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
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
"[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)
I listen to a ton of books, and rarely actually purchase them. I typically wait for the library to get them in and listen for free. This time, I am happy to say that this was worth every blessed penny. Typically, I remove a book from my iPhone immediately upon finishing it. Not so with this one - I have gone back and re-listened to a couple of chapters ... in particular, where Rob talks about the pilot episode of The West Wing. He is engaging as a narrator, and makes you feel like you're sitting at the kitchen table, or curled up on his living room couch listening to his stories. Rob is also a wonderful writer - I am hoping that he now has "the bug" and I'll have something to read again soon!
I really enjoyed this work, which didn't sound like it was "work" for him at all. It was fun to hear all the name drops of kids he played with that have also made such public futures for themselves.
Rob's voice is pleasant and entertaining, his impersonations impressive!
Spend an afternoon with him, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.
Well-written, well-read, interesting stories. Actually made me go back to watch The Outsiders and About Last Night. Like Oprah said, hard to put down!
WOW! This wonderful man writes and READS as good (well) as he looks, and that is saying a lot!! Sadly, this was my first audible purchase and now absolutely nothing comes close, and I've downloaded several in eager anticipation after this.
It is a joy to recommend this so highly. I envy you!
I really enjoyed listening to this audio book. Rob Lowe is not only a great actor but a master storyteller and writer. One of the things I liked most about the book is that it was written with integrity and avoids telling a story at the expense of other celebrities. Bravo, Mr. Lowe, bravo.
the written word lover
I bought this book for my wife and ended up loving it myself.
A fascinating ribbon of stories that weave through Rob's life. Hearing Rob tell the stories in his own words and voice makes for a riveting and delightful listen.
When it was over it made me wish for more.
This book is so much fun to listen to. He became a young star at a fascinating time and met so many intersting people. It will be a flash back in time for many. His reading of the book is great. He switches voices to immitate characters like Andy Warhol etc. and he is quite good at it. I laughed out loud on multiple occasions. It is a fun and fascinating ride through the time period, movie industry and Rob's personal life. A MUST listen if you enjoy biographies.
I have very happy with this book. Rob did a great job narrating this/his book.
It was very interesting and kept me entertained.
I highly recommend this book.
I've listened to a lot of books on audible. This is a sleeper and by far my favorite. Rob crushes it! Awe inspiring but calm and amazing in its own way. I didn't know who he was before and now I'm a huge fan. Best of of luck Rob .. from a new (and real) fan who won't show up in your underwear! If family life permits, I would love to see more in the future. Please...
I loved this book!!! It was interesting from the first sentence. Rob Lowe narrates the book so well I hope he thinks about reading more books. I would buy them all. You won't be disappointed. I watched all of his movies and the West Wing again with the in put from the book. It was wonderful. I was so sorry when I finished the book because I miss its company for the long drive to work.
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