Review: Are You There Alone? By Suzanne O’Malley

This was listened to via Audible. 

Blurb via Goodreads

On a June morning in a Houston suburb, a 911 dispatcher questioned the caller on the other end of the line: “ARE YOU HAVING A DISTURBANCE?”




It took a jury less than four hours to find Houston housewife Andrea Yates guilty of the drowning deaths of three of her five children — and a mere half hour to sentence the troubled woman with a stunning history of severe mental problems to life in prison. But beyond the media coverage of her heinous crimes, there is a story that only investigative reporter Suzanne O’Malley has fully illuminated.


The updated edition of “Are You There Alone?” features a new chapter on the appeal of the Yates case, as well as personal updates on both Andrea and Rusty Yates. Having drawn upon hundreds of interviews — with expert witnesses, close friends, family advisers, and Andrea and Rusty themselves — O’Malley has produced a riveting true-crime account that shatters our notions about criminal law, mental illness, death-penalty politics, and religious fanaticism in America today.

I’ve been listening to this book on Audbile for a few weeks now, which would be more like months. A little here and there, only because I have a full time study schedule and not because it was a bore or anything like that.  True crime is my first passion when it comes to book genres and if you don’t know about Andrea Yates, then perhaps read this book first before you Google because it is wonderfully descriptive andquite neutral, in my opinion.

The author has done a spectacular job in investigating this tragic event which will stir emotions in you whether you have children or not, and that’s because we tend to deify those who are weak or vulnerable in society, and children most certainly fit in that criteria.  So, if you are not a fan of crimes that involve children, then this account won’t be for you because it involves the death of five children.

As mentioned, the author has done a wonderfully thorough job of investigating the history and medical story behind Andrea Yates.  Although it can be quite ‘full on’ with the telling of her mental history, which for me is welcomed given my field of work. Whether you agree of disagree with the verdict Andrea received, there’s no denying that she was a very mentally ill woman who was failed by a number of people, in a number of ways. I don’t want to get too far into that argument, I don’t think this is the time or place for that. But the author did a fantastic job of giving us the information, and making us aware of Andrea’s life.

The narrator on Audible, was one of the good ones. I’ve had one that I just didn’t like at all,  was too animated. However this one was very good.

I rate this Audible book: bookworm1bookworm1bookworm1bookworm1bookworm1/5

So if you would like to read up about the Andrea Yates case, then here’s the link to Wikipedia.

And if you’d prefer the ebook click here

Or listen to it on Audible click here

Happy reading or listening!



Published by A.Bookish.Rainbow.Sanctuary

Avid reader and 'collector' of books. I'm a prison psychologist and criminologist, so no surprise when I admit I have a particular like in true crime and psychological/police procedure thrillers and suspense books.

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