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Unauthorized Michael Jackson bio: Remarkably timed

A Montreal publisher has incredible timing -- its unauthorized biography of Michael Jackson had just gone to the printer on June 24, the day before the pop singer's unexpected death. Publisher Pierre Turgeon halted the presses so author Ian Halperin could write a new ending, and the book, previously titled "Michael Jackson: Return from Exile" quickly became "Unmasked: The Final Years of Michael Jackson."

"Unmasked" is likely to be one of the first posthumous Michael Jackson biographies to hit shelves. There are rumors that an American publisher has already bought the U.S. rights.

According to a report in Quill & Quire, Turgeon's company, Transit Publishing, was launched sometime after the 2005 bankruptcy of his earlier house, Trait d'Union. In March of this year, Turgeon pleaded guilty to fraud charges in Quebec and was fined. He's also been found to owe a former partner $600,000. But since the new company is not connected to the old one, the partner says, "He is off the hook."

Ian Halperin has experience writing unauthorized bios of musicians, including "Celine Dion: Behind the Fairytale," "Who Killed Kurt Cobain?" and "Love & Death: The Murder of Kurt Cobain." He has claimed -- most recently on June 29 in a piece in the Daily Mail -- that Michael Jackson was dangerously thin and that he had a genetic condition that damaged his lungs, leaving him unable to sing.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Photo: Rusty Kennedy / Associated Press

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Hmmm an unauthorized, quickie book by a tabloid type being published by bankrupt convicted felon - what a joke. Wouldn't waste a cent on it. If Turdgeon profits he should have to give back the money he stole.

Turgeon sold this book to Simon & Schuster, which announced yesterday it's publishing "Unmasked" in ten days in hardcover, so he's profited plenty already.

But Halperin's book is not going to be the big Michael expose between covers. It'll be written by one of three: Diane Diamond, Mark Ebner, or Maureen Orth. Which will be first out of the gate?

writing unautorise bio . what a liar I wont spent even a cent for your stupid book. What a gold digger. Michael is dead in this people still wanna make money out of him and writing a bunch of lies especially now he cant defend himself.

Halperin is a running joke. His site is a testament to how far the man will go for a bit of attention. Now he has the media's attention he's craved for years, I hope he gets what he deserves - from all the people he's written absolute rubbish about.

*oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive*


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