The Last Victim: A True-Life Journey into the Mind of the Serial Killer

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9780446608275: The Last Victim: A True-Life Journey into the Mind of the Serial Killer

DEAR MR. MANSON...

It started with a college course assignment, then escalated into a dangerous obsession. Eighteen-year-old honor student Jason Moss wrote to men whose body counts had made criminal history: men named Dahmer, Manson, Ramirez, and Gacy.

DEAR MR. DAHMER...

Posing as their ideal victim, Jason seduced them with his words. One by one they wrote him back, showering him with their madness and violent fantasies. Then the game spun out of control. John Wayne Gacy revealed all to Jason -- and invited his pen pal to visit him in prison...

DEAR MR. GACY...

It was an offer Jason couldn't turn down. Even if it made him...

The book that has riveted the attention of the national media, this may be the most revealing look at serial killers ever recorded and the most illuminating study of the dark places of the human mind ever attempted.

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Review:

Jason Moss was a very strange boy: an overachiever, always looking for some challenge, some new way to excel. In his studies, in sports, and, for some reason that he can never explain comprehensibly, seducing serial killers into telling him their secrets. His first "project" was John Wayne Gacy. Moss sent carefully crafted letters to Gacy in which he portrayed himself as a young, naive, insecure gay man who could be easily manipulated. Gacy was suspicious and put Moss through harrowing emotional tests before surrendering his trust, but Moss came out ahead. Gacy fell head over heels for Moss, replying with graphic and disturbing letters instructing him to commit depraved acts for Gacy's vicarious thrills. Moss led him on, convincing Gacy that he was doing these things, but somehow this victory wasn't sufficient. So he extended his efforts to include other jailed killers. Although he experienced some success, amassing a disturbing collection of documents--including detailed sexual prose from Jeffrey Dahmer, disjointed ramblings from Charles Manson, and awkward, violent illustrations from "Night Stalker" Richard Ramirez--his closest relationship was always with Gacy, whom he eventually visited in prison, where even the unflappable Moss learned fear.

The Last Victim challenges the reader to understand not only the twisted psychology of serial killers who kill for pleasure but why and how a young, seemingly bright and healthy young man such as Jason Moss could create such elaborate schemes to ingratiate himself with them. Moss puts his own safety and well-being on the line time and time again, simply to gain these men's trust, to coerce from them some understanding of what makes them do the things they do. And the book gives readers the opportunity to gain this insight without providing serial killers their home addresses--not a bad deal, overall. --Lisa Higgins

From Kirkus Reviews:

A bizarre first-person account of a young man's nearly disastrous obsession with serial killers. As a freshman at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas, Moss, who dreamed of a career in law enforcement, conceived the idea of writing to serial killers on death row, hoping to gain their trust and discover what made them tick. His most extensive contact was with John Wayne Gacy, who had raped and murdered 33 teenage boys. He also corresponded with Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, Richard Ramirez (a.k.a. the Night Stalker), and other killers whom he admired for their nerve. To gain Gacy's attentiondeath-row inmates of Gacy's notoriety are besieged by would-be correspondentsMoss posed as a sexually confused and highly impressionable boy, matching himself to the profile of Gacy's victims. When this ploy worked, Moss felt that he had psyched out the killer and assumed that he would be able to manipulate and control him. Soon, however, Moss found himself identifying with, even sympathizing with Gacy, who began telephoning him regularly. When Gacy invited him for an expense-paid visit, Moss discovered that the guards behaved more like servants and left him alone and unobserved in the same room with the convicted murderer. Though aging and handcuffed, Gacy was able to break Moss down and turn him into the confused and compliant young man he had been pretending to be, demonstrating for him not only how a predator operates but how a potential victim feels. Fortunately, Moss, who could easily have become Gacy's last victim, escaped with only his ego bruised. A prologue and afterword by psychologist Kottler comment on both Moss's behavior and society's propensity for glorifying violence and turning serial killers into celebrities. An engrossing and gut-wrenching read. (20 b&w photos) -- Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Book Description Little, Brown Company, United States, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. DEAR MR. MANSON. It started with a college course assignment, then escalated into a dangerous obsession. Eighteen-year-old honor student Jason Moss wrote to men whose body counts had made criminal history: men named Dahmer, Manson, Ramirez, and Gacy. DEAR MR. DAHMER. Posing as their ideal victim, Jason seduced them with his words. One by one they wrote him back, showering him with their madness and violent fantasies. Then the game spun out of control. John Wayne Gacy revealed all to Jason -- and invited his pen pal to visit him in prison. DEAR MR. GACY. It was an offer Jason couldn t turn down. Even if it made him. The book that has riveted the attention of the national media, this may be the most revealing look at serial killers ever recorded and the most illuminating study of the dark places of the human mind ever attempted. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780446608275

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Book Description Little, Brown Company, United States, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.DEAR MR. MANSON. It started with a college course assignment, then escalated into a dangerous obsession. Eighteen-year-old honor student Jason Moss wrote to men whose body counts had made criminal history: men named Dahmer, Manson, Ramirez, and Gacy. DEAR MR. DAHMER. Posing as their ideal victim, Jason seduced them with his words. One by one they wrote him back, showering him with their madness and violent fantasies. Then the game spun out of control. John Wayne Gacy revealed all to Jason -- and invited his pen pal to visit him in prison. DEAR MR. GACY. It was an offer Jason couldn t turn down. Even if it made him. The book that has riveted the attention of the national media, this may be the most revealing look at serial killers ever recorded and the most illuminating study of the dark places of the human mind ever attempted. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780446608275

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Book Description Vision. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Mass Market Paperback. 320 pages. Dimensions: 6.7in. x 4.1in. x 1.1in.DEAR MR. MANSON. . . It started with a college course assignment, then escalated into a dangerous obsession. Eighteen-year-old honor student Jason Moss wrote to men whose body counts had made criminal history: men named Dahmer, Manson, Ramirez, and Gacy. DEAR MR. DAHMER. . . Posing as their ideal victim, Jason seduced them with his words. One by one they wrote him back, showering him with their madness and violent fantasies. Then the game spun out of control. John Wayne Gacy revealed all to Jason -- and invited his pen pal to visit him in prison. . . DEAR MR. GACY. . . It was an offer Jason couldnt turn down. Even if it made him. . . The book that has riveted the attention of the national media, this may be the most revealing look at serial killers ever recorded and the most illuminating study of the dark places of the human mind ever attempted. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Mass Market Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9780446608275

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