Sins Of The Brother by Mark Whittaker & Les Kennedy

Sins of the brother by Mark Whittaker & Les Kennedy is the second book I have read about Ivan Milat this year. The first, Milat: inside Australia’s biggest manhunt by former detective and assistant commissioner of the NSW Police Clive Small, provided a personal account of how he led the investigation into the Belanglo State Forest murders and convicted Milat. Small’s account is accurate and piqued my interest but ultimately left me wanting more. Fortunately Whittaker & Kennedy’s 535 page tome filled in the gaps – and then some.

My interest in the Milat case began after watching an episode of Crime Investigation Australia back in 2007. When it was announced earlier this year that Channel 7 would be screening a mini-series called Catching Milat, I decided to find out more. Whittaker and Kennedy’s book draws extensively on personal interviews with members of the Milat family and people involved in the investigations. Part 1 of the book provides the back story of the Milat family’s life in Sydney’s south-west, in particular Ivan’s trouble-filled teenage years, detailing many run-ins with the law. Part 2 of the book details the police investigation and is where the book really picks up pace. Often in chilling detail, the authors provide an in-depth account of each murder scene, the impact on the family’s of the murder victims and how the clues eventually led police to find their man.

I really enjoyed this book and appreciated the painstaking detail the authors provided – evidence of their many years of research and countless interviews. My knowledge of Milat and his family is now extensive, for better or worse.