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Sex, Lies, and Handwriting: A Top Expert Reveals the Secrets Hidden in Your Handwriting Paperback – July 22, 2008
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The maestro storyteller and reporter provocatively argues that what we think we know about speech and human evolution is wrong. Learn more
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About the Author
James Kwalwasser is the cocreator and editor of "The Handwriting Doctor" syndicated column. He lives in Pittsburgh, PA.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
At division headquarters, Commander Freeman had a stack of old case files involving handwriting piled on his desk. For hours, he showed me suicide notes, confessions, threatening letters, and other writing, and asked me questions like: "Is this person male or female? How old? Is the writer violent? Suicidal? Honest or dishonest? Straight or gay? Sane or insane? Smart or stupid? Healthy or sick? Go-getter or lazy bum?" After every answer, he smiled. Although he never said so, this was a test.
I must have passed, because a few days later, I got my first assignment: To profile an UNSUB (police lingo for unidentified subject) from a bank robbery note.
"This is a stick up," the note said. "Put $50's, $20's, $10's in bag."
After scanning the note for a few minutes, I turned to the detective in charge of the case. "You're not gonna find this guy's prints in your files, because he probably never committed a crime before. He's not a hardcore criminal. Under normal circumstances, he'd never rob a bank. But he's feeling really desperate." The detective nodded his head politely, but I could tell that he was skeptical.
A few days later, the bank robber was in police custody. As I had predicted, he was not a hardened criminal. In fact, he had no previous arrest record. He was a 52-year-old bus driver who tearfully confessed that he needed money to pay for his son's liver transplant. "Without the operation my son will die," he said.
One day, a woman walking her dog on Aylesboro Avenue in Pittsburgh found a mysterious note on the sidewalk. Printed in purple crayon were the words: Ples rascu me. Thinking it could be a desperate plea for help, the woman brought the note to a police station.
The detectives wondered if the note was a hoax. It appeared to be the writing of a child, but was it? And did the writer really need to be rescued?
"It's not the writing of an adult pretending to be a child," I told the lead detective. "It was written by a girl between the ages of five and seven. And I see absolutely no signs of stress or danger in the handwriting, so the writer is definitely not a kidnap victim." Then I added, "It's signed Kealsey."
But who was Kealsey? And why did Kealsey write the note? We turned to the news media, hoping that someone might recognize the handwriting, or something in the note, that could help us unravel the mystery.
That night when I turned on the six o'clock news, a reporter was interviewing another handwriting analyst who proclaimed that he could tell from the handwriting that the note's author was in "grave danger."
"What if I'm wrong?" I thought.
The next morning, a man and his daughter walked into the police station. They had seen a photograph of the note in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. The 6-year-old daughter, Kealsey, timidly stated that she had written the message to her teddy bear. Her father explained that Kealsey often played detective with her teddy. Somehow the note must have blown out the window and landed on the sidewalk.
Copyright © 2006 by Michelle Dresbold and James Kwalwasser --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
I say this because if you really want to enter the world of graphology and/or handwriting analysis, you need authors who have studied as a team player and from good sources to learn the right way. It is very hard to be any good if you learned from theories that were never streamlined or just interpretations concocted by an author. Unfortunately, some authors proclaim they have "the only book you will ever need," and this is so not true. This is a science and an on-going education. So, whether you are moderately interested in graphology and/or handwriting analysis, or want to be a master someday - this is a great book to have in your collection.
When this author makes statements she usually explains "why" she came to that conclusion, which also helps you learn. So, she teaches horizontally, not vertically. Meaning the author speaks to you and not at you. She is also a great writer and keeps your attention throughout the entire book and not just parts.
The amount of time she spent on each story really floored me. The author made sure she knew what she was talking about when it came to all the high profile cases and material, and she has more stats and real images pertaining to them, than I have seen in my own studies and writing.Read more ›
And are they guilty? Yes, they all are. That's why you should beware--after you read this book, you're not going to have any skills of analyzing normal people's handwriting, but you will know how to analyze a killer's handwriting. For a couple days after reading this book, I would grab people's handwriting, suspiciously eye them and their handwriting, and then after a few minutes of staring them down, say, 'okay, you're safe.' I'd recommend another, more boring book on handwriting analysis right after you finish this book, to balance you out. Beware, and don't just read this one book.
This book is really only 1/3rd handwriting analysis, and 2/3rds whodunit mystery book. That's why it's a great introductory book on handwriting analysis is that it's a fun, quick read that educates you at the same time it entertains you. If you're looking for boring textbook, pick another book.
I've wanted to learn about graphology for a long time, but the other books just seemed so boring, and I never made it past the first chapter. Thanks to Ms. Dresbold for writing a handwriting analysis book that everyone can enjoy, and read quickly!
+Awesome first book on handwriting analysis
+Makes handwriting analysis fun and exciting
+You can read straight through this book and learn while you're entertained, without having to do any boring exercises.Read more ›
It was almost more of a look at what graphology can do rather than a useful tool for learning it. There were plenty of true crime cases and the handwriting profiles that went with them. However, it always seemed to me that hindsight prevailed in these profiles, even though a few times she mentions that no prior knowledge is needed or is better that you don't have any. Many times the author came off as more of a braggart, seemingly using her book as a solicitation for new clients rather than a guide to spark interest in the public about the field.
Also, in every example given, only the highlighted topic for that section was pointed out in the handwriting sample. I would have liked to see all the traits of the sample pointed out. And depending on what page you were on, the translation of a trait would mean something totally different from sample to sample even though the trait stayed the same. I'm sure it's all part of the art of translation, but for learning purposes made it very difficult to pinpoint what to look for and how to interpret it.
Overall, it was insightful into how it can be used in solving crimes and other tasks, but jumpy in lesson topics and lacking in full explanations.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting book. I would tend to believe that handwriting, like your expressions or posture, can tell a thousand stories. Not an absolute science, but fascinating.Published 2 days ago by Amazon Customer
It is sort of like how to read palms. The book was hard for me to believe.Published 3 months ago by jsbark
I've read three or four books on handwriting analysis and I like this one the best. The claims associated with various writing strokes seem plausible. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Verbena Reverb
I've analyzed everyone's handwriting that I've come across, and came to the conclusion that everyone is crazy.Published 12 months ago by J. Miller
I can actually say that I enjoyed reading this book. This book has expanded my perspective and understanding of human behavior.Published 12 months ago by Zachary Hartgraves
In addition to learning about what your handwriting reveals about you, this also reads like a great whodunit! Very, very interesting. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Frank Dutro