“Killing Stalking Free” is written by Patrick Carnes who according to his bio in the author’s blurb has been “a quiet, scrawny, average guy with a mild brain disorder”. What is interesting about this blurb, is that Patrick Carnes has managed to get this book published by Random House, which is the giant publishing arm of Conde Nast. I have always loved Random House and especially their romance books.
In this gripping thriller, the main character, a scrawny quiet boy, has a crush on one of the most beautiful and popular girls in school. The trouble in the beginning is that he cannot bring himself to tell her what he thinks of her. However, things take an even more dramatic turn when he stumbles upon the grisly murder of a girl he hardly knew. It turns out that Patrick is actually suffering from a mental disorder that causes him to have an obsession towards the opposite sex. He even goes so far as to plan a killing spree in order to get back at his tormentor.
One thing I find very interesting in ” Killing stalkers” is how it presents a very realistic description of what it’s like to live with this mental condition. The author shows us what it’s like to have such an intense longing for someone that you simply can’t have. His description of the brutality of such an obsession is so accurate that it makes you feel for the people involved. I would say the majority of the characters in this series are likeable, but some, such as the father, are a bit one-dimensional.
I think that part may be why this series was made available for free to subscribers. There were quite a few people who really loved the story and wanted to see how it was told in a visual medium. It’s understandable why they were offering it for free to keep people from having to read killing stalkers chapter by chapter. I personally don’t mind seeing pictures of dead people, I just prefer reading them as a reader rather than as a writer.
I should mention that the first arc in the series is probably the worst. It doesn’t follow the normal format of most story telling sequences. There isn’t any build up to the climax, the ending isn’t properly explained, and there are major lulls in between the scenes. However, once you get past this scene, everything picks up considerably.
I particularly liked how the series focused on how the killer had taken up the hobby of killing women. It’s oftenentimes forgotten that such a deviant behavior stems from some deep psychological issue. This first arc did an excellent job of showing us just how the problem got started. It also pointed out how the victim had grown up to be such a cold, calculating killer.
The second chapter in the series sheds some more light on the relationship between the killing spree killer and his family. We learn that he has at least two wives. There’s a tension between them as they both suspect each other of being involved. We also learn how he came to be so obsessed with the sport. Finally, I really liked how the entire novel was related through the eyes of the characters who were facing off against the killer.
These books will always remain good reads because they do a great job of chronicling history and presenting it in a way that doesn’t bog down the reader with tedious details. I especially appreciate how these novels present a bit of the “grisly facts” to readers, which make them more interesting. For many people, reading about a grisly crime is much more interesting than actually witnessing one in person, and these books help give some historical context.