Book Review" "We Remember, Elvis"
Hill, Wanda June. We remember, Elvis, Booksurge, [np], 2006. [revised ed.], 248 p. Pbk. ISBN 0-89430-028-0.
Availablity: email@example.com or amazon.com
Anecdotes about Elvis, his sense of humour and his compassion abound. There is the story of Lisa Marie wearing a potty on her head and another of her emptying the contents of her nappy (diaper) out of the car window, much to Elvis's embarrassment. He had to go and pick it all up. When Hill's daughter Juliann broke her elbow, Elvis sent gifts and cards to the hospital.
The stated purpose of Wanda June Hill's book is to expel the lies and reveal Elvis Presley's true character.
It has long been my contention that a fairer picture of Elvis Presley's character will emerge from his women friends - not those he slept with, who were fleeting - but from his wide circle of telephone friends. The telephone was Elvis's connection with the outside world and normality.
Hill was one of those telephone friends. The first chapters are an account of Hill's friendship with Presley from around 1963 until his death.
Following that are transcriptions of interview tapes recorded by Hill, sometimes over the telephone and sometimes in person from November 1976 to June 1977 for a student's college project. Hill claims that their authenticity was verified by interested publishers, although she didn't sell them.
Next come testimonies in the form of notes and letters from various people supporting this portrait of Elvis. Some of the letters were written in response to the first edition of We remember, Elvis, published in 1979.
Lastly, there are quotes and photographs, including poems written by Elvis and some poems possibly written by Elvis. Navigation through the book is difficult with neither a table of contents nor an index.
On learning that a young Mexican girl who had never walked was in the same ward undergoing operations to straighten her spine and legs, Elvis sent her gifts and brought her family from Mexico, paid for their hotel accommodation and probably also paid the child's hospital bills. He set up Dr Harry Rosenberg up in medical practice, providing office equipment and a nurse, particularly because Rosenberg was providing medical care to people in a poor area, not practising medicine to line his pockets. When any of his telephone friends had a death in the family, Elvis would ring them to provide consolation.
Elvis was kind to young and old alike. He obtained a pass and tickets to Disneyland for a small girl dying of leukemia; he did the same for an 87 year old man coming to the US from New Zealand to fulfil his biggest wish of visiting Disneyland. He did all these acts of kindness without wanting any publicity.
There are many acts such as these in the various testimonies. He was a florist's dream. He must have run up huge telephone bills and posted a good many birthday cards annually. He gave to charities every Christmas. Those who think he failed to use his money to do good for others should read more widely and document all the anecdotes - which should fill a fair-sized book.
There is even a letter from an Afro-American lady who lived near Elvis when she was five and Elvis and her sister were four years old. The children played together. Their mother was kind to Elvis. When he met the family again later, having returned to Tupelo to do a show, he was delighted to see them and hugged and kissed them all. The mother said it was the first time she'd been kissed by a white boy. So he kissed her again. More proof that Elvis was not a racist.
One major myth that this book attempts to destroy is about Elvis's sexual activities. He was technically a virgin until his 21st birthday, when "Col." Parker organised a date with an older woman to "make a man" of him. Elvis enjoyed sex while he was free but, according to Hill, remained faithful to Priscilla after marriage until she became involved with another man first. In some ways he was quite prude:- Priscilla wanted to watch adult videos and try out what she saw, while Elvis was unwilling. According to Hill, another false belief is that Elvis would never have sex with mothers.
The "guys" come over less well than Elvis. They called women "dogs" and treated them with scant respect. Those females wanting to get to Elvis were encouraged to have a trial run, or sexual "audition", with the lads first, but still didn't get to meet Elvis. When the wild parties were on, Elvis was usually deeply asleep under sleeping tablets. In fact, it was in the men's interest to have Elvis out of the way and drugged up. If he was awake, he would want to sit around talking about God, spoiling their fun.
Later on, Elvis was less sexually active than the myth suggests. His bedroom was the only place where he could be alone with someone, so going into the bedroom was not necessarily to use the bed. He is supposed to have had a succession of females going into his bedroom for sexual purposes.
But according to Hill, when he had females alone there, he frequently read the Bible to them and told them not to sleep around. After publication of the first edition of this book, Hill received letters from women corroborating the story.
From Hill's observation and from what others told her, Elvis was sometimes drugged against his will. The bodyguards were very controlling. Later on, there was a new set of men around Elvis who Hill thinks were mafiosi. Elvis was very protective of his extended family and friends and would not discuss anything that might endanger them. The mafia was a dangerous subject.
The topic of Elvis's health is also brought up - his allergies, glaucoma, headaches, insomnia, fluctuating size due to fluid retention, his abdominal problems and the pain he was in. Elvis apparently told people he did not want to be cut up or have parts removed. Hill suspects this was connected to colon surgery which may well have taken place.
How far was Elvis a drug addict? Hill believes not. For example, before the Aloha satellite concert Elvis had fluid drained from one eye because of a detached retina and glaucoma. He was in some pain. He lay down after taking a muscle relaxant, only to be unexpectedly whisked off for a media interview. This is the interview where people criticise Elvis for being drugged.
Hill doesn't believe that Elvis's overall behaviour was that of an addict. He hired a nurse to stay on the property, take care of his medications and make sure he got only what he was supposed to have. "A drug addict does not put his or her 'stuff' in the hands of someone else -- no way! Any druggie will tell you that." Hill considers that the number of prescription drugs taken by Elvis was warranted by his medical condition. The sheer number of drugs he took has been exaggerated because prescriptions for other people were filled in his name. This viewpoint is echoed in other books. But, addict or not, not everyone will be convinced that Elvis did not have a drug problem.
Other topics addressed include: - why Elvis didn't wear underwear; the reason for eating meatloaf every day for several weeks; whether or not he intended to marry Ginger Alden; his temper and moods; and, his spiritual nature.
The men who were physically close to Elvis appear to be somewhat proprietorial about him, assuming they know everything about him and jealous of claims by others of knowing something about him that they don't. Elvis didn't tell them everything. Sometimes he locked himself in his room for several days at a time. It would be interesting to see Red West's reaction to this book, since Hill met him on several occasions and mentions him in a somewhat unflattering light.
Is this book genuine? The question of authenticity arises when people claim to have known Elvis, especially women. Several women have written books claiming to have had an affair with Elvis or even a child by him.
Hill's book makes no such claim, in fact she claims not to have slept with him, and states that Elvis would ring her husband and ask permission to talk to her. She was one of many telephone friends. The additional testimonies by various other people support her observations on Elvis's kindness, generosity, attitudes and behaviour.
Although I've never met Wanda June Hill, I've been in touch with her over the past few years. She is a genuine and honest person, not interested in sensationalism, self-agrandisment or a quick buck.
Despite doubts expressed about Hill's veracity when the 1979 edition of We Remember, Elvis was published, I believe that the book is a true record. Not only that: it is moving account of a compassionate and generous person. There is a great deal of detail; many specific events and incidents, even if not every single statement, should be verifiable.
Hill's motivation is to defend Elvis's reputation. Her passionate defence of Elvis is admirable but could be claimed to lead her to overlook or downplay some aspects of Elvis's character, especially the drug side. The narrative is filtered through her eyes; but then, equally, books by members of the entourage are filtered by their perceptions. People's motives are important in understanding what they write.
It may be hard to accept that Elvis's sexual activity and drug taking might not have been excessive. We want to believe the myth because it fits the cosy moral tale of the dangers of flying too high. We tend to believe the worst about human nature and want to cut people down to size. Having illusions shattered is disappointing, like discovering that Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy don't exist.
But the prevalent image of Elvis doesn't fit - there are two many contradictions between what emanates from him as a human being through his music and performances and from what others have said about him. To my mind, Hill helps to redress an imbalance and reduce the contradiction gap. Of course, this position will continue to be controversial.
Susan MacDougall, January 2007
Comment on this review
Laurie: Please can you post the below as comments in response to Susan MacDougall's "We Remember, Elvis" review. Thank you.
Here is a direct link to the voice analysis done on the tapes Wanda June Hill used for her book: http://www.elvislightedcandle.org/theman/doc_soundstudio.htm
Marty: So AJ, what your implying is your a hypocrite with a double standard.
EIN (Nigel & Piers) should not personally comment on things they print, reviews or otherwise, if they don't agree with your opinion on the item or any individual or group of people involved. i.e. me or The MM.
Your agenda has been exposed below and your response to my remarks a month or so ago pertaining to Billy Miller's statements about his book. Methinks AJ has not taken a likeing to me or the MM even though he/she doesn't know us.
I seem to remember someone emailing me about you after they read your response re: Miller and me. I don't remember exactly the words they used but I remember that they implied that you badmouth a lot and you like to play games and instigate.
None of us MM, to my knowledge, has ever asked EIN to speak for us or defend us. I'm assuming that whatever they write in regards to anything, comes from how they see things. I would be disappointed if it was any other way. Just as you do, they have a right to their opinion and to state it. EIN provides Elvis fans a great service and a place for them to give and get good information about Elvis and I have heard from many fans that think the same way.
I have a solution for you, if you don't believe someone, DON'T PAY ATTENTION TO THEM!
I didn't say nobody should buy Wanda's book, I said, "Draw Your Own Conclusions,"
Something tells me you haven't bought her book but you will still run your mouth off in defending it.
I hope you buy her's and Miller's books I think it would be nice for you to continue to go through life with your head up your A..!
Linda Sowers: This is a response to Piers comment. Yes, there books about the life of Elvis that have been very well researched, but, I know... I know for a fact... that a significant piece of biographical information can be missed by the best of authors.
AJ: Since when has EIN become the spokesman for the MM?? EIN does not exist IMO, to serve the MM or any other group or individual. To do so threatens the very existence of EIN's fan base. Report the Elvis news; do NOT attempt to influence anyones opinion on who or what to believe. Stick to reporting the news, NOT deciding whose right or wrong. It will be EIN's loss & do you think the MM gives a damn about you or anyone else?? Ask Lisa Presley, she'll tell you!! While you're at it : investigate the MM & make each member speak for themselves; do NOT take Marty Lackers word on anything!!
EIN comment: EIN is not a conduit for only the views of the Memphis Mafia. We will continue publish the views of all parties on issues as we have this time. Also, as stated in EIN's charter (see About EIN) EIN has always existed to present a lot more than just news. As our name implies, EIN will continue to present the broadest range of INFORMATION on Elvis, including news, reviews, articles, interviews, criticism and analysis.
Beth: I just want to say Wanda June Hill is one of the warmest and most genuine people you could ever meet and unlike others she doesn't put Elvis down. You should read her book with an opwn mind.
I would like to comment on this because is so sad to see the parade of books coming up without stopping, but most of all the so call ones that know the King so well because of the closeness to him.
I am not a fan of the MM members, of neither one of them Marty Lacker included, but I do believe that they were there and knew all the people around Elvis most of the times, in every human being there are always things that nobody else know, the ones on their minds, the only place nobody can penetrate, and that not even the MM knew about Elvis, but I must agree with Marty when he says that her name was never mentioned, how come? as EIN put it, we will have to put in perspective the story of Debarbin or the stories of so many others with similar claims. I do not have even a desire to read this book
I do not believe one word she says, and this time I have to be in total agreement wth ML and as he said: I made my own conclusions.
Piers Beagley (EIN): Author 'Peter Guralnick' is the world's most authoritative biographer on Elvis and the author who has followed and verified every confirmable Elvis lead for his two books, 'Last Train To Memphis' and 'Careless Love'. (Bill Burk's early years books not withstanding).
In Guralnick's books every (major) verifiable friend, girlfriend & phone call is referenced. You can find references to Red West's 1976 phone call with Elvis, Jimmy Carter's phone call, Police friend Ron Pietrefaso, detailed conversations with Joyce Bova, 1976 girlfriends Melissa Blackwood & Jo Cathy Brownlee, even short-term 1977 girlfriend Alicia Kerwin etc. - Of course most Elvis fans would have never even heard of these last 3 girlfriends.
The most telling point is that in Guralnick's books nothing that Wanda June Hill has written about has been used. IF what she says is true I have no doubt that Guralnick would have to have used it in his books.
Similarly there is no mention of Wanda June Hill in Jerry Hopkin's well researched books - nor any others.
There is only her own book, which like all the others points to yet another sad use of Elvis for their own personal gratification.
Julie: im also a member of the site Elvis lighted candle , and through the site have got to know mrs wanda june hill, and im happy to say we are now friends, i know in my heart that she knew Elvis personally and all she says in her book is the truth.
i cant change others perceptions of wanda but i know she is definitely genuine , ive always trusted my intuition and believe every word.
since joining the site i feel even tho i never met Elvis presley, i feel i have gotten to know him somewhat through wandas eyes and the memories in which she very kindly shares with us.
she is a exceptional human being as elvis himself was ,i love the book and it is what i call one of my few treausres of elvis items, it is in my opinion a priceless item of which no fan should be without
im for you wanda , my friend
EIN Comment: Response to Susan MacDougall's review of Wanda June Hill's book, We Remember, Elvis, has been strong. And, as you will read below, it is obvious quite a few supporters of Ms Hill have come out in support of her.
The factual reality is that doubts must exist over Ms Hill's claims. Over the years a number of other "fans" admitted to Elvis' inner circle have been well chronicled in published books about Elvis, and publicly acknowledged by Memphis Mafia members, yet Ms Hill is not one of them. Given that the Memphis Mafia were there effectively 24/7, this begs the question, why is she not mentioned?
It is hard to believe that given Elvis' nature, he would covertly conduct a relationship with Ms Hill. If we were to accept this, the claims of Lucy de Barbin, et al, would also need to come into "fair" scope.
EIN considers (we're happy to be proven wrong - but by facts, not unsubstantiated claims) that as pointed out by a number of Memphis Mafia members, Elvis disliked using the telephone, and in the context of the minutae known and published about Elvis, the validity and extent of Ms Hill's closeness to him stretches reasonable belief.
Linda Sowers: I thought Susan MacDougall's review was excellent. Perhaps this book will help bring some balance to everything that's been written about Elvis. Fans have been deluged with negative stories. It never ceases to amaze me that Elvis' former employees and high profile "friends" can't even consider the possibility that they didn't know everything that was going on in Elvis' life. Marty did make a statement I wholeheartedly agree with..."Draw your own conclusions." I plan on doing exactly that.
Riley: Hi, I think Wanda was a very lucky lady who was in the right place at the right time I happen to know Wanda too. She is my forum friend for quite some time now. When I came to ELC site I still had some questions in my head regarding him . A lot about his health and some about Priscilla and him too.
I read hundreds of books during the past 30 years. I had the privilige to meet l people who knew him and worked with him and someone from his family too. We had the opportunity to talk to him longer then the usual talk between fans and aquintances of him (Elvis) And no secrets were told either but let's say we talked a bit about the good old days and also about Priscilla .
But still some questions remained. The puzzle did not fit at all, some pieces were missing let's say.
Then one day I decided to write Wanda a mail and while talking more and more about private things I asked her a bit of more information too it. She answered me but also said immediately that she was not an expert in his life story ... She was his friend and friends talk and pour their hearth out to each other but being a friend is not being an expert on that friends life necessarily.
I promised to keep things for myself which she told me and I will continue to do that but let's say that talking to her filled the voids, the little pieces that were still missing to have the complete puzzle she provided them to me.
I felt I could trust her immediately. Cannot explain why but it was just a feeling I had and let's say that most of the time I am very sharp in those things and I can easily see through persons who are faking or making themselves more important then they are. just by talking to them for a while I like her.
She is a very down to earth lady, who loves her horses , her family and nature in general.
Not at all someone who seeks publicity. She never made herself more important then she was in his life and really sometimes she herself said she doesn't know " everything " when being asked some things she really does not know either.
She just happened to be in the right place at the right time I guess. She met him and it clicked. They sure had mutual intrests to talk about and we all now Elvis loved talking and exchanging views and idea's.
He trusted her and when Elvis felt he could trust someone he really opened up to that person. Elvis was a very spiritual man who had lots of questions too and I don't think he found the answers with his friends the MM guys.
Elvis loved long telephone conversations and that is what Wanda mostly was "a telephone friend,"( like nowadays we all have forum friends and without knowing them very well we often tend to pour our hearth out to them, when we feel we can trust each other and share same views).
Of course she met him in person too and visited him in LA and Vegas.
Elvis liked to telephone when he was alone , mostly in his bedroom or in his badtube and I'm sure the MM guys who deny her fiercely (maybe out of fear she knew too much of them) weren't in his private quarters at those moments so they just CANNOTtell that he did not know her.
Elvis was a man who constantly searched ways to keep in touch with the real world too. He was a bright man and did make friends other then the MM entourage. He may have lived under very special circumstances but he was no caged wild animal, I mean he saw and talked constantly to new people whom he met during work, travel, shows, repetitions, hotels etc...
Friends like Wanda, kept him sane and were his soundboard whenever they were needed. And I'm glad he knew her because she is a fantastic lady, really.
I loved her book and it gave us a lot of insight on the human being. Lots of funny stories, touching stories and also sad ones. The interview tapes were unique , it is almost like you hear him say those things to you in person. Fascinating.
I totally recommand it to everyone and I'm sure Mrs Wanda June Hill will answer questions to you too as long as you respect her of course. I want to thank her for writing this honnest book. She will defend him for the rest of her life , and that is exactly what he deserved really.
Natalie: I have read Wanda June hills book and I for one believe her to be sincere. She is aI have read Wanda June hills book and I for one believe her to be sincere. She is a person of integrity and I do not think she would lie.
She is not out to make money off Elvis memory – unlike some of the MM who are still trying to squeeze everything they can out of their association with Elvis. Wanda was somebody Elvis could really talk to. They shared a very special bond.
Barbara Rogers: I have had the Pleasure of knowing Wanda June Hill for sometime now, and there isn't a Doubt in my mind that Every Word that was Written in Wandas Book is the Truth and nothing but the Truth. All I can say is that for so many People that Lived and were around Elvis on a Daily Bases, never took the time to know Elvis like Perfect Strangers did is a Dirty Rotten Shame. I sometimes even have wondered if Elvis would of had the time to have Written a Book himself if he was even Believed, I in my own Heart have always known what the Man Elvis Presley was like and after reading Wandas book just verified what I already knew. I just Thank God that he Lead Wanda in getting the Truth Out about Elvis, that has been way OVER DUE! God Bless You Wanda June Hill, You have made Elvis Proud, and I hope that with this Book That ELVIS RECIEVES THE RESPECT HE SO DESERVES!
Amanda Baró Roca (Spain): I can understand Wanda June Hill's denying from some of the "Memphis Mafia" men. It must be felt as cruel to think that the person you considered so close to you, as maybe they thought Elvis was, in fact had a range of personality and interests that he kept to himself and didn't share with most of his entourage.
The contrary could be considerated certainly an asphyxiating life.
Human beings are kaleidoscopic and to ignore it is to maintain a closed approach to reality. Probably who deny the possibility that Elvis Aaron Presley was so rich in inner resources and capability to relate to many and in many ways, is defending his established and crystallized point of view about "what the things really are".
Sometimes the cruelty felt inside is projected out, in the disdain in which some dare to talk about a loyal and caring lady: Wanda June Hill. One only has to read the book to see it, nothing else. No argumentation is needed here. Truth, honesty and love permeate every page of it. I have read several books about Elvis Presley and this one is heartfelt and seems to rush out from the need to defend the friend, from that unique place where Love and Truth meet.
Laurie: Elvis it seems to me was someone with great spiritual thirst and sensitivity. As a result, he must have found it hard to relate to those around him who did not share his same interest & awareness. Remember the infamous book burning, where he felt pressured to have his religious and metaphysical books burned? He had to hide some of these books from those around him in order to pursue his spiritual interests. This is but one example of how Elvis was not at complete ease with those around him. It sure makes sense to me that he would have reached out to others where he could feel free to be completely himself without fear of pressure or ridicule.
And it does not surprise me that Wanda June Hill was one of those people he reached out to. I have personally gotten to know Wanda and find her to be a person of honesty and integrity and someone with a caring compassionate heart. I have not found her to be given to flights of fancy either. She’s a down to earth woman who had a special friendship with Elvis, one in which they both were very protective of and treasured.
Robert Partridge: Marty Lacker said make up or own minds. Well he is right and I have but I suspect others doing the same have arrived at a different conclusion to me. I haven't read Wanda Hill's book but I also haven't read anything factual to support her claims. She may come across as a good person to those who know her but that doesn't mean she's not playing her own game as many have since Elvis died. I haven't read anything to say that clever politicans and that's all she with her down home yarns equates with honesty. Her supporters give us only subjective flowing tributes not one of them gives us verifiable fact of her goodness. They should stop and think about how you measure if a person has been truthful to you.
Paul Wheaton (England): Wanda who???? Why does EIN keep on publishing this drivel when we should let the King rest in peace. There are to many nutters out there who need to feel special by deluding themselves they were part of Elvis' world. Good on you Marty for telling it as it is. I don't feel sorry for Wanda Hill at all she's scamming off gullible fans.
Maia - Spirit Heart Sanctuary <firstname.lastname@example.org>: I have known Wanda June Hill for 23 years. In my opinion, she is a person of great personal integrity. I have never once seen her show any signs of being anything else but absolutely genuine and truthful.
I feel that it also needs to be pointed out that Wanda was not the only contributor to We Remember, Elvis. There were something like 13 other people Elvis spoke with who added to the book. I have also met and corresponded with some of these other persons. All seem quite genuine as well, and most used aliases in the book, as they wanted no publicity whatsoever.
I have heard and played repeatedly, excerpts from her taped conversations with Elvis. I can only say that the man talking on these tapes to Wanda (her voice is heard also, conversing with him) is someone who is genuine as well. He is moving in his statements: the emotion of his voice, the humor, the pathos. If this is an actor, he is the best actor I have ever heard - hands down! This man says that he is Elvis Presley. I believe him.
I saw 36 of Elvis' concerts during his lifetime. There were a very, very few times when he simply started talking differently - more confidentially to the audience about something. It would only be for a few moments. His voice changed considerably. His accent grew stronger and there was a certain lilt in the tone that was not present (or at least not to that degree) when he was using his "Elvis" voice. No impersonator I have ever heard has tried to duplicate that "other" personal voice of Elvis Presley. Probably because he used it so rarely in public and also, it would be much more difficult to duplicate convincingly. This personal voice is the same voice I hear on the taped conversations of Wanda June Hill and her friend.
Further, much of what Wanda writes in her book and has told me personally concerning Elvis, and I have heard her "friend" say on the conversation tapes, I heard from others before I knew Wanda or her book was ever released to the public (the original version). I was told many of these things before Elvis' death by people who knew him in some capacity. There were those who worked at the International / Hilton hotel in Las Vegas where Elvis performed. They were there...they saw and heard certain things (not publically known) which Elvis told to Wanda and she later wrote about or shared with me.
To read more about this go to the following page on my website:
On my website you may also read more about Wanda and view the handwritten letters from Elvis to her, the pages from books he gave her, with his own notes in them, which certainly appear to match the book notes in books displayed at Graceland; and also voice analysis documents and handwriting analysis documents. Go to:
email@example.com: It seems sick that Lacker just sits around waiting to get his 2 cents in on everything anyone has to say. Since people have got to know Lacker & pays no attention to him, I guess he has to make up for it. IF other MM members have something to say, let them speak for themselves. How else to know if HE's telling the truth ?? Crawl back into your hole, Marty. No one cares what you have to say.
Bronwyn Peters: Another kook in the Elvis world trying to make us believe she was close to Elvis. We should feel sorry for her.
Wolfgang T.: If Wanda June Hill did know Elvis why doesn't her name appear in any of the main books about him? I've never heard of her and after how every part of Elvis' life has been scrutinized I would have thought her name would be known to many.
Marty Lacker: I appreciate the opportunity you presented to me to have a laugh this evening.
This Wanda June Hill, whose name we have heard before since Elvis died and her bogus claims of her numerous telephone conversations with Elvis, did that for me, a huge laugh. We never bothered to refute her story because we just shrugged and said, "Well here's another one claiming something that wasn't true." Now it's getting tiresome, so we will comment.
Let me state very clearly, ELVIS HATED TALKING ON THE TELEPHONE! Her claim that he called her and that even tcalled to ask her husband's permission to do so is not only preposterous it's downright fantasy.
As to her claim that we drugged him, not only borders on slander and libel, it is so far fetched it takes the mind of either a deranged mental patient or someone who in fact, contrary to what Ms. McDougall's opinion is, someone fabricating stories to make that proverbial buch. (BUCK).
Wanda June Hill had nothing to do with Elvis.
We, The Memphis Mafia have foolishly been accused of everything under the sun regarding Elvis' demise and all the so-called negative things pertaining to his troubles in life.
What some of the small coterie of fanatics who view him with rose colored glasses truly don't understand, is that Elvis was a grown, intelligent man. He made his own decisions just as most of us do. Nobody made Elvis do something he did not want to. Did some of us talk to him about what he was doing--YES! Did he change--NO! To be fair to Elvis's memory, I was almost as bad as he was taking pills. So if I had said anything to him while I was doing that it would be the pot calling the kettle black.
However, when I stopped taking pills in '76 I mentioned how good I felt and maybe he should try it and he ranted and raged about me, accusing me of trying to tell him how to live his life. He did the same thing to Red West when Red talked to him about it in Vegas. It is a know (KNOWN) fact that when someone is addicted or dependent on any kind of substance, be it pills, hard drugs, alchohol, food or anything else, you can talk to them till you're blue in the face about how bad it is for them, it will do no good until they are ready to stop. As a HUMAN BEING, Elvis was no different.
They need to realize that they can't change reality nor can they change history and no matter how much they try to do it to make Elvis into something that they wanted him to be, it doesn't work that way.
Elvis was a good man, a good person. A generous person and that's about all Wanda June Hill got right in her book.
She's just another person trying to inject herself into Elvis' life who had nothing to do with his life.
It's amazing that you never heard of these people when Elvis was alive and the fans just about knew the names of the people who knew Elvis when he was alive.
To be fair to Wanda, I asked the other guys if they ever knew or met her, to a man the answer was NO!
Draw your own conclusions.
Read other book reviews by Susan MacDougall:
The Elvis Reader