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I, Tina

I, Tina

4.6 3
by Tina Turner, Kurt Loder

Tina Turner's is the most fascinating true story in show business. From Nut Bush, Tennessee, to Hollywood stardom...from Ike's Kings of Rhythm to onstage with Mick Jagger and the Stones...from the lowest lows to the highest highs, Tina has seen, done, suffered and survived it all. And in her spectacular bestseller I, TINA, she tells it like it really is...


Tina Turner's is the most fascinating true story in show business. From Nut Bush, Tennessee, to Hollywood stardom...from Ike's Kings of Rhythm to onstage with Mick Jagger and the Stones...from the lowest lows to the highest highs, Tina has seen, done, suffered and survived it all. And in her spectacular bestseller I, TINA, she tells it like it really is...

Editorial Reviews

A page-tuner!
Susan Brownmiller
“Splendid...this is rock history with substance!”
Liz Smith
“And what a tale she has to tell!”
Library Journal
Tina's autobiography is just what you'd expect from the fiery superstar: high-powered, sexy, honest, with apparently nothing held back. Tina was neglected as a child and abandoned at age 10. At 18 she hooked up with talented piano player Ike Turner; two years later, in 1960, they had their first hit record. The couple enjoyed considerable material success, but life with Ike became hell on earth. In 1976, Tina got out, giving up all rights to her and Ike's assets to gain her freedom. Flat broke, she started a comeback that culminated with Private Dancer, her award-winning, multi-million selling, worldwide smash album. Tina has somehow remained compassionate, generous, sober, a gutsy survivor who never lost faith in her exceptional singing and performing talents. A good choice for public libraries. Thomas Jewell, Waltham P.L., Mass.

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HarperCollins Publishers
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I, Tina

Chapter One

Nut Bush

It is a sun-dappled late-summer morning in Nut Bush, Tennessee, sometime in the early forties. A meandering breeze ruffles the poplars and pecan trees along State Highway 19, and the air is heavy with honeysuckle perfume. Fields of brown sorghum, soybeans, sweet corn, and blossoming cotton blanket the gently rolling countryside. Strawberries abound, and peach trees thick with fruit. There is about the scene a feeling of deep rural repose: the occasional buzz of a hornet, the halfhearted peck of an odd stray hen scratching amid the clumps of cowitch begonia, perhaps the soft flip-and-splash of a hooked perch in some nearby fern-banked pond, or a supperbound catfish in one of the creeks. And now, out of the backwoods, the unhurried clop of a family field horse bearing five small brown children down Forked Deer Road toward its oblique juncture with the two-lane highway.

As their horse draws nearer the main thoroughfare, the kids can hear the intermittent clatter of cars and farm pickups motoring up and down Number 19, headed either for the more substantial town of Ripley some six miles to the northwest — up along that part of the Arkansas border formed by the Mississippi River, wending its way south from St. Louis down through the Delta to New Orleans — or for Brownsville, fifteen miles to the south and east; or, farther southwest, another forty-five miles or so, Memphis. Few outlanders are likely to entertain Nut Bush itself as a destination. It is a sparsely inhabited mile-long burp in the road, its populace — maybe fifty families — tucked away like weevils in thesurrounding pastures, groves, and hollows. Just one in a string of such faintly evident settlements scattered along Highway 19. Passing through — en route to Ripley, say — a motorist might notice the Nut Bush cotton gin, where the annual crop is purged of its seed and prepared for baling. Or, across the highway, Gause's general store, gas pump out front, dry goods and diverse provisions within. Farther along: the Edders Grove Elementary School, a two-room wooden building attended by the children of the area's black farm workers. Next, on the right, a kind of candy shack-cum-honkytonk, owned by Miss Alglee Flowler, where by day kids buy crackers and soda and country bologna, and at night their elders crowd into the sixteen-foot-square back room to snozzle beer and perhaps stomp around to the sounds of Mr. Bootsy Whitelaw, an itinerant trombonist of local note. Finally, backed off a bit from Number 19, there is the Woodlawn Baptist Church, a tidy stack of dignified red bricks adorned by crisp white wooden pillars, where on Sundays the elders stoke their spiritual resolve for another week of strenuous endeavor.

And that, for Nut Bush, is about it. An outhouse here, a pit-dog pen there. Not much.

For the five kids on the horse, however, it is a capacious and comforting world. They are Joe Melvin Currie and his older sister, Margaret; their two first-cousins: Alline Bullock, who, like Margaret, is about age seven, and Alline's sister — younger by nearly three years and tiny by any measure — Anna Mae; and the Bullock girls' older half sister, Evelyn. Well before reaching the highway, they rein up at the drowsy intersection of Forked Deer and Tibbs Road, just behind the gin house, and slide off their snuffling horse in front of Elvis Stillman's clapboard grocery, where a cold bottle of Coke costs a nickel, and for a bit more there's ice cream to be had as well. They're chattering absently, as small children will, but they politely defer to whatever adults are present, especially white ones. Relations among whites and blacks and the scattered intermarried Indians hereabouts are generally cordial, all things considered; but Tennessee, like the rest of the South, is officially segregated. Some black groups, such as the recently formed Congress of Racial Equality — CORE — up North in Chicago, have begun questioning this social arrangement with considerable animation (and a new political tactic: the "sit-in"). But among rural blacks, an elaborate code of deferential behavior still obtains. In any case, the five kids don't linger long at Stillman's. But as they clamber back on the horse and set a leisurely, laughing course for their homes less than a mile away, they carry with them a happy sense of event, of having done something.

Two of the smaller girls wear their hair in the tight little plaits thought proper for young black daughters, pickaninny twists that poke out like thorns on their gently bobbing heads. But the third, Anna Mae, safely away from parental purview, has undone her mother's patient braidwork and gathered her full reddish hair into a rough ponytail at the back, revealing an already exotic facial geography of elegant broad bones, richly sculpted lips, honey-toned skin, smooth as a breezeless sea, and eyes like tiny brown beacons.

The woman who would one day be Tina Turner was born Anna Mae Bullock at the tail end of another age. By 1939, tensions in the world, long building, were yielding to turmoil. In September, when the Nazis, abetted by the Soviets, sandbagged Poland, England and France finally declared war on the troublesome Huns. In Paris, a physicist named Frédéric Joliot-Curie demonstrated for the first time the feasibility of a nuclear chain reaction. In the U.S. Albert Einstein pondered the possibility of an atomic bomb.

Such events still seemed safely remote to most Americans, however, and the U.S. remained politically neutral amid the bad news from abroad. There were, after all, more effervescent diversions. This was the year Garbo laughed in Ninotchka, the year of Gone With the Wind and Gunga Din, of Buck Rogers, The Wizard of Oz, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Pan American Airways inaugurated regular flights to London aboard its Dixie Clipper. In New York, Edwin Armstrong, a Columbia University professor, discovered frequency modulation...

I, Tina. Copyright (c) by Tina Turner . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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I, Tina 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Tina Turner's book is one of the best 'pull yourself up by the boolstraps' stories ever, the book shows the details of her beginning in Nutbush, a small town to her rise to stardom, her violent abuse by Ike as they traveled and performed and her break from abuse into her own unique identity as the one and only Tina Turner. I Tina is a fitting title, because with only her name, Tina built an empire.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have admired Tina Turner since I first discovered her in 1983. I remember seeing a picture of her in 'Jet' laying on a diving board. I was told by a family member that my obession of Tina was a fad. NOT!! As soon as I received this book as gift on my birthday the year it came out, I finished it in 3 days. I was not what people call an avid reader, but I did with this book. I, Tina shed a light on Tina for me. At first I was a little upset that she stayed so long, but I understood her reasons for staying. I respect her for that.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What can I say about this extraordinary superstar? She is my idol and I am her biggest fan in the entire universe. This book chronicles the life story of Tina and her long bout of mental and verbal abuse from her long-time husband, Ike. I knew her marriage was abusive but this book put a whole new spin on things for me. Tina is a survivor and I don't mind giving her her props. She is a very strong-willed woman and she has all my admiration. My one wish would be to meet her in person. It's amazing how one person can take so much abuse from another and still get on stage and perform the way Tina does. I'd be half crazy if I were married to someone like Ike. She's a trooper in every sense of the word. Congratulations, Tina on being all that you can be. You deserve all the comforts of retirement. Enjoy every moment. Your biggest fan, LaSonya
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love Tina Turner's music and I love her as a person now that I know the story behind her incredible life and career. I wish I had found this sooner. I was also surprised to find out she is a practicing Buddhist. Very cool! No wonder she seems like such a centered human being in all of her interviews. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of Tina Turner. Since learning more about Tina's spirituality, I also highly recommend a book by Taro Gold called 'Open Your Mind, Open Your Life' which contains many inspirational thoughts based on the Buddhism Tina metions in her autobiography.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Before I read the book 'I, Tina' I went to see the movie based on tina's life, 'Whats love got to do with it.' Not taking aways anything from the actors or producers of the film, I just felt it did not truly live up to the true Phenomenon that this woman is. I know that hollywood white washes everything and make certain aspects seem less than they really were, but I would have preferred Tina's life being made into a television Mini series as opposed to the brief little snippet that made it to the big screen....But since the movie did not live up to expectations, I will settle for the book, I, TINA...a truly inspirational story of a courageous warrior and Survivor! Tina turner Stared adversity in the face and took it down with Her bare hands! How Much do I love tina Turner? I can't even begin to count the ways....If her life had not been reality, I really don't believe anyone would have the nerve to create her. The book essentially tells us the story of a young country who through hard knocks becomes a radiant and Beautiful woman....How Tina Turner endured 16 years of Ike turner's Brutality without picking up a gun and shooting him is beyond me....But when the book reaches its Highest point with Tina Finding the power within herself to fight Back and make it on her own, that was Just the icing on the cake for me. I believe that anyone who reads this book will not only end up with a little more knowledge on the history of rock and roll,but also have a new perspective on this amazing woman with the monster voice and Killer legs....Tina Turner is truly, SIMPLY THE BEST!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I recommend this book to every fan of Tina Turner. I found out things about Tina that I never knew before and was surprised to find out. I,Tina Life was so tragic and sad. The good thing about this book is it doesnt have an ending the ending is just that her life is still going and will be after death. When you read this book make sure you have a box of kleenex and keep beside you at all time for cries of sadness and joy. If I was Tina I proably would be dead right now or very mink and old in an old peoples home. Im glad that I am not Tina because we would not have any Tina today. Tina was so strong her whole life and that is what I love about her. She kept her head up even through the toughest of times in her life. This is one of the greatest books I have ever read in my life and I recommend this book to each and everyone of you Tina fans out there.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have loved Tina Turner ever since I was 6 years old. She had so much energy and life in her it just made my heart melt at the sight of her. When I was 11 I read I,Tina and by that time I had already seen the movie and was fascinated by the fact that she could just pick herself up and get her life back together and become a star all over again. Well, I read the book and found out that it was nothing like the movie. I practically cried at the thought of Tina of anyone being treated as she was it just took my breath away. Tina is my ideal and admirer because she is strong. She has so much strength in her and no matter what anyone says her strength will keep going on and on even in death. I can honestly say that Tina has inspired me to be the best I can be and to never let a man put me down because when you do that sometimes if you don't have the strength you'll never be able to pick yourself back up and then you'll end up dying from it. I don't want to end up that way and Tina has inspired me not to. So, would I reccommend this book to you. Of course I would because if it can change me then it can proably change another persons point of view on man...on life.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just recently finished reading I, Tina for a report for my history class for high school. I was surpised about the many things that Tina went through to be in the position that she is in now. She deserves every single award seh recieves.. plus more.. She is an amazing woman and the strongest I have ever had the pleasure of reading about.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found this book after seeing a Larry King Live interview with Tina Turner in which she discusses her life and the Buddhist practice she credits with helping turning her life around, Soka Gakkai. This book is the most inspirational life-story of a living person I've ever read! I've since read and re-read this book a few times, as well as other books that are related to the Buddhism she practices. At first, it was hard for me to believe someone like Tina could also be a Buddhist, but now that I've read more about it I completely understand. I'm so glad Tina mentioned Soka Gakkai and Daisaku Ikeda in the interview, because she didn't directly discuss them in this book. Tina is the greatest! A true rock and roll Buddhist Goddess! Nam-myoho-renge-kyo...
Guest More than 1 year ago
Tina's life was one hell of a rollercoaster ride and one hell of a publicity stunt. However it leaves you in no doubt that she's human. But then again so is Ike.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book helps people understand the real life of Tina turner. It tells everything about her life starting from the beging but this book does not have an ending because Tina is still going strong. I reccomend this book to everyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was great. If you dont want to read the book, get the movie 'Whats Love got to do with it'. Both are great. Tina had a tought life, and look at her now. Shes a great singer and person...