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  • Zodiac
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am 25. August 1999
A great read; very, very, engrossing. Along with The Black Dahlia, The Lindbergh Baby, and the JFK assassination cases, the Zodiac killings represent the most intriguing, baffling set of questions ever posed in the annals of American crime.
As morbid and as bizarre as The Dahlia killing was, it can't hold a candle to the sheer weirdness of all the evidence and twists and turns of the Zodiac killings. This book kept me awake for a few nights--because the crimes seemed so damn random. Graysmith is a good writer, if not great. But he puts everything he had into the story, so readers are hooked from page one.
One of the most incredible angles revealed in the book is how many single women were actually hitch-hiking in and around Santa Rosa, California AFTER several several people had already been murdered -- many probable Zodiac victims.
Please read this book and give it to 3 friends. It will keep you filled with stimulating conversation for weeks.
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am 26. August 1997
After reading an article in the New york Times Book Review with a brief mention of the Zodiac killings in San Francisco, I decided to pick up a used copy at one of San Francisco's numerous book shops. As a San Francisco resident I was intrigued by the locale of the murders as well as the fact that no one was ever charged with the crimes. What absolutely stunned me to silence however, was learning that one of the murders occurred on the corner of Washington and Cherry streets, a spot I pass by everyday going home to my apartment on Washington St. just a few blocks away. The reason I am writing this review is because for as long as I have lived at my present address I have noticed an unusual but frequent visitor to the same street corner. I first noticed this man late one night coming home from my friend's house in the Marina. I would ride my bike through the Presidio and exit on Arguello St. making a left onto Washington and then continue on a few short blocks home. This man was just standing on the corner. I wouln't have even remembered him but on several trips home usually very late around 1:00 or 2:00 am, I would see the same man on the same spot just standing there. What was most striking about him was that he was between 60 and 70 years of age. What is a man his age doing there at this time of night? After reading Robert Graysmith's book, I had a chilling thought. What if this man was the Zodiac coming back to the scene of the murder to relieve it. He would be around the same age presently. I have not seen this man since I read the book, but you can imagine the fright I'm feeling. I am very nervous when passing that corner now. I get chills in the evening when walking home. I realize most likely that he probably is not the Zodiac but I can not figure a good explanation for this man's frequent appearance there. Could he be a man fascinated by the killings? Whatever the case may be it is quite unusual and definitely disturbing
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am 17. Februar 1997
I was only a child when the Zodiac killings occurred. I saw just a brief mention about the book on a talk show several years ago. Being in law enforcement, it intrigued me, so I read the book. I couldn't put it down. How could this have happened without Zodiac being caught? How could Zodiac be so clever (or just so lucky)? After finishing the true crime thriller, I had to know more. I had to know just how accurate author Robert Graysmith was with this terrifying novel. Was he just guessing? Was it just HIS opinion? As an investigator myself, I had to learn for myself. What I found, still scares me to this day.
The book leaves the reader to determine whom THEY think the Zodiac was, based on the information the author provided. I spend months re-tracking the suspect(s) information provided in the book. I've been to just about every site the book mentions. I've interviewed police officers from the SFPD and the Vallejo PD. I spoke face-to-face with a then current SFPD evidence criminologist about the evidence. I listened to confidential telephone conversations of the SFPD discussing the case. I did it all.
At the end of my very lengthy independent investigation, I now know who Zodiac was. I have his close-up facial photograph. I had a sketch artist put horned-rimmed glasses on the photo and age he was supposed to be during his murderous spree. They matched the composite drawings in the book. The matched like a glove. I've been to the Zodiac's house. I've SEEN the basement where he undoubtedly wrote his taunting letters to the police and the newspapers. I spoke with his neighbors. I saw the car that he most likely used in his crimes (the white one with a large windshield that no one could seem to put a name to).It's registered to who I now know IS without a shadow of a doubt, the true killer.
Some of the businesses listed in the book are now gone. I learned through speaking directly to the property owners what had been there previously. It all matched. I'd say that 99% of the statistical information written is accurate, except for a couple of new renamed streets. Author Robert Graysmith spent years on collecting the true evidence and facts in this case. If the Zodiac were up to his "thing" in today's technology, he would have been caught. Unfortunately, the reader must understand that this was the 1960's/1970's, and the police technology wasn't one-tenth of what it is today. I took tons of photos and spoke with many people. This is the most factual book about a still "unknown" killer to the public I've ever read. I'm absolutely astonished that there hasn't been a movie based on the book. Brian Denehy would made the most believable Zodiac.
I'm not at liberty at this time to divulge the Zodiac by name, however, Graysmith and maybe a handful of others know. I wish to God there were a SECOND Zodiac book by Graysmith, giving up the Zodiac's true identity, however, for some reason, there hasn't been...and probably for a good reason.
I highly recommend this book for anyone who is interested in true crime. It'll blow you away, and leave you wanting more, such as in my case. It's terrifying, but true. Do yourself a favor and pick-up this gem!
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am 21. Dezember 1998
This is *not* the Zodiac speaking...
Robert Graysmith, previously a rather little-known journalist, decided to have his five minutes by showing all the details of the never-solved case of the elusive Zodiac killer of California. Graysmith does a good job presenting the terrifying true story, and even though he misses some points, that part of the book is an interesting read to a true-crime junkie. Unfortunately, Graysmith also tries his strength at tracking the Zodiac. Since he is far from being Sherlock Holmes, he concentrates on Detective Dave Toschi's suspect Arthur Leigh Allen, whom he hides under the name of Robert Hall Starr. It is in fact quite funny to watch Graysmith try - and fail - to show Allen (ruled out as a suspect long ago, and for good reasons) as the Zodiac. A few of Graysmith's ideas on why he thinks Allen to be the Zodiac, such as the handwriting-forgery device, are truly amusing. Unfortunately for Graysmith, they were not meant to be.
Since the book was published, Graysmith has learned a lot information from the readers, and - being always prepared to milk the old cash cow - he is preparing a new book on the same subject. Will it be even worse?
That was *not* the Zodiac speaking.
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am 28. August 1999
In a time span of 1968 and into the late 1970s, the San Francisco Bay area was haunted by a hooded psychopath calling himself Zodiac. Claiming six in his murderous trek, the real count could be Zodiac's claimed thirty-seven. Or it could be fifty.
They never caught the Zodiac.
Bob Graysmith writes a true crime horror story that is intriguing and frightening since the guy got away. In this book, you will read the complete text of the killer's letters, hundreds of little known facts, and Graysmith's theory of who the Zodiac is. This is a must read for any true crime buff; it is meticulously detailed and I have been unable to put it down.
P.S. The 1971 film DIRTY HARRY with Clint Eastwood molded this story to film: a hooded killer terrorizing the city sends bizarre letters filled with demands. It's not exact, but it's still close. It does have an ending I wished for reality: The Killer gets blasted away by Clint's gun.
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am 23. Oktober 1999
Reading this book on Holiday in the San Francisco bay area, I have to admit I did not feel comfortable anymore. I started in the evening, I could not put it down. Goosebumps all-over, every creaking sound magnified...scary!
The way Mr. Graysmith approached the subject, trying to gain some insight in the timeline of the killings, and the hardwork (if unsuccesfull) put in by the various police departments was highly interesting.
The scary part is that the Zoadiac is possibly still out there, all though an older man. Don't forget that most serial killers start in their twenties! Assuming that 1963 were his first 'kills' (not mentioned in the book), and having an average age of 25, that makes him 64!
Where has he been? Where is he now? This book is a definite must read. I can't wait for Zodiac Unmasked!
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am 22. März 2000
I read this book almost 11 years ago and I can still remember almost all of the events that happened. The Zodiac has to be one of the most cunning and elusive serial killers since Jack the Ripper. They both (Zodiac and Jack) have the destinction of never being caught. The author of the book does a fantastic job of telling the tale with chilling clarity that is not often found in true crime tales anymore. The background of the events from 1966 (when the Zodiac first started killing) up to the late 1960's/early 1970's puts the reader almost into the investigators shoes of trying to catch this elusive and very intelligent killer. This is a definite MUST read to any fan of true crime or mystery readers. Kudo's to the author.
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am 20. Mai 1999
We have reached the point where true-crime books are so common, the writing of them so inadequate, that the entire genre is plunging downhill, at breakneck speed. So, for readers newly-hooked on this arena, Robert Graysmith's "Zodiac" will be the masterpiece they will forever compare new books with. This story has all the essential elements of a gripping, impossible-to-put-down book: intimate knowledge of the crimes, a wealth of interesting dialogue from those who were most affected by Zodiac, forensic and scientific data that does not read like a calculus text, and, most important of all: the story is true!
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am 23. März 1999
This book opened my eyes. Before reading this, I was just a small town kid who had no idea things like this happened. Not to mention in the late 60's. Graysmith is a master at weaving the tale of a mysterious being who calls himself the Zodiac. The vivid descriptions and attention to detail he derives through his interviews with those involved in the case still haunt me at least once a week in my sleep. Graysmith is the king of true crime in my book and a master at non-fiction in general. He puts you there, and I suggest all of his books and I'm eagerly awaiting The Bell Tower.
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am 14. Juli 2000
This was the first book I ever read in the true crime genre. After a few, I realised it was a good class act to start with. This book was not a guide book for future serial killers like so many newer ones are, and has respect for the victims and family. This book sets out to find out who the Zodiac killer is, and after his death, it was revealed the person GraySmith pointed his finger at was indeed the killer. I don't know if it has been updated in the book since then, my version was older. I loved the detective work that went with the story.
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