The Babysitter

The Babysitter

My Summers With A Serial Killer

eBook - 2021
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Named Most Anticipated Crime Book of the Year by CrimeReads ​ ​ A chilling true story—part memoir, part crime investigation—reminiscent of Ann Rule's classic The Stranger Beside Me , about a little girl longing for love and how she found friendship with her charismatic babysitter—who was also a vicious serial killer. Growing up on Cape Cod in the 1960s, Liza Rodman was a lonely little girl. During the summers, while her mother worked days in a local motel and danced most nights in the Provincetown bars, her babysitter—the kind, handsome handyman at the motel where her mother worked—took her and her sister on adventures in his truck. He bought them popsicles and together, they visited his "secret garden" in the Truro woods. To Liza, he was one of the few kind and understanding adults in her life. Everyone thought he was just a "great guy." But there was one thing she didn't know; their babysitter was a serial killer. Some of his victims were buried—in pieces—right there, in his garden in the woods. Though Tony Costa's gruesome case made screaming headlines in 1969 and beyond, Liza never made the connection between her friendly babysitter and the infamous killer of numerous women, including four in Massachusetts, until decades later. Haunted by nightmares and horrified by what she learned, Liza became obsessed with the case. Now, she and cowriter Jennifer Jordan reveal the chilling and unforgettable true story of a charming but brutal psychopath through the eyes of a young girl who once called him her friend.
Publisher: 2021.
ISBN: 9781982129491
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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Feb 28, 2021

The story of how a little girl's life intersected with a convicted serial killer is told in a meticulously researched and documented format that is also easily devoured. In the 1960's both Liza Rodman and Tony Costa were spending their summers in Provincetown. Liza's mother was a harried divorced mother who welcomed the "breaks" a babysitter would give her from caring for her two little girls. Tony was kind to the girls, giving them popsicles and letting them ride with him in his truck as he ran errands. By the time Tony was convicted of two murders, Liza was still only ten years old and the adults in her life kept the truth from her. What a shock it would be to learn of this connection as an adult and recognize the trauma that remained. Sadly, Tony Costa had three factors in his young life that contributed to his unspeakable violence as an adult: 1) chromosomal, genetic, and hormonal abnormalities; 2) low-functioning prefrontal cortex; and 3) childhood neglect, trauma, and/or abuse. These three factors combined with drug abuse as a young adult created a monster. Fans of true crime will find this a fascinating read as will folks who enjoy watching shows like "Forensic Files."


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