I’m attracted to true crime that is interested in the “why?”: Ruth McIver

Melbourne-based Ruth McIver’s debut book I Shot the Devil l fictionalises the satanic panic of the 1980s and 1990s in North America where society became somewhat obsessed with the souls of teens and whether heavy metal was corrupting them.


Ruth won the prestigious Richell Prize for emerging writers in 2018 for this novel.



Erin Sloane was sixteen when high school senior Andre Villiers was murdered by his friends. They were her friends, too, led by the intense, charismatic Ricky Hell. Five people went into West Cypress Road Woods the night Andre was murdered. Only three came out.

Ativan, alcohol and distance had dimmed Erin's memories of that time. But nearly twenty years later, an ageing father will bring her home. Now a journalist, she is asked to write a story about the Southport Three and the thrill-kill murder that mesmerised the country. Erin's investigation propels her closer and closer to a terrifying truth. And closer and closer to danger.


Ruth’s essential true crime reads:

The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule (about Ted Bundy)

The Lost Girls by Ava Benny-Morrison (murder of Karlie Pearce-Stevenson and her daughter Khandalyce)

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara (Ther Golden State Killer)

The shrine of Jeffrey Dahmer by Brian Masters



Background on Ricky Kasso “The Acid King”

On June 19, 1984, seventeen-year-old Ricky Kasso murdered Gary Lauwers in what local police and the international press dubbed a “Satanic Sacrifice.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ricky_Kasso


Background on Amy Fisher

In 1992, at the age of 17, Amy shot and severely wounded Mary Jo Buttafuoco. At the time Amy was having an affair with Mary’s Jo’s husband, Joey Buttafuoco. Amy served seven years in prison. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amy_Fisher


Your host is Emily Webb


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Emily is the author of Angels of Death: Doctors and Nurses Who Kill http://clandestinepress.net/products/angels-of-death


Thanks to this week’s guest Ruth McIver. I Shot the Devil is published by Hachette.


Find out more about Ruth McIver at https://www.ruthmciverwriter.com/



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