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The real life FBI profiler who inspired the TV program, Mindhunter, reveals his secrets within these pages He details some of his most high profile cases and his interviews with the criminals He delves deep into their crimes and their minds I m a fan of true crime and of all things psychological This was a disturbing look into some truly diabolical minds Their utter lack of humanity and empathy is the stuff of nightmares Are psychopathic killers born or are they made And if made, what experiences molded them into cold blooded killers devoid of the characteristics that makes us human By sitting down with convicted killers and using interview techniques specific to the criminal mindset, he explores potential answers to these questions By doing so, the author unlocks the secrets to profiling, which improves the odds of identifying and apprehending these monsters.Well written and narrated by the actor from MIndhunters, this is the perfect book for true crime devotees who are interested in criminal profiling I recommend this one only for those who can stomach the graphic details of the crimes and can tolerate being inside the minds of serial killers I highly recommend this on audio Don t miss the interview at the end between the narrator and the author.This was another fantastic buddy read with Marialyce For this and other duo reviews please visit her blog Ecstatic update I just ordered a signed copy of this book I m going to own a signed copy of a John Douglas book Need morning to come so it s socially acceptable to jump up and down with glee Have you ever considered who you d invite to your fantasy Ultimate Dinner Party John Douglas is one of my top five fantasy guests although, introvert that I am, I d much prefer a one on one conversation with him.My main takeaway from my psychology degree was my obsession with criminal profiling My favourite assessment was when I was given a scenario that detailed a crime scene and my job was to profile the UNSUB I bought and devoured every John Douglas book he d written at the time and fantasised about moving to America to join the FBI I wanted to be a criminal profiler way before Criminal Minds premiered and if I had a do over of my life, you d know me as Special Agent Nerd and I would have been mentored by Mr Douglas Ah, fantasy landWhy How WhoBuilt around conversations with four violent predators, The Killer Across the Table provides relevant information about their backgrounds, how they offended, what they thought in the lead up to, during and after their offences, and importantly, gives valuable insights that can help investigators prevent similar crimes or assist in apprehending offenders.With its content this book could easily have sensationalised the crimes but the authors recount the details of the cases and their perpetrators in a matter of fact way as matter of fact as you can be when discussing sexual assault, torture and murder With clear empathy and compassion for the victims and their loved ones, their stories are told in a way that at once honours the people they were but also affords them a dignity they were denied by their murderers.Given his pioneering work in the field of criminal investigations and profiling, John Douglas could easily and justifiably come across as a know it all seeking glory for his brilliance But he doesn t He explains his approach and why he treats the offenders he interviews well but I don t feel any arrogance in the writing At first glance you could be forgiven for thinking the authors are name dropping when they casually explain something by making comparisons with renowned criminals like Bundy or Manson, but John Douglas has interviewed so many household names that it feels organic when he links certain aspects of cases The explanations add to your understanding of not only the case he s referencing, but also provides insights into others.I haven t read a John Douglas book in several years but this read has reawakened my need to reread all of my previous reads and to finally read the couple I haven t actually read yet If you have even a passing interest in what makes people who commit horrendous crimes tick, I can t recommend these authors books to you enough Content warnings include descriptions of sexual assault, torture and murder of adults and children. Every so often a book sends shivers down one s spine, makes one check the locks of the doors and windows of the house, and hunker down to listen to a book that is both harrowing and frightening all in the knowledge that this was all true Needless to say, the saying life is stranger than fiction is ever so true and in the harrowing story of serial killers, one finds that the strange is also the horrifying Imagine the most frightening book you have ever read It made you scared, creeping you out, chilling you, probably horrifying, eerie and alarming However, that book was fiction and though you were scared silly, you knew in your head that nothing there was real.What if you read a horrific book about killers, serial killers, and the mind that creates such people and all of it was totally real This is the world that John Douglas and Mark Olshaker present to us as we are seated with the killer across the table The harrowing details and the people described, names we all know, crimes we all read of or listened to on the nightly news were vividly portrayed for us in detail as to what creates this kind of macabre personality As we travel the road taken by Mr Douglas as a former FBI profiler, we are lead into the world of the psychopath and we, as well as the author, try to understand the why of their nature Do they, these killers, share similar characteristics or is each one a separate entity, one bent on destruction and death of another human being This is the stuff of nightmares, it is a nightmare lived out in the real world These killers once lived among us and probably some still do This was a fascinating story certainly not for the faint of heart but one that I found so intriguing and thought provoking Jan and I had a few lurking nightmares after reading this one, but it was definitely an alluring look into the mind of killers To see our reviews and a with John Edward Douglas, you can go here The Killer Across the Table not only takes you into the minds of serial killers but also into the minds of the profilers who examine and interview these murderers John Edward Douglas has been with the FBI s Behavioral Science Unit for twenty five years, making him a leading authority in his field Researching what makes a killer tick is not for the faint of heart Edward Douglas reveals the life and previous crimes of four of his cases, bringing the reader along to help understand what leads a man to commit brutal murders This is a difficult book to read and makes you appreciate the necessary and important work being done by profilers. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review The Killer Across The Table is the latest book by John Douglas, pioneer in behavioural sciences at the FBI, and the inspiration behind the character of Holden Ford on Netflix s Mindhunter In this latest book he examines four different murderers, ranging in victims and signature, as he delves into their mind and discusses the why, what and how of their crimes Douglas always has an interesting way at examining these kinds of criminals, casting a critical look at their past to find their triggers As he states, to understand this level of behaviour you need to examine every aspect of their life They didn t start to exist the day they came to jail The writing, as usual, is also good and flows well John uses a lot of past cases as evidence to support his ideas and the reasons he believes these criminals behave the way they do to great effect He also never glorifies the criminals, or sensationalises the crimes Particularly with the first case, which surrounds the death of a child, Joan D Alessandro, he s empathetic to the victim and family and shines a light on what the family has done to reduce child murder since her death He also spends time discussing the great lengths that the family went to ensure the child s killer remains behind bars The criminals do not ever come out of Douglas s books with a good reputation As they shouldn t I found the section on Joan D Alessandro and her killer John McGowan the most interesting, and the most well researched Douglas masterfully dissects McGowan s behaviour, and the reasons behind the killing, bringing up interviews from his colleagues and neighbours as well as his own time talking to McGowan and other similar killers to discern the real reasons behind why he did what he did As mentioned, he also touches on the work of Joan s mother in particular, and demonstrates what a truly inspirational woman she is.I do think that sometimes he repeats himself quite a lot, rehashing sections of his book Mindhunter , or repeating comments he s already made earlier in the book such as mentioning, twice, that police brought in self proclaimed experts to help solve satanic ritual crimes which at times I found annoying However for the most part I found this interesting and insightful Information is presented here in what I would call an objective way, although with an obvious passion for the subject, that is easy to understand I also found Douglas s personality to be less in your face than previous novels Here the criminals and their behaviour take centre stage Interesting read, obviously written to coincide with the success of the Netflix show Mindhunter, but worthwhile for fans of true crime and Douglas s unique insight into criminal behaviour. John Douglas is undoubtedly a fascinating man Right at the forefront of criminal profiling, he s sat across the interview table from some of the most infamous and prolific serial killers of our time Yet this is a light offering, repetitive and covering ground well trodden The cases are, of course, horrific, especially the first the rape and murder of 7 year old Joan D Alessandro The problem is that he can t let those bigger fish go, instead their stories seep into this book at every possible point of comparison Ed Kemper shows up regularly, as do other big names If you ve seen Mindhunter and I recommend that you do , most of what s discussed here, save the specifics of these 4 cases, has been covered before I was expecting something procedural and academic, something about the work the profilers do, rather than this sensationalist, killer focused work This is a book dominated by personality, both Douglas own and those of the well known criminals he has interviewed Because of that, it sometimes veers too far into uncomfortable territory, exploitative and almost celebratory at times Something about it just didn t sit quite right with me As much as the advances in criminal investigation interests me, I doubt I d read anything by him again.ARC via Netgalley By all intents and purposes, John E Douglas is an interesting character with a fascination for interesting characters He was one of the FBI s first criminal profilers and a celebrated serial killer whisperer for the duration of his career In this book, he delves into criminal psychopathy and attempts to answer questions such as are killers born or made but also investigates the reasoning for their offences and how the offender themselves tries to justify their actions Douglas s great insight was to recognise apprehended serial killers not as monsters to be thrown down a deep pit and forgotten but an untapped reservoir of knowledge and insight Who could better understand, and decipher, these debased crimes than the criminals perpetrating them So despite being considered as unorthodox at the time, Douglas decided to go to the direct source Time after time he charmed and gained the confidence of criminals such as Charles Manson, Ed Kemper and Ted Bundy who gave up their darkest secrets This is an interesting true crime book which gets to the crux of the issue through some intriguing, lesser known cases Sometimes the way in which it is written can come across as quite sensationalist, and we have to remember that these crimes had victims, but I can also see that Mr Douglas gets giddy when uncovering new information, so it may just be that This is one of the better true crime reads and recommended reading for those interested in crime, criminal profiling, psychology and psychopathy Many thanks to William Collins for an ARC. *READ EBOOK ⇙ The Killer Across the Table ↛ 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 CasesThe 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 MindhunterTwenty 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 TheseA 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 RTC Manipulation, domination, and control the hallmarks of serial predatory killers.In this shocking reveal of the investigation of a FBI criminal profiler, we get a glimpse of the inner workings of some of the most dangerous and psychotic criminals in history that would inspire crime stories in books and on the big screen When it comes to acts of heinous crimes of the utmost degree, there are many assumptions out there Some of them are correct, and others couldn t be off the mark.There are four profiles covered in this book The topic is interesting and the way the author conducted the interviews was logical and sensical It was an investigation into their minds, history, intentions, and behaviour These people are on the fringe, even in the criminal world It s grotesque and morbid It s repulsive, and at the same time fascinating and seductive It won t give you serial killer tendencies, or teach you how to be a successive criminal, but it is tremendously entertaining If you enjoy any of the crime documentaries on TV, you d love this book.