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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read!
I really enjoyed this book, and found it hard to put down. It covers all the materials that you would expect in a book of this kind, but the authors seem to have developed their style since their last effort - about the Ipswich serial murders. I suppose this is what would be called superior true crime, because Wilson is a criminology Professor and Harrison is a...
Published on 20 Aug 2010 by Mr. James T. Foster

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So close to being very good.
I did enjoy this book and took a lot away from it, however there are two big issues for me, the structure makes no sense and really frustrated me, also there is far too much weight to the `profile' element of the book, with little to no evidence to back it up.

The Bible John section was very good and very informative. They have clearly done the research and...
Published on 20 Dec 2011 by teepeegb


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read!, 20 Aug 2010
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
I really enjoyed this book, and found it hard to put down. It covers all the materials that you would expect in a book of this kind, but the authors seem to have developed their style since their last effort - about the Ipswich serial murders. I suppose this is what would be called superior true crime, because Wilson is a criminology Professor and Harrison is a journalist that works for Sky News. So, it does more than simply re-tell the story of Tobin but tries to put him and his crimes into a bigger context. It also suggests that Tobin was the Glasgow serial killer Bible John, and I for one was convinced by what they argued.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So close to being very good., 20 Dec 2011
This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
I did enjoy this book and took a lot away from it, however there are two big issues for me, the structure makes no sense and really frustrated me, also there is far too much weight to the `profile' element of the book, with little to no evidence to back it up.

The Bible John section was very good and very informative. They have clearly done the research and painted a very clear picture of Glasgow at the time of the killings. Then they cobble together a `Profile of Bible John' which is pure guess work, shows no references and undoes some of their good work. They then jump to the murder of Angelika Kluk, which is another well done section but looks to have been thrown in with little thought to the position in the book. We are then thrown back to the 1991 murders Tobin was convicted for, but then we are taken further back to random killings though the 1970's with little to link them to Tobin. We then get to the link between Tobin and Bible John, which is convincing and an argument I agree with. This book could have easily been so much better, but the co-authors seem to have written their sections separately and thrown them together at random.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars fascinating read but a bit disjointed., 30 Nov 2010
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love reading "marsy" (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
I have never read a true crime book before and they have never appealed to me but I decided to read this as it was highly recommended to me and, because I had always had a slight interest in Bible John (being a child in the 60s living in the Glasgow area, his 'photo' was synonymous with the bogie man to me).

The first half is about the Bible John murders and actually revealed how little solid evidence there is compared to our world now of DNA and advanced forensics. There was a lot of time spent explaining this which was interesting. I really found the profiling of this man very interesting too.

There is then a section on Peter Tobin and information gathered from his wives. He really is the epitome of evil and I found this quite disturbing. However, the book lacked insight into his childhood but I don't know whether this was because no information is available about it but I felt more research could have been done about this.

Links are offered for various cold cases which could be blamed on Tobin and then, finally, there is the summing up of the argument that Tobin and Bible John is the same man.

Overall, this book was fascinating and very gripping. It has made an impact on me. My only complaint is that it was slightly disjointed and the structure a bit erratic. Other than that, very fascinating indeed.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars God bless the souls of Tobin's victims, at peace now, 18 July 2010
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Ak Peacock - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
I bought this book because the disappearance of Dinah McNicol haunted me for years, I never met her but I was in a band that played Torpedo Town festival that year and I was dismayed to hear afterwards a young person had vanished on her way home, I prayed she would turn up alive but of course she didn't. The chapter in this book about Dinah is therefore especially sad and chilling for me.

I agree with the other reviewers that this is a compelling read with a lot of valuable information on modern policing techniques which hopefully may yet make Tobin one of the 'last British serial killers' (there's a hint in the book this was the original title). There are mercifully only a couple of incidents of `copy and paste' journalism (ie. a `review' of Wikipedia entries) with the emphasis not on biographical details and gore but on changes to police methods in the last forty years and on the advances in psychological profiling of killers. (Along the way I certainly didn't realise Ian Brady is now some sort of professor in criminal psychology and has even published an analysis of the serial killer mindset (he should know I suppose) this book suggests there is a bit of a news black-out in Britain about this and I got the impression the authors couldn't resist 'breaking the embargo').

In arguing Peter Tobin was Bible John the authors did leave me with a few questions, firstly if Bible John had a stand up row with the manager of the Barrowlands, surely this manager would have then had the clearest recollection of what Bible John looked like rather than the bouncers and the sister in the taxi. There is no mention in the book of the manager being interviewed about this, and what about the taxi driver as well? Nor do the authors reference the fact that, as someone who was then visibly under-25, Tobin (if he was Bible John) might have had difficulty getting into the `over 25s' dances at the Barrowlands.

I enjoyed the book and admit I couldn't put it down, but I feel a possible weakness of this book (and perhaps of a lot of the 'true crime' genre) is its lack of any kind of `feminist' critique, even where the contents suggests one (eg. in the 'cold cases' section). The task in the book of `proving' Peter Tobin was Bible John appears to ignore the welter of violence carried out against women and children between the 1960s and 2000s which the book itself reviews and which was perpetrated by any number of men either as planned campaigns against women or as simple opportunistic hate crimes. For me it is the history of this endemic misogyny which explains a lot about the supposed mystery of Bible John's identity, basically it could have been any one of the casual punters at the Barrowlands at the time (an atmosphere well evoked in the book). Until very recently this misogyny has meant violence against women has largely gone unpunished and has meant to a lot of men, not just Tobin, believing they are above the law. Rape in marriage didn't even become a crime in Britain until 1991, and even today less than 7% of reported rapes lead to convictions (95% aren't reported at all). Female journalists note the police at the Yorkshire Ripper press conferences in the 1970s made jokes about `dirty prostitutes' when the cameras were off moments after having expressed fake sympathy for his victims and appeals for assistance. In the 1960s Calvinist police officers in Glasgow therefore probably shared enough of Bible John's contempt for `adulterous women' to have overlooked obvious clues (including his first murder itself as the book points out) and even if they didn't the wider Glaswegian public probably did.

Sadly serial killers have been able to operate freely in Britain mainly because for a long time police and the wider society didn't care about the welfare of prostitutes, nor about most women and children in general, nor about the poor or the defenceless. As an aside in this book suggests, if the police had bothered regularly interviewing Bathgate's prostitutes about their clients' perversions then perhaps this knowledge about the married Tobin's behaviour would have helped them to take him off our streets decades earlier. God rest the souls of Tobin's victims, all at peace now RIP.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars peter tobin mass murderer, 22 Nov 2011
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
good book and a really good story about vicky hamilton nice girl only stayed a few yard from us in falkirk
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not too bad, 17 Nov 2011
By 
Junius (London, Middlesex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
This is an account of the investigation into the Bible John killings of 1968-1969 and of serial killer Peter Tobin. Both are undeniably nasty individuals, but were they the same man? The authors believe so, but do not discuss alternative theories and rely heavily on coincidence. They do not conisder that there were many other violent men in Glasgow in the 1960s who might have killed the three women in question.

As with other books by these authors, expect quite a bit of padding, on other serial killers, such as Sutcliffe and B;ack, police methods and forensics, as well as serial killers in question. If you don't know about these topics, this ionformation is ok, but for anyone else, it is not the best way of fillinmg pages.

What the authors do not do, in my opinion, is to provuide much information on killer or victims. There is no reference to police files of witness statements etc., which accrue during any police investigation. Possibly these are inaccessible due to data protection, but if so, attempts to see these can be made - and possibly turned down.But these important documents are not even alluded to.

Not a bad book, but not the final word.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bible John ?, 10 July 2010
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
Being a native of Glasgow and living four miles from Tobin's murder of Angelika Kluk i was already familiar with most details through the scottish media so i bought this book mostly to brouse through and pass the time on a train journey to london. Thinking it would be another trashy cash in, ten minutes in to it and i was in that wee place a good book takes you to where you become oblivious to all around you, much to the annoyance of partners. From the Barrowlands to Brighton, Bathgate, Margate and back to Glasgow this psychopathic charmer raped and murdered young women with impunity whenever the chance arose. It covers all aspects of a modern murder invstigation, dna, profiling and new fingerprinting techniques but keeps a strong connection with the sixties link to Bible John, has this man murdered in five decades ?
I thoroughly recommend this book, even if you don't get the Bible John link it's so well written and researched that any true crime buff would be crazy to miss it.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All roads lead to...., 30 Sep 2010
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D. Procter (Keighley) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
This book is well written and meticulously researched. Tobin is clearly a vile and revolting man and is finally where he belongs. Is he Bible John? I think one of the most interesting comments in the book comes at the end in the Guide to further reading. Douglas Skelton, in his book Glasgow's Black Heart: A City's Life of Crime, says there is a danger that we might elevate an insignificant little pervert into the answer to a great mystery. As in the cases of the Black Panther and the Yorkshire Ripper the bestowing of a nickname creates a glamorous image far removed from the banal reality of the people behind them. Although Jeannie Williams' description of the man her sister went off with bears no resemblance to Peter Tobin she was, by her own admission, befuddled with drink. So far as the bouncers and manager at the Barrowland Ballroom are concerned they met the man on a busy Saturday night, they would have been preoccupied and tired and not taking much notice of his appearance. The same would apply to the taxi driver. The plain fact is people remain who they are and don't suddenly gain powers of clarity and reliability just because they are bit part players in a notorious incident. Tobin's age at the time of the Bible John offences was twenty two but he dressed and acted older and more soberly than other people of his age and would probably not have had a problem getting into the Barrowland on a hectic Saturday night. I think Peter Tobin is as good a candidate as there has been for the Bible John murders - he is, after all, a proven murderer which is more than some of the other candidates have been shown to be - and if that destroys a good mystery so be it. The three women brutally murdered were real people with lives, hopes, dreams and loved ones not simply victims of a folklore character with a nickname.
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4.0 out of 5 stars True story of serial killer still alive and now living in a prison in Edinburgh, 28 Jun 2014
This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
I have just finished reading this book about Peter Tobin, who I knew nothing about until I found this book. I decided to read it as I am interested to know how these serial killers manage to get away with what they do for so long and how come the police don't catch them more quickly. I lived in Yorkshire at the time of the Yorkshire Ripper and could never understanding why Peter Sutcliffe wasn't caught sooner.
This book goes some way to answering my questions as Tobin was a so called "commuter killer" moving from one part of the country to another. I can understand why others have said the book is disjointed but this appears to be a reflection of the nature of Tobin's activity as it would have been difficult to write the book chronologically as he was not convicted for two of the murders in the early 1990's until after the murder of Angelika Kluk in 2006 which took place at opposite ends of the country as he "commuted" between Scotland and the South Coast.
In terms of the details of the murders I found what he did to be absolutely disgusting and horrific and as a woman very frightening. I could physically feel the pain that he caused and the description of what he did to his first wife was horrible.
The thesis that he was also the murderer Bible John I would agree with and intuitively it seems to fit that he did perform those and possibly more murders. However I was not convinced about the Norfolk murders although he could have done those as well and some of the assertions in the book did seem to go a step too far.
Overall this is a good and compelling read for anyone interested in true crime, in policing in the UK and even social history - as a music fan I have heard of the Barrowland Ballroom in Glasgow as hosting gigs but knew nothing of these "over 25's" nights that took place in the 1960's or even of "Bible John".
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 22 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Lost British Serial Killer (Paperback)
If you like this kind of reading then this is one for you. I found this book fascinating. Great Great
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The Lost British Serial Killer by Prof) David Wilson (Paperback - 1 July 2010)
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