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Untouchable: The Strange Life and Tragic Death of Michael Jackson

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Untouchable: The Strange Life and Tragic Death of Michael Jackson [Hardcover]

by Randall Sullivan
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (364 customer reviews)

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Amazon Best Books of the Month, November 2012: Does the world need another book about the late King of Pop? Do you want to read one? Before opening onetime Rolling Stone editor Sullivan’s massive (775+ pages) book, I would surely have screamed NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Everybody knows the story: adorable musical prodigy grows up into weird, plastic surgery–addicted, money-obsessed celebrity who may or may not have been a pedophile but is doubtless sexually stunted. And how could he not have been, given the horrific treatment he received from his father, who apparently couldn’t decide whether to beat him to death or just pimp him out as a performer? Sullivan hits all those notes, of course, and while the recitation of Jackson’s many debts and trials verges on wearying, the sheer accumulation of detail and unusual amount of access to longtime Jackson advisors and relatives also makes you realize, once and for all, the extent of the damage done both to and by the guy the British press dubbed “Wacko Jacko.” From the very first scene--in which Joe and Katherine Jackson trick their way into their son’s home--the Michael Jackson that emerges here is both hero and villain, a loving father (truly!) and a screaming egomaniac, a sometimes brilliant businessman who was also pathetically naïve. Go on: Check out this train wreck of a life. I dare you to look away. --Sara Nelson


Praise for Untouchable

“Sullivan reveals a man who was not the pedophilic, transgendered, transracial freak the media thought he was, but a highly intelligent and sensitive perfectionist, more self-aware—and ashamed—of his surgically altered looks than the public ever knew. . . . Sullivan’s sensitive portrait of [Jackson] is a good start toward explaining and rehabilitating a lonely genius who was poorly understood in his lifetime.”—Kirkus Reviews

Praise for Randall Sullivan

“Like its title, this book has something miraculous in it. Imagine, if you can, a book . . . that will interest, and satisfy, both the pious and skeptical. That book is this one. Mr. Sullivan's cast of unlikely characters recalls the inhabitants of other mountains, Thomas Mann's Magic Mountain or Thomas Merton's The Seven Storey Mountain.” —The Washington Times on The Miracle Detective

“An intrepid Portland journalist crafts a fascinating exploration of how the Catholic Church investigates purported sightings of the Virgin Mary; a globe-trotting, first-person spiritual odyssey that took him to northeastern Oregon, Arizona, Bosnia, the Vatican and beyond.” —Seattle Post-Intelligencer on The Miracle Detective

“[An] engrossing, damning tale of widespread unchecked corruption in one of the nation’s largest police departments, one that deserves attention. . . . Exhaustively researched, the book methodically weaves a disturbing story of corruption, intimidation, and murder.” —Boston Globe on LAbyrinth

About the Author

For over 20 years, Randall Sullivan was a contributing editor to both Rolling Stone and Men's Journal. He is the author of The Miracle Detective, The Price of Experience and LAbyrinth. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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