Michael Jackson Death Revives Interest In Tell-All Book

As the entertainment community and the rest of the world continue to reel over the sudden and unexpected death of “King of Pop” Michael Jackson, the singer’s undeniable mystique continues to ripple across the public consciousness.

In the hours and days after the announcement of his passing at age 50 from an apparent cardiac arrest, media were saturated with information about the pop icon’s death and life, and his songs and albums were again rocketed to best-selling status. Online music seller iTunes reported Jackson’s songs occupying the top 7 download spots, with his 1982 Thriller LP occupying the top album download spot. A Friday statement from Amazon.com’s vice president of music and video, Bill Carr, said that the company had completely sold out of Jackson’s CDs within minutes of the singer’s death making the news. Meanwhile, journalists and press outlets around the world sought reaction from those directly involved with Jackson’s unique legacy.

Among those who have unexpectedly found themselves at the center of this media blitz are SelectBooks, Stacy Brown, and the late Bob Jones; publisher and co-authors, respectively, of the 2005 expose Michael Jackson: The Man Behind the Mask (ISBN: 978-1-59079-072-4). In the book, the authors– both widely acknowledged as Jackson family “insiders”–go into great detail about the seemingly bizarre reality Jackson created to insulate himself from the world at large.

Jones, a public relations titan responsible for breaking numerous barriers for African-Americans in the entertainment and press industries, was a former high-ranking public relations official for both Motown records and Jackson’s own MJJ Productions. He was also perhaps Jackson’s closest friend for over 34 years, dating back to the early days of family act The Jackson 5. After an acrimonious split with the singer in the early years of this decade, Jones teamed with author and award-winning journalist Stacy Brown to write a book that would offer “the inside story behind the rumors, accusations, ugliness and mystery surrounding Michael Jackson.” Shortly after the publication of Michael Jackson: The Man Behind the Mask Jones also served as a witness at Jackson’s headline grabbing 2005 trial for sexual abuse of a 13-year-old boy.

Bob Jones did not live to witness Jackson’s ultimate end, dying in September 2008 at age 72. With both Jones and Jackson now gone, the responsibility of accounting for what is said and unsaid in this controversial book rests squarely on the shoulders of co-author Stacy Brown. Mr. Brown, presently a reporter for the Times-Tribune of Scranton, PA, is now personally fielding all media inquiries concerning their book and its take on the Jackson legacy.

SelectBooks founder Kenzi Sugihara has meanwhile offered the following statement:

“It is exceedingly difficult to reconcile the image of the joyful and beneficent pop icon with the material in Bob and Stacy’s book. But despite the apparent bad blood and hard feelings between Michael and Bob, this book offers information and insights not available to even seasoned journalists like Martin Bashir, whose 2003 documentary was a touchstone in Jackson’s subsequent trial. Yet, as is often the case with larger than life personalities, answers often lead to more questions.”

Mr. Sugihara added that an additional printing of the book to meet renewed interest was forthcoming.