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Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery de…
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Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery (2013 original; edició 2013)

de Robert Kolker (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
8213626,601 (3.72)43
Family & Relationships. Sociology. True Crime. Nonfiction. HTML:

New York Times Bestseller ? Now a Netflix Film

"Rich, tragic...monumental . . . true-crime reporting at its best."??Washington Post

The bestselling account of the lives of five young women whose fates converged in the perplexing case of the Long Island Serial Killer. Now updated, with a new epilogue by the author.

One late spring evening in 2010, Shannan Gilbert??after running through the oceanfront community of Oak Beach screaming for her life??went missing. No one who had heard of her disappearance thought much about what had happened to the twenty-four-year-old: she was a Craigslist escort who had been fleeing a scene??of what, no one could be sure. The Suffolk County police, too, seemed to have paid little attention??until seven months later, when an unexpected discovery in a bramble alongside a nearby highway turned up four bodies, all evenly spaced, all wrapped in burlap. But none of them Shannan's.

There was Maureen Brainard-Barnes, last seen at Penn Station in Manhattan three years earlier, and Melissa Barthelemy, last seen in the Bronx in 2009. There was Megan Waterman, last seen leaving a hotel in Hauppauge, Long Island, just a month after Shannon's disappearance in 2010, and Amber Lynn Costello, last seen leaving a house in West Babylon a few months later that same year. Like Shannan, all four women were petite, in their twenties, and had come from out of town to work as escorts, and they all had advertised on Craigslist and its competitor, Backpage.

Lost Girls is a portrait of unsolved murders in an idyllic part of America, of the underside of the Internet, and of the secrets we keep without admitting to ourselves that we keep them. Long considered "one of the best true-crime books of all time" (Time), this edition includes a new epilogue that speaks to developments in the case, including the shocking fate of Mari Gilbert, Shannan's mother, for whom this case became the crusade o… (més)

Membre:mackerdoodledoo
Títol:Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery
Autors:Robert Kolker (Autor)
Informació:Harper (2013), 416 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:to-read

Informació de l'obra

Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery de Robert Kolker (2013)

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I've mostly missed the ongoing true crime boom, but I suspect that "Lost Girls" is probably not the sort of book that's going to give fans the sort of payoff that they're looking for. As it stands, the book is out of date: not only have these girls' killer been arrested but Backpage and Craigslist have more or less ceased to exist, as far as working escorts are concerned. Kolker doesn't much focus on the forensic aspects of the case; indeed, he seems to have relatively few contacts inside Long Island police departments. This means that "Lost Girls" isn't so much a book about an unsolved case but about the difficult sets of circumstances that led these four girls to end up on this rather tony section of Long Island's wetlands and about the emotional pain they left behind when their families realized that they were gone forever. While I agree with several reviewers that it's sometimes difficult to keep all four of these stories' separate, the author is good at describing what drew them to the sex trade: easy money, convenience, involvement with drugs, and an economy that's been in long-term decline for generations. Kolker makes clear that all of the girls left an impression -- none of them could be said to be shy and retiring -- and that they had talents that, under some other circumstances, they might have put to better use. That gives the book a palpable sense of loss, and one that only augments the more personal loss that's felt by the families, with whom the author seems to have built real relationships. He describes both how their immediate family members try to keep their memories alive and how they try to keep their lost relatives in the public eye as the public's preoccupation with this mystery waxes and wanes. The book's saddest sections might be those in which the lost girls' own family members realize that, despite their best efforts, they can't remember absolutely everything about them anymore. No memory really stands eternally.

"Lost Girls" is also very much a story about technology, and it provides an invaluable look at the mechanics of how escorting worked in the first decade of the twenty-first century, after what might be called late Web 1.0 made sex workers and johns more available to each other. While I admit that I was surprised that any vestiges of the skin trade still operated in newly redeveloped Times Square, the author seems to communicate his own ambiguity as to whether these new technological innovations have made women working with their bodies safer or more independent. Still, he's very thorough about what sort of protection a pimp is supposed to provide, which calls are considered more or less risky, and how women on the streets check in with friends or family to help keep them out of harm's way. Kolker artfully shows that, for these girls, money that was comparatively easy to make and abundant came with alliances and compromises that were tough to escape and hopes, against all odds, that acceptance a commitment to transparency from all parties involved might keep events from the ones described in this book from happening. While the victims' families obviously did everything they could to keep their relatives' memories alive, his book, which later became a Netflix series, might be the best and most lasting monument to their shortened lives that we'll ever have. ( )
  TheAmpersand | Dec 22, 2023 |
A very interesting murder mystery, poorly told.

Lost Girls is a true crime book focusing on a serial killer who murdered prostitutes and dumped their remains in a small area of Long Island. This book could have been much better, but Kolker did a reasonable job of telling the stories of the victims. He definitely elaborates on how prostitution operates in today's Internet-based world, and the risks that these young women faced as they worked.

Ultimately, though, the story is unsatisfying. First, it was quite hard to follow because there are so many characters, and oddly, many, many names starting with the letter "M". Turns out there is a terrific guide to who is who. On the last page of the book. ARGGHHHHHHH! Are you kidding me? I was dying for some kind of family tree or something, and there it is. After I read the whole dang thing. Realize I am being extra sensitive since I just tried to read A Suitable Boy - - a book where the family trees must be referenced like every 6 pages - - so I'm a little family tree'd out, but now realize that lots of family trees are certainly better than no family trees. I almost started drawing them myself. Sigh. Ok, rant over.

I didn't think Kolker really did a very good job of helping the reader understand the criminal investigation, and that's what made this read a lot less than it could have been.

A much, much better book to read in a similar vein is People Who Eat Darkness by Richard Lloyd Perry. ( )
  Anita_Pomerantz | Mar 23, 2023 |
Once you're able to easily distinguish the narratives of the individual girls, whose soon-to-be-upended lives are unique except for their shared lower income background and their foray into the world of prostitution via the growing popularity of Craigslist, then the whole tragedy of Lost Girls comes into heartbreaking focus.

This is a story as old as time itself, but this difference this time is the medium is relatively new. These tragedies happened during a time when the perceived ease of getting paid for sex via online hookups was enticing for young women in difficult circumstances. It was also arguably just as easy for a sociopathic murderer to find his next victims using the same methods.

The book is better than the Netflix production, and the Netflix version is captivating. That's how good the book is. ( )
  Daniel.Estes | Nov 27, 2022 |
This audio book turned into background noise pretty quickly. I don't want to bely the tragedy of the deaths, but I had a difficult time keeping the five women's stories and families straight in my head. ( )
  Bodagirl | Mar 5, 2022 |
I saw "Lost Girls" on Netflix and was confused by its unresolved unending. Then I read the book.

If you are looking for a book where the good guys win, this book is not for you. That I know of, no one is searching for who killed these women. I hope that changes with the book and the Netflix movie. ( )
  nab6215 | Jan 18, 2022 |
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Family & Relationships. Sociology. True Crime. Nonfiction. HTML:

New York Times Bestseller ? Now a Netflix Film

"Rich, tragic...monumental . . . true-crime reporting at its best."??Washington Post

The bestselling account of the lives of five young women whose fates converged in the perplexing case of the Long Island Serial Killer. Now updated, with a new epilogue by the author.

One late spring evening in 2010, Shannan Gilbert??after running through the oceanfront community of Oak Beach screaming for her life??went missing. No one who had heard of her disappearance thought much about what had happened to the twenty-four-year-old: she was a Craigslist escort who had been fleeing a scene??of what, no one could be sure. The Suffolk County police, too, seemed to have paid little attention??until seven months later, when an unexpected discovery in a bramble alongside a nearby highway turned up four bodies, all evenly spaced, all wrapped in burlap. But none of them Shannan's.

There was Maureen Brainard-Barnes, last seen at Penn Station in Manhattan three years earlier, and Melissa Barthelemy, last seen in the Bronx in 2009. There was Megan Waterman, last seen leaving a hotel in Hauppauge, Long Island, just a month after Shannon's disappearance in 2010, and Amber Lynn Costello, last seen leaving a house in West Babylon a few months later that same year. Like Shannan, all four women were petite, in their twenties, and had come from out of town to work as escorts, and they all had advertised on Craigslist and its competitor, Backpage.

Lost Girls is a portrait of unsolved murders in an idyllic part of America, of the underside of the Internet, and of the secrets we keep without admitting to ourselves that we keep them. Long considered "one of the best true-crime books of all time" (Time), this edition includes a new epilogue that speaks to developments in the case, including the shocking fate of Mari Gilbert, Shannan's mother, for whom this case became the crusade o

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