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Publisher's Summary

Marilyn Monroe, born to deprivation and a series of foster homes, became an acting legend of the 20th century. She married famous men, Joe DiMaggio and playwright Arthur Miller, and her many lovers included President John F. Kennedy. Her death, at 36, is a mystery that remains unsolved to this day.

Anthony Summers interviewed 600 people for this book, which reveals unknown truths, some funny, some very sad, about this brilliant but troubled woman. First to gain access to the files of Monroe's last psychiatrist, he throws light on Monroe's troubled psyche and her addiction to medications. He establishes once and for all that she was intimately involved with John and Robert Kennedy, who probably covered up the circumstances of her death.

©1985 Anthony Summers (P)2017 Tantor

Critic Reviews

“A remarkable performance…. The ghost of Marilyn Monroe cries out in these pages." (New York Times)

What members say

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GODDESS*****

I always knew the basics of the background of this beautiful woman, however, after listening to this book, my heart really went out to her. Yes, she was an alcoholic, and drug addict, but there was so much more to this woman. She didn't have a chance from the day she came to Hollywood. Yes, you might say everyone that goes there should expect what they get, but her problems started way before she got there. Besides that, this book sheds light into just how much of a lonely, insecure, and horribly used person she was. By the Kennedy's, and several others. Once you listen to this, you'll realize.... she didn't even have a chance....

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The Best Is Last

Slow beginning, and performance average. The best part of the book was the last few chapters with additional details that pointed to foul play. It's hard to believe that her death was not further investigated. I found it fascinating that a 20/20 interview was squelched that would have revealed more about her death to the public!

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  • Theresa
  • Wichita, KS, United States
  • 10-23-17

Fascinating and very plausible

The first half is okay but the second half that gets into the complicated relationships between Marilyn and the Kennedy brothers, Peter Lawford, Frank Sinatra, and Sam Giancona of the mafia is really good. The most telling Marilyn quote is about being passed around like a piece of meat, and clearly that is how these 5 womanizing jerks thought of her.

This is a very well researched and balanced look into the life of a beautiful but deeply damaged woman. It's so easy for us mere mortals to forget that great beauty can be a trap, but she was no easy victim either. Used badly by the Big Studio contract system, she later became one the first women to start her own production company and played contract negotiations cunningly. Looking for love in all the wrong places, but not valuing it when she found it. Desperate for children, yet having many abortions. Working out constantly and careful with her diet, yet abusing prescription drugs. Compartmentalizing her life so that her closest associates had no idea what was really going on in her life, yet carelessly indiscreet. This was a very complicated woman who interacted with some of the most powerful men in the US, yet was either rediculously naieve or downright delusional.

Fascinating, disturbing, but I couldn't put it down. Finally, the author's conclusions about what likely happened the night she died is the most probable of all the versions I've seen. The last chapter contains updates on the latest bits of information that have become available after the original publication.

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Conspiracy-ography

50% about Marilyn Monroe 25% about Kennedy’s 25% garbage. Doesn’t do MM justice at all