Saturday, August 15, 2009

A Rose For Her Grave and other true stories by Ann Rule

This is the first one of the Ann Rule crime files (Volume 1).Ann Rule decided to start doing these crime files when she realised that she would never have the time to write a book on each of the cases she researched and investigated.So in order to try and provide some "air time" to most of her true crime stories she decided to start with these crime files.The last one of these I read was Mortal Danger which is Volume 13,which reminds me that I have to go check out her website for any new books.

In this volume,A Rose For Her Grave,the main story is about Randy Roth,a sociopath whose main victims were women and children,although there were occasions when men suffered his wrath,those occasions did not end with deadly consequences as did his crimes against women and children..He married many times,each time becoming a widower one more time.This man was an absolute health freak,with regular exercise and detested alcohol and smoking.It seems his only major vice was a love for all the good things in life and a need to acquire money in the worse way possible.(341 pages-book length)

Campbell's Revenge
This is a shocking story of a mother who was raped.The rapist/murderer was sent to jail but through some official glitch managed to return to this same home and kill the mother,her 9 year old daughter and a friend.(30 pages)

The Hit Person:Equal Opportunity Murder
The story of a beautiful,intelligent young Polish girl who took up employment as a housekeeper in order to be able to live in the US.After a while her rich employer married her but the marriage was doomed.Wanda wanted to study and establish a career while her husband would have preferred her to carry on with the housekeeping duties that had initally brought her to America.The divorce proceedings were under way when Wanda was found murdered.A hit woman was arrested for her murder.(40 pages)

The Runaway
This is such a tragic story.This family had recently lost the young father at 41 to a heart attack.The mother was now raising her four daughters alone.The youngest daughter,Janna Hanson,at 13, was the youngest child.When Janna disappeared the police originally believed she was a runaway.(25 pages)

The Rehabilitation Of A Monster
The story of Richard Marquette,a sexual predator who mutilated and murdered his victims.Ann Rule gives a brief history of each of the victims and the pitiful life stories are heartbreaking.Before this story,Ann Rule had not believed in the death penalty.Upon researching and investigating these gruesome crimes by Richard Marquette,she changed her mind and is now a supporter of the death penalty.In her opinion,these types of murderers are always on their best behavior once incarcerated,they make model prisoners who ultimately make it out of jail on parole,only to immediately re offend.Their signature traits are first and foremost a complete lack of remorse and no conscience at all.They operate on criminal instinct alone and therefore cannot be rehabilitated.(31 pages)

Molly's Murder
This story is really close to my heart.In 1986,Molly Ann McClure was just starting out in life.She had gotten herself an apartment,had added a few pot plants,started working,and having no car had made sure that the apartment was located close to bus routes.I remember being in this same situation,also starting out around the same time,being so proud of my very small apartment,using what little money I had left over to decorate,sewing my own curtains,working and studying in the evenings.It was wonderful!Molly Ann McClure was murdered in her own bed.It could have easily been me.(38 pages)

If you would like to find out more about this book then South Africans can access via Kalahari Books
or for more reviews from Amazon

Here are some more book details:
A Rose for Her Grave (True Crime Files)
Country: United Kingdom
Format: Softcover
Publisher: SPHERE
ISBN: 9780751510706
Publication date: July 1995
Pages: 528
Illustrations: portraits


  1. I am loving the round up as usual - the thing that strikes me about these books are that Ms. Rules gives a bit more of herself than in the full length epics...

    One thing I wanted to ask - Which type of books brings out more of Ms Rule's investigative style in your opinion.... and how intrusive are the synopsis...

    I AM BACK HON - and going through the post - will email you later on....


  2. Hey E.H.
    So happy you came to visit.I have no idea how you survived without your internet connection.I would have gone crazy.But still you got so many books read it probably felt like a holiday hey?
    About your questions above,I think a reader would get the feeling that she gives more of herself in the crime files because of the introductory portion she has for each story where she gives a personal history and opinion into how the story came about.Also because the stories are short,there is no need for a lot of the "filler descriptions" and you get straight into the heart of the story.
    About the books which brings out more of her investigative style,that's an excellent question,because I noticed her one book End Of The Dream (about a man who made a living robbing banks) is nowhere as good as her other books.I think being a mother herself,the time she devotes to groups against abuse of women and children PLUS her experience as a police officer and obviously her experience in writing true crime leads to good books all around but definitely the books she has written about mothers who kill have that extra something.Families of the victims speak easily to her.She writes mostly about crimes from her own area so she is never viewed as an outsider when she does start to investigate,and last but not least her previous work speaks for itself and her compassion for the victims really shines through her work.

  3. I love the cover. I am not happy with my library now for only having one Ann Rule book. Hopefully, they'll get some in. All the cases sound so interesting.

  4. Kate,Ann Rule is definitely one of the best true crime writers out there.You absolutely cannot go wrong with one of her books.Read the one that is in your library now and you will be HOOKED!!

  5. As I have said before in another review of yours I don't really care for Ann Rules books. The ones that I had I donated to my local library. After trying to read them all a number of times I just gave up. It seems to me that Ann Rule drags on in her books and i get bored.
    But I would really like to read this book. I love short stories, they make the pages fly by. I am writing this down and I am going to see if my local library has this book to read.
    Great review!

  6. Hey Trishalynn I actually thought of you with these Ann Rule crime files and not so much "filler" details.Try one of the crime files.I have a link in my sidebar just for the Ann Rule crime files Ive reviewed.Just remember one story is really long but the others are short and sweet(like you like it)


Custom Search

My True Crime Library

Shelfari: Book reviews on your book blog