BABY, LET'S PLAY HOUSE
Read below what others are saying about this incredible new book by Alanna Nash.
"Biography is one of the most difficult types of writing. Unlike fiction, where one can devise the beginning as wanted, develop the plot along any desired line and treat the end totally as one wants, a biography's beginning is set, the middle open to interpretation and disparate opinions, and the ending unalterable. Alanna Nash tackles this formidable task successfully time and again. In Baby, Let's Play House, she manages to make the well-known beginning fresh and new, gives with insight and examples of Elvis's particular personality a new slant to the middle, and makes the well-known ending poignant and heartbreaking. A lifelong fan and admirer of Elvis's music, she is patient and diligent in her research. She shows tenacity in getting at the truth, and although she reveals his faults, she shows that these faults were offset by the examples of his unselfishness and generosity. By interviewing hundreds of his personal acquaintances, she has captured so much of the man and the many and complicated reasons for the person he became. It would be unrealistic to think Elvis's later sexual predilections would not be chronicled by someone. Those who care for him should be grateful it is Ms. Nash who has taken on the job and not someone less sympathetic. Since he surrounded himself with a great many people from the early days of his career until the last, it is also unrealistic to think there could be any part of his life left private. Most of those in his circle were loyal and caring, but the keeping of their private mental diaries is not to be denied. When thinking of Elvis, reading about him and endeavoring to understand him, we should remember that like Winston Churchill's description of Russia, Elvis was "a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma." Also in judging him, perhaps we should do as I do when faced with a great problem--put all the pluses on one side of a piece of paper and the minuses on the other, and then make a decision based on the results. In Elvis's case, there are enough minuses to satisfy even the harshest critic; on the other hand, for those of us who care so much for the man, the memories and the music, thankfully the entries on the plus side just go on and on and on. I think Ms. Nash has recognized and noted the good and beautiful in Elvis's nature as well as the all too human side. She is a first-class writer capturing on paper the life of a talented, troubled and terrific man. Ms. Nash--a job well done. Elvis--a race well run. Thank you both."
Barbara Hearn Smith (Elvis's girlfriend, 1956)
"I was not able to put the book down. It was spellbinding. I got lost in the pages, and felt like I was sharing Elvis's life. Then came the tragic ending, and it was almost as if he died all over again. Your writing is remarkable to have that effect. You tell his story without being the least bit judgmental, and that means a lot to me. It is truly an honor for me to have been a small part of it. I hope you are enjoying the wonderful reviews and at last can take a deep breath for the remarkable book you have created."
Regis Wilson Vaughn (Elvis's prom date, 1953)
"There has never and never will be such an in-depth look at our guy and the stuff he was made of. This book is exactly as I saw him."
Nita Lynn-Zahn (fellow performer on The Louisiana Hayride, 1955)
"Alanna Nash, an ardent Elvis fan, has extensively researched and with savoir faire created the true heart and soul of Elvis. It has been said that the most special place one can touch a woman is her heart, and Baby, Let's Play House is the most factual and loving rendering of the memories of the women's hearts he touched. I thank Alanna for giving a voice to my very special memories of Elvis, my first kiss, and my first love. I am so blessed to have Elvis come into my life. Lest by now I'm sure I would no longer be the giant blueberry. I would be a cluster of concord grapes."
Jackie Rowland (Elvis girlfriend, 1956-1961)
"Before now, reading anything about Elvis evoked only anger and feelings of confusion in me. I've walked out of bookstores after reading only a chapter of other Presley books, feeling more bewildered than I was after the last conversation I had with the man. Alanna Nash is the first to put it straight in every way about who I was to him. Her research and her tireless quest for truth has finally given me peace in knowing who I was to Elvis. Thank you, Alanna, and God bless."
Sheila Ryan Caan (Elvis girlfriend, 1974-1975)
"Bless you for such a lovely work of love. The way you portrayed his life and the women who were touched by his life was so beautiful and heartfelt. It really opened up a lot of emotions and memories. And it was such an enlightenment as to why he wanted to be with me so much when I was at such a young age. It also made me very sad to see that so many of us wanted to try to help him, and felt so helpless at the same time. My hat is off to you for your amazing book."
Reeca Smith Gossan (Elvis friend, 1974-75)
"Baby, Let's Play House' is a wonderful book! Kudos to my good friend, Alanna. She was one hundred percent accurate in portraying my relationship with Elvis."
JoCathy Brownlee Elkington (Elvis's girlfriend, 1975)
MP3 MULTIMEDIA INTERVIEWS
"Baby, Let's Play House tells a lot about what made Elvis 'tick' when it came to women. However, in the final analysis it reveals, to absolute delight, that the greatest love in his life was his fans. Alanna Nash's book has captured in enthralling detail their wonderful stories and present day reflective memories, all a marvelous, important part of the 'mystery of Elvis.' Now we can all imagine that we were the woman he needed, because obviously he never found her! This book is a treasure and a 'must have' for every true Elvis fan. I'm delighted to have been featured in it."
Kay Wheeler (President of the first national Elvis Presley Fan Club, 1955-8)
"I defy any Elvis fan, or anyone else for that matter, to put your new book down. It's honest, compelling and extremely well-researched. Alanna, you're a powerful writer making Elvis accessible and shedding light on a whole new dimension of his life. I just loved reading it."
Larry Geller (Elvis' friend and spiritual advisor)
"I have to say, I really did enjoy this book, it gives us a glimpse of the side of Elvis we don't really hear about, the tender side and also the tragic side that brings a lump to the throat as you read it. It is inevitable that some fans will not like this book, but I did. I thought it was fantastic."
Lee Dawson (Elvis Express Radio)
"I absolutely loved your book. You did a masterful job of turning a huge body of research into a compelling read. Brava!"
Peggy Webb (Author)
"I've read the book and it affected me more than any book I have ever read, I could relate to his young life and where he used music I used sports, of course he carried his dream to the biggest thing in music. I would trade 5 years of my life for one night of e.p.'s life, but of course I want to pick the night!"
Joe V (Graceland Security - retired, Memphis TN.)
"One of the best Elvis books to be released in years."
“One of the top ten best books ever written about Elvis”
Steven B. Roberts - Discovering Elvis
"I want to tell you how much I love your book. You capture Elvis deep-down better than any other book I have read, and I have read many. Your chapters on his high school years, his regional stardom with the Louisiana Hayride, and his early national explosion were spectacular. I have just finished the chapter where June Juanico walks away. Your rendering of Elvis's foolish and heartbreaking optimism about June until after it was all over reminded me of Jay Gatsby's about Daisy. I fear your book is going to get sadder and sadder."
Burton Spivak (Wilton, CT)
MP3 MULTIMEDIA INTERVIEW
"I've just finished reading Baby, Let's Play House, and it's easily the best Elvis book to come out since Elvis Aaron Presley: Revelations of the Memphis Mafia. You've hit another home run! Your Gladys and "twinless twin" observation gained credibility as the book progressed, and helped me understand why Elvis had so many transient relationships over the years."
John Melvin (Elvis fan, San Diego, CA.)
"Baby, Let's Play House is the freshest perspective on Elvis Presley in years, and Alanna Nash is the only author who could have written this book. Nash is, in my humble opinion, the best Presley biographer bar none. Her previous efforts on the Memphis Mafia and Colonel Tom Parker are permanent fixtures on my library shelf. Why is she so good? First and foremost, she is an extraordinarily talented writer and manages to mix entertainment with information with ease, making for a delightful read. Second, she is an ace researcher and her hard work shows on every page. In this new effort, Nash writes Presley's story (with an assist from psychologist Peter Whitmer, author of the excellent "The Inner Elvis") through the eyes of the women who loved "The King of Rock 'n' Roll." This is more than just a book...it's a seminal work."
Marshall Terrill (author of "Elvis: Still Taking Care of Business" and "Sergeant Presley")
"I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book, finding out little bits of info and quotes by Elvis or photos that I have never seen of him is something that I love doing (probably only another Elvis fan will understand this!) and this book has quite a few of them. You also get a little better understanding of Elvis' character after reading it. It was one of those unputdownable books that you come across and when I'd finished reading the book my wife said "I'm glad you've finished it, you've hardly spoken a word to me whilst you've had your nose buried in that book."
Andrew Crowther (UK Elvis fan)
"Baby, Let's Play House is a previously unopened window into Presley's pain, his humor and his appeal."
Peter Cooper (The Tennessean)
"After reading your book and crying through the last one hundred pages, I have to say that this was the most beautiful biography about the man who was beautiful inside out and who was looking for his eternal twin and then mother....I watched last week his '68 Comeback special DVD. There are simply no words to describe him, his talent, his energy, his look. He really was out of this world, was he not? Your book, together with the movie Out of Africa, is something I will allways remember."
Marcella Davey (London, England)
"What a fascinating read! You've done an incredible job of meshing together quotes taken from earlier sources and your own extensive interviews, while also incorporating the ideas of Peter Whitmer. There was nothing in this book which I found offensive, maybe because I've read and heard so much about Elvis already. As a lifelong fan who got two kisses from Elvis on a Las Vegas stage, I can tell you I want to know it all! So my hat goes off to all those women who came forward to share their memories. When I think of all that's been said and written about Elvis, I realize what a monumental undertaking this book was. At times, you made me laugh hysterically, and then at the end, I was crying with sadness. In a few months, I will re-read this wonderful book, just to make sure I didn't miss any details the first time through. WHAT A BOOK! You've outdone yourself!"
Jeanne Pellicani (Lifelong Elvis fan, East Northport, NY)
MP3 MULTIMEDIA INTERVIEWS
"I have so enjoyed your book thus far. I'm on page 300-something, and I dread finishing it because I feel another piece of my life will be over. But I will have become a different person because of it. And that is a really good thing. I feel like I'm the character in the story. I'm not the girl. I'm Elvis! I'm living his life through your words, reading your book through his eyes. I am understanding the boy and man that he was. And that is what I so hoped for when I bought your book. I believe he never loved any woman but his mother. He never would have married had it not been for the Colonel forcing him to. It was all about the image and not the man. Deep down I believe he was a very unhappy and depressed person, a deep and disturbed man. He turned to drugs to cope with his unhappiness. I love him with all my heart, but I blame him for his lack of courage to step up to the plate and make positive changes in his life. He had a choice, and he made the wrong one. So sad that such great talent was lost prematurely."
Diane Kornegay (lifelong Elvis fan, Jonesboro, AR.)
“Alanna Nash never ceases to amaze me. With the many Elvis books published, few ever reach the depths that Nash achieves in Baby, Let’s Play House, a page turner you’ll want to read cover to cover. It’s a fascinating look into the personal life of one of the world’s greatest performers, told by an expert storyteller.”
Steve Binder (producer-director of Elvis The '68 Comeback Special)
'Baby, Let's Play House' is one of my favorite books on Elvis. It is so informative. I have learned so much more about him, and the details are awesome. Alanna wrote about my experience with Elvis exactly the way it happened. He was so gorgeous, well mannered, and loving. No one has ever had the magnificient prescence that Elvis had, before or after him. He was one of a kind in every way."
Judy Geller (Sister of Larry Geller and frequent Presley party guest, 1970s)
“By far the best study of Elvis Presley I have read. ‘The King’ emerges more clearly from this mosaic of his troubled love life than from any linear biography to date. Impressively researched, written and felt.”
Philip Norman (New York Times bestselling author of John Lennon and Shout!)
“A singular work devoid of fanciful rhetoric and the oft-told stories of Elvis’s romantic conquests, Alanna Nash’s Baby, Let’s Play House instead takes the reader down a long, winding, and often unsettling path, where Elvis Presley’s pathology and psychology are woven into the narrative against the backdrop of so many women along the way. Most compelling, however, is that the story ultimately is not about the women who loved him or left him, but about one woman who did both: his mother, Gladys Presley. A subtle, yet very powerful account that will lay the groundwork for a better understanding of how so many parts of Elvis’s life, both good and bad, were so profoundly affected by this defining love, and this devastating loss.”
Patrick Lacy (Author of Elvis Decoded)
Alanna Nash with Barbara Hearn
(c) Linda Hearn Harvey
Alanna Nash with JoCathy Brownlee
(c) Jim Smith