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Vanished at Sea: The True Story of a Child TV Actor and Double Murder

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Format: Mass Market Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

It was supposed to be blue skies and smooth sailing for Thomas and Jackie Hawks. A retired probation officer and a stay-at-home mom, they were looking forward to entering the next phase of their... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

A horrifying tale, well-written and not too soon.

Being new to the true crime genre, mostly a reader of fiction, mystery, and non-fiction adventure and science (a.k.a. Crichton, Connelley, Krakauer, or E.O. Wilson), I was pleasantly surprised by this book and this author. This story surprised and shocked me to say the least. Ms. Dirmann's account was well researched and very well written. Her conversational style kept me turning the pages as though she were telling me the story herself, in person. It made for an easy, enjoyable read. In fact, I am looking forward to reading it again, as soon as I finish her first book, Such Good Boys, which I am halfway through after one day and cannot put down. Also, I do not subscribe to the "written-too-soon" train of thought. The story ends with a sense of finality, with all of the accused (if they even deserve that bit of politically correct leniency) charged, behind bars, and at least one trial complete. As I understand it, others are still awaiting trial (it was recently postponed AGAIN until August 2008), and it's been 4 years since the murder. To wait for all trials to conclude before writing a book like this would deprive readers of an engaging tale for possibly years, and the story is far faded from the headlines. If opinions or accounts do change, I look forward to the 2nd edition for clarification, the decision of the jury, and the sentencing, if necessary. Great work Ms. Dirmann, Ill be in line for your next one. Please keep them coming.

Gripping and Heartbreaking, and sadly a True Story

This was a thriller and grabbed my attention immediately from page one. Couldn't put the book down. I was touched by the loving people in this book -- the victims and their families -- and was horrified by the actions of the criminals. The author gives some insight into each of the characters, which makes the story all the more tragic. If you are interested in reading true crime stories, this one was well written.

Thrown overboard alive and conscious while attached to a 66 lb anchor!

This was engrossing read. I wolfed it down in two days. The ringleader and psychopath Skylar Deleon is finally scheduled to go on trial in Orange County, Ca on June 2, 2008. The story involves financial fraud. Skylar Deleon is very similar to Joe Hunt of the Billionaire Boys Club, except not as sophisticated. I don't see how he ever really thought he could get away with stealing someone's boat without any of their family or friends reporting it to the police.


I found this book very suspenseful and well written. I liked the way the chapters skipped around in time and in between characters. Others have commented that the book was rushed. I liked the fact that it was written before the trial, which I now look forward to following. I wonder with all the publicity how they could ever find an unbiased jury. But then again, who cares? Skylar should be eliminated as slowly and painfully as possible.

A Study in Sociopaths

I am a true crime junkie. I've read over 100 TC books in my lifetime. This has to be one of the most difficult accounts I've read because of the horrific details of the crime. Many times, the crime itself is left to the imagination. In this case, a witness tells exactly what happened. I actually kept going back to the photos to look at the victims because I just couldn't come to grips with what happened. Skylar is a perfect example of someone that never should be let near society again, period. The way this crime was carried out is just beyond human comprehension. This book honors the memory of the victims and gives us a good picture of their life. I also agree that it was rushed--I will have to look online to find out the ending of the trial. Thank God these people were caught, I can't imagine what they could have done if left to their own devices any longer.
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