The Most Dangerous Animal of All: Searching for My Father%E2%80%A6And Finding The Zodiac Killer

Gary L. Stewart with Susan Mustafa. Harper, $26.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-06-231316-4
When an author purports to have uncovered the truth about a notorious unsolved series of murders, let alone that the killer was his own father, it's vital to establish credibility from the outset; unfortunately, Stewart's concession that the narrative "of [his] father's early life" is fictionalized gets things started badly. The unreliability of those sections is a significant drawback that engenders skepticism long before Stewart presents any evidence to support his claim that his biological father, who abandoned him as an infant, was responsible for the murders that terrorized San Francisco in the 1960s. And that evidence is far less impressive than Stewart believes—a resemblance between a wanted poster's image and a picture of his father, a tortured interpretation of a coded message, some ambiguous partial fingerprint, and handwriting evidence. The motive for the crimes-ostensibly the enactment of revenge fantasies on young women resembling Stewart's mother—is also unconvincing, as the author fails to even address the killing of a cabbie that could not have been so motivated. The kicker is the decision to publish before DNA test results are available that could significantly strengthen or weaken the theory. (May)
Reviewed on: 06/02/2014
Release date: 05/01/2014
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-00-757980-8
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-233192-2
Compact Disc - 978-1-4830-0437-2
Compact Disc - 978-1-4830-0438-9
Paperback - 384 pages - 978-0-06-231317-1
Ebook - 384 pages - 978-0-06-231318-8
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Audio book sample courtesy of HarperAudio
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