Dolly: My Life and Other Unfinished Business
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The successful country singer reveals her life since leaving home at the age of eighteen to pursue a singing career, while discussing her personal philosophies, her marriage, her friendships, and achievements.

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Even people who don't know country music from Kaopectate know Dolly Parton, the big-in-front, big-on-top blonde with the perky, little-girl voice who seems sometimes a hick Mae West and sometimes sweeter than Little Mary Sunshine. Given her obvious assets, the tabloid crowd knows her, too, which only increases the appeal of her memoirs. Well, she's more Mary than Mae here, with plenty of vanilla-lite sex-talk and spoofing of her persona ("It costs a lot to make a person look this cheap," etc.) but nary a word about extramarital tumbles or surgical augmentation of her charms. She explains that while she does indeed sleep with longtime friend Judy Ogle, it's not, never was, what suspicious minds think. She praises husband Carl Dean every time she speaks his name, and she doesn't say anything catty about Porter Wagoner, on whose TV show she found fame in the early 1970s and with whom she famously fought. In short, Dolly's so squeaky clean and nice that a reader can't help wondering why HarperCollins wouldn't countenance advance reviews and sent out no early copies. The book contains no secrets to expose, no juice to spill. That doesn't mean it's flat--coming from Dolly, how could it be? It's an entertaining country music rags-to-riches story, full of just enough humor and heart to thoroughly charm the fans. Ray Olson

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