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Stories I Only Tell My Friends: An Autobiography | [Rob Lowe]

Stories I Only Tell My Friends: An Autobiography

A teen idol at 15, an international icon and founder of the Brat Pack at 20, and one of Hollywood's top stars to this day, Rob Lowe chronicles his experiences. Never mean-spirited or salacious, Lowe delivers unexpected glimpses into his successes, disappointments, relationships, and one-of-a-kind encounters with people who shaped our world over the last 25 years. These stories are as entertaining as they are unforgettable.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Prepare to be amazed by the many ways this book and its author are better than you thought they would be. Everybody knows that Rob Lowe is very handsome, and that he spent a long time being a Hollywood wild child. Now in his 40s, Lowe’s reflections on his life thus far demonstrate a remarkably responsible perspective and a refreshingly self-deprecating look at how he ended up in the better state of mind he inhabits today. While the headlines and high notes may come and go, Lowe remains a devoted husband and proud father.

This listen is a small miracle for many reasons. It’s not simply the fact that Lowe reveals himself as capable of compelling writing, which he certainly does. It’s also not merely the path of the narrative that’s intriguing, though that’s definitely the case. Whether he is spending several chapters thoroughly reminiscing about the many lessons he learned during The Outsiders or sharing a quick anecdote about trying to meet Liza Minnelli when he was a little kid, Lowe indeed offers up a terrific set of insights about both life and stardom. He proves himself as a generous spirit, with strong thanks for Martin Sheen and solid praise for Patrick Swayze.

His narration is clearly heartfelt, and never comes across as phony or acted. This listen feels like a casual dinner conversation, minus the slick descent into rumor-mongering that usually rears its ugly head in memoirs of this variety. Lowe manages to steer clear of the blame game when analyzing the simultaneous blessing and curse of the Brat Pack label or his decision to leave The West Wing, and even finds some gracious adjectives for Tom Cruise. Be on the lookout for eerily spot-on impersonations of many stars, including a particularly good Christopher Walken and Matt Dillon.

In the end, it’s hard to put a finger on what makes this book so utterly fascinating. There isn’t anything shocking in the subject matter; there isn’t any mud-flinging in the tone; there is very little that stands out as an exclamation point. Yet the total package undeniably and irresistibly triumphs at being genuinely charming. This is ironic, because the book then actually sort of mirrors Lowe’s career. He’s spent the last two decades trying to upend the idea that he is simply a pretty face. The book succeeds in that endeavor, just as his several iconic film roles have done, and yet the shallow type-casting of Rob Lowe somehow too frequently persists. It’s true that he is a very dreamy guy, but this memoir absolutely proves that he is also intelligent, worldly, witty, and political. It’s an excellent listen that ought to once and for all put an end to the notion the Rob Lowe’s charisma is only skin deep. —Megan Volpert

Publisher's Summary

A wryly funny and surprisingly moving account of an extraordinary life lived almost entirely in the public eye. A teen idol at 15, an international icon and founder of the Brat Pack at 20, and one of Hollywood's top stars to this day, Rob Lowe chronicles his experiences as a painfully misunderstood child actor in Ohio who was uprooted to the wild counterculture of mid-70s Malibu, where he embarked on his unrelenting pursuit of a career in Hollywood. The Outsiders placed Lowe at the birth of the modern youth movement in the entertainment industry. During his time on The West Wing, he witnessed the surreal nexus of show business and politics, both on the set and in the actual White House. And in between are deft and humorous stories of the wild excesses that marked the 80s, leading to his quest for family and sobriety.

Never mean-spirited or salacious, Lowe delivers unexpected glimpses into his successes, disappointments, relationships, and one-of-a-kind encounters with people who shaped our world over the last 25 years. These stories are as entertaining as they are unforgettable.

©2011 Robert Lowe (P)2011 Macmillan Audio

What the Critics Say

"[Lowe] writes viscerally and insightfully...He looks back at the aberrant highs of his heart-throb days, the changing nature of stardom in Hollywood, the trade-off he has made between high life and home life, and the step-by-step effort behind his show business survival. He looked like the callowest kid in the "Outsiders" crew. Now he looks like the sturdiest of them all" (The New York Times)

"A fresh pop-culture history of Hollywood in the ’70s and ’80s from the point of view of the man who lived it…[Lowe] is as funny as he is thoughtful. This is the best type of celeb memoir, because its author is as interested in the world as the world is interested in him." (People Magazine)

"A lovely autobiography, equal parts dish and pathos.” (Vanity Fair)

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What Members Say

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  •  
    Kimberly United States 03-04-13
    Kimberly United States 03-04-13 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    28
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Love, Love, Loved it!"
    If you could sum up Stories I Only Tell My Friends in three words, what would they be?

    I have to admit, I've never been a huge Rob Lowe fan. I opted to listen to this book based on the audible.com review. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I am now a huge fan of Rob Lowe. He wrote a witty, intelligent, and enjoyable book. Way to Go Rob Lowe!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rob Lowe


    What does Rob Lowe bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His stories of his life and Hollywood and how they intersect was enlightening and sometimes hysterical.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    An interesting life, being well lived!


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donna Haddonfield, NJ, United States 03-04-13
    Donna Haddonfield, NJ, United States 03-04-13 Member Since 2012
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    1
    1
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    Story
    "Not so bad"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Stories I Only Tell My Friends to be better than the print version?

    Yes, Rob Lowe's reading gave the book a different light.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rob Lowe, the book was about him


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There were many parts. It was interesting to read that his life wasn't always charmed. It made me think of the West Wing , it's cast and the producers in a different light.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle Blacksburg, VA, United States 02-25-13
    Michelle Blacksburg, VA, United States 02-25-13 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "New appreciation for actors!"
    Where does Stories I Only Tell My Friends rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the best listens I've had the pleasure of listening too.


    What does Rob Lowe bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Rob Lowe has a dynamic personality that shines through his voice. I felt like we were sitting at my living room table having coffee and talking about life.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Hearing him describe the birth of his son brought tears to my eyes and a new admiration for Rob Lowe the man not just the actor.


    Any additional comments?

    Great listen. A must for anyone who grew up in the 80's watching movies like About Last Night and The Outsiders. Like walking down memory lane with some interesting twists and tidbits of information. Rob Lowe does a super job telling you about his life experiences but keeping his friends lives private. .

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine United States 02-25-13
    Christine United States 02-25-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "LOVED IT, WONDERFUL, MUST READ"
    Where does Stories I Only Tell My Friends rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    TOP TEN


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rob Lowe
    why: It is about him


    What does Rob Lowe bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His narrative is excellent


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    yes, when he finally won his battle with addiction


    Any additional comments?

    I learned a lot about his early movies which I will be watching now. Many interesting facts about Hollywood and other actors. More of a behind the scenes view. Will read this book again.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michele 02-20-13
    Michele 02-20-13 Member Since 2015

    Books, and words, and information are my treasures.

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    "Very Impressed!"
    What did you love best about Stories I Only Tell My Friends?

    I was happily surprised by how beautifully the book was written. And also how seamless the narration was. I usually don't think authors make the best narrators but Rob Lowe is an exception to the rule. Who knew that Rob Lowe is not only gorgeous but very bright and well spoken.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rob and his mother because I could relate lo both of them.


    Have you listened to any of Rob Lowe’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Rob, as a child, realized that in order to protect himself he needed to keep everyone at an arm's length.

    When Rob faced his alcoholism and made a decision to do something about it!


    Any additional comments?

    It was like hopping in a time machine and seeing the 80s through the eyes of my crush!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    lisa cheek Santa Monica, CA United States 02-14-13
    lisa cheek Santa Monica, CA United States 02-14-13

    A film editor who loves a great story.

    ratings
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    23
    5
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    Story
    "What an interesting life Rob Lowe has led!"
    Any additional comments?

    Rob Lowe is an exceptional writer. His narration....perfection as it's his story. One of my most favorite audiobook ever!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    pamela 02-11-13
    pamela 02-11-13
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    "If you love Rob Lowe...."
    What made the experience of listening to Stories I Only Tell My Friends the most enjoyable?

    ...then you'll really enjoy this book. i don't listen to many audio books because sometimes the the narrators voice just doesn't "fit" the characters well but of course in this case...that was NOT the case! I really enjoyed this audio book most because Rob narrated it himself. He has a nice voice and it gave more meaning to the story to hear about his life and career in his own words.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rob Lowe himself of course!


    Have you listened to any of Rob Lowe’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This is my first book by Rob


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Margret Berkeley, CA, United States 02-11-13
    Margret Berkeley, CA, United States 02-11-13
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    "Charming, Funny, and Literate"
    Where does Stories I Only Tell My Friends rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I've listened to and read many 1st person narratives such as this but must say that this one surprised me with its quality. It turns out that Rob Lowe really is Sam Seaborn! He is an excellent writer and does a stunning job narrating his own prose. What's more, he's had an unusually interesting life. Whether through his own efforts or just pure luck he has met many interesting people and has had quite a few adventures. He also has a great deal of insight into what Hollywood is about and what life is, or should be, about.

    Sure, reading a actor's memoir is a form of voyeurism - a chance to hear a little dirt about all those hollywood celebrities. What's refreshing here is that Lowe did not write a kiss and tell, or a drag anyone down. He simply tells you the path of his life , all the good and the bad and how things have turned out. He does not talk trash about others but rather complements his fellow actors and provides insight into the life of an actor. He lived through the heady days of the 80's , the "Brat Pack", the drugs and the alcohol and tells you all about it. Look up the Brat Pack in wikipedia and you will see that Rob Lowe is one of the few survivors - healthy and with an intact family.

    I enjoyed the stories and I enjoyed his telling of them. I especially enjoyed his narration.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Malia LONG BRANCH, NJ, United States 02-10-13
    Malia LONG BRANCH, NJ, United States 02-10-13 Member Since 2011

    Avid reader turned listener.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Would Highly Recommend"
    What did you love best about Stories I Only Tell My Friends?

    Lowe's deep self-reflection and honesty with his readers


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Stories I Only Tell My Friends?

    Lowe's experiences in auditions and on set, in addition to stories about his upbringing in Ohio and California.


    What about Rob Lowe’s performance did you like?

    His voice, impersonations of others and in general his candor.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I did laugh at a few points. It wasn't particularly emotion-rendering but it was very good.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JackGirl 02-10-13
    JackGirl 02-10-13 Member Since 2012

    mom of 3 boys!

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    1
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    "Thank you Mr. Lowe"
    What did you love best about Stories I Only Tell My Friends?

    I was able to revisit the movies and the idols I enjoyed in my teens! Being just 4 years younger than Rob I had a great time listening to his story. I plan to buy a copy for my dear friend from my teen years! I wish I had known that my idols were just as insecure and uncertain about life as I was at that age. That common experience is reassuring even to learn about years later.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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