New book by Bob Marley’s son strains legend’s family ties

In his new book, Ky-Mani Marley, a son of reggae legend Bob Marley, claims he was deprived of his father’s fortune for years by the reggae star’s widow. Dear Dad hit booksellers’ stands February 6, when the late reggae icon would have turned 65. It quickly became a major headache for the 34-year-old, who had second thoughts about the book, realizing the family squabbles it could unleash, and tried unsuccessfully to delay its release and tweak its content. Then a dispute arose between Ky-Mani Marley and his editor Farrah Gray, a 24-year-old businessman, over the veracity of the book’s content.

Though they both told media in the United States and Jamaica in recent days that their clash could end up in court, by Tuesday they had ironed out their differences. Ky-Mani Marley, a Jamaican actor and musician born to table tennis champ Anita Belnavis, took to his MySpace page to defend himself. “The book was not an attack on my family. I love my brothers and sisters more than anyone can know,” he said.

The book’s cover says it contains the “story the Marley family apparently didn’t want you to know.” Under the accord reached Tuesday with the publisher, that claim will be pulled from the book’s second edition. Dear Dad claims its author was kept from accessing his father’s fortune by Marley’s widow Rita. It also claims Rita Marley tried to keep the money for her children with Marley, while denying financial support to his children with six other women.

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