Thursday, May 12, 2016

{Book Review} The Michigan Murders by Edward Keyes

The Michigan Murders
by Edward Keyes
Publisher: Open Road Media
Released: April 19th 2016
Genre: Non-Fiction- Adult: True Crime
How I got it: NetGalley

An Edgar Award Nominee: The terrifying true story of savage murders, a terrorized midwestern town, and the serial killer who could have lived next door

 In 1967, during the time of peace, free love, and hitchhiking, nineteen-year-old Mary Terese Fleszar was last seen alive walking home to her apartment in Ypsilanti, Michigan. One month later, her naked body—stabbed over thirty times and missing both feet and a forearm—was discovered, partially buried, on an abandoned farm. A year later, the body of twenty-year-old Joan Schell was found, similarly violated. Southeastern Michigan was terrorized by something it had never experienced before: a serial killer. Over the next two years, five more bodies were uncovered around Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti, Michigan. All the victims were tortured and mutilated. All were female students.

After multiple failed investigations, a chance sighting finally led to a suspect. On the surface, John Norman Collins was an all-American boy—a fraternity member studying elementary education at Eastern Michigan University. But Collins wasn’t all that he seemed. His female friends described him as aggressive and short tempered. And in August 1970, Collins, the “Ypsilanti Ripper,” was arrested, found guilty, and sentenced to life in prison without chance of parole.

Written by the coauthor of The French Connection, The Michigan Murders delivers a harrowing depiction of the savage murders that tormented a small midwestern town.

Review: This was a spine tingling read, even if all the names had been changed. This is the account of several murders spanning the late 60's, each gruesome and senseless. Seven young co-eds lost their lives to a serial killer in Southeastern Michigan. I am interested in true crime and had never heard of these cases, so I found this book extremely interesting.
I thought Mr Keyes did a wonderful job researching the cases and providing readers with all the information. Starting with the first murder and crafting a detailed story leading us to the arrest and conviction of John Norman Collins, called James Armstrong in the book. In this story like many others of this genre, it was observation and diligent police work that led to the capture of this hideous person. As the book progresses we learn how James/John took pains to try and cover his tracks. It was interesting to read how forensics at that time worked and was used.
Over all this was a fascinating read, and if you are into true crime definitely check it out.


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