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Porn King: The Autobiography of John C. Holmes Paperback – January 31, 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews

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Thanks to the publication of PORN KING, the man who was such a mystery is finally opened to us. -- ADULT STARS MAGAZIN --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 172 pages
  • Publisher: BearManor Media (January 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593936850
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593936853
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #264,695 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book is fairly interesting, but the reader must keep in mind that since John Holmes wrote about himself, he casts himself in the role of victim instead of perpetrator. He absolves himself of all responsibility in the Laurel Canyon murders, placing himself in the role of unwilling participant and innocent bystander. He only slightly mentions his life in porn movies, and he does not accept responsibility nor does he seem to feel guilt for his humiliating mistreatment of his long-suffering first wife, his teenage mistress whom he pimped, beat, and started on drugs, or the fact that he neglected to mention his AIDS status to his female porn partners. Yet he does speak openly about his drug addiction, his impoverished childhood, his obsession with sex, and his mammoth "organ". All in all, this is an interesting yet not-so-honest book about a very complex man who could never deal with his inner demons and eventually succumed to them.
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Format: Paperback
As a connoisseur of pop culture and the adult film world, I eagerly anticipated the release of the autobiography from the man who made porn a household name (at least in my household). I ordered this book from Amazon shortly after it was released and tore into it immediately after receiving it upon my doorstep. While the book was interesting, I believe it to be far more fiction than fact. This is based upon other accounts I've read about this well-hung legend. As told on the recent John Holmes addition of the E! True Hollywood Story, Holmes was prone to exaggeration and fabrication. There was also very little about his life in the adult film world - only a mere skim over. While I wasn't disappointed with the book, I wasn't satisfied either. But, give it a shot and see what you think.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I became interested in John Holmes after watching the movie Boogie Nights. I've read every book about him, even ones where the author is just mentioning meeting him. Every book I've read describes Holmes being a completely different person, so who is John Holmes?

This book was written by John and Laurie Holmes. Laurie was John's wife toward the very end of his life. She speaks very well of herself in this book and it seemed (to me anyway) that she edited the book to her own liking. I kept thinking this book would have probably been much more enjoyable had Sharon, John's first wife of 18 years, co-wrote the book.

John focuses very little on his younger life, concentrating more on his move to California and how he started in porn. Even so, he's very vague about how he began and about any of his past. What is interesting in this book is his whole account of what came to be known as the Wonderland Murders. It is talked about in detail in this book, but whether his account is true, I highly doubt. He claims he wasn't even there when it happened--something I find very hard to believe.

I liked this book because it's the only John Holmes autobiography in existence, but really that's the only reason. Would I recommend it to others? Only if they have already read Jill Nelson's and Dawn Schiller's books and are looking for a little more. I think if you put the three books together, you might feel like you understand John and his life a little better.
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By A Customer on December 9, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book was a really touching story. Any body who has ever seen one of John's videos will know he had what all men want,but from early on in the book John himself questions whether he was blessed or cursed. After reading this book, and especially the brutally honest chapters concerning him dying from AIDS,it is difficult to believe his legendary endowment was a blessing. This is an interesting autobiography. John is an obviously intelligent and surprisingly modest man, and the story of his ascent and subsequent demise is both candid and compulsive reading.
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Format: Paperback
There's always going to be a strong bias when you read something like this, everyone wants to present their best side to the world.

I recently found out about the Wonderland story - I watched the movie with Kilmer and Bosworth. Looking to find out more I read Dawn Schiller's 'The Road through Wonderland' and have just completed this book. I'm sure there is bias in Dawn's writing but her version appears more believable than John's sugar coated account of his escapades.

I am sure that there was a positive relationship between Dawn and John before things got out of control but to read 'Porn King' the 5 year relationship is barely mentioned. His account of the Wonderland affair also manages to absolve himself and leave more questions than answers. Accounts of how he ended up in adult movies have also changed over the years.

So who was Holmes? A charmer, a hustler, creative and generous but also immature, abusive and selfish. This book is worth reading but take the accounts contained with a pinch of salt.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was so full of fabrications I couldn't use it for information in a scholarly article. I can't understand why people who lead extraordinary lives, whether good or bad, feel the need to lie about there past in book form!!
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By A Customer on January 23, 1999
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a moving portrait of a man who had everything, lost it, and found redemption in the arms of a loving woman before tragically dying of AIDS, this is a great book.

Unfortunately, I bought it as part of my research into the workings of the porn film biz - and it is absolutely useless in that role.
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