There is no other way to put it: Elvis is the King. Note the present tense: even though Elvis (supposedly) died nearly forty years ago, he has lived on in our hearts, as a sound, as an image, and as an especially vigorous personality. In fact, it’s safe to say no other celebrity has done so quite as well. The Death and Resurrection of Elvis Presley is the story of that afterlife, of Elvis after he left the building. Walking the eccentrically carpeted rooms of Graceland, bidding into stratospheric sums on his auctioned relics, and mingling among the some 200,000 impersonators of his likeness, Ted Harrison offers nothing less than the ultimate Elvis tribute.
Harrison begins, of course, in pilgrimage: to Graceland. He shows how Elvis’s estate was pillaged nearly to ruin by his manager but was saved through the deft business acumen and financial vision of his divorced wife, one Priscilla Presley. If Graceland seems holy, that’s because it is: Harrison unveils in Elvis’s allure a deeply spiritual dimension, showing how Elvis fans, over the decades, have anointed their idol with Christ-like qualities. Through Elvis’s extravagance, Harrison raises fascinating links between money and faith, and through Elvis’s life, he shows how the King actually fulfilled a host of roles ranging from hero to martyr to saint. Underpinning the whole story is Elvis’s extraordinary charisma and—lest we forget—his astonishing musical genius.
Fascinating, colorful, and deeply informative, this book is a must-have for any fan, anyone who was ever lucky enough to see Elvis alive or who hopes they might still be able to.
Each November, Americans celebrate Veterans Day, a holiday that honors our armed services and that marks the anniversary of the signing of the armistice that ended World War I. Veterans Day roughly coincides with Remembrance Day in Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom, where millions of people wear poppies—a flower that bloomed across the battlefields of Flanders and became emblematic of the war—and observe a period of silence at war memorials. For many countries around the world, this day is meant to thank those who give their lives to defend liberty and freedom, but as Ted Harrison reveals in Remembrance Today, the day and the poppies people wear were originally meant as a dedication to the intention that war must never happen again.
Raising questions that are too often ignored, Harrison explores what it means to be heroic and what glory means in the context of military service. Most important, he asks what the purpose of Remembrance is outside honoring the fallen and comforting those who mourn their loss. He contends that if the prime function of holidays like Remembrance Day and Veterans Day is not to serve as a warning against war and a reminder to pursue peaceful solutions, then these days are futile. An examination of how our ideas of heroism, duty, and grief have lost their way, Remembrance Today is a powerful argument to focus again on the meaning behind this poignant holiday.