WAS SHE A SWEET SOUTHERN CHARMER? OR A COLD-BLOODED KILLER? For their wedding portrait, petite Pat Taylor and handsome Tom Allanson posed as Rhett and Scarlett. Both came from fine Southern families, and dreamed of the Tara-like plantation where they would grow roses, raise horses, and move in the genteel circles of Atlanta society. Less than two months later, their dream exploded in terror and murder: their beautiful home mysteriously burned to the ground and Tom was convicted of the brutal slaying of his mother and father. Pat's only brother had died in a puzzling suicide, her grandparents-in-law were poisoned with arsenic, and no one -- from her wealthy employers to her own children -- was safe when Pat Allanson didn't get her way. It took Georgia lawmen more than two decades to stop her for good -- if indeed they have. In this fascinating account, Ann Rule delivers a tour de force: a whirlwind of misguided love, denial, guilt, and passions out of control; a series of brilliantly manipulated crimes; the bizarre and horrifying tale of two families brought to ruin; and, at the center of it all, the heartless, supremely selfish sociopath whose evil hid behind soft words and gentle manners, but who destroyed -- without mercy -- those who loved her.
Ann Rule wrote thirty-five New York Times bestsellers, all of them still in print. Her first bestseller was The Stranger Beside Me, about her personal relationship with infamous serial killer Ted Bundy. A former Seattle police officer, she used her firsthand expertise in all her books. For more than three decades, she was a powerful advocate for victims of violent crime. She lived near Seattle and died in 2015.