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Deconstructing Sammy

Deconstructing Sammy Cover

Deconstructing Sammy

Music, Money, and Madness

By Matt Birkbeck

Harper Paperbacks, Paperback, 9780061450679, 280pp.

Publication Date: September 1, 2009

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Description
Equal parts cultural history, celebrity biography, and brilliant investigative journalism, Deconstructing Sammy by Matt Birkbeck is a behind-the-scenes look at the disastrous fall of one of the brightest stars of Hollywood and Las Vegas Sammy Davis, Jr. A member of the infamous Rat Pack, a compatriot of Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, and one of the most popular performers of his day, Sammy Davis, Jr. was an entertainment icon and a national treasure who earned more than $50 million over the course of his career yet ended up nearly destitute. Deconstructing Sammy tells the whole sad, sordid, fascinating true story.


Praise For Deconstructing Sammy

“Birkbeck has killer leads, gripping kickers and sensational descriptions. This cinematic book reads more like a detective story than a traditional ‘life of.”
-New York Times Book Review

“Tremendous. . . Birkbeck tells the epic of Sammy Davis Jr... from his Harlem boyhood to his wrenching deathbed (he died of cancer in 1990) in his Beverly Hills mansion, where various hangers-on, seeing the circling vultures, stripped his corpse even before it was a corpse.”
-Los Angeles Times Book Review

“A piece of investigative journalism that unravels what happened to Davis’ estate, and reveals more about the man...Birkbeck spoke to people that have never spoken before -- and the portrait of Sammy that emerges is difficult, demanding, and ultimately tragic.”
-NPR's Talk of the Nation

“Exceptionally detailed…makes tax law sexy,”
-Library Journal

“With a journalist’s eye toward a great story, author Matt Birkbeck leads readers through a decades-long financial mess including cover-ups… mob connections, political friendships and snubbing.…Un-put-down-able…Stunning.”
-TERRI SCHLICHENMEYER, NATIONAL BOOK REVIEWER

“Davis’s remarkable life is certainly well-trod territory. Nevertheless, through interviews with close friends and confidants who had never spoken publicly before, Birkbeck digs up many startling details.”
-MICHAEL RUBINKAM, ASSOCIATED PRESS

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