A Serial Killer's Daughter
What is it like to learn that your ordinary, loving father is a serial killer?  In 2005, Kerri Rawson heard a knock on the door of her apartment. When she opened it, an FBI agent informed her that her father had been arrested for murdering ten people, including two children. It was then that she learned her father was the notorious serial killer known as BTK, a name he’d given himself that described the horrific way he committed his crimes: bind, torture, kill. As news of his capture spread, Wichitacelebrated the end of a thirty-one-year nightmare. For Kerri Rawson, another was just beginning. She was plunged into a black hole of horror and disbelief. The same man who had been a loving father, a devoted husband, church president, Boy Scout leader, and a public servant had been using their family as a cover for his heinous crimes since before she was born. Everything she had believed about her life had been a lie.Written with candor and extraordinary courage, A Serial Killer’s Daughter is an unflinching exploration of life with one of America’s most infamous killers and an astonishing tale of personal and spiritual transformation. For all who suffer from unhealed wounds or the crippling effects of violence, betrayal, and anger, Kerri Rawson’s story offers the hope of reclaiming sanity in the midst of madness, rebuilding a life in the shadow of death, and learning to forgive the unforgivable.“No easy answers here. No platitudes. Only raw honesty, written with the gracious authority of one who has glimpsed hell. Kerri Rawson shares her earned wisdom and a hope that has been bought with tears and nightmares. This book is a gritty must-read in the library of hope.”—Paul J. Pastor, author of The Face of the Deep and The Listening Day

A Serial Killer's Daughter Details

TitleA Serial Killer's Daughter
Author
ReleaseJan 29th, 2019
PublisherThomas Nelson
ISBN-139781400201754
Rating
GenreCrime, True Crime, Nonfiction, Autobiography, Memoir, Biography Memoir

A Serial Killer's Daughter Review

  • Valerity (Val)
    January 1, 1970
    A Serial Killer’s Daughter: My Story of Faith, Love, and OvercomingI approached this book with my mind and feelings completely open and was really surprised how much I came away with from it. Kerri Rawson is fresh and likable as she tells her story of growing up in her family in Kansas. She describes it as just a totally normal, semi-dysfunctional family who works, goes to school, has vacations. Pretty typical family, it seems. She comes across very real as she shares her story and I find it lik A Serial Killer’s Daughter: My Story of Faith, Love, and OvercomingI approached this book with my mind and feelings completely open and was really surprised how much I came away with from it. Kerri Rawson is fresh and likable as she tells her story of growing up in her family in Kansas. She describes it as just a totally normal, semi-dysfunctional family who works, goes to school, has vacations. Pretty typical family, it seems. She comes across very real as she shares her story and I find it like reading something a friend could be relating about what a really awful period in their life was like. The situation is just so unimaginable, and I just felt horrible for Kerri and her family, and all of the families.It gets a little bit repetitive on a few things, the spiritual theme, and other items that come up repeatedly perhaps after a while, but if that helped her get through all of what she describes well, more power to her. What I didn’t expect were some of the stories of situations she ended up in growing up with her dad that turned harrowing that she shares. In hindsight, she, of course, sees them differently after she learns of his killing past. I found this book better than I expected and well laid out. I’m glad I purchased this very heartfelt book, as it told so much more than just the BTK aspect of the family. They became real people to me by the midst of the book, not just headlines, due to her writing.Also on my BookZone blog:https://wordpress.com/post/bookblog20...
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  • Rachel Smalter Hall
    January 1, 1970
    I've grown to love what memoirs can reveal about our shared humanity when the author is willing to dig deep. True crime, on the other hand, has always given me nightmares. Enter the true crime memoir. It turns out I love true crime memoirs! When super creepy, criminal acts are filtered through the very personal, introspective lens of a memoir, I can handle it. I can stop covering my eyes. I can peer a little more closely into the depths of humanity.Kerri Rawson's astonishingly candid book about I've grown to love what memoirs can reveal about our shared humanity when the author is willing to dig deep. True crime, on the other hand, has always given me nightmares. Enter the true crime memoir. It turns out I love true crime memoirs! When super creepy, criminal acts are filtered through the very personal, introspective lens of a memoir, I can handle it. I can stop covering my eyes. I can peer a little more closely into the depths of humanity.Kerri Rawson's astonishingly candid book about learning her beloved father had been leading a double life as a serial killer her entire life is the mother of all True Crime Memoirs. It touched me to my core. I'm all for the "complicated father-daughter-relationship" memoir, and it doesn't get any more complicated than "my dad is a serial killer." What I love about this book is how she fully explores the heart's confusion around knowing someone's a monster yet loving them anyway. She's so honest and pure in these moments, and her voice truly moved me.I also really appreciated the thread of dark humor that she weaves into her story. Being able to laugh at your pain is such a hallmark of surviving crime, trauma, and abuse, and Kerri Rawson has all that in spades. Even in the darkest moments of her story, she tosses out unexpected one liners that endeared me to her even more. She's funny, and it turns out she's also a very talented writer and storyteller.The first half of the book moves a bit slowly as she describes her family's life "pre-BTK," as in before anyone knew about her dad's double life. But this part of the story still has lots of payoff as it establishes the close relationship she had with her dad, as well as lays the foundations for her religious beliefs that would ultimately see her through her darkest hours. When she finally gets to "after-BTK" about halfway through the book, the story accelerates to lightning speeds, and I had to give myself a few little breaks only because it had gotten so intense.Even though the cover screams "true crime," I hope this memoir will find a wider readership, as I truly loved it and found it to be a deft and moving account of a life that most of us can hardly even begin to imagine.
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  • Sally Lackey
    January 1, 1970
    Read in a dayFor all we have been confronted with in the BTK story, this book was a glimpse into the personal devastation to Dennis Rader’s own family. Kerri weaves a story giving the reader the background of her growing up years with her father which allows us to truly understand the shock and trauma she has been through since the day of his arrest. I couldn’t lay this down.
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  • Luann Mailman
    January 1, 1970
    I've always wondered what families of serial killers go through. This was a well written, easy to read and fascinating trip through the author's life. I started reading on Monday night, and finished in less than 24 hours. Living in Wichita, and having read over the years about the murders made it even more interesting to me.
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  • Heather
    January 1, 1970
    While Barnes and Noble had this book under "True Crime" I feel it would be more aptly shelved in Christian Living or Christian Memoir. While Kerri does recount the traumatic events of discovering her father is BTK, she beautifully weaves her faith journey throughout - from walking away, to coming back, and ultimately God working through her to forgiveness.
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  • Caleb Hoyer
    January 1, 1970
    I had no idea this book existed until I came across it in the bookstore. I've been interested in this case for a long time, particularly the family aspect of it, and I'm really impressed that Kerri Rawson had the courage to write this book and share this story. The book itself is a mixed bag. I always appreciate when people who aren't writers by trade still write their books themselves. But the risk of that is that the writing is not of the highest quality, and that is the case here. There's als I had no idea this book existed until I came across it in the bookstore. I've been interested in this case for a long time, particularly the family aspect of it, and I'm really impressed that Kerri Rawson had the courage to write this book and share this story. The book itself is a mixed bag. I always appreciate when people who aren't writers by trade still write their books themselves. But the risk of that is that the writing is not of the highest quality, and that is the case here. There's also an entire section of the book devoted to a hiking trip that feels like it serves almost no purpose (although I believe it is where the author's faith in God was renewed, which seems like a bi of a stretch to me, but who am I to deny her experience?). Those caveats aside, though, the story itself is so fascinating that I raced through the book, and her writing, in its modesty, is extremely honest. There is more talk of god than I would like, but if that's what lead her to a state of relative stability and forgiveness then more power to her. It's a staggering situation to try to wrap your mind around, and she does put you in her shoes. I'm not sure how interesting this book would be to someone who wasn't already interested in this case, but for someone like me it was very gripping.
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  • FabulousRaye
    January 1, 1970
    It's okay. Kerri doesn't go into explicit details about her father's murders. It's not explotive or sensational.It is as advertised. Life with a serial killer for a father and the fallout when finding out what he is.I wasn't into the hour long section about a family camping trip, nor did I much care for all the god and religious parts.
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  • Karlee
    January 1, 1970
    I liked that this wasn’t really a true crime book, but a story of trauma and survival. It’s so rare to hear from the untold victims of a killer, the ones who were related to the killer. I did find the writing to be a little disconnected and certain parts to be a little preachy but all and all a great story from a voice you don’t normally hear! Thanks for the ARC Netgalley!
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  • Liz Laurin
    January 1, 1970
    Maybe I just built this up in my head but it just didn't meet my expectations. Having said that though, I don't feel.comfortable rating someone's life/memoir. Interesting insight, and Raders family is also definitely victims this, I am glad Kerri and her family were able to move on and get help.
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  • Bridget
    January 1, 1970
    I really wanted to LOVE this book, because I love memoirs and true crime most of nearly any genre... but I just didn’t love this book. There was too much born again Christian ideology in this book that felt just as alienating on the page as it does in life. However in Rawson’s defense, if there is ever a time to look to forms of fundamentalist faith for meaning I suppose it is when your dad is a serial killer and you’ve been traumatized to the point where you really need a close personal connect I really wanted to LOVE this book, because I love memoirs and true crime most of nearly any genre... but I just didn’t love this book. There was too much born again Christian ideology in this book that felt just as alienating on the page as it does in life. However in Rawson’s defense, if there is ever a time to look to forms of fundamentalist faith for meaning I suppose it is when your dad is a serial killer and you’ve been traumatized to the point where you really need a close personal connection to anything good whatsoever.
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  • joy yoder
    January 1, 1970
    Great readI read this book in one day. it was well written and I was amazed that this woman opened her soul to us. I was reminded that the only behaviour and choices we are responsible for are out own, but people in our lives are victims too. I admire Kerrie honesty and pray that she and her family will continue to be happy.
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  • Jill Crosby
    January 1, 1970
    Gutsy and honest, and remarkably well-done by a first-time author.
  • Jennifer
    January 1, 1970
    Just one long poor me self-serving pity party.
  • I'd Rather Be Reading
    January 1, 1970
    3.75
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