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Book Review

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Just flipping through the splendid pages of this 4.3-pound tome dedicated to salsa music by Orlando author Mary Kent, I learned more than I ever knew – though admittedly I didn't know much. In one of the early parts of the book, Kent asked some of the 42 well-known salsa celebrities (Celia Cruz, Marc Anthony, Tito Puente) and insider stars (Canelita Medina, Papo Lucca, Marty Sheller) profiled in later chapters to define salsa music. Their disparate answers revealed at least one good reason to try to clarify the origins and current interpretations of salsa. The colorful photos taken by Kent blaze from almost every page, matching the festive nature of the subject matter, and there is due credit owed to the writer/photographer (who worked for one of the largest salsa management firms in the world) for her informative, entertaining accomplishment.

Salsa Talks! A Musical Heritage Uncovered
By Mary Kent

(Digital Domain, 415 pages)

(Mary Kent will read from Salsa Talks! 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17, at Borders Books & Music, 407-647-3300)

books@orlandoweekly.com

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