He almost didn’t survive. The birth was complicated, difficult on mother and child. It was a home birth, so the doctor didn’t have access to many of the tools he required. Forceps were forcefully used to rip the baby from the mother, permanently scarring the baby’s neck as a result. When he finally immerged, he was pronounced dead…that is until his grandmother held true to an old wives’ tale and ran his head under cold water. Suddenly, the child was brought back to life and released its first of many vocals into the world.
Life was gifted back to this young New Jersey boy…and he did nothing but live it to the fullest.
Of the many Frank Sinatra books I’ve read in my life, this one may be the definitive one. SINATRA, by Richard Havers, is not only the biography of one of the most talented performers to ever grace our TV’s, radios, and movie screens, but a historical look into the world during Frank’s lifetime. Journey to Hoboken in the early 1900’s when Frank was born. Learn what life may have been like for his Italian parents who stepped foot in America with hundreds of thousands of other immigrants. Travel through his career with him…learn about other singers of the day and people who changed Frank’s life…both for the good and the bad.
Interspersed with tons of sidebars, stories, quotes, and vignettes are hundreds of beautiful full-color photos of Frank’s life…photos I’ve never seen anywhere else. By the time you’re a quarter of the way through this epic book, you’ll feel like you know Sinatra personally and intimately. You’ll know what made him “tick” and you may discover a new appreciation for Ol’ Blue Eyes.
This book is great for Sinatra fans and those who want to know more about him. If you love his movies, flip to the section where Havers talks about the many issues filming Young at Heart, the intimate moments he had with Grace Kelly while shooting High Society, and what he went through to get that infamous role as Maggio in From Here to Eternity. If you love his music, you’ll enjoy the special record highlights randomly scattered through the book. Each one of Sinatra’s popular albums gets it’s own recognition, including a rundown of track listings, dates each song was recorded, and a brief discussion of what went into creating each album. His TV appearances, shows, programs, concerts, and specials are discussed in great detail throughout the book, as is his complicated love life, his devotion to charity and friends, and personal stories from those who loved him, helping highlight and honor a man who did it ‘His Way’ up until the very end.
NEXT WEEK: Every good wine connoisseur knows that wine is alive, it breathes and moves with the flow of life. However, as Jay McIntosh is about to discover, his wine holds more than just flavor…it has secrets.
Looking for a new book to read? Check in every Friday for a “Bee Happy” post, where I share reviews of books I’ve read or other book-themed lists.