Ira Robbins
October 16, 1992 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Pearl: The Obsessions and Passions of Janis Joplin

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Ellis Amburn
publisher
Warner Books
genre
Biography, Nonfiction

We gave it a F

According to her battling biographers, Janis Joplin was either a promiscuous bisexual alcoholic junkie in Ellis Amburn’s Pearl: The Obsessions and Passions of Janis Joplin, a wonderful big sister with few bad habits in Laura Joplin’s Love, Janis, or a lovable, talented neurotic in Myra Friedman’s Buried Alive: The Biography of Janis Joplin. Pearl‘s litany of sleaze is a tabloid tome of dubious credibility, but Laura Joplin’s canonization isn’t much better, save for Janis’ poignant letters home. The first — and we hope final — word on this subject is Buried Alive (revised from its 1973 edition), an economical memoir by an intimate. Pearl: F Love, Janis: C Buried Alive: B-

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