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Yes I Can: The Story of Sammy Davis, Jr. Paperback – December 1, 1990


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 668 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (December 1, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374522685
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374522681
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 6.3 x 1.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,287,381 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Amazing story and well written.
nurwho
I finished reading the entire book in about two days.
"jtrinidad"
I am in looooove with Sammy Davis Jr.!!!
Chassidy Wallace

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Shalom Freedman HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on January 19, 2005
Format: Paperback
This autobiography tells the story of Sammy Davis Jr. up until the sixties. It tells the now legendary story of his starting out as a four - year with the Will Mastin trio. It tells of a long - climb through many obstacles to get to the top of the show- business world. It tells of his contending with prejudice and discrimination especially during his time in the Army. And it also reveals his courage in confronting this, and in standing up for his own people. It does not tell the much sadder last part of Sammy Davis Jr. 's story when he seemed to sink into drug and alcoholic addiction, and deteriorated morally as well as in health terms. It does not tell the story of the six- pack a day smoker's final cancer.

It reveals the earlier more optimistic Sammy Davis Jr. He was usually referred to in his glory days as the greatest all- around entertainer show- business ever had. And in truth he was a terrific dancer, a quite good but not great singer, and just a remarkably energetic entertainer. He had humor about himself and about the world, about his one eye, about his being a black Jew. One interesting part of this book tells about his friendship with Jeff Chandler an actor who was Jewish and who died young. And how that influenced on Davis's own decision to convert to Judaism.

Davis was a person who you radiated not only great energy but a great hunger to be approved of and loved. He received tremendous applause on stage but perhaps that did not fully satisfy his need. Raised without formal schooling, and always on the road he too had a restlessness about him as if he were never at home in the place he stood. There was something to my mind tremendously moving about this part of his stage identity.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Andre M. on July 20, 2001
Format: Paperback
To HELL with TD Jakes, Ilyana Van Zant, and all those other so-called self-help quickbuck gurus. You want inspiration? READ THIS BOOK! When I was 14 and going to a hellish jr. high school and dealing with bullies and home problems, I checked this out of the local lie-berry and I felt that if the "Candy Man" could go through TENFOLD the hell I was going through and still become the King of his field by believing in what God had given him, then DAMMIT, so could I! I have managed to overcome most of my childhood difficulties, thanx largely to this book and Louis Armstrong's music for getting me thru those tough times! Read this and you'll see what I mean.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
We all know him as the guy who sang "The Candyman," and the black guy in the Rat Pack, but there is so much more to this beloved entertainer than meets the eye (no pun intended). This book thoughtfully recounts the unbringing of Sammy as a child star in vaudeville, and his rise as a top performer throughout the world. In a time when race was an issue in clubs and in Vegas, Sammy persevered and overcame these obstacles to become one of the most beloved and popular entertainers ever! I originally read "Yes, I Can!" when it first came out as a youngster. He was inspiring to me in my life struggles then, even though I wasn't black or a man or in show business. It was his positive outlook that stuck with me. Sammy Davis, Jr. is just the coolest cat! I recommend this book highly.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By "jtrinidad" on August 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
The first time I saw the book I looked at the volume of the book, which is about 700 pages, I thought, "I am never going to read this." But I bought the book and discovered it was easy reading and most of all it was very enjoyable. I finished reading the entire book in about two days. I really enjoyed its rich history and the peculiar way Sammy describes his way to success. I must tell you I cried a few times and couldn't help but to feel a part of Sammy's world.
I would recommend this book to anyone who has had a dream in life and thought of it as impossible, Sammy would definitely make you believe that you can accomplish anything in this world. Yes I can is a winner in my eyes.
If you have any questions as to how his life changed in the years after this book was published do not forget to read his daughter's, Tracy Davis, biography about her famous father named "Sammy Davis Jr., My Father"
Finally, I especially recommend this book for anyone who is planning to write his/her own autobiography because you will learn a great deal just by reading it
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 13, 2000
Format: Paperback
The most appropriatelly named book I have read. An inspiring and yet heartbreaking account of a remarkable mans life. I encourage ANYONE to read this book. It will give you a whole new outlook on Sammy Davis Jr., and life as well!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Beadrin Urista on August 9, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Sammy Davis Jr was among the great talents of the 20th century. To read of the racial prejudice he experienced is to be reminded of a time not so long ago. His life became Bigger Than Life, to be sure- Had he not been willing to fight the good fight our world would have been diminished.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michael Beaumier on April 6, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
From the grab-you-by-the-throat prologue to the triumphant conclusion, Yes I Can is a tour de force. Sammy tells us how he learned timing, routines and how to become a showbiz legend all under the heavy, choking scourge of racism and ignorance. Absolutely recommended.
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