Chase Darkness with Me by Billy Jensen: Audiobook Review

 Chase Darkness with Me by Billy Jensen
Release Date: April 11, 2019 by Audible Studios
8 Hours, 19 min & Narrated by Billy Jensen with foreword by Karen Kilgariff
Buy on Audible  

Short Blurb: Journalist Billy Jensen spent 15 years investigating unsolved murders, fighting for the families of victims. Every story he wrote had one thing in common – it didn’t have an ending. The killer was still out there.
Gripping, complex, unforgettable, Chase Darkness with Me is an examination of the evil forces that walk among us, illustrating a novel way to catch those killers, and a true crime narrative unlike any you’ve listened to before.

My Thoughts: If you like true crime, especially in the form of investigative journalism, this audiobook is for you! I was initially drawn to this story because of Billy’s association with Michelle McNamarra in the amazing I’ll Be Gone in the Dark book from 2018. Billy worked closely with Michelle on her Golden State Killer case and after her death he was instrumental in helping to finish and get her book published.

In his new audiobook, Billy tells of how he developed a love of true crime and justice from an early age. he describes some pretty crazy bedtime stories of crimes and criminals that his dad used to share with him. Rather than scaring him, Billy pinpoints those early stories as instilling a fascination and hunger within himself to explore crime and those who commit it

Believe me when I say this is one of the most engaging, insightful audiobooks I’ve ever listened to! Billy goes in depth in how he uses crowdsourcing…think Facebook and Twitter…to catch criminals and it’s absolutely fascinating. The murder of Marcus Gaines that Billy worked on was not only sad and frustrating to hear but incredible in terms of how it turned out. This crowdsourcing feels to me very timely and tremendously important in terms of the possibilites it offers for solving more murders and finding more missing people. In fact, Billy’s discussion of the“digital posse” seemed so accurate for the future of crime and criminal justice.

Told with empathy, compassion and energy, Billy’s dedication and passion for truth and justice came through loud and clear. I highly recommend this audiobook!

Thanks to Allison Weber and Audible for my copy

Advertisements

REVIEW: I’LL BE GONE IN THE DARK By Michelle McNamara

35068432

Publication Feb 27, 2018 By Harper
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.”

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.

******

Riveting. Chilling. Fascinating. I could go on with the adjectives to describe this incredible work of nonfiction but you get the idea. It’s very rare that I come across a book, especially a nonfiction one, that literally made my heart race while reading certain scenes. Like others have mentioned, I couldn’t read this at night. To say it’s scary doesn’t seem to do Michelle’s writing justice, but it’s absolutely how I felt while reading about this elusive rapist/killer.  She has created a brilliant work of investigative journalism that was, at times, terrifying, yet utterly gripping to read. I couldn’t put it down. When I wasn’t reading I was busy looking over my shoulder, checking the doors and windows and thinking about all the unsuspecting victims and communities he terrorized . It’s unfathomable on many levels….not just the crimes he committed but how he’s managed to continuously elude authorities. At times, he had been right there in front of them and yet he managed to vanish.

Michelle’s passion for her work and yes her obsession with finding this killer came alive through her evocative prose. I often felt that I was there with her, looking over her shoulder, reading the case files and notes. When the narrative went back in time to the various crime scenes, I felt I was walking alongside the detectives as they hunted this killer. Her writing captured the essence of everyone involved in this story and that includes the killer and his victims. For this reason, there may be many people who may not be able to read the scenes she describes; there is an abundance of rape victims whose stories she delicately details along with the murders he escalated to. This is integral to the story but never gratuitous. She perfectly balanced these details, however, with glimpses of her own life which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. She became a friend who invited me into her world which makes the fact that she died before finishing this book all the more tragic.

Something to keep in mind, the narrative does jump around in time quite often and not always in a sequential order. I’m not sure if this is indicative of the way Michelle was researching the story or that pieces were put together by the editors after her death. However, the fact that I was a little confused at times didn’t take away from the impact of the narrative. I often think the sign of a great book is one that not only teaches me something but also elicits a wide range of feelings within myself; I’ll Be Gone In the Dark has done both. And the ending…perfection.

Many thanks to HarperCollins via Edelweiss for my copy

IT’S MONDAY WHAT ARE YOU READING?

cheers!

Happy Monday everyone! I’ve been on a reading spree lately with some really fantastic reads that I can’t wait to share with you. I think my plan of not continuing on with books I’m not enjoying is really paying off because I’ve had the best time reading lately, staying up late and not even caring about the lost sleep! What I’m also excited about is the variety of books I’m reading, many I might’ve passed by before but am giving a try and it’s paying off. On the movie front, we saw Game Night yesterday and both thought it was great. Funny and pure entertainment as only Jason Bateman can do. Two thumbs up for that one!

RECENTLY READ…

I’ll Be Gone In the Dark  (Feb 27) was a page turning, chilling account of one woman’s search for the serial killer she called The Golden State Killer. I’m no longer going to my mailbox in the dark after reading this…(my review will be up Friday but consider this a must read!)

Kill the Angel (Feb 20) was one of my most anticipated sequels for 2018. I loved Kill the Father  last year but this one seemed to be missing something for me. It was less complex and the main characters who made Kill the Father so great felt stagnant in this one. On a positive note, the ending was a nice surprise.

The Family Next Door (March 6) was my most recent read and I read it in about a day. This is one I would’ve passed by a few months ago as it’s touted as a domestic suspense and I tend to steer clear of most of those; however, this was getting rave reviews from trusted bloggers so I had to take a closer look and I’m so glad I did. I predict this will be a big hit so you might want to add it to your tbr’s now! I’ll have my review up next week.

CURRENTLY READING…

35533431

The Broken Girls  (March 20) Another one I’m really surprised to find that I’m not only enjoying, I can’t wait to get back to it and find out more. Typically I don’t enjoy alternating timelines or ghost stories BUT both are keeping me glued to the pages of this one. It alternates between 1950 and 2014 and I’m equally invested in both as well as the underlying mystery.

UPCOMING READING POSSIBILITIES…. 

The Italian Party  (March 20) I would read this for just the cover and title alone but I love that it’s described as “A smart pleasure” and “sharply funny” and the blurb mentions charming spies and prosecco so I’m sold!

Every Note Played (March 20) I’ve read and loved Lisa’s books in the past so I’m very much looking forward to this one featuring a pianist with ALS. There’s always great depth and emotion to her books so I’ll have my tissues ready.

What have YOU read recently? Feel free to leave a comment and share what you’ve read and loved (or not) or what you’re looking forward to reading!  

HAPPY READING!