Tag: Memoir

Book Review: Fan Fiction: A Mem-Noir by Brent Spiner

Fan Fiction: A Mem-Noir: Inspire by True Events
Author:
Brent Spiner

Published: October 5, 2021
256 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

From Brent Spiner, who played the beloved Lieutenant Commander Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation, comes an explosive and hilarious autobiographical novel.

Brent Spiner’s explosive and hilarious novel is a personal look at the slightly askew relationship between a celebrity and his fans. If the Coen Brothers were to make a Star Trek movie, involving the complexity of fan obsession and sci-fi, this noir comedy might just be the one.

Set in 1991, just as Star Trek: The Next Generation has rocketed the cast to global fame, the young and impressionable actor Brent Spiner receives a mysterious package and a series of disturbing letters, that take him on a terrifying and bizarre journey that enlists Paramount Security, the LAPD, and even the FBI in putting a stop to the danger that has his life and career hanging in the balance.

Featuring a cast of characters from Patrick Stewart to Levar Burton to Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, to some completely imagined, this is the fictional autobiography that takes readers into the life of Brent Spiner and tells an amazing tale about the trappings of celebrity and the fear he has carried with him his entire life.

Fan Fiction is a zany love letter to a world in which we all participate, the phenomenon of “Fandom.”

Kim’s Review:

What an awesome book! It was fun and littered with Star Trek references that Trekkies all love! Plus, some hilarious 90’s stuff that today’s generation would never understand! There were some places where the story dragged a little, but overall, I had way too much fun reading it. I heard Brent reading in my head! Ok… I also heard Burton’s Dorn’s, and Frakes’s voices and I enjoyed it way too much! If you’re a Trekkie, just trust me, read this book!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

 

ARC Review: Unmasked: My Life Solving America’s Cold Cases by Paul Holes

Unmasked: My Life Solving America’s Cold Cases
Author: Paul Holes

To Be Published:  April 26, 2022
288 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: February 1-12, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars 

Book Description:

From the detective who found The Golden State Killer, a memoir of investigating America’s toughest cold cases and the rewards–and toll–of a life solving crime.

I order another bourbon, neat. This is the drink that will flip the switch. I don’t even know how I got here, to this place, to this point. Something is happening to me lately. I’m drinking too much. My sheets are soaking wet when I wake up from nightmares of decaying corpses. I order another drink and swig it, trying to forget about the latest case I can’t shake.

Crime-solving for me is more complex than the challenge of the hunt, or the process of piecing together a scientific puzzle. The thought of good people suffering drives me, for better or worse, to the point of obsession.

People always ask how I am able to detach from the horrors of my work. Part of it is an innate capacity to compartmentalize; the rest is experience and exposure, and I’ve had plenty of both. But I had always taken pride in the fact that I can keep my feelings locked up to get the job done. It’s only been recently that it feels like all that suppressed darkness is beginning to seep out.

When I look back at my long career, there is a lot I am proud of. I have caught some of the most notorious killers of the twenty-first century and brought justice and closure for their victims and families. I want to tell you about a lifetime solving these cold cases, from Laci Peterson to Jaycee Dugard to the Pittsburg homicides to, yes, my twenty-year-long hunt for the Golden State Killer.

But a deeper question eats at me as I ask myself, at what cost? I have sacrificed relationships, joy—even fatherhood—because the pursuit of evil always came first. Did I make the right choice? It’s something I grapple with every day. Yet as I stand in the spot where a young girl took her last breath, as I look into the eyes of her family, I know that, for me, there has never been a choice. “I don’t know if I can solve your case,” I whisper. “But I promise I will do my best.”

It is a promise I know I can keep.

Jessica’s Review:

Unmasked is Paul Holes memoir of his working cold cases in California.  He worked some well-known cases, along with the not so well-known cases.  He intensely works these cases to the detriment of his family life which we also see. 

Holes tells us about his life in such a way that you are truly pulled in and go on these cases with him over the course of his entire career.  He paces his story well and at times I had to remind myself that this isn’t a novel, but real life! This was his life in his search for the truly evil people that are out there.

This is also a true crime book, so there are descriptions of crime scenes and bodies given. There were no photos in the arc I was given as there usually are in true crime books. His determination for finding the criminal that would eventually be called The Golden State Killer lasted beyond his entire career. Though he can detach himself to work horrible crimes, he also lost so much in his life. 

This memoir is definitely one for true crime fans who will have a hard time putting down as Holes pulls you into his story and brings you along for his life journey. 

Unmasked is highly recommended and many thanks to Celadon Press for sending me an arc copy to read and review. 

Pre-Order Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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Audiobook Review: If You Ask Me by Betty White

If You Ask Me (And of Course You Won’t)
Author: Betty White
Narrator: Betty White
Published: May 3, 2011
Audiobook

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: January 31- February 1, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars     

Book Description:

It-girl Betty White delivers a hilarious, slyly profound take on love, life, celebrity, and everything in between.

Drawing from a lifetime of lessons learned, seven-time Emmy winner Betty White’s wit and wisdom take center stage as she tackles topics like friendship, romantic love, aging, television, fans, love for animals, and the brave new world of celebrity. If You Ask Me mixes her thoughtful observations with humorous stories from a seven- decade career in Hollywood. Longtime fans and new fans alike will relish Betty’s candid take on everything from her rumored crush on Robert Redford (true) to her beauty regimen (“I have no idea what color my hair is and I never intend to find out”) to the Facebook campaign that helped persuade her to host Saturday Night Live despite her having declined the hosting job three times already.

Featuring all-new material, with a focus on the past fifteen years of her life, If You Ask Me is funny, sweet, and to the point-just like Betty White.

Jessica’s Review:

Everyone loves Betty White, and when we lost her on December 31, 2021 the whole world mourned her.  Betty White is/was/ and will continue to be a figure that everyone loves.  This memoir was written in 2011 and focuses on those recent years. We seem to already know everything about her, but you could still learn something about her. 

She also narrated her memoir herself and I couldn’t help but smile as I listened to her memoir with fondness.  She really loved what she did (she kept herself extremely busy), animals, and her husband Allen.  Listening to some parts were bittersweet with her recent death. I loved hearing the part where she mentioned that whenever she gets to Heaven that Allen and her parents will be waiting for her… BUT they would have to get past all her beloved pets, which she goes on to name. 

She talks about her previous well-known shows: The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Golden Girls, and Hot in Cleveland along with several recent at the time movies she filmed. While listening you feel like you get to know her more. Her personality and who she was really shined in the audiobook. 

Though you may not really learn anything new about her reading/listening to this memoir, it is still a fun read with a very beloved lady.

If You Ask Me is recommended!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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