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Publisher's Summary

As the lead singer of the Doors, Jim Morrison's searing poetic vision and voracious appetite for sexual, spiritual, and psychedelic experience inflamed the spirit and psyche of a generation. Since his mysterious death in 1971, millions more fans from a new generation have embraced his legacy, as layers of myth have gathered to enshroud the life, career, and true character of the man who was James Douglas Morrison.

In Jim Morrison, critically acclaimed journalist Stephen Davis, author of Hammer of the Gods, unmasks Morrison's constructed personas of the Lizard King and Mr. Mojo Risin' to reveal a man of fierce intelligence whose own destructive tendencies both fueled his creative ambitions and brought about his downfall. Gathered from dozens of original interviews and investigations of Morrison's personal journals, Davis has assembled a vivid portrait of a misunderstood genius, tracing the arc of Morrison's life from his troubled youth to his international stardom, when his drug and alcohol binges, tumultuous sexual affairs, and fractious personal relationships reached a frenzied peak. For the first time, Davis is able to reconstruct Morrison's last days in Paris to solve one of the greatest mysteries in music history in a shocking final chapter.

Compelling and harrowing, intimate and revelatory, Jim Morrison is the definitive biography of the rock idol in snakeskin and leather who defined the 1960s.

©2004 Stephen Davis (P)2004 Penguin Audio and Books on Tape, Inc.

Featured Article: The Dubious Honor of Joining the 27 Club


There’s one infamous worldwide club that has the honor of hosting several famous members for dubious reasons: the 27 Club. Named for celebrities who passed away at the age of 27, it is host to some of the world’s most famous musicians. The idea of the 27 Club came about when several popular musicians died between 1969 and 1971. While there’s no statistical evidence, it’s undeniable that it does seem to happen a lot.

What listeners say about Jim Morrison

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Jim Morrison

This book is a riveting look at the life of complex man, a man very much a product of (and contributor to) his time. It captures the feel and history of LA in the 60's and early 70's.

Morrison, debauched, naive, sympathetic, brilliant, cruel, a train wreck in waiting. He was many things....a phony he was not.

Don't let the length of this title put you off, this is a compelling story. Great writing and narration make this one of my all time favorite listens.

24 people found this helpful

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Who knew...?

I grew up with The Doors and owned all their albums. I adored them but I had NO IDEA what was happening behind the scenes. This book is a real eye-opener. At times the endless recounting of drug/alcohol crazed events and never ending discontent among the band members is tedious. However, I was taken completely by surprise by a very sad and poignant ending that stayed with me for days and days.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

EXCELLENT!!!

This was one of the best books I have ever read. It made you feel like you were living in Morrison's head. It described his world well and did not paint a false picture of this man-legend. I highly recommend this to anyone who listened to Rock & Roll or Blues and grew up in the 70's. It also gives insight to younger folks of how music changed our lives back then.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Questions Remain

This is a great history and detailed chronolgy of Morrison's life. However, it comes up short on explaining his thoughts and what actually
fueled his destructive behaviour. For the "whens" and "wheres" it is
excellent, but it is lacking on the "whys." We learn, as the title implies, much about his life and death. However, the legend remains as
mysterious as ever, except for the incomplete discussions of his antics and writings that propelled him to his legendary status. The reading is outstanding, but the treatment left me wanting to know
more, alot more. A thorough knowledge of The Doors music is essential for maximum enjoyment of the book.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fascinating

I avoided the Doors' music as a teenager (during the 80s) and felt that the adulation directed at Jim Morrison was undue. Now in my 30s, I decided to give Jim's story a read and I've been very pleased with the choice! I suppose I still haven't decided whether Jim was a true talent or a fluke but I became engrossed in his story and just purchased the box set of the Doors studio albums. As a musician, I appreciated that the author described important musical elements of many Doors shows: the set list, the mood of the performers, the cultural setting and even the men who handled promotion. I was surprised to learn that Jim's obscenity trial was a farce and I was reminded of the intense, judgmental morality of the conservative elements of 1960s society. Whether you come to admire Jim Morrison or not as a result of this reading, I'm convinced that you will apreciate his daring, bold approach to challenging the American status quo.

6 people found this helpful

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Loved Every Second of It

What made the experience of listening to Jim Morrison the most enjoyable?

The overall story is so compelling.

What did you like best about this story?

Comprehensive view into the Doors career.

What does Paul Michael bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Can relate more emotionally I think.

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

Yes, extremely upset about Jim Morrison's self-destructive behavior on every other page. What a talent but what a shame.

Any additional comments?

Enjoyed every minute of this and would recommend it to any Doors fan or classic rock fan.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

pretty good

What made the experience of listening to Jim Morrison the most enjoyable?

I liked hearing about the scene and enviornment around the early years of the band - I was not alive so it gave me a picture of what it was like

Who was your favorite character and why?

jim--crazy @@@@@%^$#

Any additional comments?

a bit long but found out a lot about jim - one of my favorite singers - maybe more than I wanted to -- it was a good month by month history - very detailed - I felt sorry and envied jim all at the same time - quite a drunken ride - only for hardcore fans - you might bore if you don't love the music a lot

2 people found this helpful

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good listen

it's like 17 hours and I wish I was longer with more , never slow good reader I highly recommend

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Morrison Still A Mystery

This book shed very little information on the life of Jim Morrison. Part of the problem was the author’s inability to interview Morrison’s relatives. I don’t feel that I learned all that much about the famous singer, though I suppose it was marginally entertaining.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Way better than "no one here gets out alive" .

Someday, when my nephew finds the music of the doors. I will tell him this is the book to look into.

1 person found this helpful

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Profile Image for N. A. Schofield
  • N. A. Schofield
  • 03-06-21

love Jim Morrison

he was a tortured soul, most of the time he was the architect of his own torture.

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Profile Image for Scalper
  • Scalper
  • 07-30-20

Really enjoyed listening to this book.

A fascinating story of an American legend. The book covers so much of his life and the characters who were part of it. The good times, bad times and the downright crazy times. A must listen to for Doors fans.

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Profile Image for Mr. Mcintyre
  • Mr. Mcintyre
  • 06-27-20

Jim (July 3rd 1971) RIP

Book was very good, i was a little worried before reading this as i have been a huge fan of the Doors and Jim since i was 16, almost 30 years now! and light a candle for him every year on the 3rd of July. So i thought i might hear some things that would put me off or make me feel uneasy. but to be honest there wasn't much in there i didn't already know and i still love Jim and the Doors just as much after finishing it!. Like i said the book itself was good and the narrator's voice was cool! but it felt a little light in some areas, i was still left wanting more detail and information and some parts seemed rushed....but that could just be me, wanting too much. I have always felt a connection to Jim as we have so many things in common (except of course i have absolutely no musical and poetic ability) but with the life, problems and way of thinking...a different story!. Anyway RIP Jim!! there will never be another one like you!! The End

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Giulia R.
  • 05-26-19

b for effort

interesting,but several inaccuracies about rolling Stones references and at times repetitive.certain parts are litterally verbatim, the same as other bios.