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Heartbreaker: A Memoir of Judy Garland Hardcover – April 25, 2006

3.4 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Citadel; 1st edition (May 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806527544
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806527543
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,649,770 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Phelps Gates VINE VOICE on June 19, 2006
Well, it's not exactly a classic (for that, you'll need to go to Mel Torme's The Other Side of the Rainbow, now alas long out of print), but this book doesn't deserve the abuse that gets heaped on it by the other reviewers here. It's a little late to complain about kiss-and-tell scandal-mongering after almost 40 years and countless bios. Judy's tragedy was her ability to attract an endless stream of enablers (including Mr. Meyer), and it's fascinating to read the account from his point of view (I know it's a tired cliche, but I literally found this book hard to put down). Note that the book is a reprint: it originally came out in 1983, though I don't remember seeing it then. The CD isn't exactly studio-quality, but it doesn't claim to be: it's an eerie flashback to an evening in 1968...
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I loved the book 20 years ago and I still love it today. What makes it so good for me is the way John Meyer reproduces her way of talking. You can almost hear her.

I bought it again for the CD, of course (and read it yet again). Sure, it's not a studio recording but I didn't expect a clear recording and it is better quality than I expected. I found myself smiling broadly after listening to 'I'd like to hate myself in the morning' (I love the way she "corrects" the line 'somehow that something' to 'that somehow something'!). She also talks a little and it's always a pleasure. Made me rush back to the recordings of the Jack Paar interviews.

It's a happy recording and as always it's good to hear her. It's rare to get new stuff and just for that it would be worth 5 stars. But it is more than that, she sounds good. Thank you Mr Meyer - but why did you wait so long!
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John Meyer opens his heart in this tell-all book! I bought the book for the marvelous CD, which is included-- a casual recording of Judy telling stories, flirting with a new lover, preparing for a performance and learning a lovely new song. When I started to read the book itself, I couldn't put it down! Yes, it is a story of celebrity and addiction, but it is also a story of a star-crossed meeting, a courtship, euphoria, falling in love, playing house, getting to know one another, creating boundries, growing together, really getting to know one another, creating new boundaries, acceptance, hope, love and heartbreak. Mr. Meyer is honest, sincere and ALWAYS respectful of the great artist that was Judy Garland. If he waxes poetic, it is in the style of the great romatic songwriters: Lorenz Hart, Cole Porter and Johnny Mercer. As a singer, I am touched by this book-- Simply put, it is a story of a fan who has never stopped loving Judy, a song writer who was able to have the great Judy Garland sing his song and a young man who got his heart broken by an all-time great heartbreaker.
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Mr. Meyer does not tell us anything new about Judy Garland. It is a short, rough read especially since the author got carried away several times with a thesaurus and used words that were more comical than literate.

Yes. Judy Garland had a drug/drinking problem. But what Meyer doesn't understand is that he was an enabler in that relationship. Although he professes his hatred for the other's who catered to Judy's destructive needs, he was no better. Yet he wrote a book about it and painted himself as a hero.

In all, this is a sad, pathetic attempt to turn a quick buck by using a dead celebrities known weaknesses to make money.
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Nearly forty years have elapsed since John Meyer hooked the biggest-- no, the ONLY fish-- of his life: a quickie affair with a stoned-out and itinerant Judy Garland. Back in '83 he chronicled it, day-by-day, for some pulp called "Hearbreaker."

Well, time to milk Judy again. This time around, "Heartbreaker" comes with the added bonus of a CD of Judy rehearsing a Meyer

alleged song. Please don't encourage Meyer by paying full value. It will likely wind up at Dollar Tree, 99c Store, yard sales, and atop the literary trash heap right next to "My Turn" by the equally parasitic Mary Cheney.

Unfortunately, most of the lurid details of Judy's habits are likely true, but, as a fellow reviewer lamented- and I agree- this time it's Too Much Information. Particularly on the sexual front. If the picture of Meyer leads you to scratch your head and wonder what on earth was Judy thinking, consider two things: Meyer was 15 years younger than Judy and not bad-looking in 1968; also his family had a large Park Avenue apartment to offer the now-homeless Judy. In return, Meyer could get Judy to sing his godawful "songs" on the talk-show circuit. And, of course, bragging rights about shagging Judy. Okay... but Jeezus, that was 1968! Do we need a new book about it? Like some terrible nightmare that still haunts us after eating Limburger, could we please just forget this frightful episode at the end of the life of a great artist?
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If you are a Judy fan, this book is one you should read. True, as one reviewer wrote, this is Meyer's one and only claim to fame. But it provides an intense portrait of a complex and important musical figure. I don't care for Meyer in this book; he is a blatant opportunist. Judy still shines as Judy, however; the light this shines on her is harsher and perhaps the most painful I have ever read. But it is really worth including in your collection if you care about Judy Garland.
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