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True Stories of CSI: The Real Crimes Behind the Best Episodes of the Popular TV Show Paperback – September 2, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
For those unfamiliar with the crime-scene forensics television drama C.S.I., be forewarned: there will be blood, gore and dismembered body parts. Prolific author (of both novels and non-fiction) and forensic specialist Ramsland digs up the real life corollaries to 25 popular episodes, some obviously drawn from a single source ("Gentle, Gentle," based on the 1996 murder of 6-year-old Jon-Benet Ramsey), others composed from disparate incidents ("Blood Drops," drawing from the 2002 Flores Family murders in California, Charles Manson's horrific 1969 murder spree and Jeffrey MacDonald's 1970 family slaughter). Not all episodes lead to true crime; perhaps disappointingly, the series' popular "miniatures killer" storylines were not based on cases, but on crime scene dollhouses built in the 1940s as a teaching aid by philanthropist Frances Glessner Lee. Gore and devastation is handled in a responsibly clinical tone, but Ramsland can overstep when speculating without scientific backup or attribution (stating, for instance, that the admiration female sex offenders receive from their young partners is "probably the source of the addiction"). Clunky prose can also distract, but that shouldn't matter to C.S.I. fans, who will enjoy this professional-and professionally morbid-treatment of their favorite T.V. crime dramas.
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About the Author
Katherine Ramsland has written a dozen books and numerous articles and short stories. In the past year she has been editing Vampyre Magazine. After publishing two books in psychology, Engaging the Immediate and The Art of Learning, she wrote Prism of the Night: A Biography of Anne Rice. At the same time she had a cover story in Psychology Today on our culture's fascination with vampires. She followed the biography with several guide books to Anne Rice's fictional worlds including The Vampire Companion: The Official Guide to Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles and The Anne Rice Reader. Her last book before Piercing the Darkness was a biography of Dean Koontz called Dean Koontz: A Writer's Biography. She has also written for The New York Times Book Review, The Writer, The Horror Show, The Newark Star Ledger, The Trenton Times, and Publishers Weekly. Ramsland has a master's degree in clinical psychology and a Ph.D. in philosophy. She has been a professor at Rutgers University, a therapist, and a psycho-educator specializing in the psyche's shadow side, and is currently at work on another master's degree--this one in forensic psychology. She lives in Princeton, NJ.
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