Friday, August 14, 2009

Stolen in the Night

Stolen in the Night: The True Story of a Family's Murder, a Kidnapping and the Child Who Survived

AuthorGary C. King
PublisherSt. Martin's Paperbacks

This true crime story heartbreakingly conveys the story of the anniliation of a family. Sexual psychopath Joseph Edward Duncan II brutally murdered a mother, her older son, and her boyfriend. Duncan then kidnaps the murdered woman's other 2 children, young Shasta and Dylan Groene from their idyllic Idaho home.Millions of people watched the horror of this case unfold on the evening news. Detectives and the FBI scrambled to find the missing children, and the nation held it's collective breath, hoping for the best, anticipating the worst.Told with an unerring eye to detail, Gary King's book takes the reader on this heartrending story, from harrowing twists to the tale of a courageous little girl who manages to survive against all odds. You feel the righteous indignation that comes with knowing that a bragging sexual predator was allowed to escape his punishment for earlier crimes, the horror faced by the young girl who he sexually brutalized, and the brother she knows he murdered. This story will haunt you long after you finish reading it, as much from the experiences of the family as from knowing that the system didn't work, and that this monster was allowed to go free. Mr. King writes with great detail, and shares much of the case, the work involved, and the background story that allowed this horror to exist in the first place. I came away knowing more about the faults of our justice system, and what made this psychopath "tick". Knowing that Shasta has been reunited with her father, and is receiving psychological help to deal with her ordeal, brings the book to a decent conclusion. There is no happy ending to this story, and Mr. King doesn't try to paint a picture of one. It's handled with tact, well-meaning and compassion.

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