The ninth in a series of true crime author Ann Rule’s case files is an interesting collection of short stories, including:
The 1968 murder of sixteen year-old newlywed and expectant mother Sandy Bowman and the 35 year efforts of detectives to bring her killer to justice;
Dale Carrier, a postman with a most appropriate name, who murdered his teenage wife after she told him she wanted a divorce;
The strange case of Norwegian fisherman Karsten Knutsen who was seduced by a young woman then murdered by her husband, all for a few hundred dollars;
An attack on two young women, which resulted in one’s death, may never have been solved if not for the excited utterance and strong will to survive by one of Steven Terry Meyer‘s victims;
Harvey Murray Glatman was an unattractive little pervert who couldn’t get women on his own, so he turned to photography and dating services as an excuse to get close to those who would have never given him a second glance;
A young girl reluctantly marries her high school sweetheart only to find herself desperate for escape a few years later, but her abusive husband refuses to let her go so easily;
Victoria Legg‘s mother warned her against going out with strangers but Victoria couldn’t say no to Calvin Archer Lansing because he looked so much like her previous boyfriend. Unfortunately, as they say, “Mama knows best”;
A couple in Salem, Oregon, grew considered when they heard shouts from their duplex neighbors but tried to dismiss them. When the husband began mysteriously carrying items to his car and disappears into the night, they follow their instinct and report it to the police – who are temporarily baffled when it’s reported the wife died in a car accident several hundred miles away just that morning;
When a mother is murdered just inches from her sleeping child and her overnight guests brutally attacked, investigators follow a trail to a man and discover a note of his intent to give Byrle Fran Steffens an ultimate: you kill me, or I’ll kill you; and
Julie Ann Miner Weflen was a power station administrator in Spokane, Washington, when she disappeared without a trace in September 1987. Her husband and co-workers still want to know, “What is Julie?”
Kiss Me, Kill Me and Other True Cases: Ann Rule’s Crime Files: Volume 9 has taken a harsh beating by some “critics” but, quite frankly, I found this to be one of her better crime file volumes because it contains decades old cases, long out of the spotlight, and in which there have been some interesting updates.
I do, however, agree with some of the other reviews about the name changes. There is several pseudonyms in this books which tend to draw away from it’s non-fiction status. But having become more familiar with the publishing world, these name changes probably weren’t all Ms. Rule’s idea but more of her publishers. And anyway, with the exception of a couple of stories, there is enough information provided that one only needs to do a simple Google search to learn the actual names.
So, that said… I give Kiss Me, Kill Me a huge thumbs up and definitely recommend you add it to your reading list.
Where Are They Now?
James Canaday remains incarcerated at the prison in Clallam Bay, Washington.
Steven Terry Meyer is still imprisoned at the Airway Heights, Washington, prison.