June 3, 2024

Why Ann Rule
Is Still Relevant Today

Below is an email exchange between Ann Rule and one of her fans. Ann was so touched by this email from a reader, she requested that her daughter Leslie ensure that this was featured on the Ann Rule website.

Email from a reader, dated July 26, 2012:

Dear Ms. Rule, I am an avid reader of yours and I really appreciate your work. I was born in the mid-sixties and growing up I never learned “street-smarts.” As a teen I hitchhiked all the time with not a single thought as to the dangers. I wasn’t afraid of strangers and felt that no matter what the circumstances, I could take care of myself. I was a big, tough girl, after all. Your books helped me to change my innocent ways. By the time my daughters were teens, I was no longer an innocent, thinking that I could take care of any situation, but I was a cautious woman who sought the safest way possible to do things and I was able to teach my girls that.

My eldest daughter (b.1989) was only 15 when a guy tried to force her into his truck. She screamed and punched and bit and pulled his hair and kicked and he eventually let her go. Other girls in our area had also been grabbed (Vernon, BC, a small town near Kelowna, BC, about 3 hours inland from Vancouver). Two girls went missing in Kelowna. The RCMP don’t know if it was due to the same offender. My daughter was able to describe her attacker and his truck, and she had a partial plate number. I don’t think they caught him because she never had to go to court, but she was safe. If that had of been me at her age, I likely would have got into the truck. But she didn’t because I warned her of the dangers, and I knew the dangers from your books.

My second daughter (b. 1990) was 18 when she began working at a Tim Horton’s restaurant. She was struggling to gain her independence and wanted to work things out for herself. A man about 40-45 years old began coming into the restaurant. He only wanted to be served by her, and he’d let other customers go ahead of him until she was available to serve him. He went there 5 days a week, all the days she worked. He wanted to know everything about her: her interests, where she lived, did she like movies? What movies did she like? What books did she like? Did she like to go for drives, etc. At first it didn’t alarm her, but after about two months of that, seeing this guy every day she worked, she left work one day and he tried to give her a ride. He pretty much begged her to get into the truck, saying, “You can trust me…” and “I won’t hurt you…” Thankfully, she knew better from my teaching her the dangers in life which I learned in part from what your books have taught me. After that he began following her around town. At that point she brought the issue to my partner John* and I, and to her manager as well. John and I went to the restaurant and waited for the guy and when he went to the counter, we followed him and introduced ourselves to him. At the same time, my daughter called the manager over who introduced herself to the guy. Now he had three independent people watching him. When he left, John and I followed him out and took down his plate number and a description of his truck. The guy never went back to the restaurant. It could be that your exposure of the evil in this world saved our daughter’s life.

A friend of mine was going to separate from her husband, who had never hit her but had a volatile temper, threw things about the house, and yelled, screamed, and cursed on a regular basis. She was not permitted to go outside the door without his permission, and when she did go out, he checked up on her. When she told me that she was going to leave him, she said that it was only fair to meet with him in private to tell him. John and I strongly objected to that, and cited many of your books and short stories where the husband “owned” the wife and if he couldn’t have her, no one could. Eventually, she saw that we were right and she told him that she was leaving him over the phone and she wisely asked the RCMP to be involved. It all worked well. My friend is now divorced, remarried, with a great husband and three stepchildren that she adores, and life is good for her. I can’t help but think that if I had never read one of your books, perhaps I would not have had the wisdom to advise this wonderful lady on how to stay safe in a situation like that.

You sure have helped me and the people in my life, and I’m sure you’ve helped thousands of people to stay safe. Thanks so much for dedicating your life to uncovering the truth and letting us know that evil really is out there, and that we have to beware. May God richly bless you, Ms. Rule. You are certainly in my prayers.

Best regards,


Email reply from Ann Rule, dated July 27, 2012:

Oh, Sarah,

You sure made my day! I felt guilty when I first started covering crime stories, knowing that my living and my kids’ living involved the tragedies other people suffered. Every now and then, I hear from someone like you who lets me know that I DO save some lives with my words of warning.

I am going to save your email, frame it, and put it on my office wall. Thank you so much for sharing with me! One of my own daughters thought I was paranoid because of what I wrote. And then she was grabbed by a guy in broad daylight and she fought back, too, and got away. She was about 16 when that happened. I think women must have a “plan” in their heads of what we will automatically do if we are attacked. We only have a few seconds to react.

All my best,

Ann Rule

P.S. I just finished my newest book–Fatal Friends, Deadly Neighbors–and it will be out in November. It has, I believe, the most interesting collection of cases I’ve come across so far. Going to take a week off, and then start on Practice to Deceive, next year’s hardback.

Email reply, dated July 27, 2012:

Hello Ann,

Not only do you help thousands of people to stay safe, but your teachings will never go out of date. My partner, John, pointed out that “there is never going to be a time on this earth when anyone can say, ‘Oh, Ann Rule’s books… they don’t apply to today’s living!’” Please take that into your heart and be confident that your words will live on in the hearts of many for years to come.

Kindest regards,


© Leslie Rule

*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of the author.