The Hiltons: A Family Dynasty by J. Randy Taraborrelli

THE HILTONS is a fascinating, no-holds-barred account of the American industrial giant who built the world’s greatest hotel empire and his always larger-than-life family.

Demanding and enigmatic, patriarch Conrad Hilton’s visionary ideas and unyielding will established the model for the modern luxury hotel industry. But outside the boardroom, Conrad struggled with emotional detachment, failed marriages, and conflicted Catholicism.

Then there are the Hilton children. Playboy Nicky’s tragic alcoholism and passionate but abusive relationship with Elizabeth Taylor was the stuff of tabloid legend. Serious Barron, on the other hand, deftly handled his father’s legacy, carrying the Hilton brand triumphantly into the new millennium. Eric, raised apart from his older brothers, accepted his supporting role in the Hilton dynasty with calm and quiet–a stark contrast to the boys’ much younger half-sister Francesca, whose battle for recognition led her into courtrooms and conflict.

The cast of supporting players includes the inimitable Zsa Zsa Gabor, who was married to Conrad briefly but remained a thorn in his side for decades; a young Donald Trump; and a host of other Hollywood and business luminaries with whom the Hiltons crossed paths and swords over the years.

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Wow, I think may be one of favourite biographies that I have read! The novel centres around Conrad Hilton who build the Hilton hotel empire starting with $5,000 in the early 1920s. The novel flows through the different hotels that Conrad brought and also goes into the personal lives and marriages of him and his 4 children.

I loved the flow of this novel. I knew nothing about the Hilton family (with the exception of Paris Hilton) going in and I never felt lost at all (the family tree at the beginning of the novel really helped)!

The author would focus on a certain family member and a life event and really go into detail (eg. marriage between Conrad Hilton and Zsa Zsa Gabor). Even though there were other things going on during the time period (eg. building a hotel empire), the author would focus on one thing and then spend another section talking about a different life event.

This book is not for those looking on a in-depth read on Paris Hilton or her sister, Nicky. Paris was mentioned briefly in the last few chapters of the book, and that’s it.

4 calculators out of a potential 5. I would highly recommend this novel of those who are a fan of biographies! I will be checking out more of the author’s other biographies!


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20 thoughts on “The Hiltons: A Family Dynasty by J. Randy Taraborrelli

  1. I would be interested if there was any mention of Kathy Hilton, Paris’s mother, in the book and her husband Richard. Were they included at all in the book? Thanks, liked your review and definitely considering reading this for myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t do many biographies but I think this is one that I might enjoy 🙂 I have a strange fascination with the Hiltons (the earlier ones, not who you see in the spotlight now). This would be very intriguing. Thanks for sharing your review!

    Liked by 1 person

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