I have had Nancy’s book forever. Not sure why I haven’t read it until now. Nancy Rooks was Elvis’ Maid and Cook and was considered family. Although Inside Graceland is very short (just 150 pages with large print and 20 pages of photos), I learned a lot. Nancy gives a very personal look inside Elvis’ life.
After working for Elvis, Nancy realized she actually had seen him as a kid hanging around her neighborhood on Alabama Street. I enjoyed reading about what Elvis actually ate versus all the rumors. I really enjoyed all the little tidbits I can look for when I go back to Graceland, like the damage to the ceiling in the foyer and where Rising Sun is buried in the backyard. I thought it was great Nancy devoted an entire chapter to Lisa, as I am also a huge Lisa Marie Presley fan in her own right separate from Elvis.
For the first time, I heard all sorts of things about Elvis’ death and after that I had never heard before – and a lot about Aunt Delta. I had read Elvis did not believe he would live past 42, but I never knew he wanted to die on August 14th, the same date as his mother. Also I had no idea Elvis did not want to be buried in the ground. It is a shame his wish was not honored. (It still bothers me he is not buried next to his mother!)
I did not know it was Nancy who answered the phone when Ginger first called downstairs on August 16th. I knew the police / EMTs were perplexed how everything was cleaned up when they returned to Graceland that day, but I did not know it was Aunt Delta and Nancy who had cleared out Elvis’ pills and needles etc as well as cleaned his room and changed his sheets and cleaned the bathroom. I had no idea Aunt Delta locked off the upstairs when Elvis died and she had the only key. Everyone in Elvis’ life has written about the tree branch that fell as they were taking Elvis’ coffin from Graceland to the hearse after the funeral, but I did not know that tree branch fell near Ginger’s car for the procession almost hitting it.
Nancy Rook’s Inside Graceland is a must-read for any Elvis fan, and it’s a very quick, enjoyable read.