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The Mind of a Murderer Reviews

The Mind of a Murderer by Richard Taylor

The Mind of a Murderer: A glimpse into the darkest corners of the human psyche, from a leading forensic psychiatrist

Richard Taylor

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Wildfire
Publisher: Headline Publishing Group
Publication date: 21 Jan 2021
ISBN: 9781472268198

A gripping and eye-opening insight into life as a forensic psychiatrist, from one of the most experienced doctors in the field

4 stars out of 5
Joan Smith
12 Feb 2021

"Taylor is clearly a thoughtful, compassionate doctor."

By the end of more than 400 pages, it feels as though Taylor has observed a great deal in prisons and psychiatric hospitals without managing to organise his ideas in a systematic way. His chapter on women who kill their partners after suffering years of abuse is sympathetic, and he is right to argue that some murders could be prevented by reversing savage cuts to mental health services. Mysteriously, however, the fact that his book makes a compelling case for the role of misogyny as a motivating factor in so many murders seems lost on its author. It is encouraging to read Taylor’s seemingly throwaway remark that the issue of femicide needs to be tackled, but his own account of some truly horrific murders shows ow far the criminal justice system is from realising that ambition.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5
Jake Kerridge
24 Jan 2021

"Dr Richard Taylor’s memoir is a fascinating insight into what drives criminality – and a punchy polemic against mental-health service cuts"

Taylor is a very engaging writer, chatty, witty and able to convey very complex information succinctly and clearly. He is sometimes a little gauche in his attempt to being his case-histories to life with humanising details – we don’t really need to know that a bus driver who witnessed an assault on a child phoned the police on “a Nokia 6300 with a snake game that his own six-year-old daughter liked to play” – but this is evidence of an admirable commitment to avoiding dryness.