We are happy to announce that True Crime author Caitlin Rother will be talking about her latest book, which was just released: DEATH ON OCEAN BOULEVARD: Inside the Coronado Mansion Case.
Caitlin will discuss how she put this “true crime” book together, when, at least according to law enforcement there has been no crime committed. It took nine years to research and write the book, which is different from her other true crimes, as have been the challenges it posed.
New York Times bestselling author Caitlin Rother has written or co‑authored 14 books. Her previous titles include: Dead Reckoning, Hunting Charles Manson;Then No One Can Have Her;Naked Addiction; Secrets, Lies, and Shoelaces; I’ll Take Care of You; Lost Girls; Poisoned Love; Body Parts; Twisted Triangle; Deadly Devotion; Love Gone Wrong, and My Life, Deleted. Rother was an investigative reporter at daily newspapers for 19 years before deciding to write books full‑time. Her stories have been published in Cosmopolitan, Los Angeles Times, The San Diego Union‑Tribune, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and The Daily Beast. She has appeared as a TV crime commentator more than 200 times on episodes of 20/20, People Magazine Investigates, Crime Watch Daily, Australia’s World News, Nancy Grace, Snapped, and numerous shows on Netflix, Investigation Discovery, HLN, REELZ, Oxygen, E!, and A&E. Rother also works as a writing/research coach and consultant, and plays in an acoustic band. For more info, please visit https://www.caitlinrother.com.
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Saturday May 8th, 2pm
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“I got a girl, hung herself in the guest house,” Adam Shacknai told authorities in a breathless and confused call to 911 in July 2011.
For years since this call, the public has been gripped by the mysterious death of Rebecca Zahau, a 32-year-old Burmese beauty, whom Adam said he found hanging naked, bound, and gagged from the second-floor balcony of his wealthy brother Jonah’s historic home, the Spreckels Mansion in Coronado, California. After the authorities declared her bizarre death a suicide, her family refused to accept the notion that the religious young woman would ever embarrass them with such a public spectacle. They filed a lawsuit that accused Adam of killing Rebecca, and ultimately persuaded a civil jury in 2018 to find him responsible for her death. Although Adam insists he is innocent, the Zahaus continue to fight to re-open Rebecca’s criminal case and to change her manner of death to homicide.
DEATH ON OCEAN BOULEVARD: Inside the Coronado Mansion Case
“The Rebecca Zahau case is one of the great crime mysteries of modern times. It took an author of Caitlin Rother’s caliber to bring it into sharp focus. A riveting read.”
–Gregg Olsen, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“Rother’s meticulous journalism shines through in this authoritative account of the Rebecca Zahau death incident…If you think you know this case, think again. And read this book.”
–Dr. Katherine Ramsland, forensic psychology professor and author of The Psychology of Death Investigations.
“A suspicious headline-making death proves to be only the beginning as Rother unlocks the door of this real-life mansion of horrors to reveal a shocking true story of money, power, duplicity and scandal.”
–Michael Fleeman, New York Times bestselling author
“Using her innermost understanding of suicide, Caitlin Rother connects you with the heart-wrenching details of the Coronado Mansion Case. Prepare to be deeply immersed in this beautifully written, impeccably researched book right up to the gripping epilogue. The new facts never before exposed about this case will shock you! … a must-read for any true crime fan!”
–Alan R. Warren, author and host of “House of Mystery” podcast
“Gripping. Propulsive. A tour de force of true crime storytelling. Rother is a rare talent, and Death on Ocean Boulevard an instant classic of the genre.”
–Kevin Deutsch, author and host of “A Dark Turn” podcast
DEATH ON OCEAN BOULEVARD takes a takes a comprehensive, psychological, and objective look at the Rebecca Zahau death case, laying out evidence and theories from all sides in this murder vs. suicide debate. Rother’s 11th book of true crime, DEATH is based on a massive compilation of research, including new, exclusive details, and never revealed investigative facts from her own interviews as well as from the official investigation by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department (SDSD). With no agenda, financial settlement or verdict to protect, Rother set out to correct speculation, misinformation, and conflation. Her goal was only to find the truth about what happened to Rebecca Zahau and her boyfriend’s six-year-old son Max, whose fatal falls, occurring less than two days apart, are inextricably linked.
News of Rebecca’s death spread internationally due to the unusual and bizarre circumstances of her death as well as the wealth of her multimillionaire boyfriend Jonah Shaknai, who owned Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp., headquartered in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area. But the debate continues even today, because many people just can’t believe that a woman would bind and gag herself, then throw herself over a balcony, a feat that even experts say is physically impossible without partial or complete decapitation. Some experts offer parallels with the controversial Jeffrey Epstein death case, due to the similarly minor injuries to cartilages and bones in their necks, saying they are more consistent with murder. Although authorities cleared Adam Shacknai’s of criminal wrongdoing because his DNA and fingerprints were nowhere to be found—even on items he admitted to touching—some outside experts argue that this supports their belief that the investigation was flawed, incomplete, and based on confirmation bias.
Rother, who has a unique insight into this case, has been particularly haunted and obsessed by Rebecca’s death, because her husband committed suicide by hanging in 1999. He was a chronic alcoholic, diagnosed with depression and borderline personality disorder, who repeatedly lied to her, told her wild stories, and also threatened to commit suicide several times. Rother used that experience and knowledge as a lens to explore the facts of this case.