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"Maureen Callahan's deft reporting and stylish writing have created one of the all-time-great serial-killer books: sensitive, chilling, and completely impossible to put down." (Ada Calhoun, author of St. Marks Is Dead)
Ted Bundy. John Wayne Gacy. Jeffrey Dahmer. The names of notorious serial killers are usually well-known; they echo in the news and in public consciousness. But most people have never heard of Israel Keyes, one of the most ambitious and terrifying serial killers in modern history. The FBI considered his behavior unprecedented. Described by a prosecutor as "a force of pure evil", Keyes was a predator who struck all over the United States. He buried "kill kits" - cash, weapons, and body-disposal tools - in remote locations across the country. Over the course of 14 years, Keyes would fly to a city, rent a car, and drive thousands of miles in order to use his kits. He would break into a stranger's house, abduct his victims in broad daylight, and kill and dispose of them in mere hours. And then he would return home to Alaska, resuming life as a quiet, reliable construction worker devoted to his only daughter.
When journalist Maureen Callahan first heard about Israel Keyes in 2012, she was captivated by how a killer of this magnitude could go undetected by law enforcement for over a decade. And so began a project that consumed her for the next several years - uncovering the true story behind how the FBI ultimately caught Israel Keyes, and trying to understand what it means for a killer like Keyes to exist. A killer who left a path of monstrous, randomly committed crimes in his wake - many of which remain unsolved to this day.
American Predator is the ambitious culmination of years of interviews with key figures in law enforcement and in Keyes's life, and research uncovered from classified FBI files. Callahan takes us on a journey into the chilling, nightmarish mind of a relentless killer, and to the limitations of traditional law enforcement.
â€œA deep dive into the twisted life of Israel Keyes, â€˜a new kind of monsterâ€™.... Serial killers often commit their crimes close to home, inside a comfort zone, but as the author documents throughout this compelling narrative, little about Keyes fit the conventional serial-killer mold...[Callahan] offers fascinating context about law enforcement investigative techniques and revelations about how a murderer can strike again and again without being detected for more than a decade.â€ (Kirkus Reviews)
â€œAmerican Predator is the scariest book Iâ€™ve ever read. No exaggeration - the book you hold is bone-chilling. Maureen Callahan explores the black heart of a new kind of American monster - a serial killer that confounded our most elite criminal profilers - and the race-against-time investigation to follow. This is the work of a journalist in her prime, telling you the story the FBI doesnâ€™t want you to hear and delivering an unforgettable tale of evil that will haunt you. Mark my words: This modern true crime classic will stand with the likes of Jeff Guinnâ€™s Manson, Ann Ruleâ€™s The Stranger Beside Me, and Michelle McNamaraâ€™s Iâ€™ll Be Gone in the Dark.â€ (Susannah Cahalan, New York Times best-selling author of Brain on Fire)
â€œInvestigative journalist Callahan provides a chilling true-crime narrative in this detailed study of Israel Keyes, whom she describes as â€˜a new kind of monster, likely responsible for the greatest string of unsolved disappearances and murders in modern American history.â€™... Through Callahanâ€™s access to many of the key players in law enforcement, she has produced the definitive account of a terrifying psychopath.â€ (Publishers Weekly)
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