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Defending a King ~ His Life & Legacy Paperback – December 15, 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 498 pages
  • Publisher: Infinity Publishing; 1st edition (December 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0741470314
  • ISBN-13: 978-0741470317
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (458 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,646,505 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


A Psychologists Take on Michael Jackson

Dr. Karen Moriartys "Defending A King" may not be a traditional biography, but it offers an intriguingand humanizingperspective on the King of Pop.

A trained clinical psychologist, Dr. Moriartys most interesting contribution is her professional analysis of Jacksons actions throughout his life, especially those deemed strange by the tabloid media. Of particular note is her Bizarre Behavior chapter, in which she points out that bizarre behavior is normal in bizarre circumstances and then thoughtfully explains how and why.

Dr. Moriarty delves into the psychology of what it was like to be Michael Jackson,  underscoring how incredible it was, from a therapists perspective, that Jackson turned out to be such a kind and gentle human being  given his upbringing.
[H]er professional perspective on the inner workings of Michael Jackson alone made the book a worthwhile read for anyone looking to gain a new understanding of the King of Pop.
                                                                  -- Zack OMalley Greenburg, Senior Editor, Forbes Magazine & Author, "Michael Jackson, Inc."

Truly engaging  the real story at last!Skillfully-written with layer after layer of facts and presented with interesting style, this book tells the heart-wrenching story of that most interesting and complex entertainer [Michael Jackson]....

Truthfully, I was never a fan of Michael Jackson. But I am keenly interested in the few who skyrocket beyond the heights of celebrity strata through hard work and sheer brilliance. Dr. Moriarty helped me appreciate this performer who, in spite of his eccentricities (which many great personalities seem to acquire), was a highly talented, creative, good man trying to do the right thing....

When the hype of the media skews the truth, you will find satisfying resolution to your doubts through this extraordinary book.                                                                      -- Kenneth R. Overman, Author, "A Lion in Spring"

From the Author


Michael Jackson fans and others have praised Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy for many reasons:

~ It discloses the truth about Michael Jackson with respect & passion
~ First-hand witnesses and true friends of Michael are its major sources
~ Michael's last four years are disclosed in detail
~ The author presents a well-reasoned analysis of Michael's personality & behaviors
~ The book dispels the myths - avoids sensationalism & distortions
~ It captures both the mind ... and heart of the reader
~ Michael Jackson, the innocent victim of media & the greedy, is revealed and vindicated


                                                               "His kindness and humility."
                                 These are the words that most people used to answer my question,
                                             "What did you most admire about Michael Jackson?"

     It is because of Michael Jackson's goodness - mostly unknown and ignored during his lifetime - that I have been inspired to undertake this project. "A mission" is the best way to describe it. I never experienced a moment of "writer's block" as I was working on this book. Not ever.
     The "SECRETS" about Michael Jackson that I discovered were neither sinister nor ugly. Michael chose love, as corny as that sounds. He chose to be a global humanitarian. Michael believed that was his purpose on this Earth -- to "heal the world."


     I always believed in Michael Jackson's innocence. To me, his jury trial in 2005 for alleged crimes against children, including kidnapping and molestation, was a misguided, ill-intentioned travesty of justice. I rejoiced when Michael was found not guilty of all 14 counts of felonies and misdemeanors.
     When Michael Jackson died suddenly on June 25, 2009, I was stunned, numbed, and deeply saddened. That fateful and pivotal day began what turned into full-time research about Michael; visits to his homes, including Neverland; writing as a volunteer for a secret MJ advocacy group; interviewing many people who knew him; and networking with his fans from everywhere.

     In early 2010, I watched a television program that featured Michael's team of three bodyguards, men who protected him and his children while he was based in Las Vegas from late 2006 to mid-2008. These men announced that they wanted to write a book about Michael Jackson from their "inside" experiences and perspective. They felt like his champions and were determined to dispel the media-created nonsense about their beloved boss.

     Weeks later, after searching unsuccessfully for their book, I contacted the head of security on that team and volunteered my services to help. I believed that it was important that finally there would be a caring and credible book about Michael Jackson. After four days of meetings with two of the bodyguards in Las Vegas and several months of full-time ghostwriting for them, I realized that we were "not on the same page" on some major issues. We had "a parting of the ways," which I describe fully in "The Back Door" chapter. With my husband Robert's encouragement, I changed direction, expanded the scope, and wrote the "definitive book" about Michael Jackson that I had hoped would be available ... but never was.

     During my author's journey, I met with and interviewed many people who knew and loved Michael. They were generous both in spirit and in the information that they shared with me. Everyone knew that we were working together on a project to advance Michael's legacy.

     I made no attempt to work with a conventional publishing company because many "knowers" assured me that the American publishing industry was not interested in a positive book about Michael Jackson. It was trash that sold - sensationalism, rumor, innuendo, allegations, and sordid stories. I self-published Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy in December 2011.

     Michael Jackson fans responded in great numbers. People from around the globe have embraced this book in heartwarming ways.

     Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy was updated during the early months of 2012, incorporating excellent suggestions from fans and other readers. I self-published the second edition with Outskirts Press in August 2012. This edition is now available anywhere in the world. The book became an Amazon Kindle bestseller at the end of that year. I'm so grateful: "It's all for L.O.V.E."


     From Michael's two bodyguards, I gained a real feel of Michael Jackson as a private person, father, boss, businessman, friend, and family member. These men knew the greatest entertainer in the world as "surprisingly normal," kind, gentle, vulnerable, and plagued by extraordinary troubles. They were surprised and amazed by their journey as his protectors and occasionally as his confidantes. They loved "the boss" and his "three little ones" -- Prince, Paris, and Blanket.

     When we went our separate ways, we were not friends ... but we were not enemies either. These men never did publish a book about their beloved boss. Perhaps someday they will.

     After that fascinating "immersion" experience, I have been blessed to make friends with many wonderful people of unquestionable integrity, all of whom are advocates of Michael and his legacy. I feel that we are kindred spirits. They have generously shared with me their stories, intimacies, feelings, and experiences with Michael Jackson. I feel humbled and honored to call them my friends.

                                                    The "Dedication" of the book says it all:

                                                        "To Robert, my in-house inspiration,
                                                    To Michael Jackson, who changed my life."

     One of the biggest surprises for me has been the discovery of the multitude of individuals whose lives have been changed by Michael Jackson. I've included as many stories from these people as possible in this book.

     I'm especially grateful to....
  • Thomas Mesereau and Susan Yu, MJ's defense attorneys in 2004-05;
  • David Nordahl, MJ's personal artist and mentor for 20-plus years;
  • Larry Nimmer, MJ's advocate and the filmmaker of the only video of Neverland, Michael's home and sanctuary for 17 years;
  • Cherilyn Lee, MJ's personal nurse in 2009 and key witness in the Conrad Murray manslaughter trial.
     There are many others whom I would like to include here, but space does not permit....


     As a former teacher of English and writing, I incorporated specific goals in Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy:
  • This book contains no salacious material; its content is appropriate for teenagers as well as adults of all ages.
  • The reader does not need to read it from beginning to end because there are 19 discreet chapters, each with its own theme.
  • This biography can be comfortably incorporated into the curriculum at the high school, college, and graduate school levels.
     While I was writing Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy, I was ever-conscious of Michael's beloved children - Prince, Paris, and Blanket. I wanted this book to be a worthy tribute to their father.

LAST WORDS: I encourage readers to write reviews of Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy. Also, I welcome direct communications from readers. I attempt to answer every message.

Find Us On Facebook: "Karen Moriarty" and "Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy"
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Dr. Karen Moriarty has worked as a teacher, counselor, administrator, and consultant in public schools and as a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice. She earned advanced degrees, including her doctorate, from Northern Illinois University.

Defending a King~His Life & Legacy is offered as an intimate and disclosing portrayal of Michael Jackson, with new information and unique insights regarding this "king of a man." His goodness has been unknown and/or ignored; this volume needs to be affixed to the legacy of his greatness. "Bizarre behavior is normal in bizarre circumstances." Dr. Moriarty leads her reader through the maze of stunningly bizarre circumstances in which Michael lived and struggled, through his private joys and sufferings as a real human being... a transcendent man.

Baby Richard: A Four-Year-Old Comes Home, published in 2003, was her first book, written because it was "an epic story that had to be told."

Karen is married to Dr. Robert V. Moriarty, also a licensed clinical psychologist and former president of a community college and of a private graduate school.

They reside with their feline companion, Billy Gene, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

Customer Reviews

Thank you so much to DR. Karen Moriarty for this wonderful book about the real Michael Jackson.
I hope from the bottom of my heart that the whole World will read your Book and the love what Michael wanted to learn us will come more and more.
I recommend this book to anyone who wants to know how MJ, as a matter fact, tried his very best to make our world a better place.
Q Zhang

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

153 of 179 people found the following review helpful By sanemjfan on April 10, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had high hopes for Dr. Moriarty's book "Defending A King", based on reviews from different MJ fan sites and blogs, an endorsement from Tom Mesereau, and hearing her interview on Blog Talk Radio to promote the book. However, after finally completing this massive 500 page book, I am left with a feeling of immense incompleteness, as there is much to be desired from this well-intentioned but poorly research book. Let me explain:

The book started out great, with Dr. Moriarty speaking about her conversations with MJ's bodyguards from Vegas. There is a lot of great information that they gave, and it's a shame that they had a falling out with Dr. Moriarty and did not complete the book with her, as was the original intention. The knowledge that she received from MJ's attorney Tom Mesereau was valuable as well, as Dr. Moriarty gives fans an inside look at what is was like for MJ to experience that tortuous trial.

Unfortunately, the book falls apart quickly because Dr. Moriarty obviously isn't very knowledgeable about MJ, and she is a very poor researcher. Here are a few examples:

On page 226, she inadvertently regurgitates a March 2008 tabloid story written by Stacy Brown, who co-authored the 2004 piece of trash book "Man Behind The Mask" with MJ's former manager Bob Jones. The article, titled "Jacko Clan In A Deep Funk", was originally printed in the New York Post, and it purports to be an honest portrayal of the whereabouts and happenings of the Jackson family in 2008. It was reprinted in the "Michael Jackson Tribute - Exclusive Collector's Edition" book, and this is where Dr. Moriarty copied it almost word for word!
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By LUKE R. on February 11, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When considering the myriad of books, articles and television programs that have been released since Michael's passing, some people may wonder if there's anything new or compelling left to be said about his well-chronicled, remarkable life. Well, I can assure you that Defending A King ~ His Life & Legacy will give readers something unique: a never-before-told, inside story of what daily life was really like for the world's most famous person. What Michael referred to as his "life in a fishbowl" will seem like an understatement when you've finished reading this exceptional book.

I was extremely impressed with the depth and breadth of Dr. Karen Moriarty's research. She supports her positions thoroughly and thoughtfully in each of the 19 chapters. An emphasis on firsthand sources--including security staff and professional associates--adds a great deal of credibility throughout. Additionally, I thought the book did an excellent job of clearing up the lies and misinformation repeatedly spread by the self-serving media.

Writing from a psychologist's perspective, Dr. Moriarty effectively describes the "why" behind the "what" regarding Michael's decisions, both as a public figure and as a father. Conclusions are grounded in psychological theory, presented at an accessible level. It was particularly interesting to learn about concepts such as compartmentalization and situational demand. I came away with a better appreciation of how Michael Jackson was uniquely human, just like the rest of us.

One of the central themes across several chapters explores the duality of Michael's mission in life. Almost everyone knows him for his unparalleled artistic excellence; however, the extent of his worldwide philanthropic involvement is equally impressive.
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39 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Soldier of Love on January 20, 2012
Format: Paperback
I am very grateful to Dr. Moriarty for writing such a detailed book about Sweet Michael! Whether or not you are a fan, this book will give you a much better idea of what His life was like. Dr. Moriarty researched well for this book and provides many glimpes into Michael's amazing life. There were a few times I had to stop reading and dry my eyes before continuing. I was not surprised by Michael's generosity and love for His fans, family, and people all over the world. It's who He was/is. He loved with abandon. He gave with ease. This book is a gift to to our community, and a must read for the entire world. Thank-you so much Dr. Moriarty. You are definately a soldier of love! peace, light & MichaeLove, E. M. Bx.
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33 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Mary Singer on February 3, 2012
Format: Paperback
THE BEST book available on Michael Jackson! I have collected shelves of books on & about him through the years & many more since his death, but this one is by far the best! Dr. Moriarty has made him a man, not just a name or a performer & I hope that thousands will buy this book & read it.
EVERY Michael Jackson fan needs to read this fantastic book. It will open your eyes, make you think, make you cry and make you smile.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Kittycat on March 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Though I have 2 chapters to go, I feel safe in saying Buy This Book!

For those just learning about Michael, this book gives a comprehensive look at his life - his career, philanthropy, legal and financial issues (and their causes), fatherhood, and unequaled necessary security measures. There is more information here about Michael's last four years than in anything else I've read, mainly due to anecdotes shared by the men who were Michael's Las Vegas bodyguards.

Dr. Moriarty writes with genuine respect and understanding for Michael, but she does not paint him as the meek, mild, one dimensional character some fans embrace. She gives real insight to the way this intelligent, sensitive, often funny man dealt with the pressures of his life. While she touches on health issues and his sexuality it is with respect, with the intent of setting the record straight.

To the informed fan I say this: it is time we put our money where our mouths are. Too many MJ fans think they already know it all, so don't need to read another book. For others, it's time to stop the misguided "protection" of Michael's privacy by silencing, via boycotts, anyone who actually knew, loved and understood him, or has interviewed those who did. Tom Messerau not only endorses this book, he was interviewed for it, and no one can doubt his motives.

How do' we get the general public interested in the truth about Michael? We have to fight this battle on the existing field, and that means hit 'em in the bottom line. Sales = media interest' = curiosity in the general public. If truth sells, publishers and producers will stop brainwashing the masses with their toxic swill. It really is all about $$$.
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