Remembering Whitney: My Story of Love, Loss, and the Night the Music Stopped
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Remembering Whitney: My Story of Love, Loss, and the Night the Music Stopped

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by Cissy Houston
     
 

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Honest and heartbreaking, a mother's story of tears, joy, and her greatest love of all—her daughter, Whitney

On the eve of the 2012 Grammy Awards, the world learned of a stunning tragedy: Whitney Houston, unquestionably one of the most remarkable and powerful voices in all of music, had been silenced forever. Over the weeks and months that followed,

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Overview

Honest and heartbreaking, a mother's story of tears, joy, and her greatest love of all—her daughter, Whitney

On the eve of the 2012 Grammy Awards, the world learned of a stunning tragedy: Whitney Houston, unquestionably one of the most remarkable and powerful voices in all of music, had been silenced forever. Over the weeks and months that followed, family, friends, and fans alike tried to understand how such a magnificent talent and beautiful soul could have been taken so early and so unexpectedly. Glamorous and approachable, captivating and sweet, Whitney had long ago won the hearts of America, but in recent years her tumultuous personal life had grabbed as many headlines as her soaring vocal talents. Her sudden death left behind not only a legacy of brilliance, but also painful questions with no easy answers.

Now, for the first time, the beloved superstar's mother, Cissy Houston—a gospel legend in her own right—relates the full, astonishing scope of the pop icon's life and career. From Whitney's earliest days singing in the church choir to her rapid ascent to the pinnacles of music stardom, from her string of number one hits to her topping the Hollywood box office, Cissy recounts her daughter's journey to becoming one of the most popular and successful artists of all time. Setting the record straight, Cissy also speaks candidly about Whitney's struggles in the limelight, revealing the truth about her turbulent marriage to singer Bobby Brown, her public attempts to regain her celebrated voice, and the battle with drugs that ultimately proved too much.

In this poignant and tender tribute to her "Nippy," Cissy summons all her strength to reveal not only Whitney the superstar, but also Whitney as a sweet girl, a bright-eyed young woman, and a deeply caring mother. Complete with never-before-seen family photographs, Remembering Whitney is an intimate, heartfelt portrait of one of our most revered artists, from the woman who cherished her most.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Whitney Houston may have belonged to the world, but “Nippy” belonged to her mother. Grammy Award?winning gospel singer Houston, with coauthor Dickey (Happy Accidents), writes of the joy of discovering and nurturing her daughter’s talents and the sorrow and anger accompanying her premature death. Starting with her own fascinating career, Houston discusses how she revolutionized the background singing industry working with Aretha Franklin, Elvis Presley, and others. Her life changed with Nippy’s birth, and when 12-year-old Whitney decided she wants to sing professionally, Houston helped guide her daughter’s career, which included modeling and acting. Houston talks about her efforts to warn her daughter of the dangers of the music industry and to keep her grounded, especially in faith, but this fiercely protective mother could only do so much. Whitney’s career is celebrated, and her close relationship with her family is on display, both in text and in accompanying photos.

Verdict Whitney Houston was a megastar and fans will appreciate this honest, dignified, yet emotional account of her life from her mother. Those looking for lurid details, especially about Whitney’s relationship with ex-husband Bobby Brown, will be disappointed by her mother’s high-road approach. With photos, an index, and a discography for mother and daughter, this book is highly recommended.—Terry Bosky, Madison, WI
(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Reviews
A talented, flawed artist, seen through the eyes of a loving, forgiving mother. Considering what her daughter put her through, most readers will be impressed by Cissy's patience and unconditional loyalty. Cissy, a well-respected yet underappreciated vocalist herself, relates Whitney's highest highs and lowest lows with honesty, but not much in the way of introspection or insight. The narrative proceeds in a this-happened-then-this-happened-then-this-happened fashion, readable and breezy but lacking depth. Cissy all but glosses over her own impressive career, which is unfortunate, since she recorded as a background vocalist for Wilson Pickett, Van Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Aretha Franklin, Paul Simon, Gregg Allman, David Bowie, Diana Ross and many others. Still, there is plenty of material that Houston devotee's will find fascinating: Young Whitney's (aka Nippy) childhood thrall with music and her speedy ascension up the music-industry ladder; the insider view of the behind-the-scenes machinations that helped Whitney get to and remain at the top of the charts; and Whitney's true feelings about fame. Many readers will pick up the book hoping to learn the real deal about her tumultuous, toxic relationship with fellow singer Bobby Brown and her descent into substance-abuse–based madness. While Cissy details how she bent over backward to save her daughter, she offers precious little information about what happened in the Houston/Brown household. However, that sort of salacious material would be out of place in this mostly affectionate remembrance of an iconic singer whose whole story will likely never be told. Fans of the Houston ladies will laugh, cry and beg for more. The rest of us will shrug and move on.
Boston Globe
Disarming… In the emotionally tangled “Remembering Whitney,” the elder Houston - still clearly working out her grief - is a fiercely protective mama bear to the memory of her damaged cub, but she also refuses to lionize her. She paints a picture of her daughter’s life… that is both triumphant and anguished.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062238399
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
01/29/2013
Pages:
297
Sales rank:
348,972
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.40(d)

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Meet the Author

Cissy Houston is a Grammy Award–winning soul and gospel singer and the mother of the late superstar Whitney Houston. She gained fame as part of the Drinkards, a family gospel group, and revolutionized the "Background Industry" as the founder and leader of the Sweet Inspirations, a well-respected vocal group who provided background vocals for such artists as Luther Vandross, Wishbone Ash, Aretha Franklin, Dusty Springfield, and Elvis Presley. She later enjoyed a successful career as a solo artist. Cissy grew up in Newark, New Jersey, where she raised her family and still lives in the area.

Lisa Dickey has been a freelance ghostwriter and book doctor since 1997. She has helped write and/or edit fourteen published nonfiction books, including six New York Times bestsellers.

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