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My Life Among the Serial Killers: Inside the Minds of the World's Most Notorious Murderers    by Helen Morrison & Harold Goldberg Amazon.com order for
My Life Among the Serial Killers
by Helen Morrison
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Avon, 2005 (2004)
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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

My Life Among the Serial Killers is a very difficult book to read. It includes names like John Wayne Gacy, Wayne Williams, Gary Leon Ridgway, Peter Sutcliffe. Isn't it appalling that these are only a few of the many serial killers who have terrorized whole countries?

Forensic psychiatrist Helen Morrison has spent thirty years talking to and studying these human aberrations to see if there was a common thread that made them take life without compunction almost believing they had a right to do so. She writes knowledgeably about her findings. She has visited countless serial killers in their prisons to try to determine what could make them commit the crimes they do mostly without remorse. Unless you count their feelings about being apprehended.

More up-to-date technology has helped Morrison determine there is something in the killers' makeup or genes if you will that turn them into the people they become. (Women are not immune to the condition.) She believes something at conception goes awry, though studies of the brains of both living and dead serial killers has so far offered no insight into this terrible phenomenon.

This is not a book for the squeamish. It is true to life, and often does not make for nice fireside reading. Dr. Morrison makes her points clearly and concisely. The next step would be to be able to look for the signs in children before they become murdering adults.

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