Monday, August 08, 2022

Review - Elvis King of the Ring Vol. 2

New York based Elvis Presley biographer Paul Belard published volume 2 of ‘Elvis - The King of the Rings’. 

The first volume was released early 2021 through the author’s Linden Press and re-issued in Europe by the Danish Memphis Mansion Publications. Let’s see what this second volume has to offer. 




Like the previous volume, this edition tops the 250-page mark. Belard continued to use black as the base-color for his book. Understandable as it keep the series a whole, but it also makes the content look a bit dark. I hope the author will try white as the base-color for volume 3, I think it will complement the mainly white background of the jewelry shown.


The quality is the same as other books from the author and as good as can be without using expensive gloss paper. Using that may let the King’s bling shine even more that it already does. 



If you liked the first volume, you will enjoy this book too as it picks up where the first volume ended. And let’s be honest, Elvis was the original “King of the Bling” wearing some subtle, but mostly extravagant, flashy and grandiose jewelry on and off-stage. 


This is the kind of book you pick-up every now and then to feast your eyes on the hundreds pieces of Elvis  Presley jewelry or use it as a reference when “new” rings (re)appear on the auction block. An index of the rings would be a nice addition for volume 3. 


The latter is also the main source of information for these books, which may come in handy as Belard included the estimates and final prices the items sold for during these auctions. The background-information and various letters of authenticity complete the picture. 


Fun to see are all the images of Elvis wearing the jewelry Belard added. Placed in this context you don’t look at Elvis so much, but automatically focus-in on his hands, a new way to look at our man. Even if you look at old black and white pictures in this book, the jewelry jumps at you where you wouldn’t spot it if you stumbled on these pictures in another context.


Browsing through the pages it is hard to pick a favorite. Of course Elvis’ Gold and Diamond “TCB” ring, which opens the book, comes to mind as it is so iconic for our man. And so are the Horseshoe rings. Other are a reflection of the time in which they were made like the use of Onyx, Black Star Sapphire, Coral, Opalescent Stone and Turquoise with silver. Others are just too feminine for me or are plain ugly, like the golden “Keeper of the Flame” ring with Elvis’ own face engraved on the top. But I will admit that is a matter of taste (no pun intended of course!).


The 2014 interview with Lowell Hays was a good read setting the scene on how Elvis selected and later designed his jewelry. It would be interesting if he would add his memories to the jewelry shown in this book. 



As no-one knows how much jewelry is out there, it is great that Paul Belard took on the task to document the King’s jewelry. These books are interesting reads, showcasing both the bling of the King as well as opening a window on one of the things that interested Elvis Presley very much. 


With new jewelry popping up continuously, just like the “lost” jewelry Elvis gave to his manager Colonel Tom Parker over the two decades the men worked together. The auction includes gold rings encrusted with jewels, cufflinks, watches and chains. The highlight of the auction could be Elvis’  first 9.81ctw Diamond TCB Ring with a minimum bid of US$500,000.00. 


So let’s see if there will be a volume 3 somewhere down the line. I look forward to it already!   

The book can be ordered directly from the author ( or via Amazon.