Netflix has blown true crime world wide open in recent years by consistently releasing gripping documentaries and dramas that keep everybody talking. If you're looking to feed your 'serial' obsession, here are five books that are an absolute must read.
1. The Stranger Beside Me by Anne Rule
WHAT A BOOK! In an extreme example of truth being stranger than fiction, Rule discovered her long-time coworker and friend Ted Bundy, was a serial killer and rapist who admitted to murdering 36 women. Rule had been in the midst of writing about the murders when she discovered the culprit's identity.
In the book, Rule delves deep into Bundy's past and gives an intricate and haunting description of the crimes he committed. She raises the nature v nurture debate and poses the question, how well can you truly know someone? You'll need to sleep with the lights long after you've finished this.
2. The Irish Scissor Sisters by Mick McCaffrey
Focusing on one of the worst crimes committed in Ireland in recent years, McCaffrey gives a graphic account of the brutal murder and dismemberment of Farah Swaleh Noor whose remains were dumped in the Royal Canal in Dublin. The book investigates what drove the Mulhall sisters to kill as well as the role their mother played in the death of Noor, who was her boyfriend. Word to the wise though, don't read this one while you're eating.
3. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
One of the most highly acclaimed true life books in the US, the narrative focuses on the 1959 brutal killing of the Cutter family in Kansas. With the aid of his childhood friend and author Harper Lee, Capote conducted a unique journalistic investigation into the manhunt, arrest, and trial of the two murderers.
On writing the book, Capote is reported to have once said: “No one will ever know what In Cold Blood took out of me. It scraped me right down to the marrow of my bones. It nearly killed me. I think, in a way, it did kill me."
4. Columbine by Dave Cullen
In 1999, two students walked into Columbine High School and went on a rampage with pipe bombs and semi-automatic weapons, killing 13 people and wounding dozens more.
In writing what is widely regarded as a definitive account of the massacre that sparked a media storm worldwide, Cullen acutely portrays the killers and gives an insight into how the survivors dealt with the aftermath.
5. Happy Like Murders: The True Story of Fred And Rosemary West by Gordon Burn
Fans of true crime will most definitely be familiar with the names Fred and Rose West. The writer recounts the horrifying story of the couple who were responsible for a string of rape and murders including those of their own daughters, in England.
Burn crafts a deeply disturbing description of the lives of the infamous murderers and gives a compelling account of their backstories, their victims including those who survived. Amazon called it a “vile catalogue."