Charles Manson has been one of those criminals that has always provided plenty of fodder for the True Crime enthusiast. Whether it’s the years leading up to the Tate-Labianca murders or his odd behavior up until his death just last year, his powers to persuade a group of young men and women to commit unspeakable acts still gives us the shivers. Prosecutor and regular contributor to the Neil Cavuto Show, Lis Wiehl has put together one of the most comprehensive looks at Charles Manson since Helter Skelter with her book Hunting Charles Manson. The book is also written with Caitlin Rother, who helps give the book a polished feel.
Hunting Charles Manson begins with the difficult life of a young Charles Manson and leads all the way up to his death from cardiac failure after years with dealing with respiratory problems from COPD. It also has the added benefit of not being sympathetic like so many other books are. The book presents facts, discusses their meaning, and doesn’t try to make you feel bad for a monster. The book focuses on how a man with a severely criminal past managed to get away from the police for so long while pretty much hiding out where everyone knew to find him. One of the biggest strengths of the book is covering not just only the well known deaths, but those that lead up to the Tate-Labianca murders. I for one did not know how many people Charles Manson helped to remove from the world with just a few well-placed suggestions to his followers and threats.
Charles Manson was not a good man, that much is obvious. The hardest part of Hunting Charles Manson is the descriptions of what happened to his children; none of it is good. Initially, Charles Manson’s first wife tried to shield her son from the truth about his father, but in the end that strain was far too much. Including what happened to his children, and even the eighteen year-old who wanted to marry him- Star Manson- the book gives a more complete picture and makes it very hard for the reader to just ignore what a horrible effect the man had on the world.
Hunting Charles Manson is now available from Thomas Nelson Publishing. If you’re a Murderino and want a more complete understanding of the Charles Manson case, I highly recommend picking up a copy immediately. It’s also available on Audible if you prefer the audiobook version.