Dismembered by Susan D. Mustafa and Sue Israel (July 2011)

2/3 Great Earns 4/5 Stars
Review by Kim Cantrell

Sean Vincent Gillis seemed to be just the average boy next door. To most, anyway. Some neighbors would later say that something was always a little strange about him.

Sean had been born and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and continued to live there, in his mother’s home, even after Yvonne took a job and moved to Atlanta, Georgia.

And that’s when trouble begin.

It began with the elderly Ann Bryan being killed in her assisted living apartment. Next, Hardee Moseley Schmidt was murdered while jogging around her affluent neighborhood.

Suddenly prostitutes in Baton Rouge’s seedy areas were disappearing at an alarming rate. And, even more terrifying, women were being attacked, raped and murdered in the safety of their own homes.

Police soon came to realize that they had not only one serial killer in Baton Rouge, but three!

Fortunately, the hunt for one killer came to a halt with the arrest of Derrick Lee Todd but police were still racing against the clock to catch the others.

All the while, Sean Gillis watched the news reports, laughed to himself, and boldly carried on.

Eventually his arrogance and sloppiness would catch up with him and Sean would find himself face to face with the investigators at whom he had laughed.

And what he had to tell police would shock, disgust and downright appall even the most seasoned of homicide detectives!

Susan D. Mustafa and Sue Israel provided the scoop on Derrick Todd in their 2009 true crime Blood Bath, now they bring us the story of Sean Gillis with their newest book (released yesterday) appropriately and simply titled Dismembered.

Louisiana made national headlines when Katrina blew in, but the worst storms were brewing long before the deadly hurricane was born in the Gulf.

This book is extremely detailed, even making my stomach turn at times. For two-thirds of the book, I waived between being unable to wanting to retch but being unable to put the book down, then after the arrest it just flopped.

At this point, Dismembered became mostly repetitious. Now, in all fairness, the authors did toss in some diction about how Sean’s girlfriend was managing, his correspondence with the girlfriend’s new live in boyfriend, his parent’s coping strategies, and his new found religion – but it was rather tedious and, most frequently, didn’t contribute to the overall story.

Because it is the only book available on Sean Gillis and provides thorough details, I would give Dismembered 4 out of 5 stars. Get rid of some of the crud and I can say that it could easily be a 5 star book.


Amazon    Barnes and Noble    Indie Bound    Half.com

GIVEAWAY! This isn’t something I do much here, but Kensington was kind of enough to send me a extra copy of Dismembered by Susan Mustafa and Sue Israel for one of True Crime Book Reviews‘ fabulous readers!  So here goes –

Mandatory entry:  Leave a comment with the name of the most recent book (and author, if possible) you’ve read. (We love true crime, but we don’t discriminate against fiction or other nonfiction!).

That’s it!   

Plus you can EARN EXTRA ENTRIES by doing any or all of the following (Leave a comment for each additional entry):

The Fine Print: Contest ends at 11: 59:59 PM Central Time onWednesday, July 13, 2011. Winner will be chosen by random number generator. Must be 18 years or older to enter. Open to U.S. and territories residents only; void where prohibited. Winner will be announced on Facebook and notified via email no later than Friday, July 15, 2011, and will have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate winner will be chosen.