Chase Darkness with Me Kindle ✓ Chase Darkness PDF


  • Hardcover
  • 336 pages
  • Chase Darkness with Me
  • Billy Jensen
  • 06 October 2016
  • 9781492685852

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Chase Darkness with MeChase Darkness with Me by Billy Jensen is a 2019 Sourcebooks publication Gripping and personal journey into true crime reporting and crime solving The sheer number of cases that remain unsolved are mind numbing We often focus on the crimes that make the big headlines but for every one of those there are numerous others that never make a blip on the public’s consciousness Some cases go viral such as the one where an innocent man is knocked unconscious then hit by a car then robbed while he lay in the street Although the crime was recorded finding the man who assaulted the victim took a long time with many dead end leads and reuired much tenacity patience and a very sharp eye For Billy Jensen helping to solve the lesser known cold cases has become his life’s work He is still a writer and journalist but what he writes about is unsolved crimes He became friends with fellow cold casetrue crime advocate Michelle McNamara and he helped to complete her book after her untimely deathIn this book Jensen explains how he became a crime reporter his personal background and even exposes his single minded fixation on solving crimes helping law enforcement and bringing some closure to the victim's families who at this point just want to know the truth His heady exhilaration at having helped law enforcement close the books on a case is what keeps him from losing faith when so many cases hit a brick wall One thing that we can all agree on is that despite all the perils of social media without it and the advances in DNA and forensics murderers and rapists like the Golden State Killer might never have been caught Jensen outlines the way he uses social media and the internet in general to help solve crimes It’s a fascinating story and you have to hand it to the guy He’s like a dog with a bone when he gets started on a story or case and he doesn’t turn loose of it even when it looks as if he’s just chasing his own tale This dedication might also be described as an obsession though One issue I had with the book and it is the same issue I had with McNamara’ is the layout and organization of the book The flow is uneven as Jensen seems unsure of when to insert something poignant or personal which came off as feeling a little too forced and awkward The timing is a bit off in that area but I did enjoy some of the nostalgia from the seventies he spoke of Adding personal antidotes was something that worked for McNamara but not so much here I think The other issue I have with the book is with the last portion which is a DIY tutorial on amateur sleuthing and crime solving Because it goes without saying that law enforcement agencies nationwide are overwhelmed it may have gotten to the point where it now takes a village to help solve crimes It never hurts to be informed prepared aware and alert I do not have a problem with people logging onto to social media to study crime cold cases or missing persons profiles Sometimes a citizen’s hyper awareness could help save a life In many ways I greatly admire Jensen and what he does Without him some crimes and murders would mostly likely have remained unsolved That said While I read a great deal of true crime and do follow certain specific cases I keep my concerns and interest in the proper perspective Too many people interfering in official police investigations could backfire spectacularly While Jensen found the internet and social media to be a huge asset we all know by now that it is also packed with erroneous and harmful information which could hinder instead of help solve a crime It could also be very dangerous opening oneself up to scams or cons or even physical harm It could lead to false accusations as well and we know that even a hint of such a thing can ruin a life in an instant So I’m thinking this is a bit of a slippery slope and I’m not entirely comfortable with Jensen encouraging the general public to follow his chosen path Putting oneself out there interviewing victim’s families and the heart wrenching day to day drudge of following a lead that turned out to be nothing is an emotional drain that can be mentally draining and uite damaging just take a look at the toll it took on Michelle McNamara I’m not saying Jensen glorified his work or sugarcoated anything as the cases he examines are truly horrifying and one gets a glimpse at the cost the author pays and the sacrifices his family must endure for him to be successful at what he does In my humble opinion climbing into that dark murky world and becoming shall we say devoted to the exclusion of all else in life can’t be all that healthy Still I did find this book to be very interesting and absorbing overall sans the DYI bits Although I don’t necessarily recommend we all jump into the boat along with him I’m glad Jensen has had success as a reporter author and amateur sleuth and hope that as he continues his work he will at long last solve some of the cases that continue to haunt him 35 stars Have you ever wanted to solve a murder Gather the clues the police overlooked Put together the pieces Identify the suspectJournalist Billy Jensen spent fifteen years investigating unsolved murders fighting for the families of victims Every story he wrote had one thing in common―they didn't have an ending The killer was still out thereBut after the sudden death of a friend crime writer and author of I'll Be Gone in the Dark Michelle McNamara Billy became fed up Following a dark night he came up with a plan A plan to investigate past the point when the cops had given up A plan to solve the murders himselfYou'll ride shotgun as Billy identifies the Halloween Mask Murderer finds a missing girl in the California Redwoods and investigates the only other murder in New York City on 911 You'll hear intimate details of the hunts for two of the most terrifying serial killers in history his friend Michelle McNamara's pursuit of the Golden State Killer and his own uest to find the murderer of the Allenstown Four And Billy gives you the tools―and the rules―to help solve murders yourselfGripping complex unforgettable Chase Darkness with Me is an examination of the evil forces that walk among us illustrating a novel way to catch those killers and a true crime narrative unlike any you've read before “Whenever people ask me why I only write about unsolved murders I always say the same thing because I hate the guy who got away with it” When you think about a True Crime book it’s usually about some unsolvable crime or an elusive criminal We rarely see the amount of work and determination that goes into solving mysteries Chase Darkness With Me by Billy Jensen is a fascinating real life journey of Bill Jensen; from being a crime reporter to helping authorities in solving real life cold cases In this engrossing memoir Jensen takes the reader on his uest to hunt down killers using social media and crowdsourcingThe book begins from Bill’s childhood with his father reading him crime headlines from the paper which fueled his interest in true crime to becoming a crime journalist Jensen details his early work as a journalist and what drove him to crime investigations He recalls his early successes failures and his frustration with the system which eventually made him take to solving crimes himself The book recounts several cases including the Halloween Mask Murder case the case of fugitive hiding out in Mexico and the Bear Brook murders among others cases where he helped find killers for police around the country using social media Also covered in the book is Jensen’s experience of working with fellow journalist Michelle McNamara who was investigating the Golden State Killer case The author has included a section at the end of the book for those who wish to work as an online citizen detective to track killers and fugitives with a complete list of rules tips and cautions If you’ve ever wanted to become a citizen detective you may find this very useful though personally I find the idea a bit risky Chase Darkness with Me allows readers to understand the tough world of crime solving Jensen uses groundbreaking techniues to identify the criminals behind seemingly unsolvable murders Using DNA databases crowdsourcing on social media is a game changer but the results are still hard and slow to come by Jensen is honest about his successes and failures and the many dead ends in the pathThis book is also a reality check for a lot of armchair detectives crime solving is tough frustrating and in the end don’t expect to be the hero In a way this story is about a man’s journey through darkness to find the light at the end of the tunnel The success of the book lies in the fact that Jensen makes you feel part of the journey You feel disappointed after every setback you feel thrilled after every breakthrough and you feel happy after solved caseI also enjoyed his childhood stories including his interactions with his father which I found uite emotional My only complaint about the book is that the author has covered many cases in the book and it’s hard to keep up with all of them The book starts with a case meets a dead end and is finally solved a few chapters later The chapters could have been organized a bit better This book would definitely interest true crime fans a lot It has multiple causes and offers a uniue perspective on the world of crime solving Many thanks to the publisher Sourcebooks and NetGalley for the ARC Part true crime memoir part DIY cold case solving instruction manual Chase Darkness with Me How One True Crime Writer Started Solving Murders is a uniue read that stands out in a sea of true crime novels Billy Jensen has truly seen it all and it was refreshing to read about horrific murders from a tender caring and emotional standpoint Highly recommended I dole out 25 stars as I wander into the wrong townIt’s a case of me wandering into the wrong town; now THAT’S the true crime But really what is this fiction broad doing in true crime? The author helps solve tough cases by using social media Interesting idea—but a whole book about how he came to do this? And then a how to for others? I don’t think so I went from bored to furiousI knew it I knew it I knew it I should have stayed in my own lane continued reading exciting made up stories I guess I was expecting something different I had read a couple of positive reviews from friends and I thought hm the psychology of the criminal fascinates me so I’ll check it out Like the rest of the world I shiver when I think of The Boston Strangler Son of Sam Charlie Manson and I read a lot about them—ha especially when my mom clipped every Boston Strangler article ever written and sent them to me when I moved to Boston at age 18 Please explain to me why she would do that—by reading them I would ward off murder?The book is a memoir or a report by a man who has made it his life work to solve murders and to a lesser extent find missing people What’s uniue about him is that he has figured out how to get tips through social media He was involved in other new ideas about how the Internet can help solve crimes like using familial DNA to track criminals He has solved a couple of murders no small featJoy Jar Jensen is a good guy who is passionate about catching the bad guys Persistence is his middle name That he cares so much and works so hard at it earns him many gold stars He kept gore out of it This was much appreciated He didn’t get off on shocking us with all the gross details of crimes There were a few mentions of the bizarre things a sicko had done like burying a body in cat litter but he didn’t dwell on them The teensy blob of story about the author’s father’s edgy past and the father son relationship was the best part of the book The few statistics were interesting For example I can’t fathom that there are 5000 unsolved crimes a year in America It was interesting to hear about how you can target areas genders age groups etc when you’re trying to reach strangers on FacebookComplaint BoardThat’s not what I THOUGHT I was going to hear When am I going to figure out how to ditch those expectations? I thought I would hear the author’s take on the twisted minds of the sickos who commit heinous murders I wanted psychology And I guess I expected the author to zero in on one or two crimes Nope that wasn’t what the book was aboutDon’t tell me about crimes that still aren’t solved The author gave many too many details about what he did to try to solve particular crimes only to conclude by saying he never solved most of them That got obnoxious frustrating and disappointing real fast like I realized early on that I’m only interested in hearing a detailed report of all the steps you went through to solve a crime IF in fact you DID solve the crime Why do I want to know about what didn’t work?? I think it’s natural to want closure—that’s true in fiction of course but also when you’re talking about true crime “Yeah we did this and this and we even did this but no we didn’t solve the crime Sorry to say the bandito is still out there We’re back at suare 1” It’s like telling me you lost your keys then described in excruciating detail all the nooks and crannies where you searched for them only to end with “I never did find the damn keys” I wanted you needed you to find the keys; the story of the search isn’t interesting unless there is success at the end I know cold cases fascinate people and they sort of fascinated me too—until I read this book Oh I was so bored I mean really bored—for the first 90 percent of the book in fact I dreaded picking the book up The author presented a jumbled report about a few crimes that he tried to solve going on and on spewing out details of his methods and perseverance It was pretty show offy I’m sorry yawn city I didn’t need to know about what day he met with other crimefighters and details of the conversations they had I wanted lively I got droning Many journalists are good storytellers; this author is not He jumped around going back and forth between crimes and his language was dull and repetitive Because of the sort of staccato scattered monotone I didn’t end up truly feeling enough for the victims The purpose of the book I realize wasn’t to talk much about the victims but instead to outline how the author went about trying to solve crimes He name dropped crimes and solvers that I was unfamiliar with and this was annoying I’m sure people who follow true crimes and crime fighters loved itThe last 10 percent made me see red So I was bored for 90 percent but the last 10 percent made me furious It was a how to for jo schmos who want to solve crimes themselves Before you attack let me just say that I KNOW that there’s a whole group of people who want to be amateur sleuths they’re all part of a club and they are avid listeners to the author’s podcasts and his crime solving efforts I think it’s cool that the public can occasionally help solve a crime I know some people found the last section fascinating and useful I on the other hand felt like I been plopped down into at a UFO convention and I didn’t fit in and I wasn’t going to report any sightings because I wasn’t “onboard” Here’s the deal The author uses social media to track down the bad guys He is a smart passionate responsible man who wants everyone to share his hobby of catching the bad guys But not everyone is like him The last 10 percent of the book is a detailed DIY instruction manualOkay deep breath I don’t think untrained citizens should try to be detectives period First it’s dangerous There are trained experienced paid detectives who do this job One of the things you’re supposed to do is buy space on Facebook or other social media targeting certain demographics so you can circulate pictures of the criminal you’re trying to catch Then you wait for tips to come in The author gives you a couple of no no’s so you’ll be safe from crazy criminals trying to find you but I think it’s irresponsible of the author to lead people down this road Some people aren’t going to remember or want to adhere to the “what not to do’s” and they may end up being stalked or even dead The author tells one story about an amateur sleuth with a day job as a doctor who got herself killed by a gang in Mexico she was investigating And sometimes these zealous hobbyists ruin the lives of innocent people once they post a photo of a suspect the suspect’s reputation is toast even if they didn’t do the crime In these Internet days when stories and pictures are eternal it’s hugely bad to point a finger at an innocent personSecond you better be a rich person with no job if you want to be an amateur sleuth So it’s not true that “even you can find bad guys” because you may be too poor to do so The author explains that you have to buy space on Facebook or other social media so you can send out pictures of potential criminals The money you throw into it the people you can reach Yeah I have hundreds of dollars to throw around so I can maybe help solve a crime And about the time reuired—he says it’s a 247 job Really? This comment assumes that no one has a day job Wouldn’t it be nice if we had the time and luxury to have a selfless virtuous and applaudable volunteer job as a crime fighter? One final nit about that last maddening 10 percent The author in his earnest thoroughness even tells you the location of icons you need to click on the Facebook interface We all know what it’s like when web builders decide to redo the site moving buttons randomly left to right and taking away features and whole menus I go on a cussing jag and fantasize sending letters telling “them” a thing or two It happens all the time I used to edit and write online Help and believe me I was horrified when the interface was radically redesigned after I carefully described which button to click and where No fun So back to this book—the instructions the author outlined won’t apply and will surely frustrate people whenever a new designer decides to impress their boss and change the look of the site The author should not have gone into that much detail; the information will become obsolete Okay I’ll stop my rant As I said I know the author’s heart is in the right place and solving crimes is laudable People who love true crime will love this book It just wasn’t for me Thanks to NetGalley for the advance copy I reviewed a digital version of this book The author was a friend and colleague of Michelle McNamera’s until she passed away while working on her true crime book ‘I’ll Be Gone In The Dark’ He is one of several who helped her husband to finish the book and get it published This is his story telling how he went from just reporting on stories to getting so frustrated that he jumped in and started solving them He and Michelle had plans to work together at it as soon as she sent off her book manuscript to the publishers which sadly never happened as she passed away It tells how Jensen began in murder solving How he fumbled and got advice and learned and kept on Like most anything the you do it and learn about it the better you get at it Then at long last he solved his first case and that made a huge difference in his confidence After his regular job he’d been working on Michelle’s book at nightJensen eventually developed his own system for getting tips online by targeting certain areas and then focusing on them with information and reuests He solved his 2nd case which came with police recognition and hugs from the victim’s mother and sister which really really meant the most After that he was really on his way This would be of interest to true crime fans as you can follow along and see how a writer becomes a crime solver It has multiple cases that are interesting all through the book some solved and some being worked on yet Fascinating stuff as law enforcement and others tweak their skills to come up with new ways to solve crime in this new age Advance electronic review copy was provided by NetGalley author Billy Jensen and the publisherMy BookZone blog Billy Jensen who finished Michelle McNamara's I'll Be Gone in the Dark following her untimely death talks about his love for true crime and how he became involved in investigating unsolved murdersJensen provides a really fascinating insight into how he carries out his own investigative journalist and lays down the tools and rules to help you get involved yourself I’m not 100% convinced that it’s a good idea to encourage people to get involved in trying to solve crimes on their own There’s a difference between helping out where you can and then leading your own investigation It's perhaps just a good idea to get involved where it's appropriateJensen's passion for catching the bad guys who think they got away with it really shines through Most of the crimes covered were ones I already knew about which was unfortunate but I liked hearing about of the backstory into how they were solved35 stars Definitely recommend to all true crime fans especially if you’re already a fan of Billy Jensen 45 starsSometimes a tragedy can spur one onto doing something of taking a stand of getting involved With the death of his friend Michele McNamara the author of I'll Be Gone In the Dark a book I read and so enjoyed Billy Jensen becomes involved in the concept and tracking of killers who got away With the advent of DNA tracking many who were previously living among us though that was denied the ones they killed were fated to be found While Ms McNamara died before the Golden State killer was identified her relentless and exhaustive research on him was the catalyst to spur Mr Jensen on to taking up the gauntlet pursuing other killers Jensen was also one of those who assisted in completing Michelle's book after her untimely death Through the use of the internet social media platforms and research Jensen has helped to solve a number of cases bringing to justice those who had escaped the conseuences of their crime He presents us with how he was spurred on by his love of true crime stories started early on by the stories his father shared with him and later as a journalist tuned off by the intrusion into the lives of the bereaved He turned to the concept of crowd sourcing to catch to ferret out and find the perpetrator bringing to some families a closure of their circle of griefThe book is fascinating even providing a how to guide to become your very own investigative detective and help the police to ferret out a possible murderer I definitely recommend this book to those who enjoy true crime stories and the audible version I listened to narrated by the author was done so very well Perhaps now with the internet social media platforms and of course the use of DNA many will be brought to justice and the families of those who lost their loved ones will be able to know that while their loved ones have lost their lives those who killed them might no longer walk among us free to live their life a life they denied others to have According to some statistics one third of the murders in the United States go unresolved For many especially the families of those who were murdered there is no ending no resolution no justice until the killer or killers is found tried and brought to justice For Jan and I listening to this book was an eye opening experience as Billy Jensen took us on his journey to bring some resolution to the families and perhaps in a small way allow justice to be served on those who chose to kill For both our reviews and a look at the author you can go here CHASE DARKNESS WITH ME was sad informative and interesting Sad because of the author's relationship with Michelle McNamara; together they worked on the Golden State Killer case Informative because of the tips the author shares with readers on how to investigate crimes themselves and interesting because there are a lot of new ways where non professionals can help the real professionals solve a case As a true crime buff from way back I enjoyed this audio and I'm thinking about following the author's podcast Thanks to Audible for the free Original with my membership 45 starsIf you like true crime especially in the form of investigative journalism this audiobook is for you I was initially drawn to this story because of Billy’s association with Michelle McNamarra in the amazing I’ll Be Gone in the Dark book from 2018 Billy worked closely with Michelle on her Golden State Killer case and after her death he was instrumental in helping to finish and get her book published In his new audiobook Billy tells of how he developed a love of true crime and justice from an early age he describes some pretty crazy bedtime stories of crimes and criminals that his dad used to share with him Rather than scaring him Billy pinpoints those early stories as instilling a fascination and hunger within himself to explore crime and those who commit itBelieve me when I say this is one of the most engaging insightful audiobooks I’ve ever listened to Billy goes in depth in how he uses crowdsourcingthink Facebook and Twitterto catch criminals and it’s absolutely fascinating The murder of Marcus Gaines that Billy worked on was not only sad and frustrating to hear but incredible in terms of how it turned out This crowdsourcing feels to me very timely and tremendously important in terms of the possibilites it offers for solving murders and finding missing people In fact Billy’s discussion of the“digital posse” seemed so accurate for the future of crime and criminal justice Told with empathy compassion and energy Billy’s dedication and passion for truth and justice came through loud and clear I highly recommend this audiobook


About the Author: Billy Jensen

An American true crime investigative journalist and producer focusing on unsolved crimes citizen detectives and crowdsolving I’ve written crime stories for Rolling Stone Los Angeles Magazine Boston Magazine and the New York Times Referred to as an expert on amateur digital detectives by both MSNBC and Al Jazeera America I presented the panel “Solving Murders With Social Media” at the SXSW