mass Market Paperback $6.99  
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Book Description

In The Hands Of A Sadist. . .

First, he bound and beat his girlfriend, a 43-year-old librarian. Then he went after her teenaged daughter--warning her, "Scream and I will kill you both"--before knocking her unconscious. When the teenager awoke, he proceded to rape her. And in a final horrifying act of depravity, he forced the girl to watch as he slit her mother's throat. But the killing didn't stop there. . .

In The Crosshairs Of A Killer. . .

Stephen Stanko was described as "a perfect gentleman" who "seemed so pleasant. . .and so normal." But behind Stanko's mild-mannered appearance, round spectacles, and quiet intelligence was a coldblooded ex-convict who kept a grisly scrapbook on serial killers--and convinced everyone he was a nice guy--until he killed and killed again.

On The Trail Of A Psycho. . .

A well-orchestrated manhunt caught up with Stanko, who tried to get away with his crimes by pleading insanity. But the jury saw through his ruse and the ruthless killer was sentenced to death.

Case Seen On 48 Hours

Includes 16 Pages of Shocking Photos

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Michael Benson, who has partied with the Hells Angels on both coasts, is the author of 41 books. His most recent works include Betrayal in Blood: The Murder of Tabatha Bryant, and Inside Secret Societies: What They Don’t Want You to Know.Russ Austin, a nationally recognized expert on choppers, is the owner and head designer of Precious Metal Custom, a custom chopper shop where he builds 40 choppers a year for private customers.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1595 KB
  • Print Length: 385 pages
  • Publisher: Pinnacle; 1 edition (May 1, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004NEW53Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #223,008 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fool Me Once, Shame On You; Fool Me Twice... May 6, 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Stephen Stanko was a predator of the worst kind. Charming, romantic, and handsome, he caught the attention of many women; yet when behind the facade was a monster who was a pathological liar, a conman, and a killer.

His first victim, girlfriend Elizabeth McLendon, fell for his lies for four years. And when finally she confronted him with his lies about finances, he became enraged and attempted to kill her. Fortunately, he wasn't yet well schooled in murderous methods.

As he served his time for prison for the attempted murder of Elizabeth, he would continue to run his scam. This time he would peddle a tale about while collar crimes and the mistreatment of prisoners to Dr. Gordon Crews, who co-authored a 2004 book with Stanko titled Living in Prison: A History of the Correctional System with an Insider's View.

Less than a year after the book's and Stanko's release, he would begin his charades again. This time, however, he would up the ante by raping a 15-year-old girl and murdering her mother and his girlfriend, Laura Ling.

Finally the con games were over.

Or maybe not. But this time time the stakes were higher: Stanko would be fighting for his life.

I've long been critical of Michael Benson's true crime books; finding them repetitive, boring, and filled with too much fluff. With his latest book Watch Mommy Die, that's all changed.

Aside from the title that's a little lacking, a bit long on each cop's history, and there being no photos of Laura, it's still a very interesting book about a conman killer that was difficult to put down.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great True Crime Book May 4, 2011
By Grace
Format:Mass Market Paperback
If you can get past the cover, which has to be one of the scariest things I've ever seen, you'll find a terse and detailed tale of a man smart enough to write a published book about prison reform, yet chose to live the life of a sexually perverted con man, so into the con that his life became a hundred times more complicated than it needed to be. When he painted himself in a corner of deception, he struck out violently, killing and raping. Both the outside and inside of this book gives you goosebumps, (I was pleased to figure out, part way through the book, that both of the beautiful women on the cover are survivors of this madman's attack.) Must read.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent True Crime May 19, 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a very interesting book that follows the step by step violence and justice to killer Steven Stanko. I was unfamiliar with these crimes prior to reading the book and now feel very much the expert. It is a well written, well researched and detailed account of the violence, the victims, the criminal and the justice system of South Carolina. It is definitely one of the better true crime books I have read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A crime reading this book November 30, 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
First, let me begin...I love the true crime genre and read many, many books in that category. With that said, it is torture for me to get through this book; I find the writer's style a bit flippant for the subject matter. He seems to like to inject humor or irony where, sadly none exist in this story. I have seen this story portrayed on various true crime television programs and it is a heartbreaking story; but it doesn't transfer over in this book. This is the first book of this type that I've seen this style, and I hope the last. Definitely not on the leve of an Ann Rule chronicle.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring August 9, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A true story that of course is shocking but the book is way too long and very repetitive.
The story line is A nutty ex con gets out of Jail, kills his Girlfriend and leaves her daughter half dead.
The rest of the book is all about the guy who did it and the investigation and court case following.
To tell the truth the villain is just not worth knowing about and can be summed up in one or two nasty words that are unprintable making the pages and pages of long winded writing on the subject just that - Long Winded!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Watch Mommy Die November 6, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Quite a chilling read. I read a lot of true crime and this story had me intrigued. Well worth a read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Watch Mommy Die October 9, 2012
By Wanda
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I finally got this book read. It was a good book but I got to wondering if the author was paid by the word. In places it seemed like it went on and on and might have been something not really relevant. The killer, Stephen Stanko was good at getting women to allow him to move in with them soon after they met. At first he would be kind and loving but soon the women would realize he was manipulating them and his whole life was a lie. When, after killing one woman and raping her teenage daughter, and then killing a man who was his good friend, he was finally caught. He would probably have killed again if not caught when he was.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How can people be so trusting? August 4, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was very interested in this story because I visit the Myrtle Beach area and Conway a couple of times per year and also have my entire life. I could follow the story and know exactly where in the town they were referring to. I can't believe how when someone gets lonely, they let their guard and trust just about anyone who shows interest in them. Good story about a killer's quick snap and how is conman ways finally turned on him. Hard to put down once you start.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Watch Mommy Die
MIchael Benson has been writing true crime for many years, but I am fortunate to finally learn about him. Read more
Published 16 days ago by Cynthia Wood
1.0 out of 5 stars So So
Not great writing was hard to get through.
Published 1 month ago by MaggieMurphy
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by Lynna
5.0 out of 5 stars like new
Published 3 months ago by meliapau
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent book.
Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars GOOD READ
I got this book because I knew the case and had follows it closely. There was a good grip on this suspense as well as detail although at a certain point it became somewhat... Read more
Published 8 months ago by poetess13
1.0 out of 5 stars Horrible book...
This book was very slow and had so many parts that were a waste of time reading... was not interesting at all
Published 9 months ago by Samara McDonald
5.0 out of 5 stars Watch Mommy Die
How sad and tragic. A good reminder of what trusting too much too soon can cost in a relationship. No one wants to pay the price this relationship cost.
Published 9 months ago by teresa a grigg
3.0 out of 5 stars It was OK
Not anything "edge of your seat" , but it was an OK read. I like true crime, just because reading about real criminals is so much more fascinating than fictional ones. Read more
Published 12 months ago by judith.dole
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but...
I definitely would not call this a must read. It was interesting but I really would have liked to have learned more about Stanko and his life also more in depth psychological... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Cereallover
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More About the Author

Michael Benson is a regular contributor to the Investigation Discovery TV series: EVIL TWINS and EVIL KIN. An eclectic writer with a 30-year career, he has covered sports, crime, film, and the military. Originally from Rochester, N.Y., he is a graduate of Wheatland-Chili High School and Hofstra University. An old-school journalist, he believes in putting facts first.

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