Monday 14 June 2021

Book Review ~ A Special Place in Hell by Christopher Berry-Dee

Ad Lib
March 2021

My thanks to the publishers for my copy of this book

Sunday Times bestselling author Christopher Berry-Dee is the man who talks to serial killers. A world-renowned investigative criminologist, he has gained the trust of murderers across the world, entered their high security prisons, and discussed in detail their shocking crimes. The killers' pursuit of horror and violence is described through the unique audiotape and videotape interviews which BerryDee conducted, deep inside the bowels of some of the world's toughest prisons. 

Christopher Berry-Dee has collated these interviews into this astounding, disturbing book. Not only does he describe his meetings with some of the world's most evil men and women, he also reproduces, verbatim, their very words as they describe their crimes, allowing the reader a glimpse into the inner workings of the people who have committed the worst crime possible - to mercilessly take the life of another human being.

My Thoughts..

I'm not an enthusiastic reader of the true crime genre but after watching a recent TV programme about the psychiatric hospital Broadmoor I found myself dipping into this book which has been so kindly sent to me by Ad Lib publishers and Mardle Books. I have to be honest and say that this one has lingered on my shelf since March as I wasn't too sure if I wanted to read it.

Any way into the book I go which seems a rather incongruous choice of reading on a beautiful summer afternoon. Going into the minds of a bunch of killers isn't really a fun way to spend time but it did becoming morbidly fascinating, even though I have to admit to skipping some sections as I had my fingers over my eyes. 

Criminologist, Christopher Berry-Dee has spent time analysing some of the world's most evil men and women and so doesn't shy away from recounting their stories, their words, their lack of morality and blasรฉ indifference at taking away another person's life. Of the ten 'killers' mentioned in this book I was only familiar with two of them, one being Peter Sutcliffe, the depraved serial killer, who terrorised the streets of Northern England in the late nineteen seventies. I lived, and worked in Leeds, at the height of Ripper mania and remember only too well, the sheer terror that this evil man instilled into the hearts of women as they went about their daily lives. I will never forgive him for making my early years in a wonderful city fraught with danger.

This is definitely not a book for the faint hearted, and certainly not pleasant reading if you don't find getting into the minds of seriously disturbed individuals interesting. However, in A Special Place in Hell, the author shares his thoughts about ten of the most heinous serial killers/mass murderers who fully deserve their special place in hell, and all credit must go to the author for writing with dispassionate ease about some quite horrific subjects. That there are more killers out there who have the potential to be the worst of the worst Christopher Berry-Dee readily admits but I don't think I want to  read about them.

If you like true crime, and are not easily shocked, then A Special Place in Hell is a well written and interesting account of ten of the world's most evil serial killers.

About the Author

Noted writer and criminologist, Christopher Berry-Dee's recent books include Talking With Psychopaths and Savages, the UK's best selling true-crime title of 2017, and Talking With Female Serial Killers. He is the country's No. 1 true crime author.

Twitter @AdLibPublishers


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