Honky Tonk Angel

Honky Tonk Angel
Honky Tonk Angel

Honky Tonk Angel

The Intimate Story of Patsy Cline
By Ellis Nassour, Foreword by Dottie West


320 Pages, 6 x 9 1/4

Formats: Trade Paper, EPUB, PDF, Mobipocket

Trade Paper, $24.99 (CA $33.99) (US $24.99)

ISBN 9781556527470

Rights: WOR

Chicago Review Press (Jun 2008)


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Crazy for loving you

Earthy, sexy, and vivacious, the life of beloved country singer, Patsy Cline, who soared from obscurity to international fame to tragic death in just thirty short years, is explored in colorful and poignant detail. An innovator—and even a hell-raiser—Cline broke all the boys’ club barriers of Nashville’s music business in the 1950s and brought a new Nashville sound to the nation with her pop hits and torch ballads like “Walking After Midnight,” “I Fall to Pieces“ and "Crazy.” She is the subject of a major Hollywood movie and countless articles, and her albums are still selling 45 years after her death. Ellis Nassour was the very first to write about Cline and did so with the cooperation of the stars who knew and loved her—including Jimmy Dean, Jan Howard, Brenda Lee, Loretta Lynn, Roger Miller, Dottie West, and Faron Young. He was the only writer to interview Cline's mother and husbands. This updated edition features not only a complete discography and a host of never-before-published photographs, but includes an afterword that details controversial claims about her birth, the battle between Cline's siblings for her possessions, the amazing influence Cline had on a new generation of singers and, in Cline’s own words from letters to a devoted friend, her excitement as her career soared to new heights and her marriage descended to new depths.


"Done with great respect and humor and just enough down-and-dirty detail." —New York Daily News

"Patsy Cline's immortal voice sings in Honky Tonk Angel . . . it brings tears streaming down your face. . . . Larger than life, yet still intimate. Honest and respectful."  —The Virginian-Pilot

"Gazes unflinchingly at its subject. . . . Filled with poignant memories and amazing detail."  ­­—Nashville Tennessean

"With a clear, concise style, Nassour reconstructs Cline’s life. . . . [The] painstaking interviews provide an insightful and comprehensive look at one of country music's pioneers. It’s a good read."  —Rocky Mountain News

"Cline was a woman of great passion, prone to her own style of sexual braggadocio, and Nassour gives us all the earthiness of this most sublime singer."  —Phoenix Gazette

"Revealing and absorbing . . . a winner."  —Liz Smith

"Ellis Nassour’s biography doesn’t just paint an image of the Patsy Cline I knew and loved. What really emerges is a poignant tribute to one of our greatest singing legends."  —Brenda Lee, American pop singer and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Country Music Hall of Fame, and Rockabilly Hall of Fame

"Honky Tonk Angel brought back wonderful memories. It brings home the fact that Patsy was an original in her cowboy outfit with red boots and western hat singing her butt off, singing her soul at you. There's been no one quite like her."  —Roger Miller

Author Biography

Ellis Nassour is a veteran of The New York Times and an entertainment writer. He has devoted the past 15 years to promoting the legacy of Patsy Cline, and has been involved in two musicals of her story. He lives in New York City.