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Serial Killers: The World's Most Evil (Paperback)

P&S History > True Crime

By Nigel Blundell
Imprint: Pen & Sword True Crime
Pages: 202
Illustrations: 16 black and white
ISBN: 9781526781741
Published: 13th August 2020
Last Released: 20th May 2021



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On an internationally acknowledged Scale of Evil, these are the worlds worst serial killers. The qualifications for entry to this list of the vilest criminals of all time are a propensity for sadism, torture and murder without a shred of remorse.

Using expert evidence, this book looks behind the shocking headlines and delves into the minds of monsters. What drove them to crime? What turned seemingly ordinary members of society into sick slayers. How did they self-justify their heinous deeds? And, quite simply, how did they get away with murder?

Included in this catalogue of the worlds most evil killers are men who committed crimes so monstrous that they almost defy belief yet to their neighbours and work colleagues seemed quite normal.

Dennis Rader was a respected pillar of society yet set out on nightly killing sprees. David Parker Ray was just an average working guy but had a torture chamber in his backyard. Fred and Rose West raised a large extended family yet violently abused and murdered their own children.

These are examples of the killers who sank to the darkest depths of depravity. Find out what made them such monsters in Serial Killers: The Worlds Most Evil.

I do love a bit of true crime and anything about serial killers grabs me immediately. This was fascinating, and easy to read.
Great book for fans of true crime.

NetGalley, Tracy Fenton

This book examines some of the worst, most evil serial killers on record, from Fred and Rosemary West to Ian Brady, and tries to understand what made them the way they were. What drive them to want to kidnap, torture, and kill, their victims.

This was an uncomfortable read in places. And that's good. That's a good thing. Because if you are left unmoved by the contents of this book and the descriptions of such horrific murders, you should go see someone.

This is the kind of book I'll revisit every now and again, as I look for inspiration for my own book.

I recommend this book to anyone interested in knowing what made the evil people tick. I gave Serial Killers: The World's Most Evil four stars.

NetGalley, John Dixon

Rating: 5 out 5 stars

I have a morbid fascination for reading anything about true-crime, this book did not disappoint. Recommended.

NetGalley, Wendy M Rhodes

Serial Killers: The World's Most Evil is absolutely fascinating. This is the second book I have read by Nigel Blundell and I am far from disappointed. I was ecstatic to learn of the serial killers in other countries. Some I actually had not heard of and others made my jaw drop. That doesn't happen too often anymore. As macabre as it sounds, I really enjoyed this book.

NetGalley, Amy Corkins

I do love a good true crime book and a binge read on serial killers and I thought that this one was great!

I really liked the layout and the chapter length was spot on, it made the book a punchy read and was on that I could dip in and out of reading a few chapters here and there.

There was just the right amount of detail on each of those mentioned too so you could use the book as an introduction if needed and go away to read more about the different serial killers mentioned.

It was concise and kept to the main facts too and didn't have a lot of waffle as some books do, it did not sensationalise the killings either but it does go to show how evil some people really can be.

It is 4 stars from me for this one, highly recommended!

NetGalley, Donna Maguire

My advice: Do not read this book alone or in the dark. It is scary!!!!!
It is very well written but still scary to think about.

NetGalley, Jennifer DiCenzo

Each chapter is like a mini book report for different serial killers. There are the famous ones like BTK and Son of Sam along with lesser known killers from different countries.

NetGalley, Claire Riley

Was interesting reading the authors insight in to these serial killers. A lot of them were known to me so I new the history. But this book gave a different edge to it.

NetGalley, Lisa Houston

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant but terrible the story’s of so many true crimes.
Really well written , perfect for avid crime /crime thrillers readers like myself.
Well done.

NetGalley, Eileen Lrizvi

A book for any real crime lover.

NetGalley, Cennin Thomas

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

A good read full of so much detail and information about serial Killers. It was well researched and well written. Definitely a must read for true crime fans.

NetGalley, Meggan Turner

I love a true crime story, these are the stories I’ve read about in the news, an interesting true life book about the evil killers that have walked our streets. Well written and simply chilling.

NetGalley, Amanda Wray

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I absolutely loved reading this book. It has been exactly what I have been looking for. It is only a very short read so really quick to read. It doesn't mess around with any waffle, it is straight in and gives you all the hard facts. Some serial killer books give, I think, too much information that I don't necessarily need to know/ not interested in. This is to the point, and gives you the right amount of information on loads of different serial killers around the world. There has been some really interesting serial killers included in this which I have never heard of, and it is refreshing to not revisit some of the "classic" serial killers that we normally read about.

I would say this read is more like a starter read to then go on and do more research and reading on a particular serial killer that you are interested in. Which I will be doing. Loved it, I will definitely be reading more from this author.

NetGalley, Dannielle Greensmith

I am addicted to true crime. While some binge sitcoms on net flix I binge documentaries. this was such a good glimpse into so many bad men!

NetGalley, Marisa Gothie

I enjoyed Serial Killers: The World's Most Evil by Nigel Blundell. The cases were interesting and the book gave me a good overview of each case.

NetGalley, Cheryl Hurst

I enjoyed Serial Killers: The World’s Most Evil. It was interesting to read up about some of the most horrific killings not only in the UK but throughout the world. A fascinating read that I could pick up and put down and still get straight back into the different stories.

NetGalley, Jenny Little

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this books lots of different serial killers some I have heard of some I did not I found it very interesting read as I love true crime things it kept me hooked from the start finish highly recommend this book for any one who is interested in true crime!

NetGalley, Nikki Cable

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

When you consider that entire books could be written on each of the "subjects" in this book, Nigel Blundell has done an incredible job of distilling the facts. Some of those facts are particularly hard to read - disturbing and revolting behaviour from, yes, "The World's Most Evil". Everything is laid out in a clear, concise manner which helps when digesting facts as gruesome as those contained in this book. It's uncomfortable reading, but utterly fascinating.

NetGalley, Dawn Lewis

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I found this book so interest. My favourite genre is crime, thrillers and mystery and this fitted into each category. I was fascinated by these Killers and I found it shocking how they did what they did. I'd definitely read more books by this author.

NetGalley, Leanne Jones

This is an interesting, if slightly sickening, roll call of the world's most evil killers - mainly culled from America and Britain but with a few from further afield. The stories cover all the basic facts, from the circumstances of their birth and upbringing, to a catalogue of their crimes and how they were caught.

One thing that stands out for many of these killers is how 'ordinary' they appeared to family, friends and colleagues - how surprising it was when their crimes were revealed. I was also amazed at the variety of silly sobriquets the American press felt the need to append to the serial killers, both before and after capture, which probably just fed the ego of many. And of course the missed opportunities to apprehend them at an earlier date when suspicions had been aroused.

Overall an interesting list, ensuring the reader checks over his/her shoulder when out alone!

NetGalley, Sue Andrews

Really good read. Some I knew of some I didn’t. Ended far too quick for me lol. Written well. Covered all details within the chapter of the person.

NetGalley, Louise Pridige

This was a great read! Loved getting to learn about other serial killers from different parts of the world. Also, it was interesting to know how the authorities caught these criminals. And at the same time, it was also interesting to learn about the different moments of incompetence and negligence that happens then until now.

NetGalley, Alexandra Benecio

This is a interesting book. It is well written and thought through. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone who likes true crime and learning more about the famous serial killers and some lesser known serial killers and there motives. I plan to read more by this author in the future.

NetGalley, Kate Church

For the true crime lovers, this is a must read book. The author has done a great job in compiling these compelling stories and the backgrounds of the serial killers into interesting stories. Each story is well told with great explanations on why the killer was like they were and how they were ultimately caught.

NetGalley, Ron Baumer

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This is one of the best book I've read this year! It is a manifestation of the world's most dangerous serial killers. I thought Ted Bundy was the worst but I guess i'm wrong. This is a total package boom for people who loves crime or any killer thingy books.

NetGalley, Aubrey Jewel Bautista

If you are mostly interested in learning about any serial killers you may not have heard of, this book will serve you well. You won't get a lot of narrative detail but you will get a lot of what would be in an abbreviated case file. While these are located largely in western/Anglo countries and does not investigate in some other countries, I think this is as much a case of citing cases where the information is complete and easily accessible rather than a desire to leave out any regions of the world. Not every country makes their serial killers as well known or makes the cases so openly available. And this book is less about extensive research and more about collecting what is available into a nice small package. In that, it succeeds.

NetGalley, Jack Messer

Growing up, the Green River Killer was our bogeyman, he wasn't caught until I was in high school, by a man I knew as Officer Reichert, who would come to my elementary school and talk to us about stranger danger. In my adult years I would watch a movie about this man and the strides he took to capture one of the most evil men in the world. My stepbrother remembers seeing Ridgeway at lunch when he worked Boeing. As a pastor, my father once counseled a family of one of Rideway's victims. It's a game of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, Serial Killer edition.

Maybe it's because I was born, raised, and continue to live in the murderous epicenter of the Pacific Northwest, but since I was old enough to Google, I guess, since the invention of Google, I've been fascinated with serial killers. So it was only natural that when I saw that this book was available to wish for, I was definitely interested, and it did not disappoint.

A very thorough and comprehensive rundown of some truly evil and horrific people, this book gives just enough detail to sate the curious mind, but not too much so as it's difficult to read. Some may still find it a bit graphic, as I've become mildly desensitized due to my own research, but I would warn off those that are more sensitive.

Even as familiar as I am with my state's sordid past, I was shocked to learn of yet another case that hit very close to home, specifically, the town most of my family lives, and where my husband graduated from high school. This isn't some sprawling city, either, this is a small, farming town at the base of Mt. Rainier. While this book is nonfiction, it is neither dry nor clinical. It was engaging and readable, and I would recommend it to anyone that is at all interested in a complete, yet compact, history of some of the most deplorable humans to grace mankind.

NetGalley, Heather Gadd

Interesting book. I used to love the show Most Evil where they discussed different killers (way before true crime became a top genre for tv and books). I learned new information, which is surprising.

NetGalley, Reva M

I have always had a fascination about serial killers and the reasons and psychology behind their actions. This book has satisfied my curiousity on this topic since it covers serial killer cases from all over the world. It provides the readers with the background story of the killers and the horrific crimes they have commited. It's a very comprehensive and binge-wothy book, especially recommended if you are into true crime or serial killers.

NetGalley, Luna Dollanganger

I enjoyed reading about the variety of murderous throughout the ages, not just in the States. Some were familiar to me while others I never heard about. I was really excited for this book because I enjoy true crime.

NetGalley, Kimberly DeAnne

I really enjoyed the way the author really summarized the serial killers in a clear and concise way. Not giving you more information than you need but also not leaving out anything important. I saw a review saying “I already knew about these cases” but these books aren’t written for people who already are true crime junkies like me. I really liked what I learned and I also appreciated a look at serial killers around the world.

NetGalley, Caroline Craig David

There was a few serial killers in there I haven’t heard of, so it was interesting to read about them. Well written.

NetGalley, Katie Warburton

The book was written in short chapters and there were a number of people I knew a lot about (Bundy for one) and a lot that I had never heard of (David Rose Parker). Each section was well presented with enough salient yet sordid facts to keep the average reader enthralled - if you are into non-fiction and well, sick people, this is a fascinating read.

NetGalley, Janet Pole Cousineau

Why are people so fascinated with serial killers?It feels wrong, but I think it's important to learn more about mental illness and deviance and I also think it is important to pay some kind of tribute to the victims, while hopefully not sensationalizing their deaths. This book is very straightforward and gives facts.

NetGalley, Michelle Herring

I will definitely be looking to read more of the true crime books written by Blundell in the future . If you are interested in reading some true crime but arent the type to commit to a book strictly on one killer and their crimes in detail...This might be a more applicable book for you.

NetGalley, Lyndie Dison

The world is full of some sick and twisted people and within these pages Nigel Blundell has collected some of the very worst.
Well written without playing to the subjects ego's so as to limit the notoriety most of these killers strive for, it is an interesting look at some of the most heinous crimes and the perpetrators the world has ever produced and seen the likes of such depravity.

NetGalley, Debbie Hosie

This was a great book about serial killers. It goes into awesome details about their crimes. I love the different types of serial killers in this book.

NetGalley, Nichole Sellers

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This book summarises and retells the stories of some of the most evil serial killers in history. Using Dr Michael Stone's scale of evil as a referencing point as to why Blundell selected certain killers to be in his book, each serial killer is discussed from early life to eventual capture. Opening with the notorious "Toy Box" killer David Parker Ray and ending with killer doctors such as Dr Harold Shipman, known as "Britain's biggest-ever serial killer with an official toll of 215 victims". Blundell's book is gripping and fast paced, making it very easy to read "just one more section" and finding yourself at 2am wondering where the time has gone.

NetGalley, April McClements

Well if you have followed me for a while you will know I enjoy true crime - be it book, podcast or TV show. I actually read one of Nigel Blundell's previous books in this series and you can read the review in my March 2020 Book Reviews.

Again, this is not one for the faint at heart. Using the axis of evil, Nigel has picked out some of the most abhorrent murderers. As a student of psychology, my interest is always in what drives a person, which I think is why I like to read these books. Quite a few of these monsters I had previously heard about but there were some I hadn't.

This book isn't for everyone but if you are interested in the genre, I would definitely recommend a read. I think Nigel does a great job putting these together and this is the second book of his I have enjoyed reading.

NetGalley, Natalie Gardner

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The book was very informative and interesting. I know alot about the serial killers in The United States, but I knew very little about serial killers from other countries. It was nice to learn some new facts that I was not aware of until I read the book!!

NetGalley, Amber Archambault

A must for fans who likes reading about serial killers.

NetGalley, Trish Ratna

This book was very informative. Because I do not know a lot about serial killers, I learned a lot from it. I also learned a lot about serial killers from around the world, as the media tend to focus on American serial killers.

NetGalley, Linde Boon

I have a little obsession with true crime and serial killers but it mainly those in the US. I loved reading about other serial killers from the different countries. This is a dark book and it might not be from some people but if you are like me then you will enjoy this book. There were a few killers that I thought would have been if the in this book but if the author put in ever killer then the book would be very long. I would be reading more from Nigel Blundell in the future.

NetGalley, Elizabeth Neill

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Wow! What a book! I learned way more than I ever wanted to about serial killers! That being said, this book is really good. Insightful and well written. I'm definitely going to check out the author's other books.

NetGalley, Paula Hoponick

This book had some very interesting takes on serial killers from around the world. I found it interesting to read about serial killers outside of the United States.

NetGalley, Jennifer Altomare

It was a good jumping off point for finding out about cases that you may wish to explore further. I have read a lot in this genre and there were several cases noted that I hadn’t heard about previously. There were also updates for cases right up until the end of 2019 which was good, it contained a good mix of older and more recent cases.

NetGalley, Lynsay Lambert

This book was super helpful and informative. Who knew there was so much I didn't know on this topic!! It was a very interesting read.

NetGalley, Alicia Goeser

For the true crime lovers, this is a must read book. The author has done a great job in compiling these compelling stories and the backgrounds of the serial killers into interesting stories. Each story is well told with great explanations on why the killer was like they were and how they were ultimately caught.

NetGalley, Ron Baumer

I thought this book was very informative. Each case was well presented. It amazes me that there are people in the world who just do not value human life.
Worth a read for fans of the genre.

NetGalley, Sue Blanchard

I like true crime books some of these people when you read about them make your blood boil. How does someone's mind get so twisted.

NetGalley, Angela Stewart

For anyone interested in reading a condensed version on serial killers worldwide, i highly recommend adding it to your " to-be-read list"

True Crime Book Reviews

Fascination with serial killers has grown and grown resulting in films, books and even music being focused upon them. Ultimately what we desire to know is simple. What makes people commit these crimes? How did they end up a murderer? Why are some never caught? The World's Most Evil answers these questions through a step by step analysis of up to twenty seven serial killers including The Doctor of Death Harold Shipman, The Killer Clown John Wayne Gacy and the despicable Fred and Rose West who used their 'House of Horrors' to torture and kill children. Nigel Blundell harnesses his twenty five years spent on Fleet Street to fully capture the minds of these killers detailing their childhood, their methods and ultimately their end. With a foreword by the respected forensic scientist Dr Michael Stone MD, this book will hook and horrify you until the very last page.

JB (Customer Review)

Each account in this book seems to be like a well-written thriller novel - but each ordeal was real; chillingly real. The fact that every account in this book is true, makes it all the more shocking. Starting with David Parker Ray, he forcefully sets the tone for the rest of the book. With as many as sixty victims, Ray has been officially dubbed the most evil serial killer in recent history. He drugged, tortured and raped women and kept them chained up in his backyard chamber that he named 'The Toy Box' or 'Satan's Den'. As if Ray's crimes were not sadistic enough, the story takes an even darker turn as his daughter and girlfriend assisted him getting his victims. David Parker Ray's reign of terror was ended when one of his victims escaped: Cynthia Vigil ran through the streets of New Mexico, naked with a metal dog collar around her neck, sobbing. She told of her ordeal and pointed the finger at David Parker Ray, who on arrest, was found to have a torture chamber, containing the most gruesome of sexual weapons. Ray died in 2002 of heart failure, only eight months into his prison sentence, literally getting away with murder. This book not only describes the heinous crimes in the grimmest of detail, it also looks at the minds of the maniacs with an introduction from a forensic psychiatrist, Dr Michael Stone. Only the cruelest and vilest of crimes committed by the wickedest serial killers are included in this book, giving an educated insight into the minds of the worlds worst serial killers.

Brian R (Customer Review)

If there are degrees of evil then the murderers we label Serial Killers are surely high on the the scale of sin.
On an internationally acknowledged "Scale of evil" The characters labeled in this book are the worlds very worst murderers.
This book contains vile criminals that perform acts of murder, torture and sadism without the slightest shred of remorse and goes behind the shocking headlines to discover what drives these seemingly ordinary members of society into twisted killers.
What drives them to kill? How do they self-justify their monsterous crimes? And how do they quite simply get away with murder?, all these questions are answered in great detail by a forensic psychiatrist who delves into the darkest minds of homicidal maniacs and monsters who truly fit the category Serial Killers: The Worlds Most Evil.

Jeff Bond

This book presents a delving insight into the dark and twisted psyche of those killers who are internationally recognized as the world's vilest criminals on a pre-acknowledged 'Scale of Evil'. These monstrous degenerates are in a class of their own, with a gluttonous propensity for torture, sadism and alike - and all committed without a shred of remorse for their victims. But what is it that drives these killers to carry out such vile acts? How do they justify them? And, in a lot of cases, how do they, bluntly, get away with murder? In an attempt to answer such grim questions, expert evidence is presented throughout the book and world-eminent forensic psychiatrist Dr Michael Stone MD provides an insightful foreword to this sickening, yet gripping publication.

James Tweal

Evil is a word to sum up the content of this book, as Blundell gives an account of the horrific nature of some of the worlds most horrendous killers. Each person featured within this book is as evil as the next, however this isn't just a catalog of hideous people, it delves deeper into their state of mind and tries to shed some light into why these people committed such brutal crimes. Blundell encapsulates details in which make it hard to turn away from, as a person you know that you shouldn't read such horror stories but at the same time the content is strangely compelling, it is as thought these people are monsters and yet, you want to know why these people did such devastating things. When reading you have to abandon all thought that these people are actually human, because the acts that they take part in are inhumane, it also carries with it the terrifying realisation that some of these killers behaved like everyday citizens, which then in turn makes you feel a little sceptical and wary of people. That being said it is a gripping read and gives the chance to explore the most evil people in the world at a safe distance.


The World's Most Evil is possibly a departure from other publications on the subject of murder or other heinous crimes. Nigel Blundell goes 'behind the headlines' and takes a more psychological approach as he attempts to explore the minds of some of the world's most infamous serial killers. A foreword by renowned forensic psychiatrist Dr Michael Stone rather sets the tone for what is to follow, and that tone is an uncomfortable one. This seems to be almost a celebration of some of the twisted minds covered, a certain level of notoriety and 'pure evil' has to be achieved to be worthy of inclusion! Indeed, one has to be gloomier of mind to find a dark fascination with the subject at hand although such as it is to arouse some level of curiosity in all of us. Blundell's work itself is a generous selection of some of the world's most evil killers, including the most well known UK cases such as Myra Hindley, Fred and Rose West, and Harold Shipman. There are also some less well-known examples that are considered interesting nonetheless because of the perceived oddity of the crimes (see the 'Killer Clown'). Each individual piece is succinct but covers neatly all aspects of the story concerned, with particular focus given to examining the psyche of the monsters usually in the form of a brief closing analysis by Dr Stone himself. What grates a little is the constant referral to Stone's own so-called 'Scale of Evil' where delight seems to be taken in the ranking and comparing of different levels of evil based on the acts committed. This seems a little insensitive considering the subject at hand, and claims that the book may aid us in being warier against such 'fiends', and spotting danger signs in time, are perhaps hollow. Nevertheless, what cannot be denied is a darkly intriguing topic bound to tempt the darker side in us all.

Carl (customer review)

I am a huge fan of true crime short stories and Nigel Blundells don't disappoint. Even with some of the cases (i.e, Ted Bundy) on which I have done extensive reading, Blundell Still brought an interesting tidbit or two to the story.

For anyone interested in reading a condensed version on serial killers world wide, I highly recommend adding this book to your to-be-read list.

True Crime Book Reviews
 Nigel Blundell

About Nigel Blundell

NIGEL BLUNDELL is a journalist who has worked in the United States, Australia and Great Britain. He spent twenty-five years in Fleet Street before becoming a contributor to national newspapers and magazines. He is author of more than fifty factual books, many on crime and criminal behaviour.

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