The problem with picking up books based solely upon their opening lines is you are routinely caught off guard by what comes after that initial bit. With this book, I just assumed what was in store for me was another wrongful conviction story. Boy, I learned right quick that I was dead wrong (pun intended) on that one. I’d have known that if I’d read any of the blurbs on the back, but I tend to skip those. I will say that I was pleasantly surprised that it didn’t go that more predictable route, instead slowly unweaving how evil our man on death row truly is. I also liked the increased focus on his victims, making it less about him and more about the impact upon them and those around them.
That being said, the part of me that loved shows like Most Evil couldn’t help but be disappointed that he was left as such an enigma. I get he was meant to take a backseat to the stories of the people he affected, but I wanted at least some analysis of what exactly made him tick, especially because I was a little confused by his not-manifesto that he kept referencing as a means of distancing himself from his crimes. It almost felt like the author was going out of their way to make him as weird and evil a character as they could, so I inevitably had some questions that wound up going unanswered.
It was a quick read, though, and struck that same salacious chord as true crime does, so it wasn’t all bad. I just felt like more could have been done with it, I guess.