Acclaimed crime writer Carol Anne Davis explores the minds of sadistic killers: their childhoods, their growing pathology and horrific crimes. Knowing what some of these killers endured doesn't even begin to excuse their crimes - but it does explain them. Davis delineates the different subgroups of sadists - for example, those who kill indiscriminately - in Britain, the US and Australia. There are also chapters on: female sadists, who tend to be overlooked by the media; consensual sadomasochism - including a rare interview with a well-known female practitioner, Lynn Paula Russell; and, input from a psychologist who has helped rehabilitate some of Britain's most violent men. "Sadistic Killers" is a compelling look at the formative influences of a sadist and at his or her crimes. Unflinching in detail but never gratuitous, this is an informative read with a hopeful ending.