PEN/Hemingway Award-winner Bobbie Ann Mason turns her acumen on one of twentieth-century America's most mysterious icons, The King himself. This new biography eschews sensational speculation to paint a thoughtfully researched but wholly felt portrait of the man-child who metamorphosed into a hero, one of the most popular and least supported characters in American history. In 1955, at age 20, Elvis provoked his first near-riot when he sang at a baseball park in Jacksonville. Inspired by black gospel quartets and mentored by producer Sam Phillips, Elvis blended hillbilly music with rhythm and blues in a synthesis that defined a new direction for popular music. Mason's book gets at the consciousness of the icon and of the cultural climate that made him one.
If youÆre going to read one book to find out what Elvis was all about, MasonÆs is a good choice. She brings to the task a novelistÆs eye and the sensibilities of a Southern girl who came of age in the 1950s. (The San Diego Union-Tribune)

If youÆre going to read one book to find out what Elvis was all about, MasonÆs is a good choice. She brings to the task a novelistÆs eye and the sensibilities of a Southern girl who came of age in the 1950s. (The San Diego Union-Tribune)