Award-winning journalist and culture critic, Gerrick Kennedy, announces his new book Didn’t We Have It All: In Defense of Whitney Houston to be released February 1, 2022 with Abrams Books publishing company. There will also be a foreword by Houston’s mentee and R&B songstress, Brandy Norwood to be included in Kennedy’s book exploring the duality of Whitney’s life as a woman in the spotlight and someone who often had to hide who she was. The story will cover her entire life told with both grace and honesty according to the book’s description.
On February 11, 2012, Whitney Houston was found submerged in the bathtub of her suite at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. A decade has passed and the world has continued to mourn her death despite newfound revelations about her relationship to her Blackness, her sexuality and her battle with addiction.
Though there have been several renditions of Whitney Houston’s story, especially since her passing, author Gerrick Kennedy aims to tell a different story about the iconic superstar with a humble nod from her family and extended family members like Norwood. He will peel back the layers of Whitney’s complex story to uncover the truth at the center of what dover her, what inspired her and what haunted her.
In the book, Kennedy will connect the key elements that informed her life from growing up in the famed Drinkard family, the two romantic relationships that shaped her entire adult life with Robyn Crawford and Bobby Brown, her fraught relationship to her own Blackness and the ways in which she faced judgment from the Black community, and her drug and alcohol addiction. Didn’t We Have It All: In Defense of Whitney Houston will focus on the shame she carried in her heart, which ultimately informed every piece of her life.
Kennedy draws upon hundreds of sources while taking the readers back to a world in which someone like Whitney couldn’t exist. He explains, even in painful detail, the ways in which her fame did not and could not protect her.
Celebrity culture has changed a great deal since we lost the legendary singer and actress. The book intends on contextualizing her struggles against tabloid culture, audience consumption, mental health stigmas and the imminent racial divide in America. This exploration on Houston’s life will account for how and why we lost the beloved icon.
Didn’t We Have It All: In Defense of Whitney Houston written by Gerrick Kennedy is available for preorder now.