Why I wrote DELIVER US

January 9, 2015

Tags: Deliver Us, Kathryn Casey, serial killers, Texas Killing Field, I-45 mysteries, Tim Miller, William Lewis Reece, Mark Stallings, Edward Harold Bell, murder, true crime, Houston, Texas

I often have readers email to ask how certain books came about. It's an understandable question. I mean, just peruse your daily newspaper. I write about crime cases, real ones, usually murders. Sadly, newspapers across the U.S., actually, I suspect, around the world, are filled with possible subjects. Some, like the Jodi Arias or Casey Anthony cases, make news for months, even years. Others come and go, generating little more than a paragraph or two in the city section. No matter how much attention each attracts, they all have stories behind them, people involved, events that led to the killings, investigations that may or may not have led to killers.

So why write a book on the I-45/Texas Killing Fields? Why now?

For those of you who aren't familiar with the cases, the truth is that they've haunted me since soon after I landed in Houston, back in the eighties. Over the years, I've seen the articles in the Houston Chronicle, teenage girls abducted and missing on or near I-45. In the nineties, the Chronicle and the Galveston County Daily News both started running charts, showing the girls' photos.

From that point on, I knew one day I would have to write about the cases. I couldn't forget the girls. They lived in the back of my mind. As I wrote book after book, I always knew eventually I'd have to do my best to find out who the girls were, how they'd disappeared, and why their murders remained unsolved. I confess that it became something of a compulsion.

"But why now?" you ask. Some of these cases are more than forty years old. Why do they deserve attention at this point in time?

Why not now?

Ironically, I began my research at a time when some of the cases first started to come together. One actually led to a trial. While I worked on DELIVER US, I discovered that although they'd never entered a courtroom charged with any of the girls' murderers, there were suspects. So I did what I always do in my books; I gave the folks believed to have committed the murders the opportunity to talk. I went inside Texas prisons and sat down with men who described themselves as vicious serial killers. And I listened as they told me how and why they murdered their victims.

It was terrifying.

DELIVER US took me three solid years to research and write. I investigated eighteen murder cases. Attended two trials. Interviewed three inmates behind prison walls.

The result, I admit, is a troubling book. It's an unflinching look inside a tragedy, the continuing murders of teenage girls just outside America's fourth largest city. This isn't happening in isolation, but along one of the nation's busiest highways.

I looked at this phenomenon from all sides: survivors, victims' families, investigators, and the alleged killers. And in the end, this book changed me in ways I couldn't have predicted.

I hope you'll read the prologue to DELIVER US, now available by clicking the link under excerpts in the left-hand column of this Website. And if you like the sample, that you'll read the book.

Why? These are important cases, exposing evil at its core. And the girls deserve to be remembered.


  1. January 9, 2015 2:47 PM EST
    I cannot wait to read this book. Will I be able to get it on my Nook?
    - Ellen McLendon
  2. January 9, 2015 3:04 PM EST
    Yes, you will, Ellen. You can order it on BN.com now, and it'll download as soon as it's available. Here's the link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/deliver-us-kathryn-casey/1118926065?ean=9780062300492
    - Kathryn Casey
  3. June 15, 2015 9:05 PM EDT
    I read Deliver Us and found it accurate on the things that have went on around 1-45. I live in LaMarque and have for the past 50+ yrs. My only question is why didn't you include the case of Rene Richardson that was taken from a hotel in Galveston and never found?
    - Kathy Hansley
  4. June 15, 2015 9:10 PM EDT
    whoops sorry I misspelled her name it was Suzanne Rene Richerson that disappeared from Casa Del Mar in Galveston
    - Kathy Hansley
  5. June 16, 2015 12:06 AM EDT
    Hi Kathy,
    Wonderful to hear that you found the book accurate. There are a handful of cases I didn't include, including Rene's, because I couldn't get anyone to talk about the girls and/or find enough information to shed new light on the cases. Without something new to add to the conversation, I decided it didn't make sense to cover them.
    - Kathryn Casey