10 Best Books About Serial Killers | TheReviewGeek Recommends

Best Books About Serial Killers

Serial killers have long fascinated society, with their gruesome crimes and the dark psychology behind their actions. Exploring the minds of these twisted individuals, whether real or fictional, can be both chilling and captivating. So, if you’re intrigued by the world of serial killers, here are ten of the best books that will take you on a thrilling journey into their dark and twisted minds. 

American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis 

One of the most famous Serial Killers was brought to us by Bret Easton Ellis. In his 1991 novel American Psycho, Ellis explores the chilling mind of Patrick Bateman. Set in the late 1980s, the book follows Bateman, a wealthy investment banker by day and sadistic murderer by night. 

Ellis immerses readers in the twisted world and mind that he created, exploring Bateman’s growing obsession with material possessions, his attention to detail, and his sadistic acts of violence, painting a disturbing portrait of a psychopath. In 2000, Christian Bale brought Patrick Bateman to the big screen. We could finally watch the breakdown and exploration of Bateman’s psyche, which is just as good as the book.

Silence of the Lamb by Thomas Harris

One of the most well-known fictional serial killers is Hannibal Lecter, a cannibal who was first introduced in the 1981 novel Red Dragon. It wasn’t until Thomas Harris’s Silence of the Lamb that we were able to get full exposure to Lecter. Immediately, readers became intrigued by his complex character and intellect.

Silence of the Lambs is a true masterpiece in the psychological thriller genre. The book allows us to spend time with the iconic character of Hannibal Lecter, a brilliant psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer. In the book, FBI trainee Clarice Starling is tasked with interviewing Lecter to gain insights into the mind of another serial killer, Buffalo Bill. Harris’s writing is gripping, with heart-pounding suspense and allows us to explore the mind of the sophisticated cannibal Lecter.

Exquisite Corpse by Poppy Z Brite

Exquisite Corpse takes readers on a dark and twisted journey into the world of serial killers. The book follows Andrew Compton and Jay Byrne, two serial killers who become lovers after noticing the darkness that dwells within each other. 

The story is set during the early 90’s, at the height of the HIV/AIDs epidemic. The two lovers are driven by their shared obsession with death. While this novel doesn’t have the serial killers meet until the middle of the book, the focus is on the characters, their relationships, and their experiences during a dark time in history.

Brite’s writing is both poetic and disturbing, immersing readers in a world where love and violence collide.

The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes

The Shining Girls is a gripping and unique take on the serial killer genre. The book follows the story of Harper Curtis, a time-travelling serial killer, and Kirby Mazrachi, one of his intended victims who survive.

The atmospheric and immersive writing transports readers to various time periods as the story unfolds. It’s a captivating thriller too, with a clever premise and a nail-biting climax that’ll keep you turning pages until the very end.

My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

Oyinkan Braithwaite’s My Sister, the Serial Killer offers a fresh and unique perspective on the genre. The book follows the story of Korede, a nurse who is constantly cleaning up after her sister, Ayoola, who has a habit of killing her boyfriends. Braithwaite’s writing is darkly humorous and explores themes of family, loyalty, and the complexities of sisterhood. 

The Fourth Monkey by J.D. Barker

The Fourth Monkey is a thrilling and suspenseful read that will keep you on the edge of your seat. The book follows Detective Sam Porter as he hunts down the Four Monkey Killer, a sadistic serial killer who leaves behind macabre gifts for his victims’ families.

This book is fast-paced and filled with unexpected twists and turns. If you enjoyed the movie Se7en, this is absolutely the novel for you!

The Stranger Beside Me by Amy Rule

Now, for the real-life terrors; Amy Rule’s The Stranger Beside Me is a chilling true crime account of her personal relationship with one of the most notorious serial killers in history, Ted Bundy.

Rule’s book is both insightful and deeply personal, offering a unique perspective on the mind of a serial killer. You will be both disturbed and fascinated by Rule’s intimate account of her relationship with Ted Bundy.

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

The Devil in the White City is a captivating blend of true crime and historical non-fiction. The book tells the parallel stories of H.H. Holmes, one of America’s first serial killers, and the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago. Larson’s writing is meticulously researched, transporting readers to a bygone era, and will leave you incredulously thinking that this can’t be true.

The Five by Hallie Rubenhold

Hallie Rubenhold’s The Five offers a fresh and feminist perspective on the infamous Jack the Ripper killings. The book focuses on the lives of the five victims, taking us through their day to day routines and shedding light on the social and economic challenges they faced. You’ll be moved by Rubenhold’s compassionate portrayal of the forgotten victims of Jack the Ripper. 

My Friend Dahmer by Derf Backderf 

If you’re interested in learning about the psychology and background of a notorious serial killer, My Friend Dahmer is a must read. This graphic novel offers a unique perspective on the life of Jeffrey Dahmer, from his teenage years through to his first murders.

Backderf, who attended high school with Dahmer, provides an intimate and chilling account of the events leading up to Dahmer’s horrific crimes. Through his personal experiences and observations, Backderf sheds light on the warning signs that were overlooked by those around Dahmer, making this book a fascinating and thought-provoking read.

The world of serial killers is both terrifying and fascinating, and these ten books offer a glimpse into their dark and twisted minds.

Whether you’re a true crime enthusiast or simply curious about the human psyche, these books will take you on a thrilling journey into the depths of darkness. So, grab a book, turn off the lights, and prepare for a spine-chilling experience. 

Did you enjoy this list? Have you read any of these? Comment below and let us know! 

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