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Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders

Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders [Kindle Edition]

Curt Gentry , Vincent Bugliosi
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"The fullest story of the Manson case anybody ever is likely to get." (Wall Street Journal)

"A valuable book on a lurid subject...A record of savagery and official bungling." (Time)

"Continuously fascinating .. .Bugliosi does not disappoint." (New York Magazine)

"The fullest story of the Manson case anybody ever is likely to get" (Wall Street Journal)

"A valuable book on a lurid subject...A record of savagery and official bungling" (Time)

Book Description

The shocking true story of the Manson murders, revealed in this harrowing, often terrifying book. Helter Skelter won a Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award in 1975 for Best Fact Crime Book.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 4596 KB
  • Print Length: 768 pages
  • Publisher: Cornerstone Digital; New Ed edition (31 July 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00LI55EK2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #10,774 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best true crime book ever written - a classic 29 Mar. 2001
By Mrs. K. A. Wheatley TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
What fascinates me about this book is not the sex and drugs aspect of it, but what a powerfully hypnotic figure Charles Manson must have been. Even Bugliosi struggles to find words to describe what power Manson was able to wield over his followers. It is literally mind blowing. The other hard hitting aspect of the book was the police incompetence right through the entire investigation. I found it terrifying that they mislaid, lost and destroyed evidence and overlooked obvious and vital matters throughout. It is a testament to Bugliosi's skills as a prosecutor and Manson's huge ego that he ever got convicted. What strikes horror into my soul is the fact that if the police had got themselves sorted out from the beginning it would have been an open and shut case instead of one which dragged on for months, cost thousands of dollars and resulted in the murder of various key witnesses by members of the Manson family. An extraordinary and chilling book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars you can't have it all 25 Mar. 2010
By Cjob
The only criticism this book - and all Mr Bugliosi's other books - receive, that is worthy of consideration, is that he is a bit vain. To criticise him as a previous reviewer has, for not acknowledging the defence's contribution to the guilty verdict through their incompetence is very unfair, he lists every one of their own goals. I don't know what some readers expect. When Manson leapt ten feet from a sitting position to try to get at the judge do we really need a paragraph or two from Bugliosi conceding that this did not harm the prosecution's case?
Ok so the rest of it. His book is, like his prosecution work, immensely thorough and intellectually impressive, a masterpiece of combining factually accurate detail with concise and pacy writing. In other words you get the best of both worlds, all the excitement of a tightly written novel with the fascination of a compelling true story that is very easy to read and absorb. This is a wonderful read for any fan of real life crime and judicial history.
Oh, and the vanity. I don't think so. He does not claim much in the way of special skills or immense intellect. He is always at pains to point out how thorough his preparation is - because it needs to be - and the sometimes mind bogglingly huge ammounts of hours he puts into it. He is clear that he has had to graft for his extraordinary record. He certainly does take a strongly disapproving position on what he percieves as incompetance and laziness in many of the professionals he encounters in his work. And we should share his view of how poorly so many of our public servants at all levels perform, it is what makes our world not so great.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
By Teebs
For those who enjoy true crime, this is one hell of a story. Manson is a terrible antihero who is iconic in history. The book is well and intelligently written and it is very interestingly told by a prosecutor who was able to play an important role in Manson's demise. The fact that the narrator had a personal stake in the outcome of the case makes a big difference from other books of the genre. The book misses out on five stars because the narrator is a little too vain from time to time. I had the impression that Manson's defence was so shambolic that a monkey could have successfully prosecuted him. This is not a point that the narrator takes into consideration.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars INCREDIBLE!!! 11 April 2009
By Heather Negahdar VINE VOICE
"It was so quiet one of the killers would later say, you could almost hear the sound of ice rattling in cocktail shakers in the houses way down the canyon."

This was not an easy case for the Los Angeles detectives top solve. It was one of the biggest murder cases in American history, and definitely not for the faint-hearted. Written by Prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry, there are no holds barred, as all the facts surrounding these horrific murders are laid out in the open, naked for all to see of the Tate-LaBianca murders. The lovely movie star Sharon Tate, hairdresser to the stars Jay Sebring, the well heeled Abigail Folger the Coffee heiress, Voytek Frylowski, Folger's boyfriend, and Steven Parent who was at the address at the wrong time, Leno and his wife Rosemary LaBianca.
The warped and drugged out mind of Charles Manson killers shall be with you forever, as they kill for the fun of it for no particular reason. This well written novel will keep you engaged and it will be very hard to tear yourself away from it once you have begun.
This novel comes highly recommended.
Reviewed by Heather Marshall Negahdar (Sugar-Cane 11-04-09)
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a thundering good read 26 Jan. 2002
This is the definitive account of the longest trial in American legal history. Four persons: Charles Manson, Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten, are sentenced to death for the murders of Sharon Tate, Jay Sebring, Abigail Folger, Voytek Frykowski, Stephen Parent, Leno La Bianca and Rosemary La Bianca. The crimes, collectively known as the Tate/La Bianca murders took place in Los Angeles in August 1969. Vincent Bugliosi's work is both focussed and orderly and he scores highly in bringing a convoluted and at times incompetent enquiry to the reader in a totally believable account. Stretching to 664 pages, some might consider the work too long winded but the story certainly licks along at a good pace. The lion's share of the time is given over to a day by day, blow by blow account detailing the court proceedings. These accounts are so good that in places you can believe yourself to be in the public gallery and can feel the tension and horror as this macabre tale unfolds.
The crimes, which rocked America in the late 60's and early 70's, are truly horrific. Bugliosi does not shy away from revealing the cold, callous and detached nature of each defendant; none of whom show the slightest remorse for their barbaric actions. Neither too are we sheltered from the abundant stabbings, shootings, hangings, and mutilations. There are ample official statements, legal examinations, cross-examinations and personal conversations to satisfy even the most curious. The reader's inclusion 'in the court' so to speak, might for some readers prove too much, but by a combination of thoroughness, attention to detail and style the author takes us into the bizarre world of Charles Manson.
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