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The River Of No Return: On the trail of Hannah Anderson and Jim DiMaggio [Perfect Paperback]

Chelsea Hoffman
1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

30 Oct 2013
At first it was a story of a sinister friend of the family, Jim DiMaggio, kidnapping 16 year old Hannah Anderson after killing her mother and brother, thereby triggering an Amber Alert that led to his death at the hands of the FBI in the wilds of Idaho a few days later. But then Sheriff Billy Gore of San Diego made a statement to the effect that he was not entirely convinced that Hannah Anderson had been taken involuntarily. Either he was being spectacularly insensitive to the feelings of a young, innocent girl who had just gone through hell and back, or he knew something he wasn't sharing. Then there was the bizarre behavior of Hannah Anderson herself who was giving every impression of being a starlet from a recent Hollywood blockbuster rather than someone grieving the brutal murders of her mother and brother. And after more investigation, very few of the stated facts of the case stood up to any level of objective scrutiny ...

Product details

  • Perfect Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Taylor Street Publishing LLC (30 Oct 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0989285413
  • ISBN-13: 978-0989285414
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 13.8 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,515,729 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars THIS IS A STOLEN COPY 13 Nov 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
Be aware that this is a stolen and erroneous version/copy of Chelsea Hoffman's work. Do not buy this version/copy. Amazon.UH insist on 20 words being written, however, there isn't anything else to say on this matter.
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Amazon.com: 3.5 out of 5 stars  19 reviews
13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Sensationalism at its worst. 26 Nov 2013
By Jennifer Lewis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Perfect Paperback
Luckily I didn't pay for this since the author posted a link to a free version. Unfortunately, it still wasn't worth it.

My one word description of the book -
Sensationalism: the use of exciting or shocking stories or language at the expense of accuracy, in order to provoke public interest or excitement.

My one word description of the author -
Charlatan: a person falsely claiming to have a special knowledge or skill; a fraud.
15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Author - Publisher Feud 10 Nov 2013
By Patricia Arthur - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Perfect Paperback|Verified Purchase
Just when you thought this case couldn't get any weirder, it now appears there is a permanent rift between author Chelsea Hoffman and Taylor Street Books. This may be why this book is no longer offered for sale on Amazon. Chelsea Hoffman's website describes the battle in detail, including her complaints of poor editing, which may explain the many spelling and grammatical errors. She also states an entire chapter was mysteriously left out--the much touted chapter detailing the author's discussions with great aunt Jenn Willis.
I read this book in a day, and I was surprised that it was so poorly written. But apparently there may be an explanation now. Aside from the writing/editing, I found the book's content to be a very inclusive summary of this case and the many questions surrounding it. The author also made some salient points about why this case has attracted certain types of attention. For example, Hoffman wondered if people hated Hannah because they thought she was guilty, or because she represents a social media-obsessed youth culture reviled by many adults. She also dug quite a bit into Jim DiMaggio's psyche to really try and figure out what was going through his mind and offered several opinions about why DiMaggio had been hanging out with a teenaged crowd. She examined Hannah's possible thought processes in the same detailed fashion.
Overall, the author did an admirable job and I'd like to see the "corrected" version if possible. This book is worth reading if you can get past the editing.
19 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A solid overview of a strange and troubling case 3 Nov 2013
By Laurie Dennison - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am glad someone has published a book chronicling the inconsistencies and general weirdness surrounding the Hannah Anderson case. Chelsea Hoffman has done a creditable job of compiling the news stories plus everything Hannah and her friends have stated online.

I have followed this story since day one, always feeling that something was "off". Hoffman has gotten all the details in there. Everything I have read and heard over the months has made it into the book. Hoffman hasn't taken any liberties, made anything up, nor played fast and loose with the facts. As an overview of the case as presented in the media, this book is solid.

It's clear that Hoffman has been writing and rewriting to keep up with Hannah's online shenanigans up to a week before the release date. i am sure this book will be revised and re-revised many more times to come. Hence, the many grammatical errors, run-on sentences, and incorrect names that should have been corrected by an editor or even a competent proofreader.
My only complaint or suggestion is that someone needs to get in there pronto and clean up those errors, at least in the Kindle version, lest the grammar trolls try to undermine all that Hoffman has gotten right in taking on this subject.
9 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars CLEARLY NOT written by a professional criminal profiler... 30 Nov 2013
By AJ Rolland - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Perfect Paperback
Hang onto your money if you are seeking truth about the Hannah Anderson, James DiMaggio story...

If you don't mind pissing money away reading crazy assertions by someone who was at no time anywhere near these events, you just might like this book. The [book] is currently unavailable on Amazon, so I purchased a "print on demand" hard copy via Lulu.

The first 20 pages are massively padded. If I had a dollar for every time the word "like" was used i.e. "Picture a Norman Rockwell like scene of American simplicity..." This does nothing to forewarn the over abuse of the word "likely" which seems to be Hoffman's word of choice for warning readers she is about to GUESS what someone was "likely" thinking...

Chelsea Hoffman's investigative journalism is beyond horrible. If her accounting of events that transpired in California is only half as inaccurate as her rendition of what took place in Idaho, she's more guilty of murder than she will ever prove Hannah Anderson might be. I guarantee you Chelsea's recounting of events in Idaho-- 1.) completely never happened, 2.) are grossly out of time-sequence or 3.) outrageously distorted for bending towards her fanatical theories.

The book is a poorly written work of fantasy fiction. It's sad that so many readers that wrote reviews for this book actually believe what this person wrote.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Would You Trust a 16-Year-Old? 20 Mar 2014
By Caitlin Seida - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Perfect Paperback
"Would you trust a 16-year-old?" While not the most poignant question posed by this book, it's the one that stuck with me and the one that got me thinking. As someone who suffers from mental illness and was a miserable brat in my teenage years, I could see a lot of myself in Hannah Anderson's reactions - and had I been a different person, one, perhaps, predisposed to violence toward others (instead of toward myself), I may have had it in me to do something similar. This chilling revelation is just one of the painful realizations that hits after reading Chelsea Hoffman's work.

Her prose is fluid and her imagery is stark and hard-hitting. Being almost completely unfamiliar with the details of this case before reading River of No Return, Ms. Hoffman covers all the basics that a newcomer to the Anderson/DiMaggio case would need to know - the whos, whats, wheres, whys, and even attempts to address the hows that everyone is grasping for. Once I began reading, I could not put the book down and devoured it in the span of less than a day.

Unfortunately, I can't give this book 5 stars. While I was unfamiliar with the case, I was in contact with Chelsea at the time of writing and knowing the pressure she was under from Taylor Street Publishing to finish the book (in my opinion, at the cost of the story), it shows.

Unlike Ms. Hoffman's other work, this felt rushed and disjointed at times. Chapters that should have been contiguous were slapped here and there. Spelling and grammatical errors (that Ms. Hoffman owns up to in the foreword) are present throughout the book, but in my opinion, it doesn't lessen the experience: Ms. Hoffman's voice, style and message are enough to overcome any errors that may be present due to sloppy editing. Unfortunately, due to the rush to publish, Ms. Hoffman missed a few things that could have enhanced this book: A chance to set a vivid scene in Frank Church, a chance to delve into the sad history of the area (which she mentions, but does not elaborate on) and a chance to flesh out the Marilyn Monroe obsession (which, to this fan, is fascinating given the (sadly unmentioned) obvious connection between the alleged offender and Ms. Monroe's ex husband, if in name only.)

Even with these missed opportunities and errors, this book is well worth the price and well worth the read. Ms. Hoffman's voice is easy and conjures up the images you need in your head (no matter how painful they may be. For an example, see her walk through of the autopsy results). She has an ability to make you question all sides while allowing you to form your own opinions, gently guiding you through the facts of the case. And beyond that? She'll make you question yourself and your own behavior, humanizing the players in this case which is both chilling and more than appropriate.
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