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Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson | [Jeff Guinn]

Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson

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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Publisher's Summary

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.

©2013 24Words LLC (P)2013 Recorded Books

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (150 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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Overall
4.3 (138 )
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Story
4.2 (142 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Ruby Dartz 09-15-13
    Ruby Dartz 09-15-13

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Charles Manson: Even worse than you imagined"
    Where does Manson rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book is in the top 5 of all the books I've listened to and the #1 biography.


    What did you like best about this story?

    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.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    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.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    I don't know what the tag line would be but I nominate Colin Farrell to play Charlie Manson.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    17 of 17 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K 01-19-14
    K 01-19-14 Listener Since 2010

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Finally. What Really Happened -- And How It Happe"
    What made the experience of listening to Manson the most enjoyable?

    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.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It was factual, not sensationalized, and was supported by research.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    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.


    Any additional comments?

    I hate that Manson feels rewarded and glorified by continuing publicity. However, it is important this story be told.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    christy Plano, TX, United States 08-01-14
    christy Plano, TX, United States 08-01-14 Member Since 2011
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    "So sick, I couldn't look away..."

    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...

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. A. Milliken Williamsport, PA USA 10-24-14
    J. A. Milliken Williamsport, PA USA 10-24-14

    Jere

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    "Fascinating, Bone Chilling Bio"
    What made the experience of listening to Manson the most enjoyable?

    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.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    prism 03-21-14
    prism 03-21-14
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    "EXCELLENT READ AND TERRIFIC NARRATION."
    What did you love best about Manson?

    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).


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Manson?

    As a big Beach Boys fan, I found the material relating to Dennis Wilson, Terry Melcher, etc, VERY fascinating.


    What about Jim Frangione’s performance did you like?

    VERY gripping narration.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The whole book moved me.


    Any additional comments?

    Buy it. It's worth the read.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie Anderson Columbus, OH United States 12-29-13
    Debbie Anderson Columbus, OH United States 12-29-13 Member Since 2013
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    "OK, but not all that original"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I have read pretty much every Manson book written and found this to be primarily a rehash of previously published info.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    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.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    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.


    Was Manson worth the listening time?

    I thought the book was very long, but I am glad I got through it.


    Any additional comments?

    The back stories about Dennis Wilson, Terry Melcher and Greg Jacobson were a much appreciated addition.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pat 12-17-13
    Pat 12-17-13 Member Since 2015
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    "I Thought I Knew It All"

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dixie St, Louis 08-21-13
    Dixie St, Louis 08-21-13 Member Since 2014

    Well read X

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    "Not Much New Here"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes, if they're interested in the Manson phenomenon and haven't read much about it.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    The story was interesting, fascinating, instructive... not too "enjoyable." One can't go back and change the gruesome facts.


    How could the performance have been better?

    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.)


    Could you see Manson being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    IMO, the best has already been made: The original TV movie "Helter Skelter."


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Wanaque, NJ, USA 06-22-15
    Karen Wanaque, NJ, USA 06-22-15 Member Since 2012
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    "Riveting Real-Life Story, And Well-Researched"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This was an extremely interesting book about a troubled, but (to some) charismatic young man. A review of his background and early life helps one understand a bit of why he went so far off the deep end and is a great adjunct to other books written about Manson covering his trial only. The information about the period of time and the locations of Manson's roaming early in his adult life are also fastidiously researched and well-done. It's hard to say I "enjoyed" this book in a sense because I knew the outcome and it involved mass killings; yet, it was very interesting to read.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The narrator, Jim Frangione, has a sing-song voice that is not so much distracting as it is comical in this venue, i.e. reading book about a mass murderer. He slides into sentences and pauses a bit too long at certain junctions.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    "Helter Skelter", but that's already been done, hasn't it?


    Any additional comments?

    For anyone looking for more specific information about the people involved with these crimes and/or the general atmosphere of the country during this period of time, this is an excellent book, as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle NJ 06-21-15
    Michelle NJ 06-21-15 Member Since 2015

    michelleg4

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    "My first audible book...."

    Excellent,historical account. More than satisfied my,at first,peripheral interest in Manson & made clear to me others' fascination with him. Narrator's performance made the words of the author even more vivid. Very enjoyable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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