To Kill a Mockingbird author Harper Lee has denied she approved the writing of a memoir about her life in Alabama by former neighbor Marja Mills.
“Rest assured, as long as I am alive any book purporting to be with my cooperation is a falsehood,” Harper Lee, 88, wrote in a letter.
Its circulation coincided with the publication of the book, by former Chicago Tribune reporter Marja Mills.
Marja Mills responded by saying her book had the “blessing” of Harper Lee and her sister.
The writer moved next door to Harper Lee and Alice Lee’s Monroeville home in 2004, remaining there for 18 months.
“Nelle Harper Lee and Alice F. Lee were aware I was writing this book,” she went on.
“The stories they shared with me that I recount in the book speak for themselves.”
Harper Lee first distanced herself from The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee when Penguin announced its publication in 2011 (photo Penguin)
Harper Lee first distanced herself from The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee when Penguin announced its publication in 2011.
At the time, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author said she had not “willingly participated” or “authorized” [sic] the book and that “any claims otherwise [were] false”.
Harper Lee reiterated her position earlier this week, claiming Marja Mills had befriended her sister and that she had been “hurt, angry and saddened, but not surprised” to discover her “true mission” had been “another book about Harper Lee”.
“I immediately cut off all contact with Miss Mills, leaving town whenever she headed this way.”
In her rebuttal, Marja Mills referred to a letter she received from Alice Lee in 2011 saying her sister’s initial denial had been written by others for her to sign.
“Poor Nelle Harper can’t see and can’t hear and will sign anything put before her by anyone in whom she has confidence,” Alice Lee’s letter went on.
Harper Lee’s latest letter says her sister “would have been 100 years old at the time” she made that statement.
In her book, Marja Mills writes that she became part of the Lee sisters’ social circle and that she had won their trust.
On Tuesday, Penguin Press said it was “proud” to publish the memoir, which it said had been “a labor [sic] of love”.
During a recent interview, Michelle Knight revealed how her captor Ariel Castro would keep her and the other two women locked in an upstairs room when guests would come to visit – blocking them in with piles of furniture.
Using a model reconstruction of the Cleveland horror house, Michelle Knight, who has changed her name to Lily Rose Lee, explained how Ariel Castro “would take speakers, a couch, chairs and block anyone from getting up the stairs at all”.
Michelle Knight, who spent more than a decade locked up, revealed that she has moved into her own apartment and started cooking classes as she dreams of becoming a chef.
The 33-year-old told Today Show: “Sometimes in life you have a dark past that makes you who you are but doesn’t define who you are.”
Michelle Knight is now known as Lily Rose Lee, a name she picked after her favorite flower. She explained her decision, saying: “I felt like every brand new start needs new beginnings.”
Michelle Knight revealed how her captor Ariel Castro would keep her and the other two women locked in an upstairs room when guests would come to visit (photo Today Show)
She escaped on May 6, 2013, along with Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Berry’s 6-year-old daughter from the Cleveland home.
Michelle Knight explained how at times during those long years in the house she contemplated suicide but that her friendship with fellow captor Gina DeJesus kept her strong.
She earlier revealed that she has cut ties with Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus.
Michelle Knight explained Today Show that the three survivors have put distance between each other as they all come to terms with the ordeal they suffered.
She said: “I love them and they love me. Hopefully we’ll all get back together again.”
Michelle Knight has written a memoir Finding Me which comes out on May 6, the one-year anniversary of the women’s escape.
In her book, she tells of the abuse she suffered at the hands of Ariel Castro, who killed himself in prison in September just weeks into his life sentence.
Michelle Knight had made a brave and defiant appearance at Ariel Castro’s sentencing in August in which she told him: “I spent 11 years in hell, your hell is just beginning.”
She also reveals in her book the close bond she developed with the other women, who were all snatched off the streets of Cleveland by Ariel Castro between 2002 and 2004.
Michelle Knight, who is 4’11, said that her hellish ordeal has taught her to enjoy every moment of her life.
Michelle Knight was the only one of Ariel Castro’s three victims to appear in person at his trial. Gina DeJesus and Amanda Berry’s victim impact statements were read by members of their family.
Michelle Knight, the woman held captive in Ariel Castro’s Cleveland house of horrors for over a decade, wants to be known as “Lily”, her favorite flower.
Michelle Knight’s memoir, Finding Me, is set to be published on May 6, the anniversary of her rescue.
It’s “my favorite flower,” she told People magazine, and it symbolizes renewal.
Michelle Knight, who was 21 when she was kidnapped in 2002, was the first of Ariel Castro’s victims and the one who suffered the most at the hands of the sadist.
“Everything in the house was unexplainable,” said Michelle Knight, who is now 33.
Michelle Knight’s memoir, Finding Me, is set to be published on May 6, the anniversary of her rescue (photo Dr Phil)
“It happened. I don’t know the reasons why.”
Michelle Knight said she has seen little of Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus, the other two victims, since they were rescued on May 6.
She insists there is no bad blood and that after years of being yoked together by a madman they need to heal on their own.
“I love them and they love me,” she said.
“Hopefully we’ll all get back together again.”
Michelle Knight is living in her own apartment in Cleveland, taking cooking classes and relishing her freedom.
“I don’t take things for granted anymore,” she told People magazine.
“Not even the little things like looking out a window. I went through years of torture, and now I’m back. I’m free to fly.”
Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus are also working on books.
Excerpts of Michelle Knight’s tome will be featured in next week’s issue of People magazine.
They are likely to include Michelle Knight’s horrific accounts of being chained to a pole in the basement, repeated rapes and how Ariel Castro impregnated her five times and beat her so she would miscarry each time.
Rita Moreno dedicated much of her new memoir Rita Moreno to her lengthy affair with Marlon Brando, which continued for nearly a decade even though he had two different wives during that period.
Actress Rita Moreno, known best for her role as Anita in West Side Story, met Marlon Brando on the set of his 1954 movie Desiree, when he was 30-year-old and far more experienced than she since she was just 22-year-old at the time.
“Just meeting him that first day sent my body temperature skyrocketing as though I had been dropped into a very hot bath, and I went into a full-body blush. It was the sort of rush that inspires poetry and songs,” Rita Moreno writes in her new memoir.
The New York Post, which has an early copy of the book, reports that Rita Moreno tells how their physical connection created a real emotional entanglement.
“To say that he was a great lover – sensual, generous, delightfully inventive – would be gravely understating what he did not only to my body, but for my soul. Every aspect of being with Marlon was thrilling, because he was more engaged in the world than anyone else I’d ever known,” Rita Moreno wrote.
Their intimacy did not lead to mutual respect, however, as Rita Moreno writes that Marlon Brando cheated on her frequently in order to try to meet his “insatiable” sexual appetite.
In order to stand her ground, Rita Moreno would date other famous men in order to make him jealous, including future Oscar-winner Dennis Hopper. She tells a story about how a man that she didn’t know made aggressive eyes at her while his “regal” wife sat beside him, only to later learn it was then-Senator John F. Kennedy.
Rita Moreno dedicated much of her new memoir Rita Moreno to her lengthy affair with Marlon Brando
The paramour that drove Marlon Brando the most insane, however, was when she went on a number of dates with Elvis Presley.
Little did he know that Elvis Presley and his famous pelvic thrusts did not match up to the sexual chemistry that Rita Moreno had with Marlon Brando.
“My dates…nearly always concluded in a tender tussle on my living-room floor, with Elvis’ pelvis in that famous gyration straining against his taut trousers. I could feel him thrust against my clothed body, and expecting the next move…but it never came,” Rita Moreno said of Elvis Presley.
No matter the emotional toll, Rita Moreno kept coming back to Marlon Brando.
Two of the lowest points in their torrid affair came when Marlon Brando pressured- and paid for- her to have an abortion when she became pregnant with their child.
Shortly after that, he flew away to film Mutiny on the Bounty and she was left heart broken when he fell in love with his new co-star.
After he returned and he picked her back up, Rita Moreno was left alone in his house at one point and she took the chance to attempt an overdose on pills.
“I went to bed to die. This wasn’t a revenge suicide, but a consolation, an escape-from-pain death,” Rita Moreno said, crediting her survival to his assistant who found her and took her to the hospital to have her stomach pumped.
A therapist told the lovers to keep away from each other for their own health and finally, they relented.
Rita Moreno went on to have a successful and made records for being the first Hispanic actress to have won an Oscar, Tony, Grammy and Emmy. She is still working today at the age of 81-years-old, most recently appearing in the television series Happily Divorced.
Her romantic was also far more successful after she finished her affair with Brando, as she was set up with- and ended up marrying- a doctor named Lenny Gordon.
“We balance each other,” Rita Moreno told People Magazine in 1975, ten years after marrying Lenny Gordon.
“I am not exactly Mrs. Good Housekeeping, although I love to cook, bake, even iron, but only because it’s not mandatory.”
Looking back on the suicide attempt, the prospect of ending her life as there was so much left to come- including her daughter Fernanda- leaves her filled with regret.
“The thought that I may never have lived to see that beautiful creature Nandy just tears at me sometimes. But not for long. I can’t dwell on past mistakes,” Rita Moreno told the magazine.
Brigitte Nielsen revealed that she and Arnold Schwarzenegger had an affair in her own memoir, last year.
And now Arnold Schwarzenegger has confirmed that he cheated on his then girlfriend and now ex-wife Maria Shriver with actress Brigitte Nielsen.
The Terminator star has made the explosive revelation in his own new autobiography, Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, 65, says that he and Brigitte Nielsen shared a passionate tryst whilst filming their sword and sorcery/action film Red Sonja in 1985.
At the time, Arnold Schwarzenegger was dating and living with Maria Shriver, who he went on to marry a year later.
Meanwhile, in 1985, Brigitte Nielsen was married to fellow action star and one of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s pals, Sylvester Stallone.
In her own book You Only Get One Life, Brigitte Nielsen, who for years has struggled with alcohol addiction, claims she didn’t know Arnold Schwarzenegger was involved with another woman during their affair.
His book has become one of the most talked about celebrity autobiography in recent memory.
But the action star is said to be keeping all the profits of the book to himself.
Earlier this week it was revealed that Arnold Schwarzenegger did not send his estranged wife a copy of his book, as he does not want her to claim a share of the money that it is making.
The Terminator star is reportedly hell-bent on keeping all of the proceeds from the tome for himself, even though his relationship with Maria Shriver is a key strand of his story.
Sources close to the couple made the shocking claims to TMZ.
Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver were together for 34 years and married for 25, and their times together are exhaustively dealt with in the forthcoming book.
They married in April 1986, and have four children together – Katherine, 22, Christina, 21, Patrick, 19, and 15-year-old Christopher.
However, Arnold Schwarzenegger has allegedly made it clear to her that the book is his property, and she will not be getting her hands on any part of his multi-million dollar advance or the bumper royalties.
It has also been claimed the love cheat has been trying to give Maria Shriver a raw deal during financial settlement negotiations.
An insider said: “Arnold has been really stingy with Maria and the kids, which is amazing considering what he did.”
Apparently Arnold Schwarzenegger is treating the divorce like just another business deal, rather than seeing the cash sum as a symbol of the parting of the relationship he had with the mother of his children.
This is despite the sources also claiming he begged for her to return to him as recently as last week.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the 56-year-old author and activist turned down the request.
Arnold Schwarzenegger’s representative reportedly told TMZ divorce settlement negotiations are ongoing so no agreement has been struck.
MTV has gotten their paws on R. Kelly’s new memoir Soulacoaster, The Diary of Me, and the most surprising detail is that the King of R&B needed a hanky after watching The Notebook movie.
The cheesy 2004 romance movie was the final spark to push R. Kelly to divorce wife and former back up dancer Andrea Kelly, inciting an intense period of introspection about the woman he married in 1996 and had three children with.
“As the film credits started to roll, I couldn’t move,” wrote R. Kelly.
The Notebook movie was the final spark to push R. Kelly to divorce wife and former back up dancer Andrea Kelly
“I burst into tears. People walking past me patted me on the back, trying to console me. <<The Notebook>> was beautiful, and I was crying because its hero and heroine had died together. But I was also crying because I remembered a Valentine’s Day when a helicopter dropped a rainfall of roses. That had come and gone… My marriage had died. And there was nothing I could do to bring it back.”
The couple divorced in January 2009, a mere six months after R. Kelly, real name Robert Sylvester Kelly, was exonerated of all 14 counts of videotaping himself having sex with an underage girl. Talk about a Pyrrhic victory.
R. Kelly’s music will next be heard in this summer’s Whitney Houston starrer Sparkle, which he composed several new tracks for.
Cissy Houston has agreed to write a book about Whitney Houston that will give fans “something to treasure”, book publisher HarperCollins announced on Monday.
Cissy Houston, 78, agreed to write a memoir the publisher says will reveal the “unabridged and unbelievable story” of her daughter, who died in a Beverly Hills, California, hotel bathtub in February at 48.
The still untitled book is scheduled to come out next February.
“When I lost my daughter Nippy [Whitney Houston’s nickname], the world lost one of the most beautiful voices and an extraordinarily beautiful and charitable woman,” Cissy Houston said in a statement released by the publisher.
“In sharing our story in this book, I hope to give her fans something to treasure, the way we all treasured Whitney. We are still receiving thousands of letters each day from her fans, and I hope reading this book will provide a deeper understanding into my daughter’s true story.”
Cissy Houston has agreed to write a book about Whitney Houston that will give fans “something to treasure”
HarperCollins wouldn’t divulge how much they’re paying Cissy Houston but said “a portion” of the proceeds will be donated to the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, N.J., where Whitney Houston, whose many hits included The Greatest Love of All and I Will Always Love You, sang as a child.
Whitney Houston’s funeral was also held there.
Cissy Houston has had meetings with several publishers and the word in media circles is the book deal could be worth seven figures.
According to HarperCollins, Cissy Houston will write with “candor, honesty and respect” about her daughter’s remarkable career. She’ll also address Whitney Houston’s drug problems and her troubled marriage to fellow singer Bobby Brown.
Cissy Houston also will tell of her own grief.
“She will tell the unabridged and unbelievable story of her daughter’s life as well as her own, addressing Whitney’s brightest and darkest moments while helping fans around the world understand the complexities of this extraordinary star who died much too soon,” HarperCollins announced.
“Ultimately, Cissy will go behind the headlines to show the true, human side of this strong, successful yet complicated musical icon, capturing the dramatic depths and soaring range of an extraordinary woman, along with the pain and heartbreak of a grieving mother as she struggles with impossible loss.”
Cissy Houston recently released a new album of gospel tunes called Walk on By Faith, her first new music in more than a decade.
This will be Cissy Houston’s second book. She wrote the memoir, How Sweet the Sound, in 1998.