Killing for Company: The Story of a Man Addicted to Murder

Brian Masters, Author Random House (NY) $24 (324p) ISBN 978-0-679-42425-3
Dennis Nilsen was arrested in February 1983 after the plumbing in his suburban London apartment was found to be clogged with body parts. ``Are we talking about one body or two,'' a detective asked. Nilsen, a 35-year-old civil servant, replied: ``Fifteen or sixteen, since 1978. I'll tell you everything.'' Besides confessing to the police, Nilsen wrote extensively to Masters from prison and offered him his journals. Using these sources and his considerable journalistic skill, the author ( Moliere ) fashions a stunning account of the largest mass murderer in British history. Nilsen is depicted as a lonely, articulate man who met men in pubs and cafes, invited them to his flat for drinks and killed them, fearing that they would leave the next day. Nilsen's trial was brief and expert testimony cast little light on the grisly events (Nilsen dismembered his victims, stuffying body parts under floorboards or boiling off flesh in a soup pot). Noting that the plea of insanity was not accepted either for Nilsen or for Jeffrey Dahmer, who was convicted of similar acts in the U.S. in 1992, Masters suggests that the current legal definitions of insanity need reworking. Photos not seen by PW. True Crime Book Club selection. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/04/1993
Release date: 10/01/1993
Genre: Nonfiction
Hardcover - 978-0-517-16439-6
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-8128-8340-4
Mass Market Paperbound - 400 pages - 978-0-440-22043-5
Open Ebook - 352 pages - 978-1-4464-2873-3
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-1-78475-942-1
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