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Aretha: From These Roots
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Most listeners will find this autobiography lacking in both sound and substance. Ann Duquesnay, an award-winning Broadway actress with a strong, beautiful voice, delivers Franklin's frequently self-congratulatory prose with a haughtiness that emphasizes the narcissistic nature of the work. Also, because Franklin is evasive about her personal history, this is more an annotated discography of her extraordinary career as a soul singer than a true biography. On the rare occasions when she does open up, the results are moving and the narration superb. For instance, the description of the events surrounding the tragic death of her father, the renowned Rev. C.L. Franklin, is quite powerful. With this work, Franklin and coauthor Ritz, veteran biographer of musical superstars including Ray Charles and B.B. King, will likely disappoint those hoping for a substantial examination of the life of the "Queen of Soul." For popular collections.--Beth Farrell, Portage Cty. Dist. Lib., OH Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

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