Pub. Date: 2005
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Non-Fiction, True Crime
It was not easy deciding if this book should have 2 stars or 3. I struggled to finish it and usually when that happens the star count goes down. The facts of the case are laid out for us, for me there was too much detail, the police interviews were word for word, and then the testimony at trial, word for word when a summary would have down. In fact Kelly’s whole first trial, appeal and release could have been cut in half.
There was also a lot of personal information. I’m not talking about biographical information but a lot of details about the lives of minor players that just distracted from the main case. We’re introduced to “The Youth of View Royal”: Colon Jones, Warren G., Syreeta, Reena Virk, Josephine, Dusty, Kelly etc. But the book spends a chapter on one, then jumps to another, then back again. It’s not until the end of this part that we even know who the victim is.
The police didn’t even know anyone had been killed, we are then treated to the endless conversations between this person and that person, until finally we come upon the two girls who go to the police and tell them, “Some one has been murdered, her body is in the gorge”, up to that point she was a missing person. Then the investigation began, when in a sense they already ‘knew’ who had done it.
Another problem I had was that while she reported conversations and testimony in excruciating detail, there were inaccuracies and Ms. Godfrey tried to make the account sound like literature, for example the front of the book has this blurb “In 1997, a fourteen-year-old girl was discovered floating in the waters bordering an idyllic suburb on the west coast. Her death was no accident, her killer no stranger …” It almost sounds like the body was discovered by accident, but the police were searching for it. I don’t know who writes this, whether the author or someone else, but that is her style of writing. “Stan Lowe glanced at Warren’s lawyer, for he was making an odd motion with his good luck pen. He was shaking his pen, and his wrist jolted back and forth.
“His good luck pen has run out of ink!” Stan thought to himself, and he smiled then, for he was a believer in such omens.”
Ms. Godfrey also reports on the impact the murder had on the families, the victims family, the accused families, the families in the community, the friends of the accused and the victim. Once again she details where she could summarize.
I found this book to be boring, and I do not recommend it.