This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.
I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Chase Darkness with Me: How One True-Crime Writer Started Solving Murders by Billy Jensen
Published by Sourcebooks on August 13, 2019
Genres: True Crime, Memoir
Buy on Amazon
Have you ever wanted to solve a murder? Gather the clues the police overlooked? Put together the pieces? Identify the suspect?
Journalist Billy Jensen spent fifteen years investigating unsolved murders, fighting for the families of victims. Every story he wrote had one thing in common―they didn't have an ending. The killer was still out there.
But after the sudden death of a friend, crime writer and author of I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara, Billy became fed up. Following a dark night, he came up with a plan. A plan to investigate past the point when the cops had given up. A plan to solve the murders himself.
You'll ride shotgun as Billy identifies the Halloween Mask Murderer, finds a missing girl in the California Redwoods, and investigates the only other murder in New York City on 9/11. You'll hear intimate details of the hunts for two of the most terrifying serial killers in history: his friend Michelle McNamara's pursuit of the Golden State Killer and his own quest to find the murderer of the Allenstown Four. And Billy gives you the tools―and the rules―to help solve murders yourself.
Gripping, complex, unforgettable, Chase Darkness with Me is an examination of the evil forces that walk among us, illustrating a novel way to catch those killers, and a true-crime narrative unlike any you've read before.
I can’t even begin to list the things I loved about Chase Darkness With Me … there are so many!
First of all, one thing I have to give Billy Jensen mad respect for is that his investigative drive is fuelled by the search for justice and empathy for victims and their families. While much of true crime can border on exploitative gory details for attention, Jensen’s desire to advocate and give voice to victims is noteworthy. His dedication to bringing answers to surviving family members makes him stand out as an example of how more investigators should operate.
I found it interesting to learn about how Jensen worked his way through journalism and reporting and how his entry into investigations began. He used his skills in writing and marketing to leverage social media and crowd-sourcing in order to narrow in on his target, positioning himself as a sleuth of the modern-day. With the backlog of unsolved cases, his skills are certainly needed!
In Chase Darkness With Me, Jensen does include a section outlining some tips, and most importantly, some rules about how you can get involved in investigative work. Thankfully he includes a caution to tread carefully if you do become involved because you want to help, not hinder an investigation. It would be best to check with law enforcement in charge before diving into anything.
Billy’s writing makes me feel as though I’m right there with him and I loved every minute of it. The mix of personal stories, true crime reporting, and little Paul Holes bromance. I don’t blame him, I’m #HotForHoles too! Speaking of this dynamic duo, they are now podcasting! If podcasts are your thing, check them out on Jensen & Holes: The Murder Squad.
Love podcasts? Check out my 10 favourite Bookish Podcasts!
I also have to mention his friendship with author Michelle McNamara and how instrumental she was in his journey. The two shared a kinship and love for the hunt that brought them together and inspired them to keep digging. Her passing affected Jensen in many ways and his admiration for her and her work shows through in his words about her. Although she passed before seeing the object of her search in handcuffs, Jensen and McNamara’s husband Patton Oswalt made sure that her work was completed with the publication of her book I’ll Be Gone In The Dark.
I already know that I will be buying a physical copy once it hits the shelves because it’s one that I want in my collection. I’ll nestle it right next to I’ll Be Gone In The Dark and Stay Sexy Don’t Get Murdered!
Thanks to NetGalley for the review copy and the opportunity to indulge in my true crime obsession!