Friday, April 12, 2019

Retro Review - Prince Wasn't Perfect, But I Still Love Him



So we are rapidly approaching the anniversary date of Prince's death - April 21, 2016.  Yes, I'm still as Prince obsessed as I have always been and while my collection still grows, there is one book I read following his death that continues to stick with me.  In fact, I'm amazed that this review is the one that has gotten the most "likes" on Goodreads.  Maybe Prince fans are just that loyal.  Anyway, I wanted to repost this review for anyone who might have missed it the first time and to let people know if they enjoy memoirs, this is definitely one they should consider picking up.

TITLE: The Most Beautiful
AUTHOR: Mayte Garcia
PUBLISHER: Hachette Books
PUBLISHING DATE: April 4, 2017


FROM GOODREADS: In The Most Beautiful, a title inspired by the hit song Prince wrote about their legendary love story, Mayte Garcia for the first time shares the deeply personal story of their relationship and offers a singular perspective on the music icon and their world together: from their unconventional meeting backstage at a concert (and the long-distance romance that followed), to their fairy-tale wedding (and their groundbreaking artistic partnership), to the devastating losses that ultimately dissolved their romantic relationship for good. Throughout it all, they shared a bond more intimate than any other in Prince's life. No one else can tell this story or can provide a deeper, more nuanced portrait of Prince--both the famously private man and the pioneering, beloved artist--than Mayte, his partner during some of the most pivotal personal and professional years of his career. The Most Beautiful is a book that will be returned to for decades, as Prince's music lives on with generations to come. 

MY THOUGHTS:  So I have to be honest here. Going into this book I had a preconceived notion that Mayte Garcia was only writing this book to capitalize on Prince's death and to taint his legacy in some way because anyone who knows anything about him knows he never would have allowed this book to come out if he were still alive. After quickly devouring this book and actually being sad to see it end, I can honestly say I think I was pretty much totally wrong.

"The Most Beautiful" really isn't a book about Prince. It's a book about Mayte who just happens to have fallen in love with one of the enigmatic celebrities of all time. Mayte grew up as an accomplished dancer. She perfected belly dancing and also took lots of ballet and was basically supporting herself financially by the time she was 14. Her parents were very supportive of her, but were dysfunctional at best. When she was young, she saw Prince on TV and in concert and immediately commented that she would one day marry him. Strangely enough, Prince made the same comment to someone when he first saw Mayte. Mayte started a friendship with Prince, centered around her dancing and his music, when she was young and once she became of legal age, it slowly developed into a relationship. Many aspects of their relationship are truly beautiful and they share quite a love story. However, like most relationships, things weren't always easy. Mayte and Prince tragically lost their son when he was born due to a horrible genetic disease and later on, Mayte miscarried again. Neither recovered from this loss and it did set the path for the destruction of their marriage a few years later.

So basically after reading this, I do believe Matye and Prince were soulmates. There is a lot of discussion in the book about previous lives and fate and the such and I think in their case, they may have had a point. However, even though Prince was Mayte's soulmate, I think he had one that took precedence over her - his career and persona. I do think she came a close second and I can't help but feel they still loved each other when he died (I know she did), but she was never able to fully compete with Prince himself for Prince's attention (confusing). I learned a few surprising things while reading this. First of all, Mayte wasn't the pushover I expected. She stood up to Prince several times in her lifetime and wasn't just some starstruck little brat. Secondly, her dog Mia saved her from overdosing and taking her life following the death of her son which is why she is so heavily involved in rescue work. And finally, Prince could be a jerk. Now I love Prince so that pains me to say. But in reality, he was only human so it's really no big revelation. Also, even though their marriage failed, it don't think it tarnished the beauty of their relationship for fans. Lots of celebrity marriages fail and I think it's often too much pressure for people in the limelight to endure. 

I really did enjoy this book. I have a new respect for Mayte and while some of the book wasn't necessarily pretty, she didn't slam Prince of talk negatively about him - and believe me, she probably had reasons to do both at times. And I still love Prince just as much. This book showed me some of his flaws and I'm pretty sure that no matter how much I adore the man, given the chance (and come on, there was NO CHANCE!) I would have never started a relationship with him - gee, now my husband can sleep better at night ;) He was too controlling and he was a perfectionist. Everything in his life had to be perfect and I think it was physically painful for him when things and often people, didn't measure up to that standard.

If you are someone who likes Prince, this is a great book to pick up. Just go into it with an open mind. You'll read about a beautiful love story and I hope that if there is some justice in this world, Prince and Mayte will eventually meet up again and be able to continue their love story without all the other stuff thrown in and without millions of eyes watching.

RATING: 5 Paws

12 comments:

  1. oh wow soulmates huh? I would have suspected the same motives you did ! so glad to hear it's a real love story!
    But yeah, many celebrities 's love stories are like this one. The real love is the career.
    "Prince could be a jerk"?? (gasps) LOL

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    1. I know. Bet you never thought you'd hear that out of my mouth!

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  2. Great review Barb! I think too many people expect their heroes to be perfect and see no wrong in them-look at the Donald Trump fans! I like reading about their flaws and challenges as it makes them more real.

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  3. I am from Minnesota, and not far from where Prince lived. I grew up on his music and his death is still devastating to me. The day he died, I felt like my heart stopped, I was in shock. I can't bring myself to read anything yet, it is too hard.

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    1. That's so cool. I remember sobbing when he died and I think there is a small part of me that wants to believe it didn't really happen - even though I know I did. There's a new CD coming out later this month so at least we are still getting stuff from him.

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  4. Probably not a book for me but it sounds like this really resonated with you which is great and even though you're such a huge fan you still managed to glean more insight from this - and yes, Prince was only human after all!
    Lynn :D

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  5. I am so happy I read your review before and was able to grab it when the ebook was on sale. I thoroughly enjoyed it. 👍✨

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