My Friend Dahmer by Derf Backderf

images$17.95, 224 pages, Non-Fiction Graphic Novel

Jeffrey Dahmer’s high school classmate recalls shared experiences with the infamous serial killer.

Author’s Website

Reviews:

Kirkus Reviews

The Comic Journal Review

Do you ever wonder about someone’s everyday life before they decide to commit unthinkable murders?  Derf Backderf was a high-school classmate of Jeffrey Dahmer and created a graphic novel depicting their life during high school.  From classes shared to car rides given and a few odd exchanges, the story reveals glimpses into what may have contributed to Dahmer’s choices.

This graphic novel turned out to be quite a fascinating read.  While I will never understand the motives behind Dahmer’s gruesome actions, the book did shed some light on his family situation and the role of his parents played (or more aptly, did not play) in his rearing.

Appeal Factors: Fast-Paced, Gruesome, Thought-Provoking

Read-alikes for this book include:  Black Hole by Charles Burns and Green River Killer: A True Detective Story by Jeff Jensen

Selected as a 2013 Alex Award winner by American Library Association

School Library Journal Blog

I saw this book featured on the 2013 Alex Award Winners list and was interested.  When Dr. Bodart mentioned she was reading it during one of our online class sessions, I decided to read it, as well.

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