Flip by Kevin Cook
The Inside Story of TV's First Black Superstar

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...despite the book’s level of detail, including some you-are-there creative license on the author’s part, readers do not come away with a real appreciation for what made Wilson tick, beyond a desire to entertain and get rich. An entertaining and well-intentioned biography that lacks a deeper understanding of its subject.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

The first biography of the beloved entertainer who broke the prime-time color barrier
 
When The Flip Wilson Show debuted in 1970, black faces were still rare on television and black hosts nonexistent. Then came Flip—to instant acclaim. His show dueled Marcus Welby, M.D. for the top spot in the ratings. His characters and catchphrases fixed themselves in America’s consciousness, and he helped launch new talent, including Richard Pryor and George Carlin. But how did Clerow Wilson, a motherless Jersey City grade-school dropout, become the celebrity heralded on the cover of TIME as “TV’s First Black Superstar”? Drawing on interviews with family, friends, and celebrities, Kevin Cook offers an inspiring salute to a self-made star who fell from grace, but not before blazing a trail for generations of entertainers to come.
 

About Kevin Cook

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KEVIN COOK is the author of The Last Headbangers, Titanic Thompson, and Tommy's Honor. The former editor in chief of Golf Magazine, he has written for Sports Illustrated, GQ, Playboy, Details, Men's Journal, and many other magazines, and has appeared on ESPN, CNN, and FOX TV. He lives in New York City.
 
Published April 18, 2013 by Plume. 257 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Flip
All: 2 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 1

WSJ online

Good
Reviewed by Preston Lauterbach on May 24 2013

Mr. Cook devotes the majority of "Flip" to the entertainer's compelling rise and inspiring arrival, and to the end, he keeps the story just as Flip Wilson kept his act and his audience, "in fun."

Read Full Review of Flip: The Inside Story of TV'... | See more reviews from WSJ online

Kirkus

Above average
on Mar 17 2013

...despite the book’s level of detail, including some you-are-there creative license on the author’s part, readers do not come away with a real appreciation for what made Wilson tick, beyond a desire to entertain and get rich. An entertaining and well-intentioned biography that lacks a deeper understanding of its subject.

Read Full Review of Flip: The Inside Story of TV'... | See more reviews from Kirkus

Reader Rating for Flip
87%

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