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Cosby: His Life and Times Hardcover – Sep 16 2014
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“A smart, revealing biography of an iconic American funnyman. . . . A fascinating look at a complicated genius.” (People)
“Whitaker’s wonderfully thorough biography of America’s most accomplished comedian provides context and depth as he analyzes Bill Cosby’s work.” (New York Times Book Review)
Fluid, admiring, packed with detail and anecdotes.” (Wall Street Journal)
“Invaluable . . . Whitaker makes a convincing argument that issues of race and politics have preoccupied Cosby throughout his life.” (New Yorker)
“Whitaker’s clear-eyed, fair-minded and deftly written book takes up all the momentous stops of Cosby’s life’s journey . . . by allowing us to see Cosby’s tumultuous life in full, Whitaker’s book makes it possible to imagine Bill Cosby being regarded as one of the first prophets of what optimists of all colors believe will someday be a “post-racial America.” (USA TODAY)
“Absorbing . . . makes a persuasive case for Cosby as a groundbreaking comic and a quiet but far-ranging pioneer of black advancement.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“Readable, thoughtful life of the brilliant comedian and . . . an eye-opening book and a pleasure to read.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“Provides an in-depth look at the triumphs and tragedies of a man who has kept America laughing for decades.” (New York Daily News)
“This is a compelling look at a man who has had a major impact on American race relations and television and whose “Cosby effect” helped prime the nation for its first black president.” (Booklist (starred review))
“An insightful, well-researched exploration . . . a generous portrayal of a complicated yet ultimately compassionate man.” (Minneapolis Star Tribune)
Editor’s Picks (Ebony)
“Written with the entertainer’s cooperation, it is admiring but not fawning, honest but not lancing, with a narrative drive that matches the soaring arc of Cosby’s career . . . [Whitaker] has a masterly command of detail . . . a must-read for the comedian’s fans, and a book that will reward anyone interested in comedy, television or the wellsprings of popular culture.” (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
“A solid, well-researched reminder of Cosby’s impact on the pop-culture landscape.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
“Cosby: His Life and Times tells a quintessentially American tale of adversity and triumph, influence, betrayal and—yes—lots and lots of laughter.” (Boston Globe)
“The book is at its strongest when the author puts Cosby’s comedy and to education into a broad social and cultural context.” (Washington Post)
“The biography examines the non-comedic side of Bill Cosby, and features interviews with 60 of his closest friends and associates. The author calls Cosby ‘entertainment’s Jackie Robinson, smashing racial barriers and teaching hard truths to the black community.’” (Sacramento Bee)
About the Author
Mark Whitaker is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir, My Long Trip Home. The former managing editor of CNN Worldwide, he was previously the Washington bureau chief for NBC News and a reporter and editor at Newsweek, where he rose to become the first African-American leader of a national newsweekly.See all Product Description
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Wrote David Carr in The Times "Whitaker...did not find room in his almost-500-page biography...to address the accusations that Mr. Cosby had assaulted numerous women/"
To which Whitaker replied on Twitter "I was wrong to not deal with the sexual assault charges against Cosby and pursue them more aggressively." False. He didn't pursue them at all. Wrote not a word.
Don't waste a dime on this worthless whitewash. Whitaker couldn't report his way out of a paper bag.
Mark Whitaker is deplorable on every level in his presentation; the mention of the affairs and other "critical" aspects of the book were clearly greenlit by the Cosby press team who got final cut. This biography is as legitimate and true as a supposed "behind the scenes" history of the Disney corporation, authorized by Disney, and being sold at Disney gift shops. No, that's being unfair--this book is far worse than a sanitized stocking stuffer picked up in a gift shop. The allegations of pathological drugging, molestation, and serial rapes over four or five decades are completely absent here. A total whitewash.
Mark would have gotten away with it too, with perhaps nothing more damning for him than a brief footnote in a Salon article a few years down the road about the omissions of the rape allegations--had it not been for social media, which is beyond the Cosby PR machine's manipulations and control.
I wonder if Mark squirmed and groveled like the AP interviewer while the camera still rolled during the infamous shoot where Cosby demands they "scuttle" the very mention of the allegations at the tail end of the interview? No, he probably did not--I am being too fair to the author. He probably never even brought the 2006 settled lawsuit up in Cosby's presence. Mark's a media lifer... he knows the game. He plays by the rules. Unfortunately for him, the public has wised up, no thanks to the media machine that protected Cosby and demonized and dismissed his victims all these years.
Sleep well at night, Mark?