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Obsession: The Fbi's Legendary Profiler Probes the Psyches of Killers, Rapists, and Stalkers and Their Victims and Tells How to Fight Back

Obsession: The Fbi's Legendary Profiler Probes the Psyches of Killers, Rapists, and Stalkers and Their Victims and Tells How to Fight Back

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From Library Journal Following on the heels of Douglas's Mindhunter (LJ 11/15/95) and both authors' Journey into Darkness (Scribner, 1997), which were best sellers, this book focuses on crimes against women. The title refers both to criminal motivation?the authors have little faith in the possibility of rehabilitation?and to Douglas's commitment as a victims' rights advocate. Founder and until recently head of the FBI's Investigative Support Unit, he "plead[s] guilty" to being "overly emotional" on the need for stringent prison sentences and terms of parole. In his discussion of self-protection, Douglas cites Gavin de Becker, whose The Gift of Fear (LJ 6/15/97) is a more complete guide to that subject. Although there is less emphasis on criminal profiling and some overlap with prior material, this work is generally insightful and certainly heartfelt about the devastating effects of violence on its victims and those who love them. Of interest to readers of the previous books.-?Gregor A. Preston, formerly with Univ. of California Lib., DavisCopyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. Product Description The best-selling authors of Mindhunter combine profiles of numerous well-know cases with practical advice on how to protect oneself and loved ones against violence in a study of the violent, interpersonal crimes committed against women and the elderly. 175,000 first printing. Tour. From Publishers Weekly With the warmth and frank bias of a firsthand observer, Douglas, the founder and head of the FBI's Investigative Support Unit and the inspiration for the character of Jack Crawford in Silence of the Lambs and Red Dragon, here describes violent crimes and their consequences. With co-author Olshaker, with whom he wrote Mindhunter and Journey into Darkness, Douglas details the crimes and case histories of serial killers, serial rapists, child molesters, stalkers and others. Included are infamous killers such as Edward Gein, Ted Bundy and Robert Chambers, along with less publicized, though just as disturbing, purveyors of acts of fatal obsession. Asserting "that behavior reflects personality," Douglas shows how he and his colleagues can assess the different temperaments and motivations at work behind grisly acts. Rapists tend to fall into four basic categories, for example, the "power-reassurance rapist" (driven by feelings of inadequacy), the "exploitive" rapist (impulsive and overtly macho), the "anger" rapist (who uses sex to displace his rage) and, cruelest of all, the "sadistic" rapist, who "simply gets off on hurting people." What stands out in this eye-opening book is how Douglas's compassion for the survivors of violent crimes seems to equal his understanding of the criminals themselves. His description of the work of the countless people who counsel, comfort and fight for the rights of victims serves as a welcome reminder that horrific and isolated acts of darkness and coldness are counterbalanced by a warmhearted and, one hopes, more natural human determination to help. Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. From Booklist Fans of the reprehensible will cheer this weighty examination of the psychological profiling of criminals. Douglas and Olshaker's subjects this time (their previous true-crime tomes include Journey into Darkness [1997]) are the mind, methodology, and, well, obsession of the sexual predator. Douglas headed the FBI's Investigative Support Unit and draws upon that experience in this endeavor. Helpfully and authoritatively, he and professional writer Olshaker advise how to avoid being victimized by the vicious miscreants they describe, but mostly the book is intended to give true-crime fans a thrill. Its style is terse, not to say Joe Fridayesque; the stories move right along, spewing detail and salient observation. Douglas and Olshaker cover an incredibly wide range of cases, some only fleetingly, so an index enhancing reference value is welcome. Tastefully gory,

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