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on April 6, 2013
Although hugely entertaining and full of laughs, I didn't find this autobiography the light fluffy romp that some readers did. It's almost hard to believe that Debbie Reynolds has survived so much disappointment and heartbreak - with humor and energy fully intact.
It says a lot that Debbie is so incredibly close to her bright and very talented children.
Amazing that she has had such awful luck with men. Eddie Fisher was a supremely selfish man who virtually abandoned his children, Harry Karl a "nice guy" hopelessly addicted to gambling and prostitutes, and her last husband, a handsome charmer from Virginia, is a truly dreadful human being.
Remember that Doris Day, Esther Williams, and Shirley MacLaine also married pathetic excuses for husbands who wiped out all or much of their wive's fortunes.
Otherwise, Debbie has little bad to say about anyone. She comes across as a person of real substance and spiritual maturity. What she says has the ring of truth.
The book's final section includes fascinating gossip and tidbits about every movie she has made. Hard to believe that she is currently appearing on HBO with giant fake shnoz and harlequin glasses as Liberace's mother.
Debbie is indeed a national treasure. Bless her.
GREATLY recommended.
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Anyone who has had an encounter with Debbie Reynolds (and to my way of thinking that is probably half of the population of the United States) can tell you one distinct thing....she is a powerhouse of energy that loves her fans and is enthusiastic and just plain nice. I've met her three times. She'll answer questions, talk about the good old days when MGM was still the top studio before it was cut up, pose for pictures and signs autographs. She is an atypical celebrity who comes across like a normal human being.
This book is an interesting read from beginning to end. It starts with the breakup of her last marriage which was the one that got the least coverage. It was a pretty rough experience once she realized #3 was robbing her blind and sending her into a mountain of debt much like #2 millionaire shoe magnet Harry Karl did. The tenacious Reynolds is willing to admit that she was blinded by trust, but she fought the good fight trying to reclaim what was rightfully hers. It was nice to know that she was mad but she was also someone who didn't let that anger consume her. She got back up, went back to work, and bailed herself out of debt to resume her career and jump start it at a time when most people would kick back poolside and down pitchers of margaritas.
The reality is that Reynolds has had a long and productive career that wasn't going to necessarily be either. She came to Burbank CA by way of El Paso TX during the Depression. Her family wasn't rich in the conventional sense, but they were loving, close, hard working, and honest. Debbie got into show business by way of a beauty contest that had a talent component. She saw movies as her way to make some money so she could go to college and become a Physical Education teacher. The rest just sort of fell her way. She loved to perform and audiences loved her and still do.
This book is crammed with anecdotes about Debbie's career and her friends (famous and non-famous) that she has met along the way, as well as her family which include her daughter Carrie, son Todd, and granddaughter Billie. She talks about Carrie with a mother's deep concern but also intense pride. Ditto for her son and the rest of the family.
Ava Gardner, Gene Kelly, Carleton Carpenter and Liz Taylor are among those included. Surprisingly after an estrangement of several years mended fences with Taylor pretty easily. This part had me laughing because they both seemed bonded by friendship and their misfortune to have been married to the less than stellar Eddie Fisher.
There was so much in this book that I found interesting. Reynolds has never lost the capacity to be a fan and her stories of life at MGM are amazing. I also loved her description of how she doggedly tracked down old Hollywood artifacts and scoured the studio auctions for costumes and other pieces of Hollywood history. One thing she clarified was the shady history of trying to find a permanent home for her collections. I found myself wondering why so many people dropped the ball on this one and her explanation of all the false starts was sad but true.
By the end, what you get is a frank, no frills look into the life of a woman who is a force of nature unto herself.
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on April 5, 2013
One of the best celebrity bios I have read and I have read a lot of them. This one is funny, touching, heartbreaking and uplifting in equal measures. I have always admired Debbie Reynolds. This book made me love her.
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on April 2, 2013
UNSINKABLE: A MEMOIR is a well-written biography by American icon, Debbie Reynolds. It is an entertaining book of stories about many of her trials and tribulations,ups and downs, friends in the business like Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra Gene Kelley and of course her famous children, Todd and Carrie Fisher.

What I like also is she tells many of these tales in a humorous way so it's hard difficult to read and not have a smile or your face. Lots of photos included in this book as well. Spanning over 60 years of memoirs, I highly recommend this book to those who enjoy reading about famous actors and actresses and especially someone as well known as Debbie Reynolds.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

RJ Parker
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on April 5, 2013
I grew up during the time Debbie grew up, married Eddie and went on from there. Reading her book bought me back through my own life and many memories. I've enjoyed her bright smile, humor and am always happy to see her films and have learned how they all came about. This book brought me back in time and I enjoyed every minute. Thank you Debbie!
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on April 4, 2013
I wouldn't say I'm a fan of Debbie Reynolds but I do enjoy the stories and anecdotes about the golden age of Hollywood. Having seen just one film she has starred in, I mostly bought this as a light, entertaining read and received exactly what I was after in this book. The writing is simple and coasts along easily and reads almost like a transcript from some breezy afternoon brunch with the spunky screen legend of her reminiscences on her films, friends and co-stars. Sometimes feeling a bit like stream of consciousness, there are times when her focus shifts slightly, but only briefly.

She does go into some detail about her loss of her memorabilia collection and the many business deals gone wrong in her attempt to create a Hollywood history museum. I wasn't all that interested in those recountings and while they are sad and unfortunate, I would hardly consider her working through these events as a triumph per se. But its always nice to hear that someone has come "out the other side" just fine after some of those ordeals. And thankfully, in Ms. Reynolds' case, with her sense of humor in tact.

A blend pluckiness, wit and southern charm, her writing did draw some laughs out of me. Especially in her recounting of what happened on the set with Walter Matthau. Just about every story and memory includes at least one positive point, even some of her less enjoyable experiences. And just about every statement about any friends, co-stars and/or acquaintances she writes about are followed with how "lovely", "dear" or "kind" they were, regardless of whether she always got along with them or not.

All in all, fun and entertaining. This is no mere gossip read. Rather, her stories are more like surprising little anecdotes. A chat with a funny, feisty lady disguised as an 81 year old who has no qualms about calling herself an "old broad".
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on April 7, 2013
So, I've bought the Hard cover and the Kindle edition. Then today I purchased the Audible.
To hear Debbie talk about what has happened to her since the last book, in her voice, is Magical. This is way more than a reading. This is like having Debbie Reynolds talk to you in your home with you.
I've spent most of the day hearing about what really happened with the Museum not opening. Many times I was brought to tears in hearing Debbie describe the challenges and hardships in finally choosing to sell her precious Hollywood Costume and prop collection. She is an amazing women, the Audible is a must purchase. An absolute Joy. Love you Debbie.
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on April 2, 2013
I could not put this book down - I had to keep on reading...every story - every line is filled with humor and sentiment. I would love to just sit and listen for hours...she may not have full filled her dream of a Hollywood & Movie Museum but she herself is a Hollywood treasure. Also, someone I would love to know.
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on April 11, 2013
Though I am 53 years old and grew up after Debbie Reynolds' major motion picture years, I have always admired her talent. When my husband told me she had been on the TV program Sunday Morning promoting her new book, I just had to download it to my Kindle. I am thoroughly enjoying it. It is one of those books that you would love to have many, many hours of the day to sit down and read. But, in my case, I don't have that luxury. But, each night after work I look forward to reading more of this very well written memoir. I will miss having a good book to go home to when I finish it.
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on April 9, 2013
Most of this memoir concerns Debbie's recent history, her disastrous third marriage and her constant struggle to create a museum for her Hollywood memorabilia. It's a fascinating story, and to think of the inner strength she had to have in order to prevail over the years is impressive, but there's a bit too much of that, which is the reason I took away one star. Her narrative really shines when she gives an account of her career, her start in the business, and the people with whom she worked. She's quite a lady, and is indeed a star in the classic sense of the world. Her memories of Old Hollywood are priceless.
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