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Serial Killers: The Method and Madness of Monsters by Peter Vronsky

Serial Killers The Method and Madness of Monsters by Peter VronskyPeter Vronsky has done an incredible job and created a treasure. Beautifully written and detailed book about the currently known serial killers, methods of their identification and capture, about their psychology, habits, and logic. Yes, their actions have logic. Finding this strange and perverse logic of the criminals — profiling — in the United States FBI. Namely BAU: Behavioral Analysis Unit. Surely some of my readers remember the movie “silence of the lambs” with jodie foster and Anthony Hopkins. That’s what their characters did in the film, and is the profiling (well, with a few assumptions). Perhaps, this was for me the most interesting in the book.

When I read “Serial Killers: The Method and Madness of Monsters“, the feeling that you are holding not just non-fiction, but a real tutorial on finding serial killers. The author’s approach to writing this work is very scientific.

It starts with the basics. Defines the term and explains that the issue is really acute. Since 1970-ies in America, a growing number of serial killings. In other countries, too, but statistics find them more difficult. Each successive killer is trying to outdo its predecessors in the perversity and cruelty of the methods. No less curious that in the public mind is more acceptable and less of a killer. More acceptable are the ones who kill insignificant members of society, those who are convicted of their lifestyle or actions. Drug addicts, prostitutes, homeless.

Let’s at least remember the TV series “Dexter” from the latest in popular culture. It is not the exaltation of a serial killer who plays the role of investigator, judge and executioner in one person? Isn’t he doing exactly what failed law enforcement and the judicial system? Not save society from ulcers and parasites?


Wronski supports each argument with concrete examples. For example, William Lester Saff killed thirteen prostitutes from 1986 to 1992. But his judgment coincided with the case of O. J. Simpson. Who cares about killed 13 prostitutes who were thrown out in the trash when TV judge celebrities who stabbed ex-wife (a respectable white woman) and her friend?

History of serial killings is no less interesting. Wronski begins with Ancient Rome. Emperors knew how to have fun, but in the Middle ages the people knew of his perversions. Gilles de Rais (Bluebeard) and Elizabeth Bathory will be nice company for each other in boiling oil.

Classification of murderers devoted almost half the book. For me it was extremely painful part. First, the classification is not alone. Of course the author considers the one used by the FBI, and under this pretext, describes the crimes of Ted Bundy.

Ted Bundy

And considering classification for authorship of Ronald Holmes, Stephan Holmes and James De Burger, more detailed than the FBI-ovsky.

Secondly, as I said, the author of each argument confirmed examples. In the case of classification for each subtype of a serial killer, he gives an example with a detailed description of childhood, adolescence and maturation thereof, murderers, his crimes (who, where, and how much of what he did), how was his profile, was caught and tried. Wronski writes academic, every case is handled with the utmost attention to detail. I don’t know how the author slept while writing this book, but I about the hundredth page of endless descriptions of where someone who buried who poured concrete, whose skull where burned, but someone just ate, have become a burden. Nightmares I never dreamed of, but it’s just hard to read.

On arising in the course of reading the question “how can this come to mind?” the author answers in the next Chapter. What features are characteristic according to statistics, serial killers, how they manifest themselves in childhood that leads them to murder and why they kill over and over again — all this the author describes in detail. Hint: to beat children over the head with a bad idea. Head injuries are generally bad for overall health, but specifically in the context of serial killers many of them have happened. By the way, beating children is not worth, no matter what she said — 42% of serial killers were subjected to childhood physical abuse and 72% psychological. That does not seem enough, the author tells the story of Henry Lee Lucas. And honestly, after reading about his childhood I can’t begin to justify it, but at least there are thoughts that the reason lies in this.

The last part is dedicated to the fight against serial killers. The author describes profiling: its history, development in America, both good and bad applications. In addition to the U.S., there was a place for other systems profiling. The British developed the geographical profiling. According to their statistics, if we draw a circle whose diameter is equal to the distance between the two most remote locations of the killings, the killer will live within this circle. In Canada, we found the use of this system and improved it, creating Orion. This system takes into account the population of cities, traffic, statistics of the population characteristics of the murderers about his profiling and other factors. If the system to be fed from 6 cases of crime, it will give the result — place of residence and even the short list of potential suspects is correct with 90% accuracy.

In the last part the author gives advice on how to survive in the face of a serial killer. I ran to read about the hundredth page, in order to calm down. The first Council author: avoid serial killers. Don’t talk to strangers. Do not perform a strange request for help (to inform, to find something/someone to help open the door, etc.). As the author writes, it is better to be rude than dead. Better sharply to deny someone who really needs help than to politely go like a lamb to the slaughter, into the hands of the killer. Unfortunately, it is possible to be extremely careful, but still fall into the risk group. Because some factors increase the likelihood that a serial killer is already you are interested.

These factors:
– you’re a woman (82% of victims);
– not married/ not married (80%);
– age from 15 to 28 years (73%).

I’m ready to sing serenades to the author and his surgical precision in dealing with details and statistics. The only thing that I sometimes strained, it is references of the author himself. Feels like actually read a textbook. Some parts could be reduced.

Also, the book has recommendations from a serial killer, which should not be neglected, to avoid becoming a victim:
– park the car in a well lit area;
– buy revolver the .38-caliber and always carry it with you;
– buy pepper spray and get it always when out of the car.
These tips on how to protect yourself from a serial killer gives Danny rolling, also known as Gainsville Ripper. He’s the expert, so his words are worth listening to.

Well, in my humble opinion Peter Wronski took on an impossible task. He wanted to describe a specific serial killers, and paint the scientific picture of their psychology, how they investigate, etc. the volume of the book was almost 500 pages, which is not surprising — the topic is bottomless. Could be it’s all good divided into two parts: the first stories of killers and biographies, the second with the scientific and statistical data, classifications, etc. on the other hand, I bought one book and got it both. If the reader is interested in a specific case or method of investigation, he can delve into this subject by reading other books. And so the author gave a tour of the world of the killers and how to combat them.

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