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Charles Manson: Coming Down Fast, A Chilling Biography

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Seven people are found shot, stabbed and beaten to death in Beverley Hills. Among them is actress Sharon Tate, the beautiful young wife of Roman Polanski. It soon became apparent that a happyish cult known as 'The Family' was responsible. Their charismatic and manipulative leader, Charles Manson, took the public's imagination. As the world watched in morbid fascination, the Seven people are found shot, stabbed and beaten to death in Beverley Hills. Among them is actress Sharon Tate, the beautiful young wife of Roman Polanski. It soon became apparent that a happyish cult known as 'The Family' was responsible. Their charismatic and manipulative leader, Charles Manson, took the public's imagination. As the world watched in morbid fascination, the sensational and horrifying details of the case slowly emerged. Coming Down Fast is the definitive and most revealing account of one of the most notorious criminals in history, charting Manson's terrifying rise from petty-criminal to one of the most recognisable icons in criminal history. Including never-before-published photographs, this is the definitive book about Charles Manson.


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Seven people are found shot, stabbed and beaten to death in Beverley Hills. Among them is actress Sharon Tate, the beautiful young wife of Roman Polanski. It soon became apparent that a happyish cult known as 'The Family' was responsible. Their charismatic and manipulative leader, Charles Manson, took the public's imagination. As the world watched in morbid fascination, the Seven people are found shot, stabbed and beaten to death in Beverley Hills. Among them is actress Sharon Tate, the beautiful young wife of Roman Polanski. It soon became apparent that a happyish cult known as 'The Family' was responsible. Their charismatic and manipulative leader, Charles Manson, took the public's imagination. As the world watched in morbid fascination, the sensational and horrifying details of the case slowly emerged. Coming Down Fast is the definitive and most revealing account of one of the most notorious criminals in history, charting Manson's terrifying rise from petty-criminal to one of the most recognisable icons in criminal history. Including never-before-published photographs, this is the definitive book about Charles Manson.

30 review for Charles Manson: Coming Down Fast, A Chilling Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jenna

    3,75 stars I’m not sure how to rate this book. It took me about half a year to read, and because of that I obviously forgot pretty much everything from the firsts chapters. I also read the book in small sections, ex. 2 pages a day, and sometimes I didn’t read the book at all in two weeks, so the reading experience was really inconsistent. English is not my first language, so I had a lot of problems to understand what the book was trying to tell or what was happening at times. I have never read a 3,75 stars I’m not sure how to rate this book. It took me about half a year to read, and because of that I obviously forgot pretty much everything from the firsts chapters. I also read the book in small sections, ex. 2 pages a day, and sometimes I didn’t read the book at all in two weeks, so the reading experience was really inconsistent. English is not my first language, so I had a lot of problems to understand what the book was trying to tell or what was happening at times. I have never read a non-fiction book in English before, and it really shows. Because of my lack of understanding, the reading experience was pretty painful at times, and about half way down, my main goal was to get the book read, no matter what. And when I finally turned the last page, I felt relief. Since I had reading difficulties with this book, I have a problem with the rating. I understand that the research was done really well and the amount of work to make this book is massive, but I couldn’t appreciate the way it should be appreciated because I had so many difficulties with the reading itself. I feel bad for letting the problem with reading itself affecting the rating, but in the other hand, the rating tells about my personal reading experience. I have been thinking about re-reading this book again when I can dedicate my time to it wholly, and not have multiple library books waiting for me to read them, and making me less interested about reading this book of Charles Manson. I know that my inconsistent reading pace with this specific book affected the overall experience and the way I feel about it a lot. It honestly felt like a chore to read this book, and I ended up in a reading slump sort of because of it, which obviously is not good. Anyway, the topic of the book interests me a lot and I’m happy I finish it. If only I could’ve had a better reading experience and understand more of the book, it would probably be one of the best non-fiction books I’ve read. Maybe I will give it a second chance once I’ve improved with English reading skills and comprehension.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jlsimon

    This is an exceptionally well done book. What I liked about this book is that it is more a companion to Helter Skelter than a dispute of the facts already known. Wells goes into deep detail of the young life of Charles Manson, but he also goes into the details of the pasts of the individual family members. So many details that flushed out the back story were added that I would definitely recommend this book to individuals who look for case studies on group psychosis, team dynamics, and environme This is an exceptionally well done book. What I liked about this book is that it is more a companion to Helter Skelter than a dispute of the facts already known. Wells goes into deep detail of the young life of Charles Manson, but he also goes into the details of the pasts of the individual family members. So many details that flushed out the back story were added that I would definitely recommend this book to individuals who look for case studies on group psychosis, team dynamics, and environmental influences on criminal behavior. It also is a good book for reading about the counter-culture swinging to far outside of the acceptable societal bounds.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Rhi

    Really interesting theories in this book about Charles Manson, i found that i wasn't really aware of his mentality and the way in which he felt about death. Its a very creepy book but i definitely would recommend it to anyone who loves learning about serial killers or the psychology behind why they did what they did. Really interesting theories in this book about Charles Manson, i found that i wasn't really aware of his mentality and the way in which he felt about death. Its a very creepy book but i definitely would recommend it to anyone who loves learning about serial killers or the psychology behind why they did what they did.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Caroline

    Most people have at some time or another heard of the murder of Sharon Tate, by the Charles Manson family. This book takes you inside the family and details the life of those members involved in this horrific crime of the 1960s. It also details the social environment and politics which led to the rise of the Hippie movement in San Francisco during the 60’s and provides an insight into how disaffection and madness, enhanced by the drug culture, led to these murders. Despite his appearance and backg Most people have at some time or another heard of the murder of Sharon Tate, by the Charles Manson family. This book takes you inside the family and details the life of those members involved in this horrific crime of the 1960s. It also details the social environment and politics which led to the rise of the Hippie movement in San Francisco during the 60’s and provides an insight into how disaffection and madness, enhanced by the drug culture, led to these murders. Despite his appearance and background, Manson was a charismatic figure who charmed nearly all he met. This included members of various popular music groups such as the Beach Boys, the Mamas and Papas, and other notable Hollywood celebrities of the day – Tony Melcher, the son of Doris Day, was to figure prominently in attempts to secure a recording contract for Manson. Melcher had at one time leased the house in which the murder of Sharon Tate took place and Manson and his family were frequent visitors so were very familiar with the layout. However, at the time of the murders, Melcher was trying his best to avoid contact with Manson and the house had now been leased to Roman Polanski and his pregnant wife Sharon Tate. The victims of this horrific crime could have been anybody. It was simply that this house was familiar territory for Manson and whoever lived there at the time would have been the victim. But the initial police investigation centred on who might want to target the Polanskis. Polanski, himself, initially thought it may have been a “revenge” murder committed by a jealous husband whose wife Polanski had had an affair with. This makes for compelling reading. If there is any flaw with this work it is the lack of notes making it difficult to ascertain the veracity of quotes

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tony Phillips

    I have read all the books on the Manson saga, and this clearly is the best. What I like about it, more than anything, is that Wells takes a truly dispassionate approach in de-constructing the legend of Charles Manson and his so-called "Family". True, what occurred with the Tate-LaBianca murders was nothing short of horrific, but Wells take a less sensational view on what actually produced the spark that led to the murders. Where Vincent Bugliosi successfully argued for the so-called "Helter Skel I have read all the books on the Manson saga, and this clearly is the best. What I like about it, more than anything, is that Wells takes a truly dispassionate approach in de-constructing the legend of Charles Manson and his so-called "Family". True, what occurred with the Tate-LaBianca murders was nothing short of horrific, but Wells take a less sensational view on what actually produced the spark that led to the murders. Where Vincent Bugliosi successfully argued for the so-called "Helter Skelter" race war theory, here, there is ample documentation in "Coming Down Fast" that Manson's world spectacularly collapsed and splintered-hence the possible grudge attack on the Polanski and LaBiancas properties. Remarkably, Coming Down Fast seems not to be available in the United States. Ummm... seems strange, as a newer, fresher view on the most famous murders of the 20th century is long overdue. "Coming Down Fast" clearly succeeds where a multitude of others have failed. Essential reading Tony Phillips

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jonny Dolan

    When I rate it as amazing, I mean it had a profound effect on me by the way I realised how the way the mind of such a human being works. Apart from the obvious psychotic nature of the man, he was a very interesting person. This book will place you right among the "Family" but leave you feeling numb through one of the most famous murders in history. When I rate it as amazing, I mean it had a profound effect on me by the way I realised how the way the mind of such a human being works. Apart from the obvious psychotic nature of the man, he was a very interesting person. This book will place you right among the "Family" but leave you feeling numb through one of the most famous murders in history.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Finn

    This was a very well written biography. I knew very little about Charles Manson before reading this and it gave an in-depth view on his background and how he attracted his followers as well as the murders, trail and his sentencing. It is written like an extended essay, with quotes to back-up all views. Although a horrific book to read, it was a written like a novel and was compelling.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sean de la Rosa

    I really enjoyed this! Of course most know of Charles Manson, but I don't think many have an appreciation of just how much a diabolical influence he had over "the family". The biographer remains emotionally detached and relays the facts with clear precision. The style of writing was also enjoyable. I really enjoyed this! Of course most know of Charles Manson, but I don't think many have an appreciation of just how much a diabolical influence he had over "the family". The biographer remains emotionally detached and relays the facts with clear precision. The style of writing was also enjoyable.

  9. 5 out of 5

    William Marshall

    I really enjoyed this book even learned a few more things about the case for the most part though it's just bits and pieces of several previous books on the case I would however highly recommend it to anyone interested in the MANSON case who haven't read alot of other books on the subject I really enjoyed this book even learned a few more things about the case for the most part though it's just bits and pieces of several previous books on the case I would however highly recommend it to anyone interested in the MANSON case who haven't read alot of other books on the subject

  10. 4 out of 5

    Brendon Grubisich

    Close to the best non opinionated Manson bio I have read. Just the facts

  11. 4 out of 5

    Tom Schulte

    There are so many books about Manson out there, it is refreshing to read one that is so recent yet high quality. Wells, despite all the Briticisms made more odd to this American ear by narrator Peter Curran (for instance, giving Geraldo Rivera a soft "g", etc.), treads a line on the Helter Skelter issue. Were the slayings an attempt to start a race war, or mislead police and free Bobby Beausoleil in the aftermath of failed drug deal? Wells allows for both with more emphasis on the drug deal swir There are so many books about Manson out there, it is refreshing to read one that is so recent yet high quality. Wells, despite all the Briticisms made more odd to this American ear by narrator Peter Curran (for instance, giving Geraldo Rivera a soft "g", etc.), treads a line on the Helter Skelter issue. Were the slayings an attempt to start a race war, or mislead police and free Bobby Beausoleil in the aftermath of failed drug deal? Wells allows for both with more emphasis on the drug deal swirling in the preludes of Gary Hinman and Lotsapoppa. This feels closer to the truth to me from my other reading. Wells leaves intriguing bread crumbs about possible LaBianca mafia connections without getting into gambling debts so much and the possibility of a Manson hit list around Manson notes separated from him at the scene of the rest without also suggesting too much about broader conspiracy. I wonder if the web of coincidence and conspiracy will ever be untangled. From Manson's institutionalization and potpourri of philosophy out of Scientology and The Process church, Wells charts the influence of the Beatles album by album, the Beach Boys' Dennis Wilson, and more.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Aimee Went

    Very well researched and written. The chapters on the trial are especially enthralling; I thought the crimes surrounding Charles Manson just revolved around Sharon Tate but there's so much more that I never had a clue about. I'm very appreciative of the time taken to inform the reader of what the Manson legacy is, both in regards to the surviving members of the Family and also that of the cultural implications and references to the crimes even up to the present day. There are some grammatical mi Very well researched and written. The chapters on the trial are especially enthralling; I thought the crimes surrounding Charles Manson just revolved around Sharon Tate but there's so much more that I never had a clue about. I'm very appreciative of the time taken to inform the reader of what the Manson legacy is, both in regards to the surviving members of the Family and also that of the cultural implications and references to the crimes even up to the present day. There are some grammatical mistakes throughout but in terms of the actual content, I couldn't ask for more.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jon Stasiak

    So tragic that this book even had to be written, the tales within are shocking and gruesome. Being born decades after these murders - is always grown up knowing something, but nothing specific about Charles Manson. After reading this book, I now know why. If you like true crime and haven’t already read up on the Manson family, this is worth a read.

  14. 4 out of 5

    LeAnne Pearson

    Focuses mostly on Manson's interesting life before the murders, something not often detailed. Probably the most interesting crime biography I've read to date. Focuses mostly on Manson's interesting life before the murders, something not often detailed. Probably the most interesting crime biography I've read to date.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Emily Lynch

    As someone who is fascinated with the saga of the Manson family and thought she was a pretty big time nerd about all things Manson, I actually found out so much I didn’t know! Bravo, Simon wells!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Timothy Stead

    An utterly workmanlike treatment of Charles Manson and the murders he ordered that adds virtually nothing to existing knowledge. Any work on Charles Manson is going to have to stand in the shadow of Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi, a highly detailed and yet enthralling account of the murders, the man and the strange following he attracted. Bugliosi's book, however, is some 40 years old, and there is certainly room for a new work which looks at the subseque An utterly workmanlike treatment of Charles Manson and the murders he ordered that adds virtually nothing to existing knowledge. Any work on Charles Manson is going to have to stand in the shadow of Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi, a highly detailed and yet enthralling account of the murders, the man and the strange following he attracted. Bugliosi's book, however, is some 40 years old, and there is certainly room for a new work which looks at the subsequent life of the Family and investigates the persistent rumours that more killings than the Tate-Labianca murders can be attributed to them. Unfortunately, this book isn't it. Wells adds virtually nothing to the story of Manson and his family. His account of Manson's upbringing, rise to semi-fame and the murders is utterly pedestrian and adds nothing new to what is already known. The one new charge that he brings to the table - that one of Manson's acolytes may have been responsible for the death in London of Joel Pugh, a disillusioned follower - lacks virtually any substance whatsoever. There is no evidence that Pugh was murdered, no confession or police records, only a vague suspicion based on the fact that Pugh once knew Manson and associated briefly with the Family. In fact, Wells - presumable inadvertently - presents a picture of a depressed and isolated young man, cut off from others and facing his own demons. The possibility that Pugh killed himself seems much more plausible. Given the vast number of vulnerable people who drifted in and out of Manson's circles during their active years, that one would end up killing himself hardly arouses suspicion. Likewise, Well's account of the post-trial life of Manson and his Family adds little, consisting largely of a resume of their activities in the years since their imprisonment. Most of his followers, once removed from Manson's dominating personality, renounced their former messiah and expressed repentance for their crimes. More detail on them and their emotional journeys - leaving aside the thorny question of whether any of them deserve to be released - would have genuinely added something to the story, but it is not found here. The book itself is atrociously written. Simple errors and mis-spellings can be found consistently throughout. Manson is described as being the youngest inmate of a particular prison at the age of 13 and on the next page, describing earlier events, described as being 14. At another point, Wells states that one of Manson's followers 'pledged alliance' to him. Pledged allegiance, surely, was meant. The sheer number of grammatical and factual mistakes makes me wonder if this book was even cursorily proofread. Wells, a music journalist, makes frequent references to the music that Manson both wrote and listened to, and it must be said that one of the only virtues of his book is his discussion of them. They serve well as an insight into Manson's mind and his own megalomania. The style of a music writer, however, contrasts poorly with the more journalistic style that Wells also uses, jumping between a more detached tone and a gonzo style. Neither of these styles is wrong, but they clash when used together. Honestly, if you want to read a book about Charles Manson, stick to Helter Skelter.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Obelia Modjeska

    A fascinating account of Charles Manson's strange journey through life, culminating in the murders perpetrated by The Family and an autopsy on the lives of Manson and his former cohorts in (and out) or prison subsequently. What is most intriguing about this book, to me, is its documenting of the Manson story within the wider social and cultural context of the counterculture and the 1960s. Most creepy is the story of his "friendship" with Beach Boys member Wilson. One ultimately comes away strange A fascinating account of Charles Manson's strange journey through life, culminating in the murders perpetrated by The Family and an autopsy on the lives of Manson and his former cohorts in (and out) or prison subsequently. What is most intriguing about this book, to me, is its documenting of the Manson story within the wider social and cultural context of the counterculture and the 1960s. Most creepy is the story of his "friendship" with Beach Boys member Wilson. One ultimately comes away strangely with some sort of empathy for Manson, who comes through not innately as a murderer (in the vein of the true "serial killer") but someone who finally resorted to that as a tool of revenge against a society he validly despised. As Charlie himself pointed out, he was a product of a system and his crimes confront the world with that system's darker nature.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Eric Rautenbach

    This is a good true crime book to read. As someone who only roughly knew the story of Charles Manson, I certainly learned a lot about this infamous man, and those that surrounded him. What I found most fascinating was that people can be so easily influenced as to do what Manson ordered them to do. If this was not a true story it probably would not have been a very convincing fictional tale as it al seems a bit too far-out! Generally I felt it was a good book and well researched. For true crime f This is a good true crime book to read. As someone who only roughly knew the story of Charles Manson, I certainly learned a lot about this infamous man, and those that surrounded him. What I found most fascinating was that people can be so easily influenced as to do what Manson ordered them to do. If this was not a true story it probably would not have been a very convincing fictional tale as it al seems a bit too far-out! Generally I felt it was a good book and well researched. For true crime fans and for those interested in the whole Manson saga this book can be highly recommended, as for people like me, who doesn’t really fall into those categories, this book is a good read, but not amazing.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kelv

    Comes across fictional with the information logically delivered. I thought the script was well presented with good cohesion, the flow of the writing was able to spell points / situations clearly and simply which allowed me to keep up the interest and curiosity. People were presented in a non-sensational, matter of fact way, which was good. The only bug bear I had with the writing was the interchange of names i.e. Charles Watson was continually referred to as Tex, Charles Watson, Watson etc. this Comes across fictional with the information logically delivered. I thought the script was well presented with good cohesion, the flow of the writing was able to spell points / situations clearly and simply which allowed me to keep up the interest and curiosity. People were presented in a non-sensational, matter of fact way, which was good. The only bug bear I had with the writing was the interchange of names i.e. Charles Watson was continually referred to as Tex, Charles Watson, Watson etc. this for some of the less prominent characters made it harder to read. I would recommend this book to anyone who is not familiar with Charlie Manson (like me) as it answers the relevant and burning questions.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Maddy

    The content was highly curated and detailed, however it was not very well edited. Grammar was poor and quite a few quotes were repeated, some words were also over used. There were also a few contradictions which confuse facts, so I'm left unsure of what was true. Quite an amazing read of one of the world's most scariest humans. The brutality of the crimes and way in which they were conducted are completely detailed. What interested me the most was how Manson brainwashed and manipulated so many p The content was highly curated and detailed, however it was not very well edited. Grammar was poor and quite a few quotes were repeated, some words were also over used. There were also a few contradictions which confuse facts, so I'm left unsure of what was true. Quite an amazing read of one of the world's most scariest humans. The brutality of the crimes and way in which they were conducted are completely detailed. What interested me the most was how Manson brainwashed and manipulated so many people and somehow seemed to charm just about anyone he met. It took some time for me to soak in the information and it was a fairly tough read in terms of content, that what is written was a reality to these people.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Melanie

    Once upon a time I could read the most grisly stories about true crime and it wouldn't affect me but that all changed after I had children. Once upon a time I would have been able to read this book with fascination and enthusiasm, now not so much. I started reading this book and soon gave it up, I just found it so hard to get into. I did give it another chance as it was a borrowed book and I wanted to return it. As hard as it was to read, I gave it 3 stars because it was informative. Whilst it wasn Once upon a time I could read the most grisly stories about true crime and it wouldn't affect me but that all changed after I had children. Once upon a time I would have been able to read this book with fascination and enthusiasm, now not so much. I started reading this book and soon gave it up, I just found it so hard to get into. I did give it another chance as it was a borrowed book and I wanted to return it. As hard as it was to read, I gave it 3 stars because it was informative. Whilst it wasn't the worst book I have read (there was only a small part about the Tate murders), I did find the writing style a little boring.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Ness

    This book really affected me because it's terrifying how one person can control so many people. A person who was preaching love and freedom showed quite the opposite through taking away freedom through acts of hate. I always knew the case and what happened on the murder nights but I never knew the background of Manson or his followers. It was very insightful to what the 60s were like and the hippie movement. Drug use and the Beatles being huge themes as well. There was a lot more to the story th This book really affected me because it's terrifying how one person can control so many people. A person who was preaching love and freedom showed quite the opposite through taking away freedom through acts of hate. I always knew the case and what happened on the murder nights but I never knew the background of Manson or his followers. It was very insightful to what the 60s were like and the hippie movement. Drug use and the Beatles being huge themes as well. There was a lot more to the story than he was just a Psychopath murder because he wasn't always and this book shows how he drove himself mad and got to that point. Was written well, was easy to read and referenced throughout.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Felicity

    After reading the below review regarding this book,it put me off a bit reading it, as it is apparently full of factual and spelling mistakes. I read it anyway, as I'd already bought it, and I thought it was a fascinating story regardless. As someone who has not read Helter Skelter or other Manson bios, I am none the wiser to any factual mistakes, and just took it as a damn compelling story. I picked up on a couple of spelling and grammatical mistakes, although this didn't faze me. I found this b After reading the below review regarding this book,it put me off a bit reading it, as it is apparently full of factual and spelling mistakes. I read it anyway, as I'd already bought it, and I thought it was a fascinating story regardless. As someone who has not read Helter Skelter or other Manson bios, I am none the wiser to any factual mistakes, and just took it as a damn compelling story. I picked up on a couple of spelling and grammatical mistakes, although this didn't faze me. I found this book hard to put down at times. Definite must-read.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Malory

    Wells' incisive account of the macabre events coloring modern Manson folklore offers a deeply unsettling glimpse into the mysticism and psychedelia intrinsic to the Family's raison d'��tre. Owing concomitantly to speculation and factual encounter, Coming Down Fast is a vaporizing admixture of dark character and narcotic reflex - Wells' position is refreshingly perspectivist, which allows his prose to strike subtly and without the subdued dilettantism of other Manson writers. Organic and responsi Wells' incisive account of the macabre events coloring modern Manson folklore offers a deeply unsettling glimpse into the mysticism and psychedelia intrinsic to the Family's raison d'��tre. Owing concomitantly to speculation and factual encounter, Coming Down Fast is a vaporizing admixture of dark character and narcotic reflex - Wells' position is refreshingly perspectivist, which allows his prose to strike subtly and without the subdued dilettantism of other Manson writers. Organic and responsive to imagination, Wells' Manson is a character all his own.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Michaela

    This book offers a fantastic insight into the life and times of Charles Manson. It was the type of book that I wanted to both finish and keep reading forever. It is a "don't read when you're alone" book if ever I read one. The Tate and LaBianca murders are so descriptive that I felt like I was a fly on the wall on those fatal nights. This, of course, may not appeal to everyone but if you're a crime buff then this book is for you. This book offers a fantastic insight into the life and times of Charles Manson. It was the type of book that I wanted to both finish and keep reading forever. It is a "don't read when you're alone" book if ever I read one. The Tate and LaBianca murders are so descriptive that I felt like I was a fly on the wall on those fatal nights. This, of course, may not appeal to everyone but if you're a crime buff then this book is for you.

  26. 4 out of 5

    John Hardin

    The best bio on Manson I've ever read. It goes much further than "Helter Skelter" and offers the reader a more in-depth portrait of Charles Manson and the Family. It doesn't go into a lot of detail about the trials, but I believe enough has been written about them that most people know about them anyway. A must-read for anyone who wants to know more about this man. The best bio on Manson I've ever read. It goes much further than "Helter Skelter" and offers the reader a more in-depth portrait of Charles Manson and the Family. It doesn't go into a lot of detail about the trials, but I believe enough has been written about them that most people know about them anyway. A must-read for anyone who wants to know more about this man.

  27. 5 out of 5

    John Hardin

    The best bio on Manson I've ever read. It goes much further than "Helter Skelter" and offers the reader a more in-depth portrait of Charles Manson and the Family. It doesn't go into a lot of detail about the trials, but I believe enough has been written about them that most people know about them anyway. A must-read for anyone who wants to know more about this man. The best bio on Manson I've ever read. It goes much further than "Helter Skelter" and offers the reader a more in-depth portrait of Charles Manson and the Family. It doesn't go into a lot of detail about the trials, but I believe enough has been written about them that most people know about them anyway. A must-read for anyone who wants to know more about this man.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Currently reading this, it's a good book and interesting to learn more about Manson's history. My only complaint would be the amount of grammatical errors which are numerous. This would put me off reading this particular author again as it makes me question his skills as a competent writer. Otherwise an interesting read! Currently reading this, it's a good book and interesting to learn more about Manson's history. My only complaint would be the amount of grammatical errors which are numerous. This would put me off reading this particular author again as it makes me question his skills as a competent writer. Otherwise an interesting read!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lori

    Same old, same old. I've come to realize if you've read one Charles Manson book, you've read them all. Helter Skelter will continue to be the definitive Manson book and no further delving into his background or philosophy makes him any more interesting. Same old, same old. I've come to realize if you've read one Charles Manson book, you've read them all. Helter Skelter will continue to be the definitive Manson book and no further delving into his background or philosophy makes him any more interesting.

  30. 5 out of 5

    David

    Pretty heavy going but a very balanced and level-headed account of what was an extremely chaotic and tragic situation. Time for something a bit lighter, I think.

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