Sunday, September 26, 2021

Book Review: The Tragic Death of Marina Habe by Tighe Taylor

As longtime devotees will know, here and there I've reviewed books associated with our topic - well, because MansonBlog is a wholesome and benevolent institution in part dedicated to helping readers find the books they'll love by spotlighting the best in TLB-related literature - but once or twice I've had to put on my black hat and present a deliciously virulent take-down. Unfortunately, this is one of those moments. This one lies prone on the sacrificial altar, ready for... well... this.

Let's get the knives out.

It's not just that The Tragic Death of Marina Habe is bad. It’s that it's bad in ways that seem to cause the space-time continuum itself to wobble. It gives us 65 pages that have the breadth and emotional resonance of the white pages. I finished it on a short flight, but was retching before we left the tarmac. I trudged on because it was only 65 pages and the lavatory was occupied.

In the introduction, Taylor says:

"Our story is told through the eyes of a fictional writer for a true crime magazine. Much of the action, particularly the early stages, centers around meetings between the writer and his editor. In these meetings, the writer explains his plan for an article about Marina and her fate.

This framing allows alternative theories to be presented...

But.. then he really didn't do much of that. It seemed like he stuck this in while reading his draft (he didn't even do THAT well) to distance himself ever so slightly from this 7th grade level school report done on Sunday night after bedtime and belongs in a folder labeled "Stuff We Already Know". He repeatedly says he made attempts to contact many (including Deidre Lansbury), but no one responded to him. My favorite part was when he said that it is rumored that Maury Terry had drafted a book solving this case before he passed. This is the same Maury Terry who believed David Berkowitz acted in concert with a satanic cult in Yonkers. Terry's family (of course) did not respond to Taylor's requests for information.

It devolves into self-satisfied, fish-in-barrel elimination of suspects (ie The Family) using long-known facts most likely gleaned from the very blogs that Taylor takes time to badmouth. All of the facts contained in the book can easily be found in this here WordPress blog. In fact, this Charmin roll is pretty much a series of glorified, padded-out blog posts... a deeply needless book... a rambling mess of facts already known to even novice TLB students... a collection of self-aggrandizing - seemingly copied/pasted, mildly tweaked facts and (of course) self-published - so he can tell women in airport bars that he writes true-crime books. I would mention the grammatical errors, quadruple quotation marks, misplaced carriage returns and repeated paragraphs, but it's Sunday night after bedtime.

For the love of God, don't read this book, or else he might write another.




45 comments:

Zeke002 said...

I take it this shitshow was self-published, Matt. I confess to being fascinated by the volume of voices that seem convinced their take on TLB is essential.
By the way, Clare Watkins has a new book coming out. Any insight on what happened to Schreck's second book? Or O'Neils.
I'd pay big to see G/W and Deb team up and give us a comprehensive piece on all Manson books in the last decade with real sales figures.
Quick aside...not to be argumentative, Grim, I never "turned on" the Saint. I had an irrationally intense dislike for the guy from the get go. Matt read me the riot act. But that is life in the blog world.
I still would like some insight into G/W's TLB pedigree.

Zeke002 said...

Damn, you did say it was self-published. My bad.
Is there a TLB book still out there that would interest you?
I always wanted to see Donkey Dan team up with a ghost writer and pen a book similar to "The Happy Hooker".

starviego said...

Hans Habe, Marina's father, was in military intelligence, an expert in psychological warfare. That was in WW2, but we don't know if he carried on in the post-war years.

Dan S said...

Tighe? That's a weird name

Peter said...

Other than that, how did you like it?

Matt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matt said...

Zeke002 said...
Is there a TLB book still out there that would interest you?


Yes, I’m reading one now. I’ll review it soon.


Milly James said...

I was just wondering if Mario III (of another case fame) is OK? He hasn't put his two penneth in for a while. Is he down with Covid perhaps? Anyone know?

grimtraveller said...

Zeke002 said:

Grim, I never "turned on" the Saint. I had an irrationally intense dislike for the guy from the get go

I'll take your word for it on the dislike from the get-go, but I never got that impression from the discourse between the two of you in the archives of Col's site, or of some of the ones here early on. It felt like there was a specific turning point, circa 2016 or 17.
Hey, but what do I know ?

Is there a TLB book still out there that would interest you?

Personally, no. But it's always hard to say. There are so many out there and I think I've read the main ones....but then, what are the main ones ? I've never touched any of Bill Nelson's stuff and have never wanted to. I'm not interested in Maury Terry. I couldn't be arsed with some of the more recent ones but then, I think Tom O'Neill's, Squeaky's, Dianne Lake's, Simon Davis', Jeff Guinn's, Nicholas Shreck's, George Stimson's and Herman Tubick's are very important and though it's poorly set out, I still think William Zamora's is gold dust, though few others seem to.
But who can tell ? If people like Linda, Gypsy, Gregg Jakobson, Stephanie Schram, Brooks Poston and those of that ilk put out books, I'd probably read them. Heck, I'd probably read Stephen Kay's !

grimtraveller said...

Dan S said...

Tighe? That's a weird name

In the Chaldees, it means "9".

Gene Aquamarine said...

Maury Terry is name-checked, tagged, and casually bashed here, and Grim mentions he isn't interested in Terry. I haven't read Terry's book but its something I've considered ever since reading Peter Levenda's "The Manson Effect". Is the distaste for Terry mainly due to his as-yet unsubstantiated theories, or are there other reasons for the anti-Terry sentiments?

GreenWhite said...

Zeke - Thank you. I'm a big fan of Deb's work and would gladly write with her.

I don't have a Manson pedigree but if I did it would be defined by a scholarly obsessiveness via books, blogs and comment threads like this hallowed one, pdf's when I had to, Youtube, The Wayback for Nelson, Glenna, Channels, Melton, McGowan, etc, and then just reaching out via email and Messenger asking questions. Matt and David were kind and helpful when I showed up asking "How did they get buzzed into the gate?" and "Why did Voytek say who are you if he knew them?"

LOL! Whatta rube. I also talked every person in my real life's ear off about Manson. No one cared.

Moreover, I have been online forever and witnessed many a war in many a trench, so for the most part, I was able to hang back and lurk most of the time I was researching Charlie and company. Eventually, the darkness that engulfs this study landed upon my naive head and whispered, "Okay your free trial is over, it's time to pay up." It was and I did. I ran so far away.

But I was never fully free. I still read the blog and bought the books as they came out. Then about two months ago Matt said they were all crazy busy with work and asked if I'd be interested in an internship of sorts. I am working on an unrelated historical project elsewhere and thought Matt's offer might help my brain see things in other ways, so I went for it.

I also secretly wanted to test a theory that anachronisms might not be as bad as the pros say. To that, the pros are correct and thank you, MB readers for helping me see the light lol.

I knew I'd get murdered in the comments from time to time or all the time but I thought about the body of work that would be lost if the MB ever folded and decided to throw caution to the wind, discard my lurker avatar, and rise from the ashes as a clueless typist who consistently spells Adkins as Atkins until the real Manson bloggers returned.

And so here we are. I'll never try to solve the case but my fascination with how peeps like Ella and Billy went from A to B shall never die. Who Bill Vance really was also holds my continual curiosity. I'd love to see someone's research on him.

I appreciate your nice compliments, Zeke. They mean a lot. I think I'm back up next week or the following week with a deeper dive into Charlie's genesis.

It's gonna be just like they say them voices tell me so...

GreenWhite said...

"For the love of God, don't read this book, or else he might write another."

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL. Pump thy snark straight into my malevolent veins, sir.

SixtiesRockRules! said...

@greenwhite....."Who bill vance really was also holds my continual curiosity. I'd love to see someone's research on him." You will want to check out some archived episodes of the stones unturned podcast on youtube (do a yt search on "stones unturned podcast" or "professor dad" to bring up past episodes). Hosted by zodiac killer expert and author thomas henry horan, these podcasts have delved (and are still delving) deeply into topics such as manson, zodiac, son of sam, jonbenet ramsey etc. and the connections between all of them. On at least ONE old episode (sorry, can't recall which one exactly), he went into some detail on vance, who he believes (and I fully agree) was a major influence on manson and a key reason why the "family" got into deep deep criminality, where previously they were more or less a benign non-violent commune. Definitely worth your time to "binge-listen" at your convenience, and also to subscribe.

Mario George Nitrini 111 said...

Ms Milly James.
Thank you for your concern for me.
I did have Covid19 9 months ago. It was brutal. A doctor told me I survived Covid19 in-part because of me being strong.

I read this blog and another Charles Manson blog everyday.
And I also read Col Scott/Don Murphy's blog for my research.

I want to apologize to you Ms Milly. I must have overlooked this comment of yours to me
👇
Milly JamesJanuary 20, 2019 at 10:23 AM
Hi Mario. I'm quite new here but I have been doing some back-reading. I understand you picked up CM hitch-hiking. But didn't you drop him at a building site? What is the ranch connection please? I'm intrigued

Regarding my Spahn Ranch connection. It has to do with a specific biker group.
The construction site/yes.

I have been very hesitant posting some correspondences I have received in the past pertaining to The Charles Manson Case & Saga.
Well here's some correspondences I received. These people initially (first) contacted me
👇
#1 person.
"btw Sonny Barger was there
Oct 30, 2020, 10:31 AM"

#2 person.
"New to this sir but I been hearing stuff about Cocaine deals and bad debts being the cause of the murders you think the Cops find that out fast right?
Oct 18, 2020, 6:36 PM"

An email I received from the #2 person
👇
"From:_______
To Mario Nitrini
Date Oct 19, 2020, 10:20 AM
Just open ended questions I know you
can going to detail your tweets do talk
about Manson, I like to bring up the
druged out world of Hollywood"

This #2 person wanted me to be on his live stream podcast.

There was another correspondence I received pertaining to Ms Sandra Good.
👇
"She's a psycho
Oct 29, 2020, 7:03 AM"
My personal opinion of Ms Sandra Good is that she is NOT a psycho. She does know about specifics that I have commented here about on this blog.

I have more correspondences. I may post them in the future

GreenWhite.
I have read your recent blog-posts.
(Excellent work sir)
This sentence of yours interested me pertaining to Leslie Van Houten
👇
"And plus she really wasn't even hanging around them all that much anyway because she liked the bikers a lot more"

Deb's. I am going to try and find out about The Fireside Inn that we corresponded about
(A 1969 phone book here in Los Angeles)

Mario George Nitrini 111
------
The OJ Simpson Case

GreenWhite said...

60's - Thank you. I'm definitely interested in consuming all things Bill Vance. You ever wonder if he was an Italian and the connected one?

General Shoutout to Everyone Here - Idk if you're aware of the new kids on the block but I've been watching videos from The Paulcast lately. They're not as miserable as the rest of us yet and have three people working together to learn everything they can about the subject. They're getting good interviews as well. Naturally, angry unhinged members of our community are downvoting them before they start their discussions. Welcome to Manson I suppose.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOxfXLe8Y8p7RVwPUaHWtCg

The woman from the Manson discussions on The Paulcast also has her own channel where she investigates and discusses true crime.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCP7HuPtAo4qkz_8fbV7ZuMw

Those folks are willing to talk Manson almost every night for those of us who can't get enough. If you check them out, let me know what you think.

Grim - I'd love to see you do an interview with them. Just a thought.

Mario - I told you before I'd buy your book and I still would. Ignore when people come at you on here and write however you like. The world needs more creators and less consumers although I fear that's an impossibility anymore.



Mario George Nitrini 111 said...

Thanks GreenWhite.
Unfortunately for me
(It's been like this for quite a long time),
a book for me.....
I would have to reveal all I know regarding The OJ Simpson Case and other high-profile cases I've been involved with or have People-Connections to. So a book for me?
No Can Do.

Please keep doing blog-posts here GreenWhite. I'll say this again. Because of this sentence of yours
👇
"And plus she really wasn't even hanging around them all that much anyway because she liked the bikers a lot more"
that is a huge reason I read this blog everyday.
I did not know that about Leslie Van Houten.(bikers)

People can come on me all they want to.
No problem for me.

This blog-post by Matt mentions the now deceased Maury Terry.
I commented about Mr Terry on a blog-post here
👇
https://www.mansonblog.com/2020/01/the-col-presents-last-word-on-tom.html?m=1

Mario George Nitrini 111
------
The OJ Simpson Case

Matt said...

A big round of applause everyone for GreenWhite. He has stepped in to help out and has done a bang up job. Hopefully he’ll stick around. I should have some more time going forward to devote to the blog too. Business was good this year and kept me extremely busy.

If anyone else is interested in speaking to me about writing ideas, let’s talk.

GreenWhite said...

Thanks, Matt. Tawna, are you out there?

Panamint Patty said...

It's awesome to have someone doing some fresh research, something pretty different from what has come before. Patty is a little bored with the topic but Green White makes it interesting again.

Peter said...

Terry's book is the only book I ver purposefully threw in the trash after I read it.

Matt said...

Peter said...
Terry's book is the only book I ver purposefully threw in the trash after I read it.


Same here. In the case of Taylor I feel a moral obligation to warn you, since it's loosely-TLB.




CarolMR said...

Apropos of nothing, Marina and Sharon Tate are buried in the same cemetery.

Milly James said...

Mario III - Glad you're back in the saddle. My household has had Covid too despite double vacs and taking all precautions. Only one of us was hospitalised but we were all pretty rough. During my mis-spent 'yoof,' I used to hang out at a pub in St Albans sometimes frequented by HA (Windsor). They normally turned up in hired BMWs. At rallies they'd have state of the art Winnebagos. Not a bike or a tent within a mile. Of course, the Members were perfect gentlemen ostensibly. It was the Prospects ordinary male punters had to watch out for. A friend of mine was beaten for the grievous offence of drinking his pint at the bar.

Any other Brits - Does anyone else remember the Banksy of Manson hitch-hiking down the Archway Road by suicide bridge? I used to drive past it on my way to work in Islington. I used to gauge my lateness by it together with the density of the queue. It's gone now. I wonder if it was saved?

To all Posters - Thank you. Food for thought every time.

Mario George Nitrini 111 said...

Thanks Ms Milly.

That Covid19 is brutal.
Glad you and everyone in your family made it through ok.

Your "yoof" past....lol.
Glad you made it though that.....unscathed I hope....lol

Mario George Nitrini 111
-------
The OJ Simpson Case

Proteus said...

Milly

Banksey's 'Charles Manson hitchhiking in prison uniform' was removed In 2005 by Haringey Council with the help of high pressure water jets. So, not saved but can still be seen at https://tinyurl.com/kuj3vvr8.

Me, not so much a Brit as an International but have lived on and off in the UK.

grimtraveller said...

Gene Aquamarine said:

Maury Terry is name-checked, tagged, and casually bashed here, and Grim mentions he isn't interested in Terry. I haven't read Terry's book but its something I've considered ever since reading Peter Levenda's "The Manson Effect". Is the distaste for Terry mainly due to his as-yet unsubstantiated theories, or are there other reasons for the anti-Terry sentiments?

It's hard to say. There are some books that tweak my antennae and some that just don't. It also has to be said that quite a number of the books that did tweak my antennae were a load of shit. And some that I bought, not particularly thinking too deeply about them beforehand, turned out to be excellent or at least really good.
I don't really know anything about Maury Terry and their theories. As yet, I've not been interested in getting acquainted, either.

Milly James said:

Does anyone else remember the Banksy of Manson hitch-hiking down the Archway Road by suicide bridge? I used to drive past it on my way to work in Islington

I lived about a 13-minute walk from Suicide Bridge from 1988 to 1999 and it's a bridge I've gone over and under hundreds of times. My Mum worked for about 5 or so years at Whittington hospital {my little brother did a Covid stint in there earlier this year}, which is on the road that runs parallel {Highgate Hill} to the Archway Road. It's actually not a myth that people have jumped off that bridge. Apart from Hammersmith hospital being next door to Wormwood Scrubs prison, Whittington has to be one of the most appropriately positioned hospitals, when one thinks of that bridge !
Funnily enough, it's actually in Harringey, although 30 footsteps later, you're in Islington.

orwhut said...

Nearly every time I download an inexpensive, crime related book similar to the one about Marina, several thoughts come into my mind. Few of them are complementary.

grimtraveller said...

Proteus said...

Banksey's 'Charles Manson hitchhiking in prison uniform' was removed In 2005 by Haringey Council with the help of high pressure water jets. So, not saved but can still be seen at https://tinyurl.com/kuj3vvr8

The picture link didn't work for me. This one might.

orwhut said...

When I omitted the period that followed the URL for the Charlie picture, it worked.

grimtraveller said...

orwhut said...

When I omitted the period that followed the URL for the Charlie picture, it worked

Whoops !
Still, I prefer the one that shows the good old London double-decker bus. The Charlie drawing looks more like this actor than Charlie !

GreenWhite said...

my fascination with how peeps like Ella and Billy went from A to B

That is a fascination, no doubt about it.
I tend to think, however, that it really isn't as mystical a process as Vincent Bugliosi alluded to in the closing pages of "Helter Skelter." If one takes the trouble {and sometimes, it really is trouble !} to deeply observe people, their environment, critique aspects of their culture/subculture {both sides, for better or for worse}, listen to what those around them are or have, for a long time, been saying/doing, observe how various strands of influence work, recognize the ways in which many people simply do not want to ride against the tide of their various peer groups {in other words, don't want to be left out or seen as boring} and the choices a person makes, then one may not be particularly surprised at any outcome. From where I'm coming from, I begin with the position that every one of us is warped in some way, be it large or small. We have no way of knowing specifically what will push our buttons initially, but it doesn't really matter. We may not want to admit it, but that doesn't really matter either. That we acknowledge that "nobody's perfect" is all that is required. Life is a continuum, and very little of the future is specifically predictable. Which means that any of us could go in any number of directions.

GreenWhite said...

Well said. Agree button.

starviego said...

GreenWhite said..
Who Bill Vance really was also holds my continual curiosity. I'd love to see someone's research on him.

True Name: William J Van Sickle, born April 17, 1933, according to this anonymous researcher:

mansonrelatedblog.blogspot.com/2021/09/real-identity-of-bill-vance-aka-william.html

orwhut said...

Grim,
Does the top level of those double decker buses make people motion sick more than the bottom level? It sees like every bump cause more sway at the top.
Whut

GreenWhite said...

Grim, etc - Might someone help me remember the interview where Charlie said his mom committed her crime to feed him or whatever it was? I printed out that arrest report and spent a week decoding the blurry print. Spoiler alert and I know you'll be shocked but he wasn't on her mind. Thank you in advance.

orwhut said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
orwhut said...

The most disgusted I've been with short TLB books was when I discovered that by downloading both MANSON'S GIRLS, and Manson Girl: The True Story of Ruth Ann Moorehouse, I'd bought the latter twice. It was included with my download of MANSON'S GIRLS.

Milly James said...

Proteus & Grim. Thank you for your information. Can't believe a Banksy was jet washed away! It was a weird one but couldn't the powers that be have relocated it for goodness sake? I know that area of N. London very well. There was a big funeral cortege on Parolles Rd one time. Turned out it was for one of Eric Clapton's roadies who was killed with Stevie Ray Vaughan. I still have my tickets to see him a week later at the Hammersmith Odeon. Grim, many thanks to your family who are working or have worked for the NHS.

orwhut said...

Murals by Banksy are listed as being held by shell companies in the Pandora Papers. I'd never heard of Bansky until reading about him in these comments.

Milly James said...

Orwhut - Beyond belief. Public art. Thank you for the info.

grimtraveller said...

Milly James said:

Can't believe a Banksy was jet washed away! It was a weird one but couldn't the powers that be have relocated it for goodness sake?

I guess Charles Manson just doesn't/didn't have the cultural clout or significance in London that he had in California. Also, unless the council commissioned murals, even a Banksy work of art was seen as graffiti and ∴ vandalism to be done away with.

I know that area of N. London very well

I have fond memories of Archway, spent much time catching the 41, the C11 and in particular the 143 and the 210. I once got on the 143 at Archway and the driver announced that he'd just been put on the bus as a replacement driver and did anyone know the route to Brent Cross ? I did and I was going to Hendon Central, so I basically acted as navigator virtually the whole way. Where I got off was only about 5 stops from the end, so I had to direct him the rest of the way without me telling him which stops to stop at.....this was around '92 or '93 so he should have found his way by now !
There was also a little Irish shop that used to sell albums in Archway. When I decided to give Celtic folk a whirl back in '91, it was there that I began. I still have the 3 albums I bought there !

your family who are working or have worked for the NHS

My Mum was working for the NHS pretty early on in its existence, she started as a student nurse in 1955. She wasn't too happy about the way her time ended with the NHS in the 90s, though. She and some others were unceremoniously shown the door as soon as they hit 60, which was retirement age for women in those days.

orwhut said:

when I discovered that by downloading both MANSON'S GIRLS, and Manson Girl: The True Story of Ruth Ann Moorehouse, I'd bought the latter twice. It was included with my download of MANSON'S GIRLS

I feel your pain ¬> a similar thing happened to me when I bought this book "False Profit: Garbage dump to Guru" by someone called Ghostdancer. It cost a lot of money, I bought it from Aes Nihil and as soon as I looked at the opening blurb, got a mighty dose of déjà vu. What made it worse was that I'd downloaded it for free a few months earlier. It was so badly printed and punctuated, that I'd spent months doing it up, improving the font, using coloured fonts to distinguish quotes from text etc. I was going to print it and have it bound. I can only regard both the work I did on the online copy and what I paid for the book, as the price of an education. I've been trying to sell it on Ebay for 2 years at a steal and no one is in the slightest bit interested !

grimtraveller said...

orwhut said:

Does the top level of those double decker buses make people motion sick more than the bottom level? It seems like every bump cause more sway at the top

Motion sickness I can't say. But one certainly gets thrown about on the top deck if the driver is flying down some hilly road with twists and turns. Even to this day, I can remember a rather harrowing ride on top deck of the 221 40 years ago as the driver sped down this windy hill on Frith lane, heading towards Mill Hill. Being so close to the tops of the trees was actually scary and I thought there was a good chance the bus was going to turn over. I've never felt that on the bottom.

GreenWhite said:

Might someone help me remember the interview where Charlie said his mom committed her crime to feed him or whatever it was?

I might have seen or read that interview, but I have no memory of it.
The stuff he says about his Mum to George Stimson in George's book, "Goodbye Helter Skelter" is a mind-blower, though. There seems to be little love lost there !

starviego said:

mansonrelatedblog.blogspot.com/2021/09/real-identity-of-bill-vance-aka-william.html

The Vance article was sort of interesting, but the one on Manson Family violence was so poor that I'm doubting the veracity of the Bill Vance one !

Peter said:

Terry's book is the only book I ver purposefully threw in the trash after I read it

I did that when I first read "The Garbage People" but that was more out of disgust for the death photos of the TLB victims. I don't think I even finished it. When I read it again some 20 years later, I thought it was a pretty decent book.
Earlier this year, I did throw away Ed Sanders' "Sharon Tate, a life." It was so lame. It had one good page in it where Sheilah Wells mentioned Sharon's thoughts on Abigail and Wojiciech.

Milly James said...

Grim - Ah, The C11 Bus. My emergency route to work in Gospel Oak. How entertaining that was... Onward from there was the 24 or the 46. I had a tendency to get on the wrong one, whenever I was going on home visits. Your Mum is a star. A forty year career in the NHS is laudable. My late Aunt trained during the war under the Red Cross, doing everything. At some point afterwards she was advised that she wasn't qualified enough to be Registered so had to take more exams. She, and several others, told the authorities to "stuff it". They'd proved themselves and were grievously insulted. Consequently, she finished her career as a SEN. More experienced and skilled than the SRNs she was asked to train. The NHS does rub its staff up the wrong way sometimes.

Unknown said...

I have quite a few friends in Sonny's club Mario. I,d like to see your e-mails with him. I truly dont think Sonny's gonna talk club business with you.its never gonna happen. WHERES your proof ??

Unknown said...

this is my name. I am not unknown now.