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Cursum Perficio

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Overview

A revealing and moving exploration of Marilyn Monroe's final months including previously unpublished interior images of the home where she died, its furnishings and decorations.

A definitive testament of Marilyn Monroe's modest nature, simple tastes and spirituality was her selection of a house in which to settle at age 35. Fans are fascinated and drawn to Marilyn's last home as a touchstone to her brief and extraordinary life. This Spanish Colonial hacienda is where the screen ...

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Overview

A revealing and moving exploration of Marilyn Monroe's final months including previously unpublished interior images of the home where she died, its furnishings and decorations.

A definitive testament of Marilyn Monroe's modest nature, simple tastes and spirituality was her selection of a house in which to settle at age 35. Fans are fascinated and drawn to Marilyn's last home as a touchstone to her brief and extraordinary life. This Spanish Colonial hacienda is where the screen goddess was found dead in 1962. The house symbolizes Marilyn's unfulfilled dreams and unfinished life. Cursum Perficio reveals the events during Marilyn's final months including the truth behind her last film. Cursum Perificio invites us inside Marilyn's private life through 100 detailed illustrations and previously unpublished photos of her house and its contents. See her art and decorations purchased on a shopping spree in Mexico, the furniture delivered days before her death, and the stylish clothing in her closets. Learn about Marilyn's most intimate relationships, her daily routine, and her random acts of kindness. Cursum Perficio is not a sensational exploitation of Marilyn Monroe but a celebration of the human being behind the legend. It is a rare and refreshing exploration for the most devout fan and an insightful introduction for those discovering this enduring icon of the Twentieth Century.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780595010820
  • Publisher: AuthorHouse
  • Publication date: 10/1/2000
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 1,005,749
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2003

    Enlightening & Sensitive

    This is an excellent follow-up to the author's first paperback edition. I had difficulty realizing this is the updated second edition as the copyright and release date is the same as the first, but this is a new version with fresh information and photos. The cover & price differenciates this edition from the first.I enjoyed this handsome, hardcover version and its wealth of new photos and illustrations. The artist's depictions looked like actual photos. This edition fleshed out more details of Marilyn's last weeks without dwelling on murder theories and the Kennedys...a flaw in most Monroe biographies. Well-researched with new information, this book avoids re-hashing what has already been written. It is a page-turner and must-have for any Marilyn fan. Now I feel as though I really know Marilyn, and I've read nearly every biography written on her in the last fifteen years. Using Marilyn's last days in the house as a context for a biography is a novel approach to understanding this icon. Vitacco-Robles wove together Marilyn's past as it related to the events during her last year. Marilyn's last year always fascinated me, and I was really interested in learning more about her months in the home in Brentwood. The book is the end-all for anyone who ever secretly wished to visit the home and see inside. It is now hidden by a huge gate to deter fans like me! The last chapter focused on Frank Lloyd Wright designing a home for Marilyn & Arthur Miller. I was not aware of this. Marilyn wanted a large nursery for the children she never had and a study for the husbanc whom she later divorced. I was amazed that the home was eventually built in Hawaii as a golfing resort. Vitacco-Robles is a therapist who works with abused children. He knows his subject well and is sensitive to Marilyn's emotional troubles created by her horrendous childhood. As a male biographer, I think Vitacco-Robles does Marilyn justice with his sensitive writing and fresh perspective. Yes, it's the latest in a long line of biographies about this remarkable woman, but one of the best!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 3, 2012

    Though Marilyn Monroe's journey has ended, this reader's jou





    Though Marilyn Monroe's journey has ended, this reader's journey into that end began with this book. This meticulously researched insight into Marilyn's home and her final months establishes Marilyn not only as a sex symbol but loving friend to many and serious home maker. The photos and artwork enhance Marilyn's efforts to transform her house into her home, thereby transforming her into a "real" person. After reading this book, her untimely death - after all her efforts to have a unique, happy home surrounded by loving friends - strikes me as more tragic. Gary Vitacco-Robles brings Marilyn back to life in 124 pages, reminding us of a life well lived and loved. For those of us who loved and still love Marilyn, her movies and books like this one keep her passionate nature fresh and alive. Begin or end your journey into Marilyn via this book. You won't be disappointed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 25, 2008

    A must for MM fans!!!

    Being a huge fan of MM and having read almost eveything and seiing every doco...I know Miss Marilyn would have loved this book! It shows all her furnighings she had purchased just before she died. She was proud of the house! Bravo!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2007

    Something's Got To Give

    More than 600 books have been written about Marilyn Monroe since her death in 1962. While most of them have focused on the theories surrounding her apparent suicide at age 36, author Gary Vitacco-Robles focuses his new book on the actress' last home. Cursum Perficio: Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood Hacienda/The Story of Her Final Months reframes and redefines Marilyn through the context of her efforts to establish a secure home following a childhood spent in a succession of foster homes. The author theorizes that the actress was trying to correct her past by putting down roots of her own. While several previous authors depict her final months as tumultuous, Vitacco-Robles provides evidence that suggests Marilyn was trying to pull her life together and give it some personal meaning. During the spring and summer of 1962, Marilyn embraced her newfound domesticity by pulling weeds in her garden, writing recipes in her copy of The Joy of Cooking and actually using the pots and pans in her kitchen. The book contains actual photographs of the house, interspersed with realistic renderings of the home by artist Brandon Heidrick. The author divides the photos and illustrations with floor plans for each room and includes pictures of an architectural model that depicts the entire property as it appeared in 1962. After she purchased the 2,300 square foot house, Monroe began extensively researching authentic Mexican design, landscaping and furnishings in an effort to slowly transform it into the home of her dreams. She arranged for an 11-day trip to Mexico where she painstakingly selected fabrics, tapestries, painted tiles, pottery and art. Monroe met the native artists who had made by hand the objects that she would later display in her home. Vitacco-Robles is donating a portion of the royalties from sales of this book to Hollygrove Children and Family Services, formerly the Los Angeles Orphans Home Society, where Marilyn Monroe lived as a child.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2004

    Something's Got To Give

    More than 600 books have been written about Marilyn Monroe since her death in 1962. While most of them have focused on the theories surrounding her apparent suicide at age 36, author Gary Vitacco-Robles focuses his new book on the actress' last home. Cursum Perficio: Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood Hacienda/The Story of Her Final Months reframes and redefines Marilyn through the context of her efforts to establish a secure home following a childhood spent in a succession of foster homes. The author theorizes that the actress was trying to correct her past by putting down roots of her own. While several previous authors depict her final months as tumultuous, Vitacco-Robles provides evidence that suggests Marilyn was trying to pull her life together and give it some personal meaning. During the spring and summer of 1962, Marilyn embraced her newfound domesticity by pulling weeds in her garden, writing recipes in her copy of The Joy of Cooking and actually using the pots and pans in her kitchen. The book contains actual photographs of the house, interspersed with realistic renderings of the home by artist Brandon Heidrick. The author divides the photos and illustrations with floor plans for each room and includes pictures of an architectural model that depicts the entire property as it appeared in 1962. After she purchased the 2,300 square foot house, Monroe began extensively researching authentic Mexican design, landscaping and furnishings in an effort to slowly transform it into the home of her dreams. She arranged for an 11-day trip to Mexico where she painstakingly selected fabrics, tapestries, painted tiles, pottery and art. Monroe met the native artists who had made by hand the objects that she would later display in her home. Vitacco-Robles is donating a portion of the royalties from sales of this book to Hollygrove Children and Family Services, formerly the Los Angeles Orphans Home Society, where Marilyn Monroe lived as a child.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2001

    Collector's Item!

    This is a must have book for any Marilyn collector. You get to view her last home and feel as if you are right there in the livingroom having hot tea or coffee. Gary is a fabulous writer and illustrator. Marilyn would have been proud of this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2000

    Cursum Perficio: Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood Hacienda: The Story of Her Final Months

    Gary Vitacco-Robles' well-researched work offers a strong sense of Marilyn Monroe as a real person, working hard to realize her personal and professional goals. That she came so close to succeeding makes her sudden death even more tragic. Cursum Perficio will prompt many to re-evaluate Monroe.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2000

    Cursum Perficio: Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood Hacienda: The Story of Her Final Months

    Brilliantly researched...Endlessly fascinating and illustrated with remarkable drawings & photographs of the house and its layout...Cursum Perficio provides essential reading for those who desire to understand Marilyn...The reader is left with the impression that he has indeed spent a wonderful afternoon visiting with Marilyn.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2000

    Cursum Perficio: Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood Hacienda: The Story of Her Final Months

    I highly recommend this book. It is beautifully, informatively, and affectionately written without the sentimentality that so many Marilyn fans fall victim. Most commendably, Gary Vitacco-Robles has chosen to avoid all the conspiracy theories--this may be the first book in twenty years about Marilyn that does so! Bravo. It drives me to distraction that our lovely Marilyn has been reduced to a mass of conspiracy theories. I think Cursum Perficio will become an important book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2000

    Not your average Monroe book . . .

    Cursum Perficio is a well researched and well thought out book. It takes you on a tour of Marilyn's last home at 12305 5th Helena Drive. Gary delves into the possible reasons behind the purchase of this, her last home, and of the furnishings as well. The reader also gets a brief introduction to Marilyn's life. With Gary's mental health background, I think we get a fresh look at what may have triggered many of the events in her life and in this home. The book is full of photographs and original art. A must for every Monroe collector. I own the Online Marilyn Monroe Book Club and this is the book we are currently reading.

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