The Girls Are Gone

The True Story of Two Sisters Who Vanished, the Father Who Kept Searching, and the Adults Who Conspired to Keep the Truth Hidden

Non-Fiction - True Crime
336 Pages
Reviewed on 10/22/2018
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Author Biography

Michael Brodkorb and Allison Mann met during the 2016 Grazzini-Rucki criminal trial. Allison worked at a law firm representing David Rucki, the father, who was trying to find his girls. Michael was working for the Star Tribune covering the story as the case developed.

Michael and Allison have spent the last two years working together investigating and researching to find the answers to many questions that had been left unanswered for years. They have analyzed court documents, reviewed investigative files, and conducted numerous interviews to provide a completed story about how and why two children vanished from their family and friends for 944 days. Their passion for following the case and connecting the dots to figure out the truth of what really happened led them to write “The Girls Are Gone.”

“The Girls Are Gone” provides new details about the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki and includes interviews with members of the Rucki family, including exclusive interviews with Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The book also discusses the connection between Michelle MacDonald, who is currently a candidate for the Minnesota Supreme Court. MacDonald was labeled a “person of interest” by the Lakeville Police Department in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki, but did not cooperate in the investigation.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite

The Girls Are Gone by Michael Brodkorb and Allison Mann is a true story. A bitter divorce and a custody battle over 5 children results in terror on April 19th, 2013 when two of the children disappear. Samantha and Gianni Rucki were being settled back into the family home when they disappeared without a trace. Their father, David, worked with law enforcement every day to try to find his daughters, knowing that his ex-wife, Sandra, had something to do with it, although she, surprisingly as their mother, refused to get involved. Then Sandra disappeared. In November 2015, after 944 days missing, the girls were found in Minnesota, living on a ranch. Four people were charged with their disappearance, including Sandra Rucki, and this book tells the story of the criminal trials of all those involved.

The Girls Are Gone By Michael Brodkorb and Allison Mann is an excellent true crime book. The two authors became acquainted in 2016; Michael a reporter and Allison representing David Rucki in court. This is a very involved book with lots of detail, including court transcripts, telling the whole story from start to finish, filling in some of the lesser known details about the case. This book reads like a crime novel but is far more horrifying, given that we know it is the truth. It is riveting and compelling reading but it will require some staying power. Loved it! I like true crime stories and this one is way above any other just because of the amount of detail and the way it was written; matter of fact yet drawing you into the web a step at a time. Fantastic book, I wish there were more like it.