Cissy Houston 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, according to a HarperCollins statement. The publishing giant acquired world rights to the untitled book, which is scheduled for release on February 15, 2013.
Houston, nicknamed Nippy by her family, is one of two children her mother had with her second husband, John Russell Houston, Jr. The couple also had a son, Michael.
When I lost my daughter, Nippy, the world lost one of the most beautiful voices and an extraordinarily beautiful and charitable woman, Cissy Houston said in a statement. 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.
The news of the book deal comes less than four months after Whitney was found dead in her Beverly Hills Hotel room bathtub. Toxicology tests showed that she had consumed drugs prior to drowning in the bathtub, including marijuana and Xanax. A coroner ruled that she died from drowning, although complications caused by the drug use contributed to her death, the Associated Press reported.
The singer, who belted out popular tunes such as I Will Always Love You and I Have Nothing, was scheduled to attend a pre-Grammys party hosted by Clive Davis that same evening. She was also planning to attend the Grammys the following night. Singer Jennifer Hudson sang I Will Always Love You in a Grammy awards tribute to Whitney.
Now, the late singer's mother, who may have known Whitney better than anyone, will get to tell her side of the story.
Cissy Houston is known for being so guarded and so caring that until now she has never spoken about her daughter, HarperCollins Senior Vice President and Director of Creative Development Lisa Sharkey said in a statement. But she is also so determined to set the record straight about her beautiful Nippy that she decided to write this book. It is an honor to publish Cissy's memoir, which will undoubtedly be the definitive book by the only person capable of telling the true inside story of Whitney Houston's life, her phenomenal successes, her desperate struggles and her private passions.
Part of the book's proceeds will go to the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, N.J., where the late singer got her start and where her star-studded memorial service was held.