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In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades, killing the most vulnerable women in one South Central neighborhood. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, Pelisek dubbed him "The Grim Sleeper" for his long break between murders. The killer preyed on a community devastated by crime and In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades, killing the most vulnerable women in one South Central neighborhood. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, Pelisek dubbed him "The Grim Sleeper" for his long break between murders. The killer preyed on a community devastated by crime and drugs and left behind a trail of bodies—all women of color, all murdered in a similar fashion, and all discarded in the alleys of Los Angeles. The case of the Grim Sleeper is unforgettably singular. But it also tells a wider story about homicide investigations in areas beset by poverty, gang violence, and despair; about how a serial killer could continue his grisly work for two decades in part due to society’s lack of concern for his chosen victims; and about the power and tenacity of those women’s families and the detectives who refused to let the case go cold. No one knows this story better than Pelisek, the reporter who followed it for more than ten years, and has written the definitive book on the capture of one of America’s most ruthless serial killers. Based on extensive interviews, reportage, and information never released to the public, The Grim Sleeper captures the long, bumpy road to justice in one of the most startling true crime stories of our generation.


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In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades, killing the most vulnerable women in one South Central neighborhood. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, Pelisek dubbed him "The Grim Sleeper" for his long break between murders. The killer preyed on a community devastated by crime and In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades, killing the most vulnerable women in one South Central neighborhood. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, Pelisek dubbed him "The Grim Sleeper" for his long break between murders. The killer preyed on a community devastated by crime and drugs and left behind a trail of bodies—all women of color, all murdered in a similar fashion, and all discarded in the alleys of Los Angeles. The case of the Grim Sleeper is unforgettably singular. But it also tells a wider story about homicide investigations in areas beset by poverty, gang violence, and despair; about how a serial killer could continue his grisly work for two decades in part due to society’s lack of concern for his chosen victims; and about the power and tenacity of those women’s families and the detectives who refused to let the case go cold. No one knows this story better than Pelisek, the reporter who followed it for more than ten years, and has written the definitive book on the capture of one of America’s most ruthless serial killers. Based on extensive interviews, reportage, and information never released to the public, The Grim Sleeper captures the long, bumpy road to justice in one of the most startling true crime stories of our generation.

30 review for The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central

  1. 5 out of 5

    Glen

    I won this book in a goodreads drawing. This is a story about the hunt and capture of The Grim Sleeper, a serial killer preying on East LA during the height of the crack epidemic. A big problem for the police was that not only was there a crack epidemic at the time, with nearly daily killings, and gang warfare, but there were at least three other serial killers, and a number of serial rapists all operating in the same area at the same time. There were almost too many bodies to even keep track of I won this book in a goodreads drawing. This is a story about the hunt and capture of The Grim Sleeper, a serial killer preying on East LA during the height of the crack epidemic. A big problem for the police was that not only was there a crack epidemic at the time, with nearly daily killings, and gang warfare, but there were at least three other serial killers, and a number of serial rapists all operating in the same area at the same time. There were almost too many bodies to even keep track of. Like most serial killers, this guy was caught mostly by accident. Police have a tough time catching serial killers, even though they seem to be getting better at it.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    If you have read Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America, you should read this. Pelisek focuses on a segment of society that totally gets disregarded. Her book not only details law enforcement and community problems, but also the lives of the victim. Princess Berthomieux is a name we should all remember and something that society should do its best to never allow to happen again. If you have read Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America, you should read this. Pelisek focuses on a segment of society that totally gets disregarded. Her book not only details law enforcement and community problems, but also the lives of the victim. Princess Berthomieux is a name we should all remember and something that society should do its best to never allow to happen again.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Stacy

    At the end of the book, Pelisek laments that we don't know why the Grim Sleeper killed all the women he did--which seems to me to negate the point of writing the book. However--and this is a big however--she brings to light the murders of women who are so marginalized in our society that, without her interest and writing, might never have been solved. Most of the women the Lonnie Davis murdered were prostitutes and drug addicts--sometimes both--and society doesn't tend to care about them. The po At the end of the book, Pelisek laments that we don't know why the Grim Sleeper killed all the women he did--which seems to me to negate the point of writing the book. However--and this is a big however--she brings to light the murders of women who are so marginalized in our society that, without her interest and writing, might never have been solved. Most of the women the Lonnie Davis murdered were prostitutes and drug addicts--sometimes both--and society doesn't tend to care about them. The police didn't like her writing about the murders, but I think this does her a disservice. In the end, she deserves kudos for caring. Most people--let alone most journalists--wouldn't.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mary Ronan Drew

    Real life for homicide detectives could not be more different from what we see on TV cop shows. Christine Pelisek's book, The Grim Sleeper, is about black women murdered over more than 20 years in South Central Los Angeles and the detectives who worked for years to find their killer. No gunshots, no explosions, just day after day searching databases, writing reports, interviewing witnesses, going door-to-door doing "knock and talk" -- and then doing it all over again. The author manages to make Real life for homicide detectives could not be more different from what we see on TV cop shows. Christine Pelisek's book, The Grim Sleeper, is about black women murdered over more than 20 years in South Central Los Angeles and the detectives who worked for years to find their killer. No gunshots, no explosions, just day after day searching databases, writing reports, interviewing witnesses, going door-to-door doing "knock and talk" -- and then doing it all over again. The author manages to make this process interesting and the arrest and conviction of the man who did it is satisfying.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    I'm glad someone took the time to tell the stories of Lonnie Franklin's victims, because too many murders of poor black women go ignored. It was satisfying to see the leads come together to catch Franklin, and the story is good - the writing here left me a little cold, though, due to some odd tics of the writer. (more later) I'm glad someone took the time to tell the stories of Lonnie Franklin's victims, because too many murders of poor black women go ignored. It was satisfying to see the leads come together to catch Franklin, and the story is good - the writing here left me a little cold, though, due to some odd tics of the writer. (more later)

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jill

    I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway, thanks to Counterpoint Press and Goodreads for the opportunity. This was my first true-crime book and it won't be my last. The author provided a comprehensive review of the case from start to finish with a real emphasis on the women and their families. The book also highlighted the long timeframe of this case and the toll it took on everyone involved. Unfortunately the wheels of justice turned quite slowly in the end, but at least it was fina I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway, thanks to Counterpoint Press and Goodreads for the opportunity. This was my first true-crime book and it won't be my last. The author provided a comprehensive review of the case from start to finish with a real emphasis on the women and their families. The book also highlighted the long timeframe of this case and the toll it took on everyone involved. Unfortunately the wheels of justice turned quite slowly in the end, but at least it was finally served.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Bergman

    I just finished reading an advanced reading copy of this book. I live in So. California and didn't know diddly about this killer. Not only was this a surprise to me, but I have spent time in the area calling on customers. This is a study of one serial killer while detectives were investigating a number of others in So. Central. This is not only enlightening it scares the hell out of me. I just finished reading an advanced reading copy of this book. I live in So. California and didn't know diddly about this killer. Not only was this a surprise to me, but I have spent time in the area calling on customers. This is a study of one serial killer while detectives were investigating a number of others in So. Central. This is not only enlightening it scares the hell out of me.

  8. 4 out of 5

    SAM

    I had this on my to-read list for almost a year before it was finally released last month. I was slightly anxious as i had been disappointed with long awaited new releases in the past e.g. Age of Myth but thankfully this wasn't the case. If i mention the name Lonnie Franklin Jr or the Grim Sleeper to people i can almost guarantee they wont have heard of him. He'll never be mentioned in the same sentence as Bundy, Gacey or Ramirez but his crimes were just as horrific. The only reason I've heard th I had this on my to-read list for almost a year before it was finally released last month. I was slightly anxious as i had been disappointed with long awaited new releases in the past e.g. Age of Myth but thankfully this wasn't the case. If i mention the name Lonnie Franklin Jr or the Grim Sleeper to people i can almost guarantee they wont have heard of him. He'll never be mentioned in the same sentence as Bundy, Gacey or Ramirez but his crimes were just as horrific. The only reason I've heard the name is because of Nick Broomfields 2014 documentary Tales of the Grim Sleeper which, like Kurt & Courtney, is a gritty and disjointed film that could have been much better in the hands of a different film maker. The book, however, is in a completely different league to the average film. The books main focus is the multiple murders in the 1980's of black prostitutes in the South Central area of Los Angeles. Rather then use the serial killer biography method of writing the book from the killers perspective the author writes mainly about the victims and their families. As well as Lonnie Franklin there were several other serial killers operating in the area during this time period and through the various task forces and old newspaper articles we are given an insight into the carnage and mayhem. The book is well written and researched and i would gladly read anything else Christine Pelisek publishes in the future.

  9. 4 out of 5

    ♥ Marlene♥

    A very interesting and well written true crime book. I was already wondering why this killer was not big news. Well perhaps in the USA but not in the world I don't think. Looking at the photos of this killer he has such cold eyes and it is obvious he does not feel any empathy. I was glad to see the author did not just blame the police for not catching this killer only because his victims were black and prostitutes as you hear sometimes. I do think they are partly to blame but also the community a A very interesting and well written true crime book. I was already wondering why this killer was not big news. Well perhaps in the USA but not in the world I don't think. Looking at the photos of this killer he has such cold eyes and it is obvious he does not feel any empathy. I was glad to see the author did not just blame the police for not catching this killer only because his victims were black and prostitutes as you hear sometimes. I do think they are partly to blame but also the community as a whole was to blame. That being said it must have been so hard for the victims loved ones. This creep killed them just because it was easy for him to do. He did it by shooting them. Most creeps like him love to have the power of control and see the fear in their victims eyes and a lot also love to touch them. He killed them in a perhaps non personal way but he like the others used them for his own pleasure by . For people like him I think the punishments dealt with are not strong enough. He killed so many and I think there are a lot of people not knowing where their loved ones are because he killed them and then duped them as trash. Some torture or truth serum is something I suggest to use on him so he tells the truth.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen Gray

    This is a must read for true crime aficionados. Pelisek has built on her skillful and wonderfully written newspaper reporting to craft a book which has a lot to teach us about investigations and about how a marginalized community can be ignored. What is heartening is that the relatives and friends of the women who were killed never gave up nor did the detectives who worked the case. Pelisek too persisted and sometimes you can feel her own emotions. Very well done. Thanks to Edelweiss for the ARC This is a must read for true crime aficionados. Pelisek has built on her skillful and wonderfully written newspaper reporting to craft a book which has a lot to teach us about investigations and about how a marginalized community can be ignored. What is heartening is that the relatives and friends of the women who were killed never gave up nor did the detectives who worked the case. Pelisek too persisted and sometimes you can feel her own emotions. Very well done. Thanks to Edelweiss for the ARC.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Desiree

    Excellent read thus far. I am very familiar with the story of the Grim Sleeper, as I have watched many documentaries on the subject. There is still a lot to learn form this book, which surprised. Pelisek does a great job of humanizing the victims, and connecting their circumstances to more systematic issues such as racism, sexism, and the breakdown of family and community. Some of the victims on the surface could be written off as just prostitutes and drug addicts that fell victim to the streets Excellent read thus far. I am very familiar with the story of the Grim Sleeper, as I have watched many documentaries on the subject. There is still a lot to learn form this book, which surprised. Pelisek does a great job of humanizing the victims, and connecting their circumstances to more systematic issues such as racism, sexism, and the breakdown of family and community. Some of the victims on the surface could be written off as just prostitutes and drug addicts that fell victim to the streets. Pelisek makes you feel like you know the victims, and the unfortunate circumstances that resulted in their deaths, at times something as simple as a friend stating that they would pick the woman up from work, but then stand her up. The author gives you the background of the victim's upbringing and life at the time of their deaths. A fascinating, yet heartbreaking book. This book would keep me up later at times. I also feel like it raised my understanding of the importance of caring for others, even at times where I am at odds with them. This book increased my empathy. As an African American woman from Detroit, I feel as if in another time, I could have become a victim as well.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Tiyahna Ridley-Padmore

    In The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central , Christine Pelisek writes the shocking and true story of the serial murderer known as the Grim Sleeper. Though he is now considered one of America's most brutal serial killers, the Grim Sleeper went undetected and not pursued for decades during the height of his crime spree. Operating in California, the killer would prey on racialized, impoverished women who were commonly sex workers and/or struggling with addiction. Using interviews, testim In The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central , Christine Pelisek writes the shocking and true story of the serial murderer known as the Grim Sleeper. Though he is now considered one of America's most brutal serial killers, the Grim Sleeper went undetected and not pursued for decades during the height of his crime spree. Operating in California, the killer would prey on racialized, impoverished women who were commonly sex workers and/or struggling with addiction. Using interviews, testimonies, reports and her expertise in journalism, author Christine Pelisek recounts the story of the victims, the Grim Sleeper and the deeply rooted systems of inequality that emboldened him. The Grim Sleeper is a great piece of true crime literature. The story, in itself, which I first heard on a true crime podcast, is harrowing and maddening. In addition to this man's depravity, the criminal justice system failed to protect the most vulnerable women in California South Central at that time. Although I knew of the story, I was engaged with Pelisek's writing the entire time.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Katie Jane Goulah

    Stopped reading about 1/3 of the way through. While I'm very interested to find out what happens (I'll google), the language the white author uses in reference to the victims, who are mainly Black sex workers, feels dehumanizing and salacious at times. Stopped reading about 1/3 of the way through. While I'm very interested to find out what happens (I'll google), the language the white author uses in reference to the victims, who are mainly Black sex workers, feels dehumanizing and salacious at times.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lulu

    I'm glad someone told this story. I wasn't a fan of the author's writing style, but it was very informative. I'm glad someone told this story. I wasn't a fan of the author's writing style, but it was very informative.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Christine (Queen of Books)

    The title of this one well-encapsulates what it's about - a serial killer, but also the women whose lives were tragically taken. And I think that's what I most appreciated about this true crime book: I didn't feel like a voyeur learning gruesome details. Instead I was right there with friends and family, grieving the loss of their loved ones. The Grim Sleeper targeted women of color, several of whom were prostitutes. This added to my frustration regarding the investigation. Often, reading true c The title of this one well-encapsulates what it's about - a serial killer, but also the women whose lives were tragically taken. And I think that's what I most appreciated about this true crime book: I didn't feel like a voyeur learning gruesome details. Instead I was right there with friends and family, grieving the loss of their loved ones. The Grim Sleeper targeted women of color, several of whom were prostitutes. This added to my frustration regarding the investigation. Often, reading true crime, I have to stop myself from yelling at the book because it seems like they could have found the murderer so much sooner than they did. But here that frustration was compounded given "society's lack of concern for his chosen victims." That's not to say the book's flawed - as far as I'm aware, it details what actually happened. I agree w/Kirkus' review, in that I'd have re-shaped how suspects were described, and cut some of the background information about the lawyers involved. Otherwise, The Grim Sleeper is a great book about an awful reality.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Abraham

    A work I wouldn’t normally have selected on my own-thanks Last Bookstore. This not only covers the murders more than adequately, but Pelisek’s work does what all great true crime works do, expanding the discussion into a larger critique of a forty-year relationship between the LAPD and South LA, one characterized by mutual mistrust and racial animosity. We become aware of the disparities between the tremendous public outcry over the Westwood shooting of Karen Toshima in 1988 and the grim silence A work I wouldn’t normally have selected on my own-thanks Last Bookstore. This not only covers the murders more than adequately, but Pelisek’s work does what all great true crime works do, expanding the discussion into a larger critique of a forty-year relationship between the LAPD and South LA, one characterized by mutual mistrust and racial animosity. We become aware of the disparities between the tremendous public outcry over the Westwood shooting of Karen Toshima in 1988 and the grim silence meeting the deaths of these young women, many of whom were struggling with addiction and highly-unstable living situations. I’d especially recommend this one to fans of true crime or dedicated LA history aficionados.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Bridgett Brown

    I won this book in a Goodreads Giveaway. I have to admit I love reading about serial killers, the stuff that goes through their minds. This is a true story of how a serial killer terrorized the streets of Los Angeles for more than two decades. The story is filled with facts about the Grim Sleeper case and other cases in the Los Angeles area. The author includes interviews with members of the investigation team and members of the victims family. These interviews give the reader an inside look at I won this book in a Goodreads Giveaway. I have to admit I love reading about serial killers, the stuff that goes through their minds. This is a true story of how a serial killer terrorized the streets of Los Angeles for more than two decades. The story is filled with facts about the Grim Sleeper case and other cases in the Los Angeles area. The author includes interviews with members of the investigation team and members of the victims family. These interviews give the reader an inside look at what it was really like for the investigation team and the family.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sarai

    This book is about a serial killer who worked in LA over the span of many years, so rather grim subject matter, but a good book. The author at times seemed a little too proud of her role in the proceedings. Other than that, it's a book about dedication and determination, ruined families, loss, and healing. Book description: In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, P This book is about a serial killer who worked in LA over the span of many years, so rather grim subject matter, but a good book. The author at times seemed a little too proud of her role in the proceedings. Other than that, it's a book about dedication and determination, ruined families, loss, and healing. Book description: In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, Pelisek dubbed him "The Grim Sleeper" for his long break between murders. The killer preyed on a community devastated by crime and drugs and left behind a trail of bodies―all women of color, all murdered in a similar fashion, and all discarded in the alleys of Los Angeles. The case of the Grim Sleeper is unforgettably singular. But it also tells a wider story about homicide investigations in areas beset by poverty, gang violence, and despair; about how a serial killer could continue his grisly work for two decades in part due to society’s lack of concern for his chosen victims; and about the power and tenacity of those women’s families and the detectives who refused to let the case go cold. No one knows this story better than Pelisek, the reporter who followed it for more than ten years. Based on extensive interviews, reportage, and information never released to the public, The Grim Sleeper captures the long, bumpy road to justice in one of the most startling true crime stories of our generation.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    I found I enjoyed this book. It was thrilling in a weird way because you know justice was coming. This book gave a spoiler for the killer half way through without even looking at the photos in the middle of the book. So if you knew nothing about this case, it was disappointing because it points out a major flaw in the police and justice systems. Police and the current justice systems in place are not there for black people / victims and this book definitely depicts that.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Annie

    This book was amazing. It was a very well researched book about The Grim Sleeper. What I really liked about the book was the author took the time to tell you about the victims. They weren’t just nameless faceless people found murdered. They were real people, mothers, sisters, daughters, and loved by their families. The author made them real again, and told their story. Easily one of my favorite true crime books of the year.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jamie Canaves

    Pelisek gives voice to the victims, families, and community rather than the serial killer.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Joanne

    For some reason I found myself reading true crime books about multiple murder, first Murder in the Bayou by Ethan Brown, and now this one. I think what I like about both books is that the authors were both heavily invested in the stories, having spent a long time as reporters following the events and trying to find answers. I'm glad this story was told from its very beginning in the 1980s to the final verdict in 2016. The author clearly cares about the people involved and the circumstances that a For some reason I found myself reading true crime books about multiple murder, first Murder in the Bayou by Ethan Brown, and now this one. I think what I like about both books is that the authors were both heavily invested in the stories, having spent a long time as reporters following the events and trying to find answers. I'm glad this story was told from its very beginning in the 1980s to the final verdict in 2016. The author clearly cares about the people involved and the circumstances that allowed the murderer to carry out his evil deeds with impunity for 30 years. Now I need a break from death and drug addiction. A light little romance would go a long way right now.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Chad Statler

    Journalist Pelisek does a good job of giving voice to victims of this killer. She treats each and everyone of them as people, with likes and dislikes, family and friends that meant a lot to them and to whom they meant much. They aren't faceless people to be ignored. The vast majority of this book is about these people and the police who worked long hours for almost 20 years to bring this man to justice. Pelisek also does a fine job of situating these crimes among the social conditions that confro Journalist Pelisek does a good job of giving voice to victims of this killer. She treats each and everyone of them as people, with likes and dislikes, family and friends that meant a lot to them and to whom they meant much. They aren't faceless people to be ignored. The vast majority of this book is about these people and the police who worked long hours for almost 20 years to bring this man to justice. Pelisek also does a fine job of situating these crimes among the social conditions that confronted the residents of South Central Los Angeles, the drugs, violence, and gang warfare on a daily basis. While this is a true crime book it is also something of a social history of a city at a particular point in its history. If you are looking for a deep probing analysis of why the killer did what he did you won't find it. I don't this this book was supposed to be that as it would've distracted from the stories of the victims and their families and the toll these murders took on them. It's also likely the killer may not know what drove his compulsions. Other than to say he didn't know the victims or that he didn't do it the murderer didn't speak much during his trial. Readers of true crime will find this to be a worthwhile read.

  24. 4 out of 5

    ExtremeBibliophile

    Extremely compelling, tragic, and occasionally infuriating account of the "Grim Sleeper" killer who, in the midst of Los Angeles' decade -long misama of the crack plague, gang warfare, and police corruption, was able to kill as many as 25 young women. Pelisek spent years researching the case and this highly detailed account is the product of that determined investigation. Lonnie Franklin Jr was eventually caught, arrested, and tried for the murders and received the death penalty. All the victims Extremely compelling, tragic, and occasionally infuriating account of the "Grim Sleeper" killer who, in the midst of Los Angeles' decade -long misama of the crack plague, gang warfare, and police corruption, was able to kill as many as 25 young women. Pelisek spent years researching the case and this highly detailed account is the product of that determined investigation. Lonnie Franklin Jr was eventually caught, arrested, and tried for the murders and received the death penalty. All the victims were poor black women who were drug addicts and prostitutes at the time of their murders, but Pelisek also delves into their prior lives with sympathy and tenderness (the story of the youngest victim, 15-year-old Princess, is especially heartbreaking). The horrifying indifference toward the fates of these young women displayed by some in the LA police force at the time of the murders is almost inhumane, but the relentless perseverance of Pelisek and others who were determined to see the Sleeper captured is gratifying. Some of the truths in this book are difficult to confront but the victims have at last gotten their justice.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Bmquiram

    The Grim Sleeper – The Lost Women of South Central by Christine Pelisek This is a true story of how a serial killer terrorized the streets of Los Angeles for more than two decades. The best way I can describe this story is to say that it was written by a journalist and for the most part it reads like a newspaper article. The story is filled with interesting facts about the Grim Sleeper case and other cases in the Los Angeles area. The author includes interviews with members of the investigation t The Grim Sleeper – The Lost Women of South Central by Christine Pelisek This is a true story of how a serial killer terrorized the streets of Los Angeles for more than two decades. The best way I can describe this story is to say that it was written by a journalist and for the most part it reads like a newspaper article. The story is filled with interesting facts about the Grim Sleeper case and other cases in the Los Angeles area. The author includes interviews with members of the investigation team and members of the victims family. These interviews give the reader an inside look at what it was really like for the investigation team and the family. The interviews also help the reader become more involved with the story. Even with the countless accounts of women whose lives were ended far to early, I never became sad or cried during the story. This isn't that type of story. I did get frustrated by the lack of progress with the criminal investigation. I couldn't believe that this could happen. I can only imagine how difficult it was for the people who lived through the ordeal.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie Kernene

    This book talks about the road to justice for the crimes of Lonnie Franklin, Jr., a serial killer who terrorized South Central LA, raping and killing many women. It took over 2 decades to identify him, arrest him and convict him of these heinous crimes. The stories of the women he terrorized is included, which I love. It reminds us that they were real people, with loved ones that miss them. I liked this book. I thought it was well-researched and well written. Every time I heard about the victims This book talks about the road to justice for the crimes of Lonnie Franklin, Jr., a serial killer who terrorized South Central LA, raping and killing many women. It took over 2 decades to identify him, arrest him and convict him of these heinous crimes. The stories of the women he terrorized is included, which I love. It reminds us that they were real people, with loved ones that miss them. I liked this book. I thought it was well-researched and well written. Every time I heard about the victims, I choked up, especially during the victim impact statements said in court. I was happy to hear each one, as they touched my heart. If you like true crime, I recommend this one. I enjoyed it.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Christie

    This is an interesting look at first the victims, but also a serial killer. I appreciated that the stories of the victims and their families are highlighted, rather than the killer himself. There's a lot of detail that I'm sure only this author would be able to offer. However, there were times when the main story gets a bit distracted by side stories, like other serial killers. Overall, though, an interesting read. This is an interesting look at first the victims, but also a serial killer. I appreciated that the stories of the victims and their families are highlighted, rather than the killer himself. There's a lot of detail that I'm sure only this author would be able to offer. However, there were times when the main story gets a bit distracted by side stories, like other serial killers. Overall, though, an interesting read.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Natasha

    Christine Pelisek gave voice to the victims and their families. This book is not lurid in the details of the crimes,just facts.From the heart break of the families to the frustrations of the police who worked this case it's all a emotional ride. I had to cheer when they finally made a arrest and after a long court battle a conviction. Christine Pelisek gave voice to the victims and their families. This book is not lurid in the details of the crimes,just facts.From the heart break of the families to the frustrations of the police who worked this case it's all a emotional ride. I had to cheer when they finally made a arrest and after a long court battle a conviction.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Nissa

    Very well written and a true page turner. As far as true crime goes, this should be at the top of anyone's list. Fantastic read! I won a copy of this book in a goodreads giveaway. Very well written and a true page turner. As far as true crime goes, this should be at the top of anyone's list. Fantastic read! I won a copy of this book in a goodreads giveaway.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lynn

    Today’s review is on The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central by Christine Pelisek. It is 325 pages long and is published by Counterpoint. The cover is a picture of an alley like where the murdered women were found. The intended reader is someone who is interested in true crime and old cases being solved. There is foul language, sex, rape, and violence in this book. There Be Spoilers Ahead. From the back of the book- In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial kille Today’s review is on The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central by Christine Pelisek. It is 325 pages long and is published by Counterpoint. The cover is a picture of an alley like where the murdered women were found. The intended reader is someone who is interested in true crime and old cases being solved. There is foul language, sex, rape, and violence in this book. There Be Spoilers Ahead. From the back of the book- In 2006, Christine Pelisek broke the story of a terrifying serial killer who went unchecked in Los Angeles for decades, killing the most vulnerable women in one South Central neighborhood. Two years later, in her cover article for L.A. Weekly, Pelisek dubbed him "The Grim Sleeper" for his long break between murders. The killer preyed on a community devastated by crime and drugs and left behind a trail of bodies—all women of color, all murdered in a similar fashion, and all discarded in the alleys of Los Angeles. The case of the Grim Sleeper is unforgettably singular. But it also tells a wider story about homicide investigations in areas beset by poverty, gang violence, and despair; about how a serial killer could continue his grisly work for two decades in part due to society’s lack of concern for his chosen victims; and about the power and tenacity of those women’s families and the detectives who refused to let the case go cold. No one knows this story better than Pelisek, the reporter who followed it for more than ten years, and has written the definitive book on the capture of one of America’s most ruthless serial killers. Based on extensive interviews, reportage, and information never released to the public, The Grim Sleeper captures the long, bumpy road to justice in one of the most startling true crime stories of our generation. Review- A little slow to get going but once it did you will be hooked until the end. Pelisek starts with her conversation with a detective. She was a true crime reporter for the LA Weekly and was just hassling him for something to write about. He didn’t really give her anything that day but she worked on him and soon enough he did. He gave the story about the unsolved serial murderers of a number of young black women in the 1980’s. Pelsiek was soon obsessed with the murders. There was so much information, like DNA and a good profile of the doer. But nothing ever panned out for twenty plus years. Pelisek tells the story of the women from their murders then she tells us about the women themselves. She wants the reader to understand these women and what drove them into the path of a murderer. The first third of the book is very slow but when we jump into the present day things really get going. Pelisek gives the reader every detail about the crimes, the detectives hunting him, and the trial of the murderer. The ending is satisfying in a way that is rare in true crime nonfiction. I give this book a Three out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

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