Award-winning journalist Jeff Guinn's highly acclaimed Manson has won rave reviews and is a top-pick on must-read lists everywhere. This superb biography answers lingering questions about the Manson Family murders, while delivering stunning revelations about the life of America's most notorious psychopath.
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This book is in the top 5 of all the books I've listened to and the #1 biography.
The author put Manson's life in context with a view to the current events of the eras. It integrated social movements like the rock and roll scene, the Chicago Convention of 1968, Kent State and the Vietnam war as the background to Manson's story line.
The opening scene where the Golden Penetrators, Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys and his entourage, go to the Whiskey a GoGo with Charlie Manson. It establishes the Rock and Roll hierarchy and Charlie's place in it in a nutshell.
I don't know what the tag line would be but I nominate Colin Farrell to play Charlie Manson.
I would have liked to see the photos that came with the book. My only complaint about Audible is that they don't include photo downloads with all of their books that include photos. It would be easy enough, especially with the Audible app. I don't need "Listening Badges" or the graphs that chart how much or how often I listen. I need the photos that are in the actual books that I purchased.
Years ago I read Helter Skelter. It was interesting but sketchy of believable information. Because it was authored by the Manson prosecutor, it seemed to have a narrow perspective with obvious exaggeration so as to boast about himself. I am a fan of Jeff Guinn. (I read "Going Down Together" Bonnie & Clyde which hooked me on Guinn.) His research is very thorough. This audiobook has a lot of Mason's background, unknown to me before reading it. Guinn puts the story in the right place for history and culture. Most of all, Guinn did not attempt to make Mason a god, devil, or magician. He stayed with the facts. Mason's history was plenty colorful without need for exaggeration. I will read it again.
It was factual, not sensationalized, and was supported by research.
The story is a human tragedy. Manson victimized many people. He also was a victim. While it is hard to balance the different victims and types of victimizations, I clearly saw Manson's manipulations and his sociopath.
I hate that Manson feels rewarded and glorified by continuing publicity. However, it is important this story be told.
This book is well written, the narration is superb.I was a young teenager when the Tate/LaBianca murders occurred. The author writes in great detail, describing the climate of the time~ The drugs, the music, the scene at Haight Ashbury.The author writes of Manson's life from the time he was an infant~ Charlie's first foray into prison life around the age of ten, and all of the subsequent time spent in prison. He was a career criminal. His magnetic hold on his followers is both fascinating and scary. The book does not spare the gruesome details of the murders. A read NOT for the squeamish but nonetheless a fascinating and gripping account.
I knew Manson was sick, but this painted him sicker than I ever IMAGINED. I tend to read fiction and only sprinkling in non-fiction occasionally. This is defintely worth the non-fiction selection. Very captivating and uterly entertaining, in a VERY sick way...
I often pass on books if the content is insufficient or if the narrator is too boring. I LOVED this book because the content was absolutely fascinating and the narration was SOLID (no boring fluff here).
As a big Beach Boys fan, I found the material relating to Dennis Wilson, Terry Melcher, etc, VERY fascinating.
VERY gripping narration.
The whole book moved me.
Buy it. It's worth the read.
Just when I thought I knew everything I needed to know about Mnson, there's more to learn. I enjoyed the bok very much and would recommend it to true crime lovers. The stories, although chilling, were gripping and interesting.
Well read X
Yes, if they're interested in the Manson phenomenon and haven't read much about it.
The story was interesting, fascinating, instructive... not too "enjoyable." One can't go back and change the gruesome facts.
The reader has an annoying habit - I almost hate to mention it, because once you're aware of it, you can't NOT be aware of it. For emphasis he tends to elongate the vowels in words: They smoked weeeeed. They gaaaazed into the distance. They careeeened through the winding streets etc.The reader also reads the Chet & Bernie light mystery series, with the same annoying quirk. (Sidenote, the Chet & Bernie series is written in first person, or first canine, by Chet the detective dog, partner to P.I. Bernie. Kind of funny to hear the Manson saga told to me by the voice I've come to think of as that of a crime-fighting dog.)
IMO, the best has already been made: The original TV movie "Helter Skelter."
Well written. I particularly enjoyed the trip back in time to the late 1960s and the well-painted portrait of the California lifestyle in the Haight and Los Angeles.
I have read pretty much every Manson book written and found this to be primarily a rehash of previously published info.
Definitely, the info about Manson's early life was the highlight of the book. I liked the stories of his childhood and how he developed into the man he became. The history lessons about the sixties took up way too much time. I guess for younger readers it would have set the scene, but for me, it slowed down the pace of the book.
I thought he was a boring narrator, kind of like he was just reading words with no emotion. His mispronounciation of names was annoying, especially Bugliosi.
I thought the book was very long, but I am glad I got through it.
The back stories about Dennis Wilson, Terry Melcher and Greg Jacobson were a much appreciated addition.
I am a retired Court Reporter and I LOVE books. All kinds of books but my favorites are mysteries and period books. I like civil war books and some biographies.
I have read probably everything about the Manson family and I do believe this is the best one I've read. I learned several new things about the family. I've been disgusted but fascinated by the things they've done. The author was a little "wordy" in some places in talking about Charlie, but overall it's a very good book about the Manson family.
If you have any interest in Charles Manson or the 1960s, I think you'll enjoy this book. It's essentially a story not just about Manson, but also about the period. It's fascinating to read about the different celebrities who came into contact with Manson and never suspected the depth of his pathology – – I think that's a sign of just how off-kilter that time was.
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