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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
There is a flesh and blood man behind the voice, and this is what Pamela Nightingale, Victor Corbin and Angela Moon hope to show their readers in the non-fiction biography of a radio sensation from a bygone era, The Story of Earl Nightingale and His Strangest Secret. While most biographies will recycle information based on what is already known or dig just a little deeper beyond that, this one actually comes from Earl Nightingale's own daughter Pamela, which promises to lift the window treatment [and in the case of a particular party, hopefully open one] so readers can sit down and have what really feels like a conversation. Pamela tells all, from the backstory that includes him reading the manufacturing information off the back of his dinner plate at the age of three to war stories, his career and some heartbreaking insight on relationship woes and a hormonal disorder, and, of course, the Strangest Secret.
I picked up The Story of Earl Nightingale and His Strangest Secret not knowing who Earl Nightingale was, and came away feeling like he was a relative—and that Pamela was too. Although this is written as a novel it is clear that the ability to reach individuals through their words is a family trait, as Pamela Nightingale is a natural at making the prose as authentic as she is profoundly honest. There's humor, sadness and imperfection, something that takes courage to share but is important in order to remove the blinding façade so we can see what those who truly knew Earl Nightingale did: that he was a brilliant man, but he was as human in his strengths and flaws as any other human can be. This is done with a lovely and loving style of writing that takes the stuffy genre of biographies and makes it as palatable as fiction. And the only thing better than good fiction is a good story of a life that was really lived. Very highly recommended.