Some asked me to write my overall review about the book. I'm going to make it as detailed as possible and comparing to other books - especially Latoya's book.
- Literary wise Jermaine's book is better - well most probably because he has a ghost writer.
- Also Jermaine's book is a lot better organized - Latoya's kept jumping back and forth in time, Jermaine's follow chronological order.
- The book is not about Jermaine - unlike Latoya's which was a mixture of her life and Michael. So if you are Jermaine fan and want to read / learn about Jermaine this is not the book. Other than Jermaine's stay with Motown there's not much about Jermaine personally. It's a book about Michael.
- Jermaine does a wonderful job of defending Michael against molestation claims and "weird / *****" stories. For a non fan / general public it could change some opinions and serve a purpose.
- In regards to addiction (not addiction but dependency) and plastic surgery (he had a reason but went overboard / body dysmorphic) the book was okay. I didn't see them to be that defending personally and it can be seen as either way.
- As a fan for 25 years and read almost anything and everything about Michael, Jermaine's book only had the new information of "Word to the Badd", "How did Tohme came into MJ's life", supposed "5 year plan of Michael". I was also interested in reading Jermaine's take on Michael's death (the last chapter).
- The rest although had some new tidbits (such as Michael forgetting Blanket) was all things that I heard / read before. Especially the beginning chapters of the book seems like the book version of "The Jacksons : An American Dream" movie. I guess it's not surprising as Jermaine and Margaret was behind that also.
- I think that Jermaine was very close with Michael in the beginning (1958 to 1975) and had a close relationship till the end of Victory tour (1976 and 1984).
- After reading both Jermaine's and Latoya's book, I personally think no Jackson (perhaps except Katherine) had close relationship with Michael after 1985.
- Both books blames other people around Michael or Michael's busy schedule for the lack of communication. However I personally don't believe it because
----- People around Michael change but not allowing family doesn't.
----- At times Jacksons can't reach to Michael directly , other people have no problems reaching him directly (such as when Jermaine can only leave messages to MJJProductions offices and hope Michael to call, Princess Diana is making direct phonecalls to Michael).
----- Similarly while Michael supposed to be busy with recording and touring and can't attend Family days, Michael has no time issues for hanging around with his surrogate families.
As a result to me it seems this distance from Jacksons is something that Michael wanted.
- The distance / lack of communication in the later years also make the book turn into a lot more 3rd party stories.
- There are no "evil" people in this book. Everyone is either really good (such as Karen Faye, Lisa Marie, Nanny Grace and even Debbie Rowe) or at worst they are "human" with good and bad sides (such as Tohme is being a hero for saving the Neverland but having personality issues and Auction fiasco or Branca being good for getting the Catalog but then having conflict of interest with Sony etc).
- Similarly the book also has a middle of the road and even playing to two different sides feel to it. I don't know if this is Jermaine's personality (harmonious person) or a tactic to get more sales. For example
---- Not an addict but had dependency issue at times
---- inner circle realized what was wrong but in all fairness AEG wasn't inner circle
---- AEG should have stopped the production but Murray told them there was nothing to worry
---- Dileo seems like controlling but it's being protective
---- Sony not promoting Invincible common practice for a artists that's leaving but they also stop distribution
---- Even at Michael's claims of people behind his catalog is portrayed as "don't know whether it's true or not but made sense"
This is hugely different from Latoya's approach which was loud and blaming people and companies for stuff and even portrayal of evil.
- If you hoped to get a better understanding of what happened behind the scenes or what is "the truth" in regards to Michael's death, unfortunately the book doesn't give any insight in regards to that. Jacksons are on the outside as we all are and as dependent as we are on to other people's versions. I personally didn't think that it included any real or different information that made me say "that's it". It's still a mystery with multiple versions.
- Different versions of events coming from different Jackson's also make it a lot more confusing. (such as Jermaine portraying Ortega as a person that cared, but Karen Faye / TINI blaming him, Katherine suing him and Randy not apologizing or taking back anything)
- Finally I will classify this book as "okay" and whether you'll be satisfied with it will depend on your expectations. Personally I do not see the money I spent on the book as a total loss (Latoya's book was totally valueless IMO) but at the same time -if- Cascio book has first hand experience and stories could be a better investment than Jermaine's book.