Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning 2016 article, a true crime book about a Seattle teenager who was charged with lying about having been raped, and the detectives who followed a winding path to arrive at the truth.
...a captivating page-turner ... The book’s narrative is grounded in Marie, but brilliantly cuts back and forth between her story and subsequent sexual assaults in Denver suburbs. There’s a gripping 'you are there' immediacy as crackerjack officers and criminalists pore over scant evidence before finally homing in on their man ... The authors flesh out their through-line with vivid portraits of attacker, victims and police, speaking powerfully to our cultural moment (even as they skirt the thorny issue of due process). Rich in forensic detail, deftly written and paced, A False Report is an instant true-crime classic, taking its rightful place beside Vincent Bugliosi’s Helter Skelter and Dave Cullen’s Columbine.
Though stranger rape isn’t the norm for sexual assault, or the focus of the sexual misconduct fueling the #MeToo moment in which this book appears, it offers broadly relevant lessons ... Miller and Armstrong tell their story plainly, expertly and well. It’s gripping and needs no dressing up.
A False Report will fascinate readers interested in the finer points of police procedure — even if they grow dizzy trying to keep track of a dozen different police officers and detectives involved with unraveling the multijurisdictional case. An unexpected strength of the book is the chance it affords Jeffrey Mason, one of the original detectives who doubted Marie, to look back on his mistakes ... The message could not be clearer: old theories on why to distrust women reporting rape still influence many of us today, which makes this an especially timely work.