Portraits of Guilt

The woman who profiles the faces of America’s deadliest criminals a memoir written by Jeanne Boylan

Synopsis: Inside the investigations of the deadly crimes that have shocked our nation — the Polly Klaas kidnapping, Susan Smith’s drownings of her own children, the Oklahoma City bombing — one woman is the investigative world’s secret weapon. You’ve seen her work: it was her composite sketch that revealed the face of the Unabomber, her hand that put a profile on Oklahoma City’s John Doe II, her “dead ringers” that led to resolutions of those and other cases. Now Jeanne Boylan, the gifted forensic artist, whose beauty and compassion make her one of the most fascinating crusaders in the war against crime, tells her own riveting and deeply personal story. In thousands of national cases, Jeanne Boylan has pieced together portraits of crime suspects from the pained and fragmented descriptions drawn out from crime victims and eyewitnesses; time after time, her uncannily accurate renderings have helped close the most baffling of cases. She has worked with investigators worldwide and the nation’s top FBI task force commanders, but Boylan herself connects with victims and grieving families in a way law enforcement officers cannot: over weeks and months she immerses herself in their lives, shares their frustrations and hopes; from this bond of trust, lost memories inevitably resurface. Through her sketches, Boylan is able to arm police with telling details of a fugitive’s face, as well as aspects of the case often overlooked during conventional investigations. It is that combination of empathy and artistry that has placed her squarely outside the box — and inside the most shattering cases of our time. But her compassion — and her compulsion for justice — have come at a price. Jeanne Boylan knows about loss and heartache: with searing honesty she portrays the effects on her marriage and her personal life of this career that calls her, at all hours, to step behind the scenes, to join the highest-profile manhunts, to find the faces of the most violent criminals, and at the same time, to help pick up the pieces of lives devastated by shocking violence. And, in a moving disclosure, Jeanne Boylan reveals that she, too, knows firsthand the price of crime. For the first time, in Portraits of Guilt, the woman who has formed the faces of the nation’s most wanted killers uses her talents to bring about the resolution of a surprisingly personal twenty-year-old case. This remarkable memoir includes Boylan’s own never-before-published drawings of two attackers who remain at large.

So I had never heard of or seen this book before, but a local woman was giving away a bunch of Ted Dekker books and just threw this one in the box with them so I figured, why not give it a read? And goodness I am happy I did!

This woman is absolutely incredible at what she does! The things she is able to do are just phenomenal. Her tactics don’t seem like they should work, but the results prove that they do and she gets amazing results.

She pours her heart and soul into each case she’s on and she forms such a strong connection to the people she works with that most of the time they end up like family to her. She gets so emotionally deeply involved in the cases that she isn’t just trying to find a strangers killer/rapist/kidnapper/etc she’s finding her friends assailant.

The images that she can produce are scarily close to how they actually look. I’m not sure how that’s possible from her way of interrogation but it is! I wonder if this tactic would work for anyone else if she was able to train people or if she is just one person who has a gift that can do this so spot on!

Overall I loved her story, I loved her personality that shined through the pages of this book and I love how she was able to change the lives of so many people. This was such a good read, if you’re into true crime I would absolutely recommend this book.

I rate this book




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