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Guiding Light: A 50th Anniversary Celebration Paperback – December 12, 1986

4.9 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

To some this book might be considered a trivia footnotean entire volume devoted to a soap opera. But Guiding Light is the longest-running radio/TV drama in history, now celebrating its 50th year. In the course of this, it has given a career start to many well-known actors and actresses. The series, although optimistic in tone, has dealt in a reasonably realistic way with many social issues throughout its long run. And what makes this book appealing is the author's enthusiasm in tracing the history of the show without being patronizing or condescending. Schemering has done a good job of research, and there are fascinating excerpts from the scripts, a listing of all the characters, and numerous photographs. A good choice for public libraries. Samuel Simons, Memorial Hall Lib., Andover, Mass.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1st edition (December 12, 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345339312
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345339317
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #970,043 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
on page 9 there is a great up close picture of Bill and Bert Bauer at a restaurant during a 1957 episode of the show. i'm glad i bought this book because it features a whole lot more different castmember pictures than, believe it or not, the 1997 60th Anniversary edition carried. No, the 1997 book is a MUST-HAVE too...it's just that this 1987 book has a more intimate feel about it than the large 1997 book, with ten added seasons. This 1987 book, strangely enough, covers ground that the 1997 book either left out because of space restraints or the author didn't feel necessary as a whole. for example, the 1987 book lists cast-members and their personal stats like birth and death and also on page 16 there's a picture of Arthur Peterson, who played "Reverend Ruthledge" on the radio version of the show until the mid '40s when the soap opera version took over with the Bauer clan. The 1997 lacks this kind of feature. Instead, they over-view the various families of the show in the back of the book. I think the 1987 book is a must-have because it's from a different author and a different lay-out and different emphasis...if you felt that the 1987 book was useless since the 1997 edition rolled around, you're sadly mistaken...the pictures alone are WORTH buying the 1987 "50th Anniversary"! My favorite characters on the show were Roger Thorpe, Alan Spaulding, Ed Bauer, Ross Marler, and Billy Lewis.
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Format: Paperback
This author knows his soaps better than almost anyone and he writes with a genuine love, authority and respect that is refreshing in ANY genre! Fans of the longest televised daytime serial will cherish this volume, but non-GL devotees will enjoy the cultural importance of it, too! Grab it if you can.
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Format: Paperback
Believe it or not, this book is over 20 years old. Irna Phillips first debuted Guiding Light on radio in 1937 as a religious serial. 50 years later, Guiding Light is one of the best soaps out there on television. 21 years later, Guiding Light is still struggling to rise above the waters of cancellation. With a first rate cast and writers, Guiding Light still has the golden touch. I loved this book because it remembered Charita Bauer who was the heart and soul of the show. Also, there is a lot of Beverlee McKinsey who had just passed away. If you think about it, Guiding Light has delivered some of today's best known actors and actresses like Melina Kanakareades (CSI New York), Sherry Stringfield (ER), Calista Flockhart (Ally McBeal), Kevin Bacon, and so many others that soaps still get no respect in this country. Soaps like Guiding Light put in long days to get one episode done. I doubt that the characters on primetime are as half-as-interesting as on daytime. That is the truth. I still prefer Melina as the original Eleni and Sherry as adult Blake over their primetime roles.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was really informative on GL's early years of which i didnt know. i started watching GL in 98 when i was 13. So this book was very interesting to me to learn about the early days of GL. Great book for diehard fans of the show.
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Format: Paperback
This book came out a year after its author, Christopher Shemering, published his insightful book "The Soap Opera Encyclopedia". "Guiding Light: A 50th Anniversary Celebration" is just that, a celebration of one of the most beloved radio and television dramas ever broadcast. Shemering conducts interviews with the stars of the series, as well as writers, producers, and directors, and offers readers a beautiful breakdown of some of the most famous storylines from the series' history.

For me what made the book so wonderful were the black and white photographs from the sixties, seeing those great hair styles and the neat clothing attire.

This book came out while "Guiding Light" was still one of America's highest-rated soap operas, usually finishing in the Top 4 of all serials daily. Now as we all know "Guiding Light" is nothing but a mere memory. Good news is though Proctor and Gamble, the owners of the series, is putting out a 4 disc set on "Guiding Light" in the coming months featuring 20 memorable episodes so I am sure there will be renewed interest in this book.
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Format: Paperback
I wish there had been more pictures and more info on some of the current players. I have watched this show forever it seems but I don't like some of the story lines any more so I might not watch it much more. Will there be another book from the author?? I do enjoy it. I started watching it when Poppa Bauer was in it I believe in the 50's.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book for Guiding Light fans, since it starts at the very beginning. I watched GL for a very long time, about 35 years, and was very sad when it was taken off the air in the middle of September. This wonderful book has helped to ease the pain.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Keeping a family tradition alive! beautiful condition this book will be cherished for generations to come!
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