When Gospel recording artist BeBe Winans decided to write a book about his longtime friendship with the late Whitney Houston, he figured doing so would help him “embrace the pain” he felt over the sudden and expected loss of the world-renowned singer.

Winans has said that his book was written with the blessing of the Houston clan. But the timing of the book’s release this summer didn’t sit well with Whitney Houston’s mother, Cissy, who signed a book deal with HarperCollins in June for a book that she hopes will “tell the unabridged and unbelievable story of her daughter’s life as well as her own.” She also wanted to be the first to weigh in on her daughter’s personal life. Cissy’s book is scheduled to be released in February.

Cissy Houston told The Wall Street Journal that Winans never asked for the family’s blessing or permission for his book. She and close family friend A. Curtis Farrow said that the first time Whitney Houston’s immediate family learned of the book was when they read about it in a newspaper article, not from Winans.

Still, Winans has been traveling around promoting his book, called “The Whitney I Knew,” in between live performances and pushing his latest recording project, a patriotic album called, “America, America.”

Winans and his gospel-singing family were a major highlight at the globally televised funeral service for Houston, held at Houston’s childhood church, New Hope Baptist in Newark. At one point in the service, his brother, Pastor Marvin Winans, called BeBe and his other family members to the pulpit to perform a surprise rendition of the family’s song, “Tomorrow.” His on-the-spot decision sparked a sales windfall for the Winans. According to Nielsen Soundscan, sales of the album skyrocketed more than 1,000 percent in the few days following Houston’s funeral. In addition, the sales of individual tracks on the album increased more than 1,000 percent.

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