From Publishers Weekly
Cissy Houston, mother of pop singer Whitney Houston, tells her life story with simple candor. Her story begins with her grandparents' life in Georgia and continues with her own family's relocation to Newark, N.J., her beginnings as a Gospel singer, her life as wife and mother and, finally, her present life as a singer whose accolades are now being sung by critics and peers alike. Born the youngest of eight children, Cissy Drinkard soaked in the quiet godliness of her introspective and resourceful mother while basking in the admiration and devotion of her hard-working father. Surrounded by devout Christian grandparents, parents and siblings, Cissy learned early in life how God was to be honored and obeyed in this life. Houston chronicles her life in a series of moves from home to home after several personal and material losses, and she describes how she found solace and security in her family relationships and in her church. Brought up as part of the Drinkard Gospel Singers, Cissy proved herself a talented, capable artist of Gospel music, and she tells how her devotion to God and music carried her through family deaths, financial losses and career setbacks. Houston describes her own experiences as a Gospel performer as good preparation for guiding her own daughter into the fierce and often fickle world of music stardom.
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The narrative is hampered by an overly dutiful recitation of facts. But the story comes to life when describing her career.... -- The New York Times Book Review, Eric P. Nash