As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
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by Summersdale Publishers, 15 July 2016. ISBN: 978-1-84953-883-1
This selection of true-crime
studies outlines the cases of thirty-seven criminals who committed violent
crimes – in most cases murder – and, at first, were shielded from suspicion by
their social position and respectable jobs, which often allowed them to offend
again. The chapters consist of a study of the perpetrators' childhoods, their
lives and the circumstances that moulded their personalities. Many of these
personalities were terrifyingly warped and ego-centric.
perpetrators ranged through several killers with positions in law enforcement and
education, there were also health workers, lawyers, a vet and an airline pilot,
and a large number of people with positions in religious organisations. Indeed
one of the most disturbing aspects of the book as a whole was the number of
violent offenders who had religion – often in an extreme form – as part of
their upbringing. The chapters often conclude with comments from psychologists
and psychiatrists, analysing the nature of the crime and perpetrators, and
these are fascinating.
the front cover includes the caption 'When good men and women turn criminal,' I
did not feel that the majority of the perpetrators were 'good,' they merely had
the position and reputation to camouflage their true natures. Because they were
respectable people who could hide behind a mask of authority, religion and good
deeds, those around them could not believe them capable of serious evil. Added
to which, official agencies (such as the Social Services in the case of abusive
foster mother Eunice Spry) are very wary of challenging the outwardly
respectable and unwilling to offend people whom they regard as 'like
Anne Davis is an outstanding authority on true crime, and Masking Evil is a fascinating, although chilling, study of
criminals who shelter (and are sheltered by those around them) behind a mask of
respectability. A book that is well worth reading for those who are interested
in true crime and the psychology behind violent actions, not to mention a good
source of plots for crime writers. An authoritative and very interesting book.
------ Reviewer: by Carol Westron
Carol Anne Davis was born in 1961 in Dundee 1961.
Went to Dundee University and gained a Master of the Arts degree in English and
Social Administration. The latter included criminology which complimented her obsession
with true crime. After graduation, Carol started working with battered and
emotionally-abused women. This was a year-long post and at the end of it did a
postgraduate diploma in Adult & Community Education at Edinburgh
University. Carol is the author if fifteen books.
Carol Westronis a successful short
story writer and a Creative Writing teacher.She is the moderator for the cosy/historical crime panel, The Deadly
Dames.Her crime novels are set both in contemporary
and Victorian times.The Terminal
Velocity of Cats is the first in her Scene of Crimes novels, was published
July 2013. Her latest book The Fragility
of Poppies was published 10 June 2016.