I'll Be Gone in the Dark
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I'll Be Gone in the Dark : One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer

4.22 (53,799 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Afterword by  , Introduction by 

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Description

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The haunting true story of the elusive serial rapist turned murderer who terrorized California during the 70s and 80s, and of the gifted journalist who died tragically while investigating the case--which was solved in April 2018.

SCIBA Book Award Winner

A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2018.

A Washington Post Notable Book of 2018



Introduction by Gillian Flynn - Afterword by Patton Oswalt

"A brilliant genre-buster.... Propulsive, can't-stop-now reading." --Stephen King



For more than ten years, a mysterious and violent predator committed fifty sexual assaults in Northern California before moving south, where he perpetrated ten sadistic murders. Then he disappeared, eluding capture by multiple police forces and some of the best detectives in the area.

Three decades later, Michelle McNamara, a true crime journalist who created the popular website TrueCrimeDiary.com, was determined to find the violent psychopath she called "the Golden State Killer." Michelle pored over police reports, interviewed victims, and embedded herself in the online communities that were as obsessed with the case as she was.

I'll Be Gone in the Dark--the masterpiece McNamara was writing at the time of her sudden death--offers an atmospheric snapshot of a moment in American history and a chilling account of a criminal mastermind and the wreckage he left behind. It is also a portrait of a woman's obsession and her unflagging pursuit of the truth. Utterly original and compelling, it has been hailed as a modern true crime classic--one which fulfilled Michelle's dream: helping unmask the Golden State Killer.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 160 x 229 x 30mm | 590g
  • English
  • Illustrations, unspecified
  • 0062319787
  • 9780062319784
  • 107,978

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Back cover copy

A masterful true-crime account of the Golden State Killer--the elusive serial rapist turned murderer who terrorized California for over a decade--from Michelle McNamara, the gifted journalist who died tragically while investigating the case

You'll be silent forever, and I'll be gone in the dark.

Over the course of more than ten years, a mysterious and violent predator committed fifty sexual assaults in Northern California before moving south, where he perpetrated ten sadistic murders. In 1986 he disappeared, eluding capture by multiple police forces and some of the best detectives in the area.

Three decades later, Michelle McNamara, a true-crime journalist who created the popular website True Crime Diary, was determined to find the violent psychopath she called "the Golden State Killer." Michelle pored over police reports, inter-viewed victims, and embedded herself in the online communities that were as obsessed with the case as she was.

At the time of the crimes, the Golden State Killer was between the ages of eighteen and thirty, Caucasian, and athletic--capable of vaulting tall fences. He always wore a mask. After choosing his victims--he favored suburban couples--he often entered their homes when no one was there, studying family pictures, mastering the layouts. He attacked while they slept, using a flashlight to awaken and blind them. Though they could not recognize him, his victims recalled his voice: a guttural whisper through clenched teeth, abrupt and threatening.

I'll Be Gone in the Dark--the masterpiece McNamara was writing at the time of her sudden death--offers an atmospheric snapshot of a moment in American history and a chilling account of a criminal mastermind and the wreckage he left behind. It is also a portrait of a woman's obsession and her unflagging pursuit of the truth. Framed by an introduction from Gillian Flynn and an afterword by McNamara's husband, Patton Oswalt, the book was completed by Michelle's lead researcher and a close colleague. Utterly original and compelling, it is destined to become a true-crime classic--and may at last unmask the Golden State Killer.
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Review quote

"Michelle McNamara was an obsessive. She was also a damn good writer. That combustive mix has produced I'll Be Gone in the Dark, a dark page-turner.... Scintillating."--USA Today
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Rating details

53,799 ratings
4.22 out of 5 stars
5 43% (23,027)
4 41% (21,909)
3 14% (7,363)
2 2% (1,183)
1 1% (317)
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