Perhaps the most notorious serial killer in England’s history is Ian Brady. Brady and Myra Hindley killed 5 children between 1963 and 1965. However, the reason for their infamy is that they were both sexual sadists who raped and tortured the children aged 10 – 17. They even made an audiotape of one of the events. The tape is 13 minutes of pure horror.
The biggest scandal might be the murders or it might be a book called The Gates of Janus. Like most psychopaths, Ian Brady attempted to put his first hand knowledge of psychopathology to some use, Bundy-style. Ted Bundy gave dozens of interviews with criminal profilers, psychiatrists, psychologists, detectives, and anyone else that would listen. He helped write books on serial killers (and some think the character Hannibal Lector is actually based on Bundy) and textbooks for training police and other law enforcement officials.
Brady did something similar, only without the interviews and what-not. He wrote a book called The Gates of Janus. In it, he describes several different types of serial killers. He attempts to provide an in depth analysis of serial killers as a whole as well as their psychological states before, during, and after they kill.
I fully admit that I have not read the book. I have not read any books by any serial killers. I have trouble giving money to serial killers. However, I did have a psychology professor who had read the book as well as books by Bundy and a few other serial killers. He referred to them as narcissistic bullshit.
Serial killers are known for their narcissism. It’s part of the reason they confess, sometimes, to murders they didn’t commit. Also, Brady and Bundy shared another trait, they were smart and believed they were smarter than everyone else. Hence why everything we believed we knew about psychopaths was mostly false for forty years.
For this reason, I share my professor’s opinion; serial killers do not write books to give insight or help society or to explain their crimes, they write them because it feeds their egos. The Gates of Janus is just one more attempt by yet another serial killer to profit from their crimes or continue to be in the public spotlight. In this case, it might be the latter. Brady, whose name is not as well known as some other serial killers, especially outside of England, became instantly famous again. The book was published by an underground publishing house in the US; legal battles ensued, the British Parliament attempted to stop the publication, and Ian Brady could now claim to be important again.