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Frank: The Voice | [James Kaplan]

Frank: The Voice

Frank Sinatra was the best-known entertainer of the 20th century - infinitely charismatic, lionized, and notori­ous in equal measure. But despite his mammoth fame, Sinatra the man has remained an enigma. As Bob Spitz did with the Beatles, Tina Brown for Diana, and Peter Guralnick for Elvis, James Kaplan goes behind the legend and hype to bring alive a force that changed popular culture in fundamental ways.
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Publisher's Summary

Best-selling author James Kaplan redefines Frank Sinatra in a triumphant new biography that includes many rarely seen photographs.

Frank Sinatra was the best-known entertainer of the 20th century - infinitely charismatic, lionized, and notori­ous in equal measure. But despite his mammoth fame, Sinatra the man has remained an enigma. As Bob Spitz did with the Beatles, Tina Brown for Diana, and Peter Guralnick for Elvis, James Kaplan goes behind the legend and hype to bring alive a force that changed popular culture in fundamental ways.

Sinatra endowed the songs he sang with the explosive conflict of his own personality. He also made the very act of listening to pop music a more personal experience than it had ever been. In Frank: The Voice, Kaplan reveals how he did it, bringing deeper insight than ever before to the complex psyche and tur­bulent life behind that incomparable vocal instrument.

We relive the years 1915 to 1954 in glistening detail, experiencing as if for the first time Sinatra’s journey from the streets of Hoboken, his fall from the apex of celebrity, and his Oscar-winning return in From Here to Eternity. Here at last is the biographer who makes the reader feel what it was really like to be Frank Sinatra - as man, as musician, as tortured genius.

©2010 James Kaplan (P)2010 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Fascinating.... For anyone who wants to know what popular culture and celebrity felt like around the middle of the twentieth century, this book is the new bible." (Booklist)

“The answer to 'what is there left to say about Sinatra' is staggeringly answered in James Kaplan's new book. This story has never been told with such incisiveness, care, research and respect. With so many new revelations, you might never really know who Frank Sinatra is until you read this book.” (Michael Feinstein)

“Jim Kaplan’s great gift is his own voice, in peak form—stylish, seductive, and richly resonant—that stands up to Sinatra’s powerful baritone. This is a perceptive, passionate biography of an immense and immensely flawed musical figure whose life and legend continue to fascinate.” (Bob Spitz, author of The Beatles)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (61 )
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4.2 (32 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Brad APO, AE, United States 12-12-10
    Brad APO, AE, United States 12-12-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Both fascinating and tedious"

    Rob Shapiro is perfect for this book, capturing Kaplan's informal narrative voice exceptionally well, and carrying the listener forward through what at times can be a mind-numbing level of detail about the first 20-some years of Sinatra's career. It's a tribute to Shapiro and Kaplan that one sticks with the book for 20+ hours, as there are passages that follow Sinatra's trail on almost a minute-by-minute detail.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Adam Shinjuku-ku, Japan 02-23-11
    Adam Shinjuku-ku, Japan 02-23-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great book and great reader!"

    After reading Kitty Kelley's scandalous Sinatra book, it was a pleasure listening to a book that was fair to Sinatra and that also fully recognized his musical genius. Kaplan pulls no punches and effectively manages to create a portrait of Sinatra that will be very hard to surpass. I strongly suggest listening to the early Sinatra in order to fully appreciate this book. Rob Shapiro was a true delight as a reader.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jayne sarver, PA, United States 03-11-13
    jayne sarver, PA, United States 03-11-13 Member Since 2009
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    48
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    "See ya Frank"

    What a fabulous book. i loved every word. Frank is really quite a guy and his love affair with Ava Gardner was a real eye opener. i would recommend this book to everyone. i will read more about frank in the future. i want to know everything. A+++++++

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jack Gwynedd Valley, PA, United States 03-18-12
    Jack Gwynedd Valley, PA, United States 03-18-12 Member Since 2011
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    3
    2
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    "Very thorough but incomplete"
    What did you love best about Frank: The Voice?

    Narrator did an excellent job


    What about Rob Shapiro’s performance did you like?

    Great


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Frank Sinatra, Part 1


    Any additional comments?

    Dissapointed that the book did not cover his full life story

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cindy Potter Mississippi 11-13-13
    Cindy Potter Mississippi 11-13-13 Member Since 2007
    ratings
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    Story
    "Very disappointed."
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Yes, it would be nice if it covered Mr. Sinatra's ENTIRE life.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    What? His life was over only half-way through it?


    Would you be willing to try another one of Rob Shapiro’s performances?

    Not if it can be avoided.


    What else would you have wanted to know about James Kaplan’s life?

    Why would I want to know anything about James Kaplan's life? It's a book about Frank Sinatra? Don't YOU at Audible even know what you're asking me about?


    Any additional comments?

    Mr. Shapiro's performance was awful. I stopped counting his mispronounciations at a dozen. At the end of the book there is a stated director. What does she do? Sit back and do her nails? Apparently she didn't listen to the book, or else she was also unaware of how to pronounce the many words the Mr. Shapiro didn't know how to pronounce. Shame on you.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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