CARY STAYNER: The True Story of the Yosemite Park Killer by Jack Rosewood – BOOK REVIEW

Cover image obtained from

Cover image obtained from

CARY STAYNER: The True Story of the Yosemite Park Killer

Author: Jack Rosewood

Type of Book: eBook

Series: Historical Serial Killers and Murderers: True Crime by Evil Killers: Volume 4

Length: 71 pages

Genre: Non-Fiction, True Crime

Release Date: August 9, 2015

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐

* I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Cary Anthony Stayner was born in California to a lower-middle-class family. He had three sisters and a younger brother. His family spent summers camping at different national parks, including Yosemite which was close to their home. Cary had decent grades at school and even played on the school baseball team. Sounds like an idyllic All-American childhood, doesn’t it?

So, if he grew up leading such a wonderful life, how did he end up becoming a killer?

The facade of normalcy that Cary’s family portrayed to the outside world proves that you cannot always judge a book by it’s cover. Cary’s childhood and his family life were anything but idyllic.

Add to this multiple family tragedies, one of which received nationwide attention and you have a recipe for disaster.

Find out what caused a seemingly normal boy to turn into an evil monster by reading this short novella by Jack Rosewood.

Shortly after starting to read this book I realized that I knew of parts of the story, but had forgotten the name of the murderer. However, I definitely learned much more about this crime by reading this book than I had known previously.

There are aspects of this book that I enjoyed immensely, but there were a few minor things that (in my opinion) could have been improved.

One of the things I did not like was that some phrases were not explained. For example, in 1999 when their granddaughter Carole Sund (age 42) and their great-granddaughter Juli (age 15) along with Carole’s sixteen year old exchange student, Silvina Pelosso, an Agentinian national went missing, Francis Carrington “… was called in for a three-house interview…” What the heck is a “three-house interview? This is not explained in the book.

The other issue I had with this book was that it needed an editor or proof-reader. Several paragraphs and sentences were redundant and some contained typos. For example: “told her I loved her, and slit her throat, driving the knife so deeply into her throat that her almost severed her head.” I assume this was supposed to say “…he almost severed her head.”, not “her.”
Example 2 – “He might just as well been talking about the bogeyman.” This should have said: “He might as well have been talking about the bogeyman.”

Once these two issues are addressed, the book will deserve a higher rating.

Author Jack Rosewood has done a terrific job of taking a huge amount of information and condensing it to fit into only 71 pages. This makes this True Crime book a quick and easy read.

Overall I enjoyed this book and am looking forward to reading more true-crime stories by this author.

I rate this book as 3.5 out of 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐


Author photo obtained from Amazon

Author photo obtained from Amazon

* Author information taken from his biography on

I live in one of the most beautiful places in Florida, Jupiter, with my wife, two kids and our golden retriever, Vincent. I’ve been a full time author for the last 15 years and I wouldn’t trade it against anything in the world!

My father was a journalist and wrote about some of the worst crimes you could ever imagine, and that’s where my big interest from serial killers and other horrible crimes comes from. Just to hear my father talk about the evil acts of Ted Bundy as we were out fishing as a kid are some of my best memories.

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