Customer Reviews for

The Monster of Florence

Average Rating 4
( 254 )
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(87)

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(81)

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(58)

2 Star

(20)

1 Star

(8)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

True crime, well written

Douglas Preston is a great writer of mysteries and brings all his skills to this true story. Such great descriptions of the beauty of Italy and the people involved in this fiasco. A serial killer on the loose and the Italian police go in so many directions that it's cra...
Douglas Preston is a great writer of mysteries and brings all his skills to this true story. Such great descriptions of the beauty of Italy and the people involved in this fiasco. A serial killer on the loose and the Italian police go in so many directions that it's crazy. And some of those directions will surprise you. Sure makes you wonder about the Amanda Knox case.....and that is even brought up at the end of the book. I think this a great read.

posted by TomT4828 on April 21, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

Not recommended

I was excited to read this book, thinking it would be a gorgeous portrait of Italy as well as a murder mystery. Unfortunately, I found the writing stilted and the plot uneven, and I left with little understanding of the real Italy. Very disappointed.

posted by 2779376 on October 8, 2010

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 87 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted April 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    True crime, well written

    Douglas Preston is a great writer of mysteries and brings all his skills to this true story. Such great descriptions of the beauty of Italy and the people involved in this fiasco. A serial killer on the loose and the Italian police go in so many directions that it's crazy. And some of those directions will surprise you. Sure makes you wonder about the Amanda Knox case.....and that is even brought up at the end of the book. I think this a great read.

    11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 6, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Had to get this book

    I saw someone reading this book for two days poolside on vacation and she could not put it down. After she finished it on the second day, I asked her about it and she recommeded it. I had seen the cover and assumed that it was a novel. The is the most amazing non-fiction book I have read in a long time. The story starts out with elements that bring to mind the David Berkowitz case of the 70's. This serial killer
    strikes in the Tuscan countryside, so the setting is beautiful, contrasted with the violence of the crimes. The story is spellbinding.
    There are so many twists and turns and the fact that both authors become involved with the investigation, adds to the intrigue. I think the authors have done an incredible job both researching and writing this book. I will be recommending it to everyone. One look at the cover also intrigues you. I think the cover is probably what hooked me
    originally as I watched someone devour the book in two days.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 16, 2010

    amazing!!

    INCREDIBLE BOOK!! ONE OF THE BEST IVE READ!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 4, 2010

    The Monster of Florence

    Great book! Hard to put down.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Worth the read!

    This was a great book. I didn't even know that there was a Monster of Florence. It was great fun to speculate who could have done it. I wish that I had the time and money to go and investigate it a bit myself!

    The book was well written and researched. Preston went to one of the greatest sources of the story and was right to include him; Spezi was awesome.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2014

    Thiller

    I really enjoyed this book and could not put it down it is based off a true story MUST READ

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  • Posted August 19, 2013

    A truly fantastic read! The culture and life of Italy only make

    A truly fantastic read! The culture and life of Italy only make this real story of the never-caught serial killer "stalking the Florentine hills." This case remains a mystery to this day, the killer never being brought to justice. The entire book was fascinating, from beginning to end! What a unique way to bring this infamous case to light in the US.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    Electrifying read!

    I always trust Douglas Preston for his fictional murder mysteries - so, it was not a big leap for me to try this book. I was not disappointed! Very intriguing story, especially with the insight into the Italian legal system and cultural differences. Definitely a good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2012

    Great read

    Fantastic!

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  • Posted July 3, 2011

    Excellent summer read

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2009

    Monster of Florence (CD)

    A truly gripping tale, made all the more horrific because it's a true story. Preston and Spezi recount an amazing series of events and become part of the tale themselves. It made a very long road trip fly by!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 4, 2009

    Spellbounding

    This is a true story. Once you get into this book, you will not be able to put it down. It's unbelievable that in this day & age that Italy can be unbelievably ignorate, completely incompetent and so incapeable of conducting investigations of any kind of crime, completely absent of any kind of intellegence. There is no rhyme or reason concerning their police tatics or intergation skills. It's really scary to think any citizen can go over to Italy, for whatever reason, be pulled into a crime scene investigation and then be accused of a crime they didn't commit. To top it off you are then 'threatened' with a long jail sentence if you didn't confess to whatever crime they are investigating. Really makes one not want to go over there at all. Read this book. You'll see what I mean. Again, once you start -- you will not want to put it down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2009

    Truth is better than Fiction!

    This true story is as amazing as any fictional thriller penned by Douglas Preston. If you enjoy reading Mr. Preston's novels, you will enjoy this real-life murder mystery.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 29, 2008

    Hard to put dowm

    I generally am not one to read books, especially complete one in a short period of time, but when my husband told me about this book I had to read it, and once I started I couldn't put it down

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2008

    repercussions of this book

    I absolutely loved this book. I do wonder however what the repercussions of this book will be. Will this be the catalyst for change? To maybe even finally say who the real monster of florence is? And for those who abused their power to get where they are, will they be called to accountability of their actions? Again I absolutely loved this book. It showed not only the horrors of the murders but also the horrors of peoples ambitions

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2008

    So gripping - the book wouldn't let me go!

    I began this morning and couldn't put it down until I was finished this evening. It read like an intense mystery and an informational history all combined. Both genres I love. I recommend it for everyone - make sure you have a full day you can devote to it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2008

    Mystery, History, The Scholarly Touch: Preston does it again!!!

    Preston has proved once again that he is the master when it comes to putting a scholarly spin on a bona fide goose pimple thriller. If you enjoy a good dose of history, forensic detail, top notch investigative reporting and satisfying prose, this read is for you. The subject of a string of unsolved murders spanning some twenty years in the city known as the birthplace of the Renaissance, coupled with the author's personal involvment had me hooked from the beginning. The characters are explored with the right amount of depth to make them interesting but not drag the story down. Preston gives insights into the differences between the Italian and the American justice systems and the cultural responses to crime. This is the total package for anyone who loves history, mystery, forensics and a good espresso!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2008

    Wonderful Book !

    I really enjoyed this book. It is a bit graphic at times but it has to be to tell the full story. The entire Italian criminal justice system sounds like they are all idiots or corrupt or both! Due to how the cases were handled, I don't believe we will ever know for 100% who is the real Monster!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2008

    One of the best books I've read this year

    What initially turned me off was 'crime thriller' description. However, this is not your average book of that genre. The plot is really great and pulls you through before you know what's happening. Fast moving but not trashy. Book is about a 'Jack the Ripper' type in Florence and newly moved to Florence Douglas Preston gets caught up in the crime wave, along with his family. It's all very 'Hannibal Lecter' in places but don't be put off--you won't be able to put it down.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    This is an incredible true crime book

    For over a decade, the killer murdered and mutilated fourteen people seven couples making out in parked cars. The police arrested several people, but none were permanently convicted. Though the case turned cold with the last homicides in 1985, renowned novelist Douglas J. Preston and Italian crime reporter Mario Spezi began an investigation to uncover the identity of THE MONSTER OF FLORENCE, which led to their being in trouble with local prosecutors.-------- This is an incredible true crime book that in some ways reads like an obsessed investigative novel. The book is chilling because it is real and not a fictional account. Set aside time as readers will be spellbound to learn whether the authors identified the serial killer.--------- Harriet Klausner

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