Even firmly entrenched in his retirement from touring, Garth Brooks remains one of the biggest stars on the planet. In the 1990s, the Oklahoma native generated news on an almost daily basis, breaking a sales record here, a concert attendance record there, and enduring endless speculation about his marriage and other aspects of his personal life. He has garnered so much publicity that numerous books have been written about the entertainer through the years - some flattering, others not so much.

But in spite of being an unauthorized biography, a new tome by music journalist Patsi Bale Cox, called 'The Garth Factor: The Career Behind Country's Big Boom,' could be the most comprehensive Brooks biography yet.

Patsi Bale Cox has known and worked with Garth since the very beginning of his now legendary career. The Nashville-based writer, who has co-authored autobiographies by Loretta Lynn, Tanya Tucker and Wynonna Judd, among others, wrote and researched much of the biographical material for Garth's official website, and with all the work she'd already done in detailing his countless achievements, not to mention her close personal relationship with the singer, felt she was ideally suited to put Garth's unprecedented accomplishments in their proper perspective.

"I thought there were so many misconceptions about him and his career," the author tells Oklahoma's Tulsa World newspaper. "After Garth and I finished working on the material for his Web site, I had written and researched so much for that Web site and so much couldn't be used, such an overwhelming amount. And so I thought, 'This story really has to be chronicled.' And I felt I should be the one to do it."

So what was it about Garth Brooks that made him the best-selling solo artist in the history of recorded music?

"It happened for a very simple reason," says Patsi. "In the entertainment business, you meet artists who suck the oxygen out of the room. They don't just command it, but everyone else is a little less because they are so much more. But when Garth walked into a room, he didn't suck the oxygen out, he breathed energy into it. And that translated to his music, his live shows - when you can harness the ability to do things like that, that's the reason for the phenomenon. It was the biggest shot in the arm that Nashville could've ever had."