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Remembering Whitney Hardcover – January 29, 2013
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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. (Boston Globe)
From the Back Cover
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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Top Customer Reviews
What I did not like: Cissy consistently describes herself as strong, tough and Whitney as... well, basically the opposite. I didn't think that was fair. In fact, if I were Whitney reading this from heaven, that would really piss me off. Cissy talked about how Whitney didn't really go through anything as a kid. Yes, she did. She was bullied - actually quite badly and often! Cissy talks about Whitney's brothers stepping in when a group of kids were gathered outside their home waiting to beat Whitney up - one of Whitney's brothers basically said - "Whitney will fight any one of you, but if you win, I will kick your ass." Cissy talks about these displays of family support as coddling, enabling behaviors that didn't help Whitney grow strong. I don't know if she thinks the family should've ignored what Whitney was going through. Any way you look at it, the insight she has into the past is minimal.
The truth is Cissy didn't know how to be there for Whitney emotionally and she didn't know what healthy family support looked like. Whitney learned when she was being bullied not to go to her mom with her problems. Cissy's own upbringing never included anyone asking her how she felt...about her mother's stroke, and then her death, her dad's remarriage...quite probably every other event in the Huston family. Her saving grace was God's intervention on her life.
Whitney did not need her mom to die at a young age like Cissy's did to learn strength. You don't need to be poor growing up or have a unlikeable stepmom to learn how to be strong. No, Whitney needed to be taught how to talk about her pain. she needed to be taught how to handle pain and work through tough circumstances. Whitney did not die because she was coddled or didn't experience enough tragedy to become strong. The sad outcome may have been the same for Whitney even if her family knew how to support her. But If anything - her early death came as a result of denial and avoidance patterns in the family system.
Sadly, one of the biggest stressors Whitney experienced right before leaving home was her parents' constant shouting matches. From Cissy's own words, Whitney was very distressed about their fighting and ultimately, her dad moving out. Cissy and John put their marital strife in full display, but Cissy makes it clear she never talked about what was going on with Whitney because her marriage was "her business." So you can yell and fight in front of her, but you can't have an adult conversation with her about the tension and pain going on in the home... because THAT is private?! This is where Whitney learned her destructive emotional habits! When I read Cissy saying Whitney never went through anything hard, I say Cissy never knew Whitney then. Whitney's life tells a very different story.
Cissy's love for her daughter was the love of a mother - the unconditional kind. But she didn't know how to be there for Whitney and she never figured it out.
by Cissy Houston was just an ok book. It is very difficult to write a review about a book on somethng so devastingly personal. I love Whitney and her performance.
A huge portion of this book is about Cissy Houston from her childhood life, singing career, courtship and marriage, to places she traveled.
From the title you would expect the book to be about her mother remembering Whitney. The book should have been about Whitney, not Cissy.
Cissy even when as far as listing all her songs in the book. I wasn't looking for the rumors or drug use to be in the book , but I did think the book would have talked about all of Whitney's childhood to all of the good things Whitney did that most people dont know, not Cissy's.
The title should have been Cissy Life Story.
The book tricks readers with the title.