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The Supremes: A Saga of Motown Dreams, Success, and Betrayal [Kindle Edition]

Mark Ribowsky
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £10.99
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Book Description

The Supremes is a sprawling tale of unforgettable music, cutthroat ambition, and heartbreaking betrayal. Mark Ribowsky explodes Dreamgirl fantasies by taking the reader behind the closed doors of Motown to witness the rise of group leader Diana Ross, the creation of timeless classics like “Where Did Our Love Go?,” and the dramatic power struggles within Detroit’s fabled music factory. Drawing on firsthand, intimate recollections from knowledgeable sources such as the Temptations’s Otis Williams and other Motown contemporaries—many never before interviewed—The Supremes is “a comprehensive look at the tumultuous relationships within the Supremes as well as among others at the Motown label” (Library Journal).


Product Description

Review

"(t)his beautifully written, harrowing tale ends with broken Ballard's death, Wilson's disempowerment and, until Ribowsky reveals her human side in the final paragraphs, further suggestions that if there are more unpleasant people than Ross, you haven't met them."

-- Q Magazine, August 2009

"The rags-to-riches story of the Supremes is almost as captivating as their music... Reading Mark Ribowsky's diligently researched biography, you soon realise why it's the first (serious biography dedicated to the Supremes)." -- The Sunday Times, 5th July 2009

"diligently researched...Ribowsky uses a stack of previously unpublished material but he has also done a lot of original interviews and goes out of his way to print alternate views of the same events." -- The Daily Express

'(I have) never paid much attention to The Supremes (but) Ribowsky's book had my glued to YouTube clips of them from the 1960s... Ribowsky, who has also written a biography of Phil Spector, set himself the task of sifting through the `muck and mucilage' of celebrity journalism, and has produced an interesting account of the lives of the three young women who once ruled the pop world.'
-- The Irish Times, 1st August 2009

Review

"The rags-to-riches story of the Supremes is almost as captivating as their music... Reading Mark Ribowsky's diligently researched biography, you soon realise why it's the first (serious biography dedicated to the Supremes)."

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3138 KB
  • Print Length: 482 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0306818736
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (23 Oct. 2008)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002ENBM8U
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #426,672 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Bad At All 4 July 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I've deducted half a star for some simple errors (which ought to have been eliminated by a fact-checker) and half a star for what seems to be the author's bias, which leads to some oft-reported distortions of the truth.

The other stars are for great writing and, best of all, a host of new interviews with people who were there. In addition, some myths are well and truly busted.

The stories may be familiar but this is an engaging book and worth every penny for the new input.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Let down by factual errors 28 Oct. 2011
By Private
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I assumed, since Mark Ribowsky appears to be a well regarded grown up writer, that this would be the definitive story of The Supremes. Certainly, it is well written and clearly well researched, delivering a deep level of detail absent from other biographies. But it is littered throughout with careless factual errors - too many to point out here. Some are not particularly important - like crediting the BBC (and not the independent channel ATV) with the British TV show 'The Sound of Motown' - but others are more significant and throw into doubt the whole book. I bought the hardback edition; perhaps some of the many errors were fixed for the softcover? It's now quite cheap and, although the writing style is quite hard going at times, it is worth getting.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Supreme! 26 Oct. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm a big Supremes fan and thought I knew everything about their story but this book was full of facts that I'd never heard before! I quite literally couldn't put it down. Mark Ribowsky has an excellent writing style and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would recommend to anyone who has the slightest interest in the subject.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Symphonic Heartache In 2/4 Time 18 July 2009
Format:Hardcover
In the introduction of The Supremes: A Saga of Motown Dreams, Success and Betrayal, author Mark Ribowsky states his goal is to write the "first real biography of the group written from the perspective of an outsider with no personal investment in how events are told." Being the most recent chronologist to sort out the story of the Supremes, he has the advantage of being able to draw liberally from the many volumes written on the subject by the subjects, Diana Ross, Mary Wilson, and Berry Gordy themselves, plus the luxury of having the previously silent song writing team, Holland-Dozier-Holland as well as Florence Ballard's relatives add to the call and response chorus.
The story of the rise and fall of the Supremes is so old, and has been told in such minute detail in the past that it should, and in an indirect way on Broadway and on the screen as Dreamgirls, have been set to music a long time ago. Ribowsky offers detailed new revelations on the fledging Primettes and their manager Milton Jenkins, who would eventually become Florence Ballard's brother in law. In short order, Jenkins is left behnd, the young quartet loses a member, and Berry Gordy's vision of a crossover act sets the stage for the morphing of the popular local group into what would become the world famous Supremes. All that remained to happen was getting that one evasive hit record. Gordy's maintained his faith in the appeal of Diana Ross through several lean years and when The Supremes finally hit the motherlode, everyone's wildest dreams were far exceeded.
Unfortunately, as the saga of the Supremes unfolds, factual errors, misspellings, and inconsistencies creep into Ribowsky's research, taking away from his masterful story telling.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Great Story but writer's style not endearing. 19 Oct. 2013
By Pol4959
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great Story but writer's style not endearing. Seen good reviews of this but was disappointed with its presentation with a narrative that did not flow, a quirky approach and constant contradictions. Too many tangents and strange language. Still, I am glad I read it and yes I do now dislike Diana Ross .... shame in some ways as it has diminished my love of the Supremes classic 60's hits. Very, very sad about Flo however.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great read 3 Jun. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This was a fantastic read , I am a great fan of Diana Ross and I was fascinated to read how they started and how they made it to the top. Diana Ross knew what she wanted and she knew how to get it
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