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Citizen Turner: The Wild Rise of an American Tycoon Hardcover – July, 1995

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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From Booklist

Books about today's media moguls, such as Rupert Murdoch, Sir James Goldsmith, and Ted Turner, usually make an obligatory nod--as do the Goldbergs here through Orson Welles--to William Randolph Hearst, the quintessential press baron. And the comparisons are usually apt. In this case, Turner, like his turn-of-the-century predecessor, has led a colorful life, accumulated great wealth, built a global communications empire, and wielded great power. Turner has already been profiled in at least four books, most recently by Porter Bibb in It Ain't As Easy As it Looks (1993). Now, armed with the results of more than 200 interviews, the Goldbergs, father-and-son writers who earlier looked at the way television covers the news with Anchors: Brokaw, Jennings, Rather and the Evening News (1990), offer this exhaustively researched, quite personal look at the man who created CNN, the network that revolutionized worldwide news coverage and that sometimes is itself responsible for influencing that news. Because Turner is often making news himself and creating controversy, there will always be an interest in his activities and plans and in the latest book about him. David Rouse
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 525 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt; 1st edition (July 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0151180083
  • ISBN-13: 978-0151180080
  • Product Dimensions: 2 x 6.8 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,818,771 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
The Goldbergs tie Ted Turner into such a tight package that the reader is left with the impression that their impression is one-sided. But his monomorphism seems to naturally follow his fascinating upbringing and the shaping of an incredible domineering father. And then, when one hears post-Citizen Turner interviews and follows the news about Ted, the authors are vindicated. They've got him pegged! Very easily readable
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Format: Hardcover
From the very start, it is plain the Goldbergs lack any primary sources for their book, since there the exploration of Turner's character and personal decisions tend to be more conjecture than anything else. This book seems to do a good job of listing each of the various public decisions and people in Turner's life, but the important decisions and events are glossed over. For instance: The Goldbergs repeatedly note how Turner micromanaged his companies, only promoted from within, and didn't allow his senior managers and board to make major decisions. Yet, by the time CNN was created, Turner was clearly ignoring his billboard company, and TBS seemed to be cranking along fine. What did Turner think of these people, and what were they doing that made the cash flow possible for Turner to lose so much money while CNN was started up?
The book also has a facination with the chronology of his womanizing. While distaining his extramarital sexual adventures, the Goldbergs seem to do little more than count the notches in Turner's bedpost. Sure they do some pop-psychological analysis, but has no discussion of how his womanizing may have affected other parts of his life, family, and businesses -- especially when the affairs became so blatently open in the 70's and 80's.
Read this book if you want to know what happened in Turner's life up until the First Gulf War (the book was written before Turner's empire was bought by Time Warner), but don't expect a whole lot of insight to his personal life and business genius.
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