This book gave me nightmares.

The cover of the book “I’ll Be Gone In The Dark” by Michelle McNamara. Black and white photo of suburban house taken at nightime.
Goodreads Screenshot

I’ll Be Gone In The Dark chronicles the search for the Golden State Killer. When I read the book, the serial killer hadn’t been caught.

This killer, also called The Nightstalker and East Area Rapist, targeted random suburban couples in California. The odds that he roamed the streets of our Midwestern suburbs were tiny. But, tell that to my imagination.

I’d lie in bed awake with my heart racing.

Did we close the garage doors?
Did I lock the sliding doors?
Do we need safer windows?

Sadly, the author died while writing this book — two years before her decade-long pursuit to catch the killer paid off.

On April 24, 2018, police arrested Joseph James DeAngelo for several Golden State Killer murders. On June 20, 2020, DeAngelo pled guilty to 13 murders and several other crimes.

What about you? Did a book terrify you?

And the winners are…

Stack of children’s Halloween books with owls figurine to the right and an orange canvas with brown handprints in the background.
Photo by Author

Every year I get excited to bust out our stash of holiday-themed books. Reading about spooky animals, monsters, and pumpkins kicks off our family’s Halloween season.

As my boys get older — Christian is 8, Cade is 6 — their tastes change a bit. But, most of the books they…

There’s a ghost in this photo.

Photo of newborn baby sleeping in basket with ivory sheets.
Author’s photo

I slip a newborn photo of our son into a vintage black frame. I step back to see how it looks on my newly created gallery wall.

A serene face pops out from the ivory sheets that swaddle my baby.

“Honey, come here!”


Adrienne Parkhurst

I’m passionate about personal and professional leadership. I write about lessons learned from managing teams (and myself) for 20+ years.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store