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

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I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer Cover Image
By Michelle McNamara, Gillian Flynn (Introduction by), Patton Oswalt (Afterword by)
$27.99
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Staff Reviews


What a read. This book was so fascinating! And 100% creepy. Michelle McNamara brought all the terror and pain and panic of that time to life here in the present. I have read only a few true crime books, as I am extremely picky when it comes to getting a narrative right when it comes to things that have actually happened. Michelle McNamara got the balance between fact and emotion down just right. She made me feel the fear that the various victims felt but she also let me know what the facts of each individual attack was. I felt for the victims but I also felt informed. And in perfect measure I was totally and utterly outraged and creeped out. It baffles my mind that a man like that had the cunning and the smarts to do what he did for so long and disappear into the darkness, when his acts of terror, his endless crimes against those he killed and those he left behind were of such a horrendous nature. I understand Ms. McNamara's obsession with the maniac. After reading it with no concrete understanding of who he was or why he did what he did I want to dive in, find those message boards and start my own investigation. A shout out to all the people that worked and are still working tirelessly to try to find this guy. This is a great read. Worth it all the way, from first moments to last pages. I recommend this to anyone that wants a good true crime book and doesn't mind being completely unsettled

-- Sara

— From Sara F. Staff Picks

Description


Soon to be an HBO® Documentary Series

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

A BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR:

Washington Post | Maureen Corrigan, NPR | Paste | Seattle Times | Entertainment Weekly | Esquire | Slate | Buzzfeed | Jezebel | Philadelphia Inquirer | Publishers Weekly | Kirkus Reviews | Library Journal | Bustle | Mother Jones | Real Simple | Crime Reads | Book Riot | Bookish | Amazon | Barnes and Noble |Hudson Booksellers New York Public Library | Chicago Public Library

Winner of the Goodreads Choice Awards for Nonfiction | Anthony Award Winner | SCIBA Book Award Winner | Finalist for the Edgar Award for Best Fact Crime | Longlisted for the Carnegie Medal for Excellence

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.

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.

About the Author


Michelle McNamara (1970–2016) was the author of the website True Crime Diary. She earned an MFA in fiction writing from the University of Minnesota, and had sold television pilots to ABC and Fox and a screenplay to Paramount. She also worked as a consultant for Dateline NBC. She lived in Los Angeles and is survived by her husband, Patton Oswalt, and their daughter, Alice.

Praise For…


“Unputdownable.... Powerful.”
— Maureen Corrigan, NPR’s Fresh Air

“A singular, fascinating read. It’s lifelike in its incompletion... a posthumous treasure that feels thrillingly alive. A-”
Entertainment Weekly

“What makes McNamara’s work so compelling is her empathy and sensitivity toward the people touched by these crimes.... I wish I could read the next 10 books she would have written.”
— Kate Tuttle, Los Angeles Times

“What readers need to know—what makes this book so special—is that it deals with two obsessions, one light and one dark. The Golden State Killer is the dark half; Michelle McNamara’s is the light half. It’s a journey into two minds, one sick and disordered, the other intelligent and determined. I loved this book.”  
— Stephen King

“Both a vivid and meticulous investigation of a twisted predator who terrorized quiet, upper middle-class communities in California for nearly a decade, and a wrenching personal account from a writer who became consumed by her subject.”
New York Times

“Remarkable… The detective’s nose for the crucial clue transmutes so easily into a novelist’s eye for the concrete detail that conjures a memory or emotion. She applies the same gift to a handful of portraits of people affected by the killer’s crimes.... These read like fragments from Raymond Carver stories, tales of ordinary lives fractured by incomprehensible violence. Had she lived, McNamara might have helped identify the man who committed that violence, but before she died, she did something nearly as miraculous: making them all live again in some small way.”
— Laura Miller, Slate

“This book just knocked me over.”
— Megan Abbott

“Utterly gripping.”
People

“A powerful portrait of the scale of the Golden State Killer’s crimes, of the mechanics of criminal investigations, of the strange particular dread and paranoia in the California in the 1970s, and of McNamara’s own obsession with violent men, and this one violent man.”
— San Francisco Chronicle

“Breathtaking, ambitious, and exquisitely written.”
New York

“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

“That the book feels triumphant even after tragedy upon tragedy is a testament to McNamara’s skill as a reporter.”
Esquire, “The 25 Best True Crime Books Every Person Should Read”

“Narrative true crime journalism at its very finest, a complex, multilayered, chilling portrait of a faceless monster, and a remarkable tribute to the woman who, up until her last day, believed she would one day have him in her crosshairs.”  
Village Voice

“Any true crime project is basically a reckoning with death, but in this case, it’s a reckoning that is no longer theoretical. McNamara is gone. And what’s especially sad about her absence is just how good she was.”
The Portland Mercury

“Remarkable.... A modern true crime classic.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Chilling.... Hard to put down.”
Minneapolis Star Tribune

“The work has many notable qualities — in particular, a penetrating and elegiac voice.”
Seattle Times

“Impressive.”
Booklist, starred review


Coverage from NPR

Product Details
ISBN: 9780062319784
ISBN-10: 0062319787
Publisher: Harper
Publication Date: February 27th, 2018
Pages: 352
Language: English