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Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson by [Jeff Guinn]
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Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 845 ratings

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Length: 526 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


Manson is not simply a biography of a killer and a cultist. It's a history of American culture from the Great Depression to the close of the 20th century. It's the dirty boogie in four-four time, a fascinating study of greed, mind control, celebriphilia, sex, narcotics, racism, and the misuse of power. I lived in South Los Angeles when many of the events in this book took place. No one has told the story as accurately as Jeff Guinn. It's the story of Nixon and Johnson, Martin Luther King, Vietnam, the SDS, the Black Panthers, the acid culture, and a nation coming apart at the seams. From the first page to the last, I could hardly put it down. Hang on, reader. This is a rip-roaring ride you won't forget.” (James Lee Burke )

“[A] brawny, deep-digging biography that's much more riveting than might be expected. . . . Mr. Guinn is fascinating in his use of hindsight, and it allows him a more probing view of his subject than earlier biographers had. . . . Steadily surprising.” (Janet Maslin The New York Times)

“Brilliant. Written with deep insight and in seamless, fluid prose, Guinn’s Manson expands the story of the cult leader into something far beyond the shocking story we're used to. The best book about Manson that I’ve read . . . and I think I’ve read them all.” (Jeffrey Deaver )

"[A] riveting, almost Dickensian narrative. . . . four stars." (Judith Newman People)

“[A] tour-de-force of a biography. . . . Vincent Bugliosi’s book Helter Skelter led me to believe there was nothing more to learn. . . . I was wrong. . . . [Manson] stands as a definitive work: important for students of criminology, human behavior, popular culture, music, psychopathology and sociopathology, and compulsively readable.” (Ann Rule The New York Times Book Review)

"Guinn has managed against all odds to offer a fresh take and a worthy complement to the first-hand immediacy of [Vincent] Bugliosi's Helter Skelter. . . . Offers new insight to those who lived through that turbulent era, and provides essential context to those who didn't. What emerges is a grim but highly compelling portrait of a 'lifelong social predator' who was 'always the wrong man in the right place at the right time.'" (Daniel Stashower The Washington Post)

"[Guinn] is now proving himself to be one of the pre-eminent true crime writers in the country. . . . Even though you know how the story turns out, you’re surprised on almost every page." (Jim Witt Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

“Jeff Guinn takes the reader on a fascinating, chilling visit to a dark and decadent time in American history, all the while maintaining a laser focus on the era’s most recognizable face of evil. A gifted writer and master researcher, Guinn explores the depths of Charles Manson’s twisted psyche in a brilliant effort that dramatically raises the bar on the true crime genre.” (Carlton Stowers, two-time Edgar winner for Best Fact Crime )

"Splendid, comprehensively researched. . . . [Guinn] has given us an American nightmare from which we have not yet fully awoken." (Ariel Gonzalez The Miami Herald)

"Jeff Guinn knows how to tell a story, and he scores some coups with Manson. . . . The new information provides some surprises. . . . [Manson] will add to Mr. Guinn's reputation as an author who can both research and write well." (Laura Malt Schneiderman Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

"Manson is a book impossible to put down, the details so palpable that the sense of being a part of each scene is almost overwhelming. . . . Guinn manages something much more than a true-crime book. Filled with the trampled hopes and broken dreams of those who gave their lives to a sociopath, Manson is an American tragedy." (Michael E. Young Dallas Morning News)

Manson is, as its author surely intended, deeply unsettling and unnerving.” (Wendy Smith

"Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry's Helter Skelter is a great true-crime book and up until now I would have said that it was the definitive book on murderer and cult leader Charles Manson. Now, having read Jeff Guinn's Manson, I realize that there was much more to this odd and horrible man." (Paul Davis Washington Times)

"Sometimes a book is so good that the reviewer does not know where to begin. It doesn't happen often, but this is one of those times. . . . Jeff Guinn has produced not only the best biography of Charles Manson, but the best study of American true crime since Victoria Lincoln's A Private Disgrace: Lizzie Borden by Daylight. . . . [A] consistently superb book. . . . Flawless." (Florence King National Review)

“Manson by Jeff Guinn knocked me down. . . . Mr. Guinn has become a truly great writer of nonfiction Americana.” (Daniel Woodrell The Wall Street Journal)

About the Author

Jeff Guinn is the bestselling author of numerous books, including Go Down Together, The Last Gunfight, Manson, and The Road to Jonestown. He lives in Fort Worth, Texas, and is a member of the Texas Literary Hall of Fame.

Product details

  • Publication date : August 6, 2013
  • File size : 29935 KB
  • Print length : 526 pages
  • Publisher : Simon & Schuster; Illustrated edition (August 6, 2013)
  • ASIN : B00A2813WE
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Language: : English
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Page numbers source ISBN : 0857208934
  • X-Ray : Enabled
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 845 ratings

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
845 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on June 4, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on July 6, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on February 28, 2019
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Reviewed in the United States on October 22, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on January 18, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on September 26, 2019
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4.0 out of 5 stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 22, 2018
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4.0 out of 5 stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 22, 2018
What I liked about this author's work was how Jeff Guinn cuts the world- famous murderer Manson down to size as a psychopathic ex-con and deluded idiot who had unrealistic expectations of fame and fortune as a pop star. Guinn's contention offers a credible alternative to the sensationalistic tale offered by the County Prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi of Manson wanting to rule the world. The author also offers a fascinating insight into late 1960s America and the birth of the free love, democratic movement in which the humble could rub shoulders with the wealthy.
[[ASIN:B00Q8S7KZQ May, Magic and Moonlight: the first in the moonlight series]]
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8 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating tale of strange times
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 14, 2017
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6 people found this helpful
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S. Hughes
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 30, 2020
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Wayne O.
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book. All the important details are included here ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 21, 2017
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6 people found this helpful
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Jennie H
5.0 out of 5 stars Compulsive Reading
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 10, 2019
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