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Bind, Torture, Kill: The Inside Story of the Serial Killer Next Door by Roy Wenzl Review

Title: Bind, Torture, Kill: The Inside Story of the Serial Killer Next Door

Author: Roy Wenzl

First published June 1, 2007

352 pages, Hardcover

ISBN: 9780061246500 (ISBN10: 0061246506)

Rating: 4.04


For over three decades, the city of Wichita, Kansas was haunted by a nameless and faceless killer. The notorious “BTK” who took pleasure in binding, torturing, and killing his victims was a mystery to the authorities and the public alike.

But when the killer was finally caught, no one could have guessed his true identity. Dennis Rader was a man next door, a family man, a leader in the community, and above all, a monster.

Roy Wenzl’s Bind, Torture, Kill: The Inside Story of the Serial Killer Next Door is an astounding account of the BTK nightmare that gripped Wichita for years, as told by the four award-winning crime reporters who covered the story for over two decades. With access to never-before-seen documents, evidence, and information, and cooperation from the Wichita Police Department’s BTK Task Force, this book is the most comprehensive and intimate account of the BTK killings that will leave readers shocked and horrified.

About the Author

Meet Roy Wenzl, an accomplished journalist at the Wichita Eagle. He has received recognition for his work, including his role as the lead writer of Bind, Torture, Kill: The Inside Story of the Serial Killer Next Door (Harper Collins, 2007) and as a co-producer of the documentary film The Miracle of Father Kapaun.

Editoral Review

Bind, Torture, Kill: The Inside Story of the Serial Killer Next Door by Roy Wenzl is a non-fiction book that delves into the horrifying crimes committed by Dennis Rader, a notorious serial killer who operated in Kansas between 1974 and 1991. Wenzl, along with three other journalists, has meticulously researched this book by interviewing Rader’s family, friends, colleagues, and victims’ families to provide a chilling and disturbing portrayal of this serial killer.

Wenzl’s style is factual and straightforward, but the subject matter is sure to send shivers down the reader’s spine. The book provides a brief history of Rader’s early life and upbringing, exploring how he became a sexual predator and developed a sick fascination with killing people.

The authors then detail the murders committed by Rader and his modus operandi, including how he stalked his victims, broke into their homes, and eventually killed them. Throughout the book, Wenzl provides a detailed account of Rader’s interactions with the police and how Rader led law enforcement on a wild goose chase with false confessions, letters and puzzles as he played a sick and twisted game of cat and mouse.

This book is not just an account of Rader’s murders, but offers an insight into the psychological profile of a serial killer. It explores how Rader’s upbringing, lack of empathy, and twisted fantasies all played a role in his gruesome crimes.

The authors do a fantastic job of painting a portrait of a man who was able to blend into society and nobody would suspect that such a mild-mannered individual was capable of committing such heinous crimes. But the book is not without its flaws.

Wenzl could have gone into more detail about Rader’s childhood and early life, which might have provided clues as to why he turned into a serial killer. Additionally, some of the writing could have been more engaging and thought-provoking.

Overall, Bind, Torture, Kill is an insightful and harrowing account of one of the most notorious serial killers in modern history. Wenzl’s writing is factual and straightforward and the book is well-researched.

It is a must-read for anyone who is interested in true crime books or wants to understand the mind of a serial killer.

Based on the quality of the writing and the research, I would give this book a rating of 4 out of 5.

As a note of caution, readers should be aware that this book contains graphic descriptions of violence, and it is not for the faint-hearted.