This is not a typical story of Internet stalking. It is an unusual case of friendship and deception so pitiless and unyielding that it opened a door to Hell into the author’s life. This is an unforgettable story for today’s digital world driven by social media in all of its permutations and cruelest forms.
The story begins with Susan Fensten’s online search for her father’s family, a search that soon turns into a two-year frightening odyssey of internet stalking and threats when a posting on a genealogy message board brings her into contact with what she thinks are distant cousins, but what turns out to be a sociopath.
Through email correspondence with her new “family”, evidence of mental illness, dark family secrets, a struggle over wealth and bizarre criminal histories emerge. She quickly becomes the focus of sexual obsession and suspicion, and her life is completely turned upside down. She soon becomes the target of dozens of frightening characters including real verifiable convicted sex offenders in an elaborate cyber-hoax that includes threats of kidnapping, murder, rape, torture and cannibalism.
Remarkable in its complexity, this story of Internet stalking is also a sinister and shocking journal of madness. Described by the FBI as a case “in a category by itself,” This book is a story about the Internet, the search for family, a friendship and a journey into the underbelly of American crime that raises questions about safety online and pushes the boundaries of our perceptions of what is real and what is not.
“You Have a Very Soft Voice, Susan is quite possibly the most twisted and surreal case of stalking I have ever encountered. Well written and gripping. Just when you think it can’t get any more bizarre, it does.” — Patrick Quinlan, Los Angeles Times bestselling author of All Those Moments
“A harrowing and visceral read. Fensten takes you straight into the heart of darkness in her debut book. A must-have for true crime readers everywhere.” —Jesse P. Pollack, author of The Acid King
“Susan Fensten’s autobiographical account of how her simple internet search for lost relatives on an ancestry website unleashed a horrifying armada of mad kinky ghouls to relentlessly stalk her, is a fright house of a tale; a Dantesque decent into a cyber inferno that any one of us could easily find themselves drawn into.” —Peter Vronsky, author of Sons of Cain: A History of Serial Killers From the Stone Age to the Present
“Susan Fensten’s new book, You Have a Very Soft Voice, Susan, is a stark look at the dark side of the Internet. It’s a cautionary tale about how quickly things can go wrong when one’s keystrokes reach the wrong person. In our connected world, where in an instant we can touch such wonderful knowledge that will change our lives for good, we need to realize that evil waits for its turn as well. Without question, Fensten’s book is a pulse-pounding work that proves once again that truth is stranger than fiction.” —Kevin M. Sullivan, author of The Bundy Murders and Vampire: The Richard Chase Murders