Sunday, July 29, 2012

Thirty Days of Graphic Novels, Day Eight: "Green River Killer: A True Detective Story"

I don't read much true crime, mainly because there's an ugly aspect of humanity I prefer not to engage with.  I do like a good mystery though, so once in a while I'll read something like Green River Killer: A True Detective Story.  This account of the decades-long hunt for the serial killer responsible for the murder of at least 48 women is told from the point of view of the lead detective on the case.  Interestingly, it's written by the detective's son.  The artwork works quite well, but the narrative style chosen serves to leech much of the drama from the story.  It's told in the increasingly-fashionable method of jumping back and forth frequently from the past to the present and everywhere in between.  There are certain stories this can really work for, but I think most of the time, especially in true crime stories and mystery fiction, the traditional chronological method works best: we want to see how the bodies were discovered, how the clues were assembled, how the murderer was caught, etc. in order.  Overall, this was a mediocre read, and the killer very much personifies Arendt's phrase "the banality of evil."

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