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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars THE DARKEST NIGHT INDEED..., 8 Jun 2008
By 
Lawyeraau (Balmoral Castle) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Darkest Night: Two Sisters, a Brutal Murder, and the Loss of Innocence in a Small Town (Mass Market Paperback)
In 1973 in Casper, Wyoming, the paths of two twenty something lowlifes, Ronald Kennedy and Jerry Jenkins, intersected with that of two half-sisters, eighteen year old Becky Thompson and eleven year old Amy Burridge. None of their lives would ever be the same again. Becky and Amy had just finished up some last minute grocery shopping at a local store, when they realized that they had a flat tire. Kennedy and Jenkins offered to help them and give them a ride home.

Once they were in the car, however, it was clear that Becky and Amy were going to be taken to hell and back again. The upshot is that they were abducted and ultimately driven to the North Platte River where Amy was thrown from a bridge that spanned a gorge into the river over a hundred feet below. Becky was then raped by Kennedy and Jenkins, and then she, too, was thrown from the bridge into that same river and left for dead. The only difference is that she physically survived her ordeal and lived to tell the tale.

The author divided the book into three parts. In the first part, the author takes great pains to describe the town and the people who played a part in the unfolding drama. He also paints a poignant portrait of the two girls who had been abducted and treated so cruelly by fate. He also describes the details of the events that led up to the crime, the crime itself, and its immediate aftermath.

In the second part of the book, the focus is on the prosecution of the case. Again, the author gives much detail on the individuals who were going to be involved in the prosecution of the case, as well as those who were to be responsible for the defense of Kennedy and Jenkins. The author also gives details from the trial itself, in addition to the outcome.

In the third part of the book, the author details what became of Becky Thompson and notes the impact that this singular event had on her life. He also details what happened to Jenkins and Kennedy. The reader also discovers what became of the families of the victims, the families of the defendants, and those who were involved in the trial process. He also includes portions of a memoir written by Kennedy, which the author expertly dissects and analyses. This is, however, the Achilles heel in the book, as the self-serving drivel served up by Kennedy made this portion of the book drag somewhat.

This case was big news when it happened, and it shook the town of Casper to its core. In fact, the author knew Becky and Amy, as they were his next door neighbors in Casper, Wyoming, where he grew up. He was a junior in high school at the time that the crime occurred, and he recalls the impact that the crime had on not only the community but on his family, as well. This personal connection explains the well-spring of deep sadness that resonates throughout this well-written book and speaks to the reader. Meticulous in his research, it is clear that for this author this book was a labor of love, as the author brings to life with his prose all those whose lives had been touched by this heinous crime.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an unbelievably tragic story.., 20 Nov 2008
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This review is from: The Darkest Night: Two Sisters, a Brutal Murder, and the Loss of Innocence in a Small Town (Mass Market Paperback)
If it was fiction you would not find it in the least bit credible. The author tells the story with a huge amount of empathy to the victims, and as a consequence the self serving drivel of Kennedy is important to the book as a whole in that we can feel free to almost ridicule him and his pathetic excuses, therefore leaving us free to be outraged, as we all should be, at the nasty, callous murder of a child,and his self-fulfilling excuses.Bad child-hood. blah blah blah!YEAH, ME TOO...DOESN'T MAKE ME DO THAT! .And as to the repercussions of that night ... I will not spoil the story but it is important to understand who the real victims are.And for them it never ends. The author conveys this admirably.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Darkest Night, 2 Feb 2009
By 
Karen Lauri Kane "Rustifer" (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Darkest Night: Two Sisters, a Brutal Murder, and the Loss of Innocence in a Small Town (Mass Market Paperback)
I enjoyed the storyline of this book but, I have to say, I don't think it is terribly well-written, which sometimes makes it slightly confusing. There is a little too much description of characters and places for my liking. I did, however, thoroughly enjoy the abstracts taken from an autobiography of one of the killers. His tales of life in a poor part of town are truly bizarre and, if everything he writes is fact, then I find it incredible that this deeply disturbed individual wasn't locked up sooner!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 2 April 2014
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This review is from: The Darkest Night: Two Sisters, a Brutal Murder, and the Loss of Innocence in a Small Town (Mass Market Paperback)
I rethought this was a good read although a very sad story. Might read it again sometime in the future
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4.0 out of 5 stars Sad sad story, 13 Jun 2013
By 
Mrs. A. J. Collop "bookworm" (united kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Darkest Night: Two Sisters, a Brutal Murder, and the Loss of Innocence in a Small Town (Mass Market Paperback)
A book that is for crime lovers like myself but be warned it is very very sad story of innocence lost.2 sisters nipping to the store for their mum get waylaid with the horrific murder by 2 evil perpetrators.Holds ur attention.
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