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A Song for You: My Life with Whitney Houston

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Sometimes when seeing family and loved ones heading down a path of destruction, you just have to step back and show tough love. I can’t imagine how brave it was to put it all in words, but I’m confident it is going to bring her the peace she deserves. This is not a tell all, as other reviewers have said, and it still feels like Robyn is holding back due to how private of a person Whitney was. It is a distorting effect of fame that minor episodes can assume a much larger prominence than they deserve.

Houston could be loyal: when, in the early days of their friendship, Crawford was employed at a car dealership and couldn’t sell a single car, Houston dropped in and bought one from her, without so much as taking it for a test-drive. I'm a Whitney Houston fan and it pained me to see her in the state she was in during her final years, particularly in the early 00's. They should live the rest of lives in shame because Whitney and Bobbi Kristina’s blood is on their hands. I just wish she’d stuck to the 7-or-so-year run when it seems they were incredibly close, instead of reaching and regurgitating and hypothesizing to meet the page requirements of her book deal. If only her entire family loved and cared for her; if only she hadn’t felt constrained by the music industry to hide her true self; if only she and Robyn could have been free?I commend Robin for not going out of her way to trash Bobby Brown, Whitney's ex husband, but to tell stories of the things she saw and heard while an employee of Nippy’s. In the end, Robyn’s biases against all of Whitney’s potential partners and her impossible longing for the “old Whitney” made it hard for me to respect much of this book.

I do not feel that Robyn was trying to exploit her friendship with Whitney in any way; instead, I feel like she was trying to set the record straight and tell her truth as she knew it. In 1995, in an even more jaw-dropping episode, Crawford learned of a story running in the National Enquirer in which it was alleged that Houston’s father had hired a thug to “break her [Crawford’s] kneecaps”. It’s a stretch to recast the silence brought on by homophobic bullying as noble, but there is something very moving about the way Crawford came to regard her secret history with Houston: as their only private space in a life dominated by public interest. This is a searing indictment of the Houston family and the way they exploited and manipulated Whitney, enabled her addiction, drove a wedge between her and the love of her life, and only served themselves. By “something that happened”, Crawford is referring to the years immediately after meeting when the two women were sexually involved.You can tell she really loved her friend and had her best interest at heart even in writing the book. Rather than considering her own position, Crawford’s first thought on hearing about the Enquirer story was for Houston. After decades of speculation, Robyn Crawford, a close friend, business collaborator and confidante of Whitney Houston, tells her side of the story.

Meanwhile, Crawford was harangued, marginalised, and allegedly threatened with violence by the singer’s family. After analyzing my thoughts I have come to realize this book is the story of a woman that couldn’t save her friend so she saved herself. But when Houston started dating Jermaine Jackson in the mid-1980s, then Eddie Murphy, and rap star Bobby Brown, whom she married, Crawford admits it was tremendously difficult. He even admitted had Whitney's sexuality been accepted by her family and Robyn been around, Whitney would still be alive today.I think she slapped my face because she felt that I had done something, and she wanted me to know that I’d earned that slap. And the fact that these ratings are not accompanied by actual reviews leads me to believe that the ppl who rated did not actually read the book, but chose to rate anyway b/c of their personal feelings about Robyn writing this book. However, it would be a 4 if I based it on the sincerity I felt that she was giving us that we have not seen in previous books and documentaries about Whitney’s life.

The takeaway here is that Bobby Brown was the worst beard any queer person has ever masqueraded with. As the documentary illuminated, Houston remained caught between two worlds when it came to race: for her sophomore album, she posed with her natural hair, only to be criticized by members of the black community because her skin appeared lighter in the studio portrait. And yes some of the rumors were true, they did have a physical relationship at one time, but it ended long ago.I remember how excited I was the Christmas I got a pink, dual cassette boombox with a microphone and the Whitney album on cassette tape. But there was also an underlying indictment of the Houston family and how they utterly failed their sister, daughter, niece, cousin friend! Reading her book, one gets the chilling sense not only of how alien things were in the very recent past, but of a story that shouldn’t be repeated in the future. The warping effect of denial isn’t easily shrugged off and there is an overwhelming sense, both in the book and in person, of someone running a gamut of internal barriers.

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