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J. Edgar Hoover and Clyde Tolson: Investigating the Sexual Secrets of America's Most Famous Men and Women Paperback – February 16, 2012

3.7 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover by Anthony Summers
Official and Confidential
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

THE DARK SIDE OF THE AMERICAN CENTURY Under direct orders from J. Edgar Hoover, iron-fisted G-Men spent decades ferreting out the most damaging scandals of America’s most famous women, including Eleanor Roosevelt and Marilyn Monroe, and damaging secrets about its most influential men, including Martin Luther King, Jr., Elvis Presley, and the Kennedys. Yet somehow, Hoover and Tolson managed to keep the lid on their own Pandora’s Box, threatening to destroy any journalist or politician who tried to expose them.

Compiled with meticulous care over many decades, the book is a chilling portrait based on candid claims made by some 1,000 people who socialized with, worked with, or encountered Hoover. It also contains titillations found in hundreds of little-known documents. For the first time, we hear from Guy Hotell, an FBI agent who was Clyde Tolson’s roommate in the 1940s and 50s. He often accompanied Hoover and Tolson on their free-loading vacations, where they sought sun, sex, and safe bets at Mafia-controlled race tracks.

Behind his back, eight American presidents held Hoover in disdain. But they found him useful for gathering career-destroying information about their enemies. In candid remarks, all of them mocked his homosexuality. One of Hoover’s bosses, Attorney General Robert Kennedy, told aides, “I expect Hoover to walk in the door any minute wearing one of Jackie’s discarded Dior dresses.”

During the compilation of this book, unusual sources were tapped, including eyewitnesses who would speak freely only after Hoover’s death in 1972. Revealing remarks were made by two of Hollywood’s most visible actresses, Dorothy Lamour and Ethel Merman, whom Hoover jokingly referred to as “my gun molls.” Each of them helped their friend acquire gowns and fashion accessories for dressing in drag.

It was not just an urban legend: Hoover was both a closeted homosexual and a transvestite. He was also a voyeur, acccumulating the nation’s largest cache of pornography. He particularly favored frontal nudes of male movie stars. As Hoover grew older and Tolson’s allure faded, he turned to a series of male hustlers, well-endowed young men supplied by pimps behind the scenes. Many of them talked.

Other tantalizing details exposed within this book include:

How Hoover took personal (undeserved) credit for mowing down “Public Enemies” in the 1930s, including Pretty Boy Floyd and Baby Face Nelson... and how he became fascinated by the penis of the slain “Public Enemy Number One,” John Dillinger, nicknamed “Donkey Dong.”

The crush Hoover developed on a young entertainer from Cuba, Desi Arnaz, then appearing on Broadway. Arnaz was arrested by the FBI, strip-searched, and photographed, nude. Later, after Hoover turned on Arnaz, he vindictively exposed Arnaz’s wife, Lucille Ball, as a communist, fully aware that the accusation might destroy her I Love Lucy TV sitcom.

Before and during World War II, Hoover kept Franklin D. Roosevelt in check with the threat of exposing that he’d moved his mistress into the White House, and that his lesbian wife, Eleanor, had moved in a female lover whom FDR referred to as “my wife’s squaw.”

During the witch-burning heyday of Red-baiter Joseph McCarthy, Hoover supplied the fuel for fires that ignited alleged communists. But then, Hoover learned that the Wisconsin senator concealed secrets that were darker than any of those he had exposed.

Hoover vs. The Kennedys, worthy of a drama by William Shakespeare, is a story of betrayals and ultimate tragedy. Days before JFK flew to Dallas for his assassination, Hoover warned him that the Senate was about to publicly investigate his sexual involvements with KGB-sponsored prostitutes within the White House.

The FBI’s pursuit of Elvis Presley: Hoover instructed his agents to gather evidence that the singer was a bisexual who had engaged in an incestuous relationship with his mother, Gladys.

How J. Edgar orchestrated relentless searches for celebrities he claimed were “as red as their underwear,” probing deep into the lives of Americans as diverse as Marlene Dietrich, Errol Flynn, Albert Einstein, Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Marlon Brando, and Jane Fonda—and what he found.

In the 1940s, President Franklin D. Roosevelt told his trusted but promiscuous (gay) aide, Sumner Welles, “Hoover’s caught all of us with our pants down. but someday, someone is going to catch him jaybird naked and involved in the most lustful, perverted behavior.”

With the publication of Darwin Porter’s newest book, that long-awaited day has come at last.

About the Author

Darwin Porter has been fascinated by the FBI ever since his widowed mother began dating a G-Man who presented him with a Junior G-Man badge in the mid 1940s.

Porter never became an FBI agent himself, but turned his investigative skills into reporting. Over the years, he gathered stories from dozens of Hollywood celebrities and FBI men, many in retirement in Florida. Sometimes, they spoke freely about their experiences in the FBI. Many others, however, preferred to keep their secrets, and those of J. Edgar Hoover and Clyde Tolson, to themselves.

Today, Porter is one of the world’s leading celebrity biographers, having written books on such diverse figures as Katharine Hepburn, Paul Newman, Howard Hughes, Marlon Brando, Humphrey Bogart, Michael Jackson, Steve McQueen, the Kennedys, and Frank Sinatra.

He is also the co-author of the popular Hollywood Babylon series, and is also the co-author of Damn You, Scarlett O’Hara, which exposed the complicated and deeply anguished private lives of Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh.

Currently, Porter is working on Marilyn at Rainbow’s End, destined for a publication during the Spring of 2012 and devoted to exploring the mysterious final years in the life of blonde sex goddess Marilyn Monroe. When not traveling, Porter lives in New York City.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Blood Moon Productions (February 16, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1936003252
  • ISBN-13: 978-1936003259
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.3 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,310,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By G.I Gurdjieff TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 13, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is absolutely explosive. It is extremely detailed and loaded with juicy tidbits about all the prominent people J. Edgar Hoover targeted on his notorious witch hunts, but ironically the most interesting thing about this book is all the information provided about Hoover himself.
While Hoover spent way too much time concerned with the sexual, social, and political habits of the well known and those who had positions of power and influence, the hypocritical Hoover and his partner Clyde Tolson had their own skeletons in their closet. Hoover conducted a decades long sexual and emotional relationship with Tolson that was ended only by death, was a raging cross dresser, commie hunter, crook, and all around creepy guy. He played people and he terrorized them with the knowledge he obtained in all sorts of covert ways, but during his own life was immune from the same sort of things he harassed other people with.
This book is crammed with information about Hoover and his long reign of terror. It also details the information Hoover accumulated about people such as JFK, RFK, LBJ, FDR, Eisenhower, Nixon, Marilyn Monroe, Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Eleanor Roosevelt, Joan Crawford, Errol Flynn, Ronald Reagan, Joe McCarthy, Roy Cohn, David Schine, Sumner Welles, Frank Sinatra, Desi Arnaz, Lucille Ball, Dorothy Lamour,Cary Grant, and Randolph Scott.
Normally I'd dismiss some of the claims made in this book, but based on information I've read in other books about Hoover that was extracted from some declassified government files and elsewhere I 'm inclined to believe most or all of the information provided.
Quite aside from all the gossipy information, this book is sort of funny. Alleged comments made about Hoover had me cracking up.
This is definitely an interesting book that never drags or bores. It starts on a high note and never loses momentum.
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Format: Paperback
This book contains the most degrading revelations I have come across in
more than 30 years of research.
The author turns over every disgusting slime-covered stone and unearths
a cornucopia of degradation and corruption more filthy to the imagination
than even Larry Flynt could conjure.

Porter reveals the most repellent, most vile and most intrepid research that I've
ever encountered.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough.

Now, please excuse me while I go and take a steaming hot shower...
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It is not news that the infamous J. Edgar Hoover was acloset queen but the almost overwhelming wealth of juicy info about legions of the famous from the Hoover era makes this book one I just could not put down. Politicians, movies stars, socialites are all shown with every bit of dirty linen exposed - some of it really shocking stuff. Darwin Porter clearly knows everything about everybody and has told all in this book.
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There are guilty pleasures.
Then there is the Master of Guilty Pleasures, Darwin Porter.
There is nothing like reading him for passing the hours, though the reading is more akin to wallowing in sleaze, rumor and scandal. He is the Nietzsche of Naughtiness, the Goethe of Gossip, the Proust of Pop Culture. Porter knows all the nasty buzz anyone has ever heard whispered in dark bars, dim alleys and confessional booths. And lovingly, precisely and in as straightforward a manner as an oncoming train, his prose whacks you between the eyes with the greatest gossip since Kenneth Anger. Some would say better than Anger.
Porter has brought us biographies of Sinatra, Bogart, Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, Brando and Merv Griffin. And he doesn't pussyfoot around, unless pussyfooting is a newly discovered fetish. His latest work, J. Edgar Hoover & Clyde Tolson: Investigating the Sexual Secrets of America's Most Famous Men and Women (Blood Moon Productions, $19.95)---the couple that could well be voted "please stay in the closet" by the gay community---is a masterwork, perhaps the greatest of all his books. Since Hoover was completely fixated on dirt and gossip, and since this is what Porter writes best about, this lengthy tome, in excess of 500 pages, is a feast for future historians. In every way, Hoover is the perfect subject for Porter; a subject who has been called evil, corrupt, vicious, brutal and cruel. Here Porter exposes Hoover with all the venom Hoover deserves.
There are those that would criticize Porter for pushing prurience in front of facts. If that is his point of view, so be it. Is there an historian that will not bend truth here and there to support a point of view? Can one be so naïve as to expect total reality and honesty from any history?
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About--J Edgar..Wm Sullivan-he was 1 of the greatest con men.

Theodore Roethke-he was head of our thought police. Sumner
Welles-he was 1 twisted sister.Ken Ackerman-a gay man who
harassed gays, Placed him self above the law-he was a monster.

Larry Flynt-he collected every rumor, Even completely innocent
people were afraid of their FBI files.RFK-J EDNA is the kind of
guy who has to squat to pee.


He loved only one woman in life-his mother and she never knew he
was gay--she hated gays. He was also a transvestite.

He loved only one man--Clyde Tolson..later in life when Clyde became
ill he treated him with comtempt.

He was ugly--he looked like a bull dog.He ruled the FBI for almost 50
years and struck fear in everyone from public official to private

Some of his victims were-MLK jr, Einstein,..Sanatra,Errol Flynn, Kate
Hepburn, JFK jr,..RFK, Maron Brando,Joseph McCarthy,Eleanor..Roosevelt
& Lindberg.

He made up storeis about the captures of Machine Gun Kelly-John Dillinger-
PrettyBoy Floyd-Adam Richetti- Baby Face Nelson and The Barkers, He and
Clyde always had a bigger part in their capture than they really did.

He was jealous of Agent Melivn Purvis...he destroyed him.

There is an interesting section on the spies he met and had files on.
These were extremely interesting men. He saw a Communist around every corner.

May 1,1972 --77yrs old--he went to bed about 11:30 pm,...he was awakened an
hour later..NIXON..told him he would be announcing a new director that morning
--in the middle of the night he died of a heart attack.
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