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BOOK REVIEW : CHASE DARKNESS WITH ME BY BILLY JENSEN

People read and watch and listen to true crime because it restores order from chaos. That’s the answer to give when someone asks you why you like hearing about real-life murder. It’s the comfort of watching everything be put in it’s place after an episode of outright, sickening bedlam.

-Billy JENSEN (CHASE DARKNESS WITH ME)

TITLE : Chase darkness with me

AUTHOR : Billy Jensen

GENRE : Non-fiction, True Crime

FBRC : 4.5 Stars

BLURB :

Have you ever wanted to solve a murder? Gather the clues the police overlooked? Put together the pieces? Identify the suspect?

Journalist 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 there.
Have you ever wanted to solve a murder? Gather the clues the police overlooked? Put together the pieces? Identify the suspect?

You’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 9/11. 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 quest to find the murderer of the Allenstown Four. And Billy gives you the tools―and the rules―to help solve murders yourself.

Gripping, 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. 

FBRC REVIEW :

DISCLAIMER : I received an ARC( advance review copy) of this book for free from NetGalley, and I am leaving this review voluntarily. Thank you, NetGalley for providing me with an e-ARC of this book.

I loved this book. I don’t know where to start. I loved how it was able to capture my interest and keep me engaged and invested in the book and stories told by Billy Jensen. The book was equally gripping and riveting in terms of the content and the story Jensen brought to us as readers. The book took us through the paths Billy Jensen traversed in order to solve crimes and bring back order to the chaos. It helps us readers understand his drive as an individual and as an investigative journalist. I loved how he brought forward different cases he worked on and how they were dealt with and the hurdles he faced while trying to solve them. I also loved how he dedicated a good part of his life to crime-solving without expecting anything but justice being served through the right channels. I would say that is the right attitude to have for someone in his field.

The idea of persistence and perseverance is stressed throughout the book. The stories in the book tell us how his persistence in the follow-up of cases helped him solve it and finally catch the perpetrators. Every time Billy Jensen took up a case he had to spend money from his own bank account and do the legwork and the necessary research for the cases. He also was running Facebook Ads to help flush out the criminals with the help of ordinary citizens. I think how he tried to do it using Facebook Ads were fantastic. I believe if the local police and ordinary people joined hands a lot of the cases that are waiting can be solved or at least be started.

The book takes us through stories and incidents from his childhood and helps us understand his drive and passion when it comes to true-crime stories. His father’s influence is very much evident in his story. I loved their bond and how his father, unlike other dads, spent his time discussing what would be sensitive content to his young son. I believe his relationship with his dad and the interactions he had with him helped him be the person he is today. Their bond portrayed in this book is so beautiful and we get to see how the stories he heard from a young age made him want to find justice and right the wrongs.

The picture of young Billy sitting with his father and listening to him talk about true crime stories that were told as cautionary tales is interesting. It also helps us get the vivid picture of where his motivation and interest in true crime originated from. The death of his friend Michelle McNamara spurred him on a mission to figure out the answers to the unsolved cases he had. He helped finish Michelle’s book as well. I found myself getting intrigued and awed by this man’s story. It is truly inspiring to see a man willing to put his time and effort into crime-solving just to deliver some semblance of justice. I can understand his need and quest for answers to the crimes in US. I definitely want to thank him for his selfless-service he is doing for his country and community. I hope and pray God preserve him in his strength and abilities.

It was shocking to see the number of cases that are cold and unsolved in the USA. The number of unsolved murders in the US is 5000 per year and the number of missing person cases happens to be 50,000. These numbers are not only staggering but also horrifying to me. I found myself getting repulsed by some of the details of the crimes mentioned in the book. It’s astonishing to see the worst side of humanity in all its glory. The number of serial killers on the loose and the amount of the crimes they have committed is still not clear. That leaves a lot of families still grieving and not getting any answers to their questions.

The knowledge that a lot of cases go unattended is because of the lack of fund is really distressing to hear and read about. To know that some of these cases will go cold and ignored by officials over time is disturbing. I hope the government provides funds and enough resources to the institutions so they can do their job. I hope as the author suggests there are more coalitions and co-operation between citizens and the police to strengthen the safety of communities. Hopefully, crowd-solving will be helpful in putting a dent in the caseload and help with crime-solving.

I recommend this book to all true crime fans who study unsolved/solved crimes to check this book out to learn the journey of a journalist and the path he paved for himself while solving some of the horrific and abominable crimes that are seen by mankind. Chase darkness with me is definitely a must-read for people who enjoy true-crime books, it will keep you riveted and engrossed in Billy Jensen’s quest for Justice.

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