Mirror Books 6th February 2020 (Paperback)
Ted Bundy was America’s first celebrity serial killer, and one of the most chilling enigmas in criminal history. Handsome, boyish and well spoken, a law student with bright political prospects, Bundy was also a predator and sexual deviant who murdered and mutilated more than thirty young women and girls, many of them college coeds, but at least two as young as twelve.
Penned by two journalists in close contact with Bundy’s friends and relatives, as well as spending 150 hours interviewing him on Death Row, Ted Bundy: The Only Living Witness is the definitive account of America’s most notorious criminal, as told by the people who knew him best.
Firstly thank you to Mel at Mirror Books for inviting me to be involved in this blog tour and providing me with a copy of the book. I am a fan of true crime and have, for a long time had a somewhat macabre interest in serial killers so obviously this was right up my street.
Ted Bundy was a prolific serial killer who targeted women across several American states during the 1970s. Probably one of the most notorious and killers of this kind, most are familiar with his name and the nature of his crimes. This book offers a comprehensive account of Bundy, touching on his early years but predominantly documenting his criminal activity though his time in jail and his death by electric chair. The authors met with Bundy on a number of occasions while he was incarcerated and without acknowledging any guilt he speculated what may have occurred, thus seeming to provide an account of his actions, which is largely believed to accurately reflect the crimes he committed.
This is a highly readable book and according to the New York Daily News,
‘One of the 10 best true crime books ever written’
a statement I whole heartedly agree with.
Insightful into the psyche of Bundy drawing on a range of first hand accounts including from those who assessed him pre trial for the purpose of psychiatric evaluation. I was interested in this aspect of the book and curiously found myself having some sympathy for Bundy as some evidence of mental disorder was suggested. There were clear missed opportunities to stop Bundy, in terms of better understanding of his mental health but also in light of his jail escapes.
As a killer Bundy was active and mobile, operating across states which caused delays in recognising the presence of a serial killer and continued to impact throughout his criminal activity and into his trial. I do think the magnitude of Bundy’s crimes were difficult to document and I struggled to recall who was who when the victims were being referred to and while I recognise I can be a stickler for detail, a chronology would have been helpful I think. That very minor criticism aside, this book was well written, detailed without being too graphic or sensationalist, it felt very balanced and it gave an incredible insight into Ted Bundy and the complexities of his character.
A must read for fans of true crime.
About the Authors
Stephen G Michaud and Hugh Aynesworth have co authored five books. Michaud writes extensively on criminal justice topics. He maintains a website at Stephenmichaud.com. Aynesworth has 50 years experience as a reporter, writer, editor and publisher. Currently he is Southwest Bureau Chief for the Washington Times.
This is a blog tour, the details of which are below if you wish to check out what others are saying about this book which is available to buy now.