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The Profiler: My Life Hunting Serial Killers and Psychopaths Hardcover – Bargain Price, May 18, 2010
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"The Profiler is the rare book that takes a complex topic and simplifies, rather than compounds, its mystique. Pat Brown has a distinct voice, which discernibly captures moments of despair, humor, and levity." -- John Valeri, Examiner.com
"The best true story crime book I've ever read." --NewsBlaze.com
"A rare, up-close, first-person look at the real world of police and profilers as they investigate crimes." --The Today Show, NBC
"Explosive!" --Levi Page, host, BlogTalkRadio.com
"The crimes detailed shock and intrigue, Brown's experiences captivate, but the meat of The Profiler is found in the issues regarding attitudes toward profiling and the need for increased training of investigators." --BlogCritics.org
About the Author
Pat Brown is a nationally known profiler and founder and CEO of the Sexual Homicide Exchange (SHE) and the Pat Brown Criminal Profiling Agency. She holds a master's degree in criminal justice from Boston University and developed the first accredited Criminal Profiling and Investigative Analysis program in the country for Excelsior College, where she is an adjunct professor. She appears on national television and radio often--more than 1,000 times in the past decade to discuss high-profile cases. Brown lives in Minnesota and Maryland.
Bob Andelman is the author or co-author of several best-selling biographical, business, management and sports books, including Will Eisner: A Spirited Life, The Profit Zone: Lessons of Strategic Genius from the People Who Created the World's Most Valued Companies, and Built from Scratch: How a Couple of Regular Guys Grew The Home Depot from Nothing to $30 Billion. Bob Andelman also produces and hosts the popular "Mr. Media Interviews" podcast on BlogTalkRadio.
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The book does suffer from the "as told to" thinness of books that have one person as a subject and a writer as the "with" part of "By Pat Brown with Bob Andelman." One gets the impression that Mr. Andelman transcribed tapes and fashioned the book that way instead of holding in depth interviews.
However, I think I disliked the book because it is so real and accurate. There's none of the romance of the hunt, the drama of the revelation, and her profiling is hard deduction from facts and not the mystical insight that many popular profiler books promote.
It's unpleasant to read the dry facts about murders and the news that the suspect was never charged and is living his life doing whatever it is that he does. Brown chose to focus on cases in which her profiling was not used by police; this not only shows her process, but the way in which police investigations are sometimes derailed by different decisions and assumptions. I don't see her confidence in her profiling as boasting.
Then there are the plain facts about self-defense classes. It might not be reassuring to have to reflect that it takes years of martial art training to place a kick accurately and effectively, but this is the truth. And Pat says it like it is.
So I am giving this book a four star rating. It could have been better written; it could have had more depth and a less disjointed, conversational tone. But I'm keeping it because it contains a world of straightforward information about profiling and murderers.
This book has none of these things.
Let me ruin one thing for you: Pat Brown doesn't bring anyone to jail. I think every profile ends with Pat Brown explaining that the police didn't listen to anything she had to say, and the real criminal is still on the loose. I found her to be a fancy, bells-and-whistles version of a criminal psychic. I know she did a lot of studying and likely has some very sound reasoning behind her observations and hypotheses. However, what good is all of this without actually getting the bad guy in jail? Anyone can tie a lasso; the point is to catch the bull.
There's no before-and-after in each story. We are presented with a crime, and we are then given the profile of the most likely perpetrator. That's it. Next story. We don't know if this person, in reality, did the crime. I'd rather the police let the guilty go free than put anyone this woman profiled behind bars. I believe in solid facts over conjecture any day.
The book was well written and somewhat interesting. But I had to force myself through. I definitely wouldn't suggest it to anybody, which is my criterea for at least 3 stars.