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Tue Jun 16, 2020, 10:03 AM

Books by Celebrities

I am reading a book by a male celebrity right now and am very disappointed that he doesn't go over any of his personal relationships, other than his Saintly Mother. I won't mention his name, because I find that DU overall has it in for this celebrity. I read Jane Fonda's memoir a few years ago, and I believe she discussed everything under the sun including all her personal relationships, even her daughter. Maybe men are less inclined to discuss personal relationships than women.

I heard Phil Donahue has a book out, What Makes a Marriage Last: 40 Celebrated Couples Share with Us the Secrets to a Happy Life. I have no interest in reading it, since I just assume Donahue doesn't give the truth, but a happy face version of his marriage.

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Reply Books by Celebrities (Original post)
Beringia Jun 2020 OP
Mike 03 Jun 2020 #1
Beringia Jun 2020 #2
Neoma Jun 2020 #3
Beringia Jun 2020 #4

Response to Beringia (Original post)

Tue Jun 16, 2020, 10:18 AM

1. I don't think it's your imagination that memoirs are often disappointing.

Now and then you might find a really good one. It seems to me like biographies, preferably unauthorized biographies, provide more of a kaleidoscopic insight about people. If I'm interested in a person I usually look for the longest biography written by an author with a history of writing biographies that is recent enough to cover the period of the person's life I'm interested in, and then read some reviews to get a secondary opinion.

I wanted to buy Linda Ronstadt's memoirs but the reviews said it was superficial and that she hardly talked about her music so I passed. My mother was so disappointed in Joan Baez's memoirs. Again, she didn't talk about being a musician, according to my mother, mostly just the people she slept with.

One recent memoir that didn't hold back is Patty Schemel's book Hit So Hard, her story of being the drummer for the grunge band Hole and her descent into heroin addiction. It was quite extraordinary as far as memoirs go.

I'm looking forward to President Obama's memoirs!

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Response to Mike 03 (Reply #1)

Tue Jun 16, 2020, 11:18 AM

2. Thanks for your perspective

I do like memoirs. Maybe it is like hearing what a therapist would hear, except you don't have to be the therapist. And even then, with therapists I suppose, many people just cherry-pick what they reveal.

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Response to Beringia (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 16, 2020, 11:45 AM

3. Celebrity memoirs almost always suck.

Just because they're famous, does not mean they're interesting.

You have to go with books where you don't know the person originally. Angela's Ashes, The Glass Castle, First They Killed My Father, Favorite Wife, The Autobiography of a Face... People you would not really know but have tremendous stories to tell. I'll admit there are duds within this category, but typically you find out fascinating things.

I will note, that Trevor Noah's Born A Crime book is a great exception. His book is hands down the best celebrity autobiography.

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Response to Neoma (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 16, 2020, 12:33 PM

4. I think the saying, everyone has one good book in them

is true. If they would tell their real life story. Not just, first I was in that movie and then that movie, etc. Or else they tell little stories that have some overall charm to them, but gives you no insight into them as a person. I kind of liked Frank Langella's book Dropped Names, but he capitalized on telling gossipy stories of other Hollywood people. The first person he encountered as a 16 year old exploring New York was Marilyn Monroe getting out of a limousine. And she was very kind to him.

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