Second Look: James Renner’s TRUE CRIME ADDICT

Okay, so if any of you know me, you know how I’m totally obsessed with true crime podcasts right now.  I even made a post of my favorite podcasts over at my personal blog.  (You can read that post here.)

I’ve been really excited to read James Renner’s new true crime book, True Crime Addict, since about March when I got really into the Missing Maura Murray podcast.  (Only strengthened from listening to Renner on True Crime Garage.)

I was all ready to go to Barnes & Noble on the release day (May 24) and pick it up.  But, lightening struck and I won a free copy on GoodReads (Thanks, St. Martin’s Press and GoodReads)!  (To say I was ecstatic is really underselling it.)

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After reading Yael Egan’s novel and reviewing it, I was finally ready to move onto Renner’s new release.

Without further ado, here is my review.

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TRUE CRIME ADDICT by James Renner
St. Martin’s Press, 2016

What It’s About:

James Renner, a journalist, wanted to dive into a new true crime story.  He stumbled upon the case of Maura Murray, a 21-year old woman who’d gone missing under mysterious circumstances in 2004.  In this book – part true crime, part memoir – Renner recounts his journey of investigating Maura’s disappearance, his own connection to criminal behavior (relatives), and what he learned about himself along the way.

Sidenote: The book is aptly subtitled, How I Lost Myself in the Mysterious Disappearance of Maura Murray.

While the majority of the book does focus on Maura’s disappearance and Renner’s investigation, there were a lot of interesting tidbits about Renner’s own life, which I found intriguing (and very honest).

If you’re not familiar with the case of Maura Murray, here’s a brief rundown: Maura, a nursing student at UMass, left school in early February 2004.  After crashing her car in a snowbank in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, she goes missing.  There were a few eye witnesses to the crash, but by the time the police appeared on the scene, Maura was gone.

There are a lot of sub mysteries that surround this, but I’ll let you read the book (or listen to one of the podcasts) to get that part of it.

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Second Look: Jeannine Pirro’s HE KILLED THEM ALL

If you know me, you know I’m some what of a true crime junkie.  I mean, just look at how I raved about Kara Thomas’s THE DARKEST CORNERS.

Recently (and by that, I mean a lot later than everyone else), I was introduced to The Jinx.  I watched it, rapt.  My feelings about Robert Durst fluctuated between, “he’s misunderstood” to “he’s a cold-hearted killer!” to “did he really just confess…?”

So when I was browsing at my favorite local haunt, Barnes & Noble, I was (of course) in the True Crime section and stumbled upon this beauty:

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I was like WHAT!?  But because I’m on limited funds, I decided to see if the library had a copy.  (They did!) And I got it within a few days. (Eei!)

Some Background: Jeannine Pirro is a retired New York District Attorney.  She was the one that brought the Kathie Durst case back to the light of day around 1999 (long before The Jinx aired on HBO).  She’s currently a Fox News consultant, and I was immediately like, “Uh oh.” Because, you know, Fox News…

As it would turn out, Pirro is pretty freaking hilarious.  I would definitely gobble up any books she’s written before (or will write in the future).  I especially liked the style of this memoir — but I’ll save that for the review.

Here’s the review for

He Killed Them All by Jeannine Pirro
Simon & Shuster, 2016

What It’s About:

A true crime memoir written by retired District Attorney Jeannine Pirro and her quest for justice against Robert Durst in the unsolved cold case of his wife, Kathie Durst, who went missing in 1982.

Not only does Pirro talk about reopening the case, but she includes anecdotes of her time as DA of Westchester County in New York; her work as a domestic violence advocate; The Jinx, and Durst’s alleged murders of Susan Berman and Morris Black.

It’s a pretty comprehensive look at all things surrounding Durst, but also gives a good insight into what it’s like being an elected government official.

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Second Look: Kara Thomas’s THE DARKEST CORNERS

Let me fangirl for a moment.  I was excited to read Kara Thomas’s YA novel from the get-go.  But then it only got more awesome because A) she’s local(ish) so I immediately emailed Jennifer Murgia and was like, WE NEED TO GET HER FOR YA FEST!  And then B) she’s a True Crime Addict.

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And then, as I was reading, she mentions me & Katie’s hometown!

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I mean, this book really just kept getting more and more awesome.

So.  If that’s not enough for you to immediately go out and read this book, I’ll give you an actual review.  I’ll try to stay away from spoilers, because there are a few MAJOR twists I didn’t see coming at the end…

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The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas
Delacorte Press, 2016.

What It’s About:

Tessa returns home to Fayette, Pennsylvania when she receives word her father is on his death-bed.  (She’s been living in Florida for the last 10 years with her maternal grandmother.  Her father’s also in jail.)  She stays at the home of childhood best friend, Callie, and her parents.  (Callie’s mom, Maggie, was always a maternal figure for Tessa.)

But, Tessa’s too late.  Her father died earlier the morning she arrived in Fayette.  But there’s mysteries left behind.  Her sister — who she hasn’t seen in 10 years — visited her father a few days before his death.  Tessa wants to find out if Joslin (her sister) is still in the area, and if she is…she has some questions she wants answered.

So, that starts the basic set-up of the novel.  But wait!  There’s more synopsis…after the cut.

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Drumroll, please…

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It’s been…too long.  October, maybe?  Ugh!

Let’s just say, I recently (finally) got out of my Reading Funk and have been powering through books these last few weeks!

I realized how much I’ve been neglecting my social media presence — between here, EAPL Teens, and Half-Filled Notebooks, not to mention my personal blog, She Bleeds Ink (/shameless.self.promotion).  So I’m going to make a concentrated effort to keep up the reviews for you!

So…

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I’ll be posting soon with a book review.  Right now I’m on a true crime kick — thanks to all the podcasts I’ve been listening to — so I picked up two books for light weekend reading:

Some light weekend reading. #truecrimebooks

A photo posted by Ashley Supinski (@ashbarski) on Mar 31, 2016 at 1:43pm PDT

 

Stay tuned for reviews!