True crime is one of the fastest growing genres around. From books to podcasts to Netflix documentaries, everyone wants to know the details behind the world's darkest crimes. This curiosity is helping people to better understand the criminal justice system and in some instances, helping to solve cold cases. True crime fans are making an undeniable impact on crime investigations.
This is a selection of our current True Crime titles. To find other titles or authors, or just to browse, please use the search box.
- by Billy Jensen
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Journalist Billy Jensen has built his career on solving cold case murders, often using information found on social media and in other places the police don't think to look. When detectives have no answers, they call Billy, the world's first digital "consulting detective." Step inside the world of true crime as Billy solves the Halloween Mask Murder, finds a murder/fugitive hiding out in Mexico, and investigates the only other murder in New York City on 9/11. Readers will also follow Billy closely as he helps finish Michelle McNamara's #1 New York Times bestseller I'll Be Gone In the Dark, after her sudden death. Full of twists, turns, and rabbit holes, Chase Darkness with Me allows readers to ride shotgun with Billy as he uses groundbreaking techniques to identify the criminals behind seemingly unsolvable murders.
- by Casey Cep
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Reader Reward Price: $32.36
New York Times Best Seller
"Compelling . . . at once a true-crime thriller, courtroom drama, and miniature biography of Harper Lee. If To Kill a Mockingbird was one of your favorite books growing up, you should add Furious Hours to your reading list today." --Southern Living
Reverend Willie Maxwell was a rural preacher accused of murdering five of his family members for insurance money in the 1970s. With the help of a savvy lawyer, he escaped justice for years until a relative shot him dead at the funeral of his last victim. Despite hundreds of witnesses, Maxwell's murderer was acquitted--thanks to the same attorney who had previously defended the Reverend.
Sitting in the audience during the vigilante's trial was Harper Lee, who had traveled from New York City to her native Alabama with the idea of writing her own In Cold Blood, the true-crime classic she had helped her friend Truman Capote research seventeen years earlier. Lee spent a year in town reporting, and many more years working on her own version of the case.
Now Casey Cep brings this story to life, from the shocking murders to the courtroom drama to the racial politics of the Deep South. At the same time, she offers a deeply moving portrait of one of the country's most beloved writers and her struggle with fame, success, and the mystery of artistic creativity.
- by Jim Brown
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Reader Reward Price: $22.49
For readers of The Devil in the White City and The Massey Murder, the incredible story of Norman "Red" Ryan--"the Jesse James of Canada" and the "Kardashian" of the 1920s and '30s
Dubbed "the Jesse James of Canada," Norman "Red" Ryan was infamous in the 1920s and '30s until he was gunned down in an attempted robbery in Sarnia, Ontario. Ernest Hemingway wrote about Ryan's escape from Kingston Penitentiary for the Toronto Star, Morley Callaghan based a novel on him and stories of Ryan and his crimes filled newspapers and airwaves. One of the first Canadians to be granted parole, he was held up by Prime Minister R. B. Bennett as a model of rehabilitation and became a regular guest at Toronto police picnics. All the while, however, Ryan was continuing a crime spree on the side.
Jim Brown, filmmaker and CBC Radio host, tells the incredible true story of "Red" Ryan, a larger-than-life criminal whose fame and legend were much encouraged by the media--he was the "Kardashian" of the time--and whose story endures.
- by John E. Douglas
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Reader Reward Price: $21.59
The legendary FBI criminal profiler, number-one New York Times bestselling author, and inspiration for the hit Netflix show Mindhunter delves deep into the lives and crimes of four of the most disturbing and complex predatory killers, offering never-before-revealed details about his profiling process, and divulging the strategies used to crack some of America's most challenging cases.
The FBI's pioneer of criminal profiling, former special agent John Douglas, has studied and interviewed many of America's most notorious killers--including Charles Manson, "Son of Sam Killer" David Berkowitz and "BTK Strangler" Dennis Rader--trained FBI agents and investigators around and the world, and helped educate the country about these deadly predators and how they operate, and has become a legend in popular culture, fictionalized in The Silence of the Lambs and the hit television shows Criminal Minds and Mindhunter.
Twenty years after his famous memoir, the man who literally wrote the book on FBI criminal profiling opens his case files once again. In this riveting work of true crime, he spotlights four of the most diabolical criminals he's confronted, interviewed and learned from. Going deep into each man's life and crimes, he outlines the factors that led them to murder and how he used his interrogation skills to expose their means, motives, and true evil. Like the hit Netflix show, The Killer Across the Table is centered around Douglas' unique interrogation and profiling process. With his longtime collaborator Mark Olshaker, Douglas recounts the chilling encounters with these four killers as he experienced them--revealing for the first time his profile methods in detail.
Going step by step through his interviews, Douglas explains how he connects each killer's crimes to the specific conversation, and contrasts these encounters with those of other deadly criminals to show what he learns from each one. In the process, he returns to other famous cases, killers and interviews that have shaped his career, describing how the knowledge he gained from those exchanges helped prepare him for these.
A glimpse into the mind of a man who has pierced the heart of human darkness, The Killer Across the Table unlocks the ultimate mystery of depravity and the techniques and approaches that have countered evil in the name of justice.
- by John E. Douglas
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Reader Reward Price: $22.49
Now a Netflix original series
Discover the classic, behind-the-scenes chronicle of John E. Douglas' twenty-five-year career in the FBI Investigative Support Unit, where he used psychological profiling to delve into the minds of the country's most notorious serial killers and criminals.
In chilling detail, the legendary Mindhunter takes us behind the scenes of some of his most gruesome, fascinating, and challenging cases--and into the darkest recesses of our worst nightmares.
During his twenty-five year career with the Investigative Support Unit, Special Agent John Douglas became a legendary figure in law enforcement, pursuing some of the most notorious and sadistic serial killers of our time: the man who hunted prostitutes for sport in the woods of Alaska, the Atlanta child murderer, and Seattle's Green River killer, the case that nearly cost Douglas his life.
As the model for Jack Crawford in The Silence of the Lambs, Douglas has confronted, interviewed, and studied scores of serial killers and assassins, including Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, and Ed Gein, who dressed himself in his victims' peeled skin. Using his uncanny ability to become both predator and prey, Douglas examines each crime scene, reliving both the killer's and the victim's actions in his mind, creating their profiles, describing their habits, and predicting their next moves.
- by Don Hale
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A gripping true crime investigation into the longest miscarriage of justice in British legal history. In September 1973, Stephen Downing was convicted and indefinitely sentenced for the murder of Wendy Sewell, a young legal secretary in the town of Bakewell in the Peak District. Wendy was attacked in broad daylight in Bakewell Cemetery. Stephen Downing, the 17-year-old groundskeeper with learning difficulties and a reading age of 11, was the primary suspect. He was immediately arrested, questioned for nine hours, without a solicitor present, and pressured into signing a confession full of words he did not understand. 21 years later, local newspaper editor Don Hale was thrust into the case. Determined to take it to appeal, as he investigated the details, he found himself inextricably linked to the narrative. He faced obstacles at every turn, and suffered several attempts on his life. All of this merely strengthened his resolve: why should anyone threaten him if Downing had committed the crime? In 2002, Stephen Downing was finally acquitted, having served 27 years in prison. Immerse yourself in this masterful account of Hale's long, dedicated and often dangerous campaign to rescue a long-forgotten victim of the British legal system; the longest miscarriage of justice in British history. 'An Extraordinary story of innocence and persecution, determination and grit ... it had me rattling through the pages' SOPHIE DRAPER
- by Joanna Jolly
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A gripping account of the unsolved death of an Indigenous teenager, and the detective determined to find her killer, set against the backdrop of a troubled city.
On August 17, 2014, the body of fifteen-year old runaway Tina Fontaine was found in Winnipeg's Red River. It was wrapped in material and weighted down with rocks. Red River Girl is a gripping account of that murder investigation and the unusual police detective who pursued the killer with every legal means at his disposal. The book, like the movie Spotlight, will chronicle the behind-the-scenes stages of a lengthy and meticulously planned investigation. It reveals characters and social tensions that bring vivid life to a story that made national headlines.
Award-winning BBC reporter and documentary maker Joanna Jolly delves into the troubled life of Tina Fontaine, the half-Ojibway, half-Cree murder victim, starting with her childhood on the Sagkeeng First Nation Reserve. Tina's journey to the capital city is a harrowing one, culminating in drug abuse, sexual exploitation, and death.
Aware of the reality of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, Jolly has chronicled Tina Fontaine's life as a reminder that she was more than a statistic. Raised by her father, and then by her great-aunt, Tina was a good student. But the violent death of her father hit Tina hard. She ran away, was found and put into the care of Child and Family Services, which she also sought to escape from. That choice left her in danger.
Red River Girl focuses not on the grisly event itself, but on the efforts to seek justice. In December 2015, the police charged Raymond Cormier, a drifter, with second-degree murder. Jolly's book will cover the trial, which resulted in an acquittal. The verdict caused dismay across the country.
The book is not only a true crime story, but a portrait of a community where Indigenous women are disproportionately more likely to be hurt or killed. Jolly asks questions about how Indigenous women, sex workers, community leaders, and activists are fighting back to protect themselves and change perceptions. Most importantly, the book will chronicle whether Tina's family will find justice.
- by Karen Kilgariff
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Reader Reward Price: $29.25
The instant #1 New York Times and USA Today best seller by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark, the voices behind the hit podcast My Favorite Murder!
Sharing never-before-heard stories ranging from their struggles with depression, eating disorders, and addiction, Karen and Georgia irreverently recount their biggest mistakes and deepest fears, reflecting on the formative life events that shaped them into two of the most followed voices in the nation.
In Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered, Karen and Georgia focus on the importance of self-advocating and valuing personal safety over being 'nice' or 'helpful.' They delve into their own pasts, true crime stories, and beyond to discuss meaningful cultural and societal issues with fierce empathy and unapologetic frankness.
"In many respects, Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered distills the My Favorite Murder podcast into its most essential elements: Georgia and Karen. They lay themselves bare on the page, in all of their neuroses, triumphs, failures, and struggles. From eating disorders to substance abuse and kleptomania to the wonders of therapy, Kilgariff and Hardstark recount their lives with honesty, humor, and compassion, offering their best unqualified life-advice along the way." --Entertainment Weekly
"Like the podcast, the book offers funny, feminist advice for survival--both in the sense of not getting killed and just, like, getting a job and working through your personal shit so you can pay your bills and have friends." --Rolling Stone