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Publisher's Summary

“I remember Sarah asking me, when I’d just begun therapy with her, what I looked for in a man. After a few moments of silent, tense deliberation I had it. ‘Hair,’ I blurted. ‘He has to have hair.’”

Meredith Baxter is a beloved and iconic television actress. Her warmth, humor, and brilliant smile made her one of the most popular women on television, with millions of viewers following her on the small screen each week. Yet her success masked a tumultuous personal story and a harrowing private life.

For the first time, Baxter is ready to share her incredible highs, (working with Robert Redford, Doris Day, Lana Turner, and the cast of Family Ties), and lows (a thorny relationship with her mother, a difficult marriage to David Birney, a bout with breast cancer), finally revealing the woman behind the image.

From her childhood in Hollywood, growing up the daughter of actress and co-creator of One Day at a Time Whitney Blake, Baxter became familiar with the ups and downs of show business from an early age. She has emerged from her experiences with the renewed self-assurance, poise, and understanding that have enabled her to find a loving, respectful relationship with Nancy Locke, and to speak about it openly.

Told with insight, wit, and disarming frankness, Untied is the eye-opening and inspiring life of an actress, a woman, and a mother who has come into her own.

©2011 Meredith Baxter (P)2011 Random House Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Thoroughly Engrossing, Highly Recommended Memoir

Wow! This sure was a serendipitous find. I grew up not exactly idolizing Meredith Baxter Birney, but definitely looking upon her as the quintessential Golden Girl with the perfect life. How very wrong I was. This book will be a liberating revelation for any woman who’s ever felt hopelessly trapped in an abusive marriage, but it will also strike a chord with anyone who has ever known and loved an alcoholic, as well. There are heart-wrenching moments, there are laugh-out-loud moments, there’s celebrity gossip, and there are touching anecdotes of motherhood in abundance. The coming-out story toward the end of the book is a bonus. Meredith, your many fans and admirers celebrate your liberation (from EVERY unhealthy tie that once bound you), and thank you so, so much for summoning the courage to tell your story. It’s well told (I bought the Kindle version too, just so I could read in every setting), smart, funny, fast-paced, and riveting. Your narration is perfect, too. Grade: A

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Self effacing pleasant to read

This is one book that is complemented by the author reading her own work. Her pleasant, modulated and familiar voice was a pleasure. I have always enjoyed Hollywood insider biographies and this was no exception. Her realization that she is gay is only a small part of the story and far more interesting is her growth as a woman who late in life realizes her worth as a human being. She is a person I would like to know as a friend. She pulls no punches when it comes to describing her relationship with her two ex-husbands. I hope she has a good lawyer.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • jennifer
  • BROOKLYN, NY, United States
  • 09-08-13

Elyse Keaton was drunk half the time

...and that is why you will enjoy this memoir. Poor Meredith Baxter was truly falling apart on camera for a good part of her life! Don't even get me started on her Lifetime TV dramas era! But MB tells it like it is, sparing no painful detail. it'll make you cringe, laugh and shake your head. She's a sweetheart who has written a very engrossing book. But I grew up on 'Family Ties' so maybe I'm biased. No, it's really good.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A great listen

I just listened to this on a very long road trip and loved every minute. I found myself not wanting to stop at rest areas because I didn't want to push pause. Her story is an interesting one and she has written it beautifully. She also has a wonderful voice for reading audiobooks. If you had a neglectful mother or parents who divorced or an abusive spouse or alcohol issues....you will find this very relate-able and her insight is wonderful. I've always liked Meredith, since her Bridget Loves Bernie days, and have followed her career with interest. My admiration for has grown exponentially as a result of listening to this book. I highly recommend it!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Joy
  • Bear, DE, United States
  • 04-17-11

Honest, forthright, interesting, well-written

Like everyone else, I knew Meredith Baxter-Birney from Family Ties and television movies, but this book is a revelation into a real life with real people. She is honest to a fault- and pulls no punches at the trials she has endured as the daughter of a famous mom, an actress, wife, mother, and finally, a happy and fulfilled woman. She reads with true emotion during each chapter of her life and I would highly recommend this book to all. It is interesting, funny, awe-inspiring and sometimes tear-jerking, but always Meredith. One of the best autobios I have ever read. I came away feeling like she was one of my friends; I always admired her as an actress, but now I admire the woman as well.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

what a story

I enjoyed it. I liked her candor and openness. I found her very likable. what stood out was that she was beautiful and talented. But had no self -esteem. Attracting men who saw and exploited that. My heart went out to her. But,I'm so happy she triumphed in the end. And she's surrounded by people who love her. No one remembers those terrible men. But we all know and love " Meredith Baxter "

1 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Peggy
  • Golden, CO, United States
  • 01-02-12

You think you "know" a celebrity...

Would you consider the audio edition of Untied to be better than the print version?

Yes, I think it is quite possibly more authentic since it is her story read in her voice, and since she has a voice I like and recognize from the tv is brings a more personal element to it. I felt like I was listening to a friend.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Untied?

Now I wish I had the book so that I could quickly flip back through and remind myself since it has been weeks since I finished it. Therefore the most memorable moments were the overall feelings of surprise that she was so naive yet I saw her as a role model mom when I was growing up.

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

No, not aware she had any others.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, I listen as I walk the dog so that would be a very long walk.

Any additional comments?

My thanks to Meredith (as we apparently are now on first name basis since I read the book! ha!) for sharing such intimate information about her life. I work with people and their emotions and this will be a book I am sure to recommend. Biographies are a useful tools to learn about people and how they have found their path to success which is so often not the path that people expect. I love the surprise of who I think they are vs who they are through their own eyes. It reinforces how many assumptions we make, good or bad, about people every day. I hear so many young people stating the desire to be famous and feel they really could benefit from knowing the truth behind the characters we see on the screen.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderfully honest

Loved that the author is also the reader of this book. What's not to love about Meredith Baxter? Is she not a national treasure? She gave an amazing recount of some really shitty times without sounding whiny or trying to garner sympathy. She just tells like it is, bravo!

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Val N.
  • Tampa Bay, FL
  • 02-06-18

Raw, Honest and Heartfelt

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I'd recommend audiobook to a friend. It's a nice alternative to turning pages, and it allows be to do other things while I listen.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Untied?

What stands out most to me is her lonely childhood experiences: as a small child coming home from school, calling her mother's name and her mother not answering because Meredith had called her "Mommy" instead of Whitney. Having to call her selfish, uncaring mother by her first name was heart-breaking --and it set the stage for the dysfunctional relationship they would have throughout their lives.

What about Meredith Baxter’s performance did you like?

She did an excellent job of narrating. Her voice and tone are clear and concise, and she knows how to capture an audience. It's storytelling at its best. It probably helped that she is an actor as well.

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

It's an emotionally compelling autobiography. I felt joy, sadness, angry and compassion.

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed it more than I thought I would. It's a well written book.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Mesmerising from the first sentence to the last.

I was afraid, at first to read this story. Not because I am a Iesbian. But, becauseI grew up watching Family Ties and remember having a huge crush on "The Mom", Meredith Baxter.
How would she explain the many years it took to "come out"?

Her story is captivating, sad, joyful and full of the true desperation on the journey to find herself.
It all made me look back over my life.
Being true to onself is so difficult, but being true to the world as a famous "hetero mom", wow! That took courage!!
Thank you for sharing such a heartfelt coming out story with all of us.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful