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Sharon Tate: A Life

2.95  ·  Rating details ·  96 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Biography of actress Sharon Tate, wife of director Roman Polanski, who was murdered by the Manson cult forty years ago.
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published January 5th 2016 by Da Capo Press (first published July 22nd 2014)
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Thank you to Da Capo Press, Perseus Books Group and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. Much appreciated!

One of the most upsetting things I have ever read is the recounting of the murder of Sharon Tate, with her killers sharing that she begged to stay alive long enough to have her baby (due to be born in just two short weeks), offering herself as a hostage, and crying “Mother, Mother…” as she was stabbed to death. Could anything be more horrifying? Could anything be more hear
I had very mixed emotions regarding this book. I was looking for more insight regarding Sharon Tate's life prior to all the scandalous rumors, that circulated after her death. After reading this book it had me thinking, "Oh, boy, here we go another conspiracy theory".

When I was just about ready to give up, something interesting would pop up and keep me reading on. Mr. Sander's did enlighten me on Roman Polansky childhood which wasn't pleasant. He had me quite confused in several places when he
Oct 16, 2015 rated it it was ok
I tried to like the book Sharon Tate by Ed Sanders. Unfortunately I did not like this book as the book was light on substance and far longer than it needed to be. The two-thirds of the book was mainly fluff and read like a Hollywood tabloid.

The remaining one-third of the book had a bit more substance as it dealt with the Manson Family's murder of Tate and the killings of several other people.

Recommend with caveats given.

Review written after downloading a galley from Edelweiss.
Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!}
I'm just going to discard this one. It was a two for one deal with the other Manson book, Helter Skelter. I took a quick glance at some reviews, and I'm just going to pass this one along. lol
Nov 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: amazon-reviewed
Sharon Tate: The Biography by Ed Sanders is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in an early morning in late November. Having watched both Valley of the Dolls and Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired somewhat recently, I had really looked forward to this book filling out the missing pieces.

Sanders' writing is scattered with uneven, sour tones and dotted with mantras (i.e. 'uh oh' and 'quicksand'). Sharon Tate's life seems almost like that of a silver shimmering trout, fighting to swim upstream in a
Dec 07, 2015 rated it it was ok
I received this book from NetGalley and it was my very first review for them. I have been waiting to read this book for months and what a total disappointment. I know that it was unedited but it was a jumbled, repetitive mess. The title is definitely wrong. Yes, Sharon Tate is a focus but he just rambles on about so many other things from the 1960's. If anyone has read even one well written book about her or the family including the authors other book about Manson then this will pretty much be n ...more
I received a free copy of this ebook from netgalley. This book is filled with information that I didn't know about Sharon Tate and Roman Polanski. I found the information about Doris Tate and her stage mother tendencies interesting. Some of the other facts of Roman Polanski's early life were fascinating as well. The book switches back and forth between Roman and Sharon. I found the story hard to follow. Later parts I was already familiar with since I've read about the Manson murders. There was n ...more
Oct 29, 2015 rated it it was ok
was given this by netgalley for a honest review..
the subject material was very interesting and detailed and researched but however found the writing style was not to my tastes i realise this is very subjective
patty ramona
Aug 21, 2016 rated it it was ok
Misleading title. One third of the book is a timeline breakdown of the Manson murders. Nothing new to see here. Move along.
Apr 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. I'm highly recommending it. It was fascinating in so many ways, a gold mine
really. No surprise about the author's impressive background in writing. With inside sources,
many contacts with those "in the know", people who Sharon trusted and told her secrets to,
{and they were quoted, so if this wasn't true they could sue the author and obviously he wasn't
sued,'s very believable}, this book stands out. I found out so many interesting tidbits. I
was glued to this book, t
Jun 29, 2017 rated it liked it
I had to read this after falling down a hole of books and podcasts about Charles Manson (don't worry guys, I'm doing just fine). It was perfect for picking up and putting down now and then, but not as gripping as other stuff I've read.

I suppose it's hard to know a ton about Sharon Tate as a person since she died so young. Instead, Sanders tells us how her life and her tragic death intertwined with other major events in politics, Hollywood, and the cultural shifts of the late 60s. As he would sa
Dominique Asser
Aug 25, 2019 rated it liked it
This is an interesting read - it gives a very detailed account of Sharon’s life and the people involved in her life, it can be a bit dense in parts.
But overall if you are fascinated with true crime like myself I highly suggest reading this biography Sharon needs to be remembered as a person not just an actress killed by a cult.
Jola Cora
Apr 19, 2018 rated it liked it
This is a weird one. Not very well written, with a strange chapter on the assassination of Bobby Kennedy (sic!) and with a conspiracy theory at the end...
Oct 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thought it would be gossipy like People magazine, but the stories and relationships associated with the Manson cult and murders were fascinating. The author was thorough and the stories were detailed. The book was much more like an extended feature story by a serious author in a newspaper or magazine like the Wall Street Journal or the New Yorker than a story in a popular magazine. If you remember the Manson murders, or your curiosity is piqued, I'd give the book a try. I was quickly hooked.
David L. Scrip
Apr 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A tragic biography

Ed Sanders writes a biography of the beautiful actress who died a cruel death at the hands of the Manson cult. Sanders expands his research digging for the truth of the reason Tate died at such a young age. Was it because she overheard something that Sirhan Sirhan did ? Did a English Satanic cult order and pay for the hit? Sanders continually to valiantly find the truth.
Polly Krize
Jan 08, 2016 rated it it was ok
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Admittedly, there is already a fair amount of writing about the short life of this talented, beautiful woman. With a lot of background information included, especially about the early life of Roman Polanski, there was quite a lot of new material which was appreciated. I cannot help but mention that the formatting and writing in the book was a little disjointed and somewhat superfluous in many places. Only my opinion.

Feb 09, 2016 rated it it was ok
I picked this up in the True Crime section at B&N. Given the subject, that was to be expected. What wasn't to be expected was the devolution into conspiracy theories about "satanic cults" and several pages on the assassination of Robert Kennedy which read like it was taken straight out of the pages of "The Manchurian Candidate". ...more
Apr 23, 2016 added it
Pretty good book, I really didn't learn anything knew about the times/murders or Sharon, but it was a nice focus on her as a person and not just as a victim. The drawings of her and scenes was a little putt-offish, as opposed to actual photos, which made it feel like it was not a 'genuine' book but all-in-all It was an enjoyable read.
Dale Stonehouse
Nov 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is as much a history of Sanders' investigations of the Tate murder as it is biography. But for someone who can never get enough (possibly) new details of the Manson family, it is must reading. There is nothing outstanding about the writing.
Magnus Stanke
Sep 30, 2016 rated it did not like it
not a well-written book, I'm afraid, though I will admit that I did not finish this one. Either way, reading some 20% is enough to ascertain that the writing style was not for me. Even Polanski's early life sounded uniteresting
Antonio Matta
Jun 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
A well inspired biography about the lovely Sharon Tate and her tragic death.
She will be loved by millions forever.
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Suzie O'Shea
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Jul 22, 2016
Nina Collins Harvey
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Mar 20, 2016
Shannon Breen
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Sep 04, 2017
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Feb 27, 2020
bill k
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Apr 25, 2019
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Oct 03, 2015
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Oct 25, 2017
FLC Public Library
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Jul 14, 2016
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Ed Sanders is an American poet, singer, social activist, environmentalist, author and publisher. He has been called a bridge between the Beat and Hippie generations.

Sanders was born in Kansas City, Missouri. He dropped out of Missouri University in 1958 and hitchhiked to New York City’s Greenwich Village. He wrote his first major poem, "Poem from Jail," on toilet paper in his cell after being jail

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