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Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story Paperback – November 5, 2013
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Choosing the title of his autobiography must have been easy for Schwarzenegger. Finding a reason for writing it, especially at this particular moment, must have been a lot harder. As everyone (at least everyone who reads the gossip sites) knows, the body builder, movie star, and governor fathered a son with the housekeeper. As Arnold makes clear, he wants nothing more than to reunite with his wife, Maria Shriver. So why go there? Oh, well, Arnold has always been a guy who sets a goal and meets it, so maybe this will work out, too. His strong will was forged in a harsh Austrian environment, where parents and teachers delivered body blows, and dentists didn’t use anesthesia. At 10, Arnold knew he would one day come to America, and, by 21, he was a Mr. Universe living large in L.A. His movie career pushed him into superstardom, and when he decided to run for governor, he won that, too (though he left office with an approval rating of 28 percent.) This is a dishy bio on lots of fronts, dipping as it does into the worlds of body building, politics, movies, and the Kennedys. Arnold seems to have a modicum of self-awareness: for instance, he knows he’s secretive (you think?), but his last chapter, “Arnold’s Rules,” really reveals him: don’t overthink (no problem); stay hungry; change always takes big balls. A guilty pleasure for those who just can’t say no. --Ilene Cooper --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
About the Author
Arnold Schwarzenegger served as governor of California from 2003 to 2011. Before that, he had a long career, starring in such films as the Terminator series; Stay Hungry; Twins; Predator; and Junior. His first book, Arnold: The Education of a Bodybuilder, was a bestseller when published in 1977 and, along with his Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding, has never been out of print since.
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Top Customer Reviews
Arnold admits the mistakes he made, but he doesn't come across as being terribly repentant. He says he used steroids in his bodybuilding career because people didn't really know their dangers at the time. Later in the book, he details some of his womanizing, but I have the sense that he rationalizes his behavior to a certain extent. He seems sorry to have caused pain to his family but, as with all of his errors, seems almost comfortable in moving on with his life. In some ways, I think this ability to compartmentalize negative experiences and move forward is one of the attributes that makes him so successful.
For me, the overriding lesson in this book was that someone with a plan, the ability to analyze experiences and the motivation to work hard can become successful in just about anything he or she seeks to do, in spite of a lack of money or connections. With everyone telling him he'd never make it on account of his accent or his physique, he just powered on. He got his business education and invested his money in distressed real estate, all while working on his training and pursuing a movie career.
This book is often funny (see Arnold's brief tank driving career), but always interesting. I'm glad I stayed up all night to read it. I'm not saying Arnie's a great guy, but I understand him better and that's the point of an autobiography from my standpoint.
Even though I assume this Terminator guy just focused on the good things and how great things turned out to be for him when he established in America I still think it's something really good to read. it's inspiring and makes you wonder how far can you go when you chase a dream. This guy it's the biggest body builder ever, he became a hollywood star and still hungry he became governor of the largest state of the US.When I was a kid I used to love his movies, he was kind of a superhero to me and when I saw the chance to read about his life I just seized it. I loved the stories behind some of his movies, I found kind of boring the chapters about what he did as governor and I found a bit disappointing the chapter "The secret" where he tells briefly about one of the biggest mistakes of his life that costed him his marriage and reputation and he said not really much about what in the blue blazes made him do what he did. Great last chapter with the 10 rules of Arnold,I guess he could have added a 11th one about not being so theatrical when you had the chance to write your biography.
I think it has something for everyone. Naturally the person that loves the Schwarzenegger movie will love the book. You really get to know the man. The average movie fan will love this book. There are scores of stories about how the various movies were made. He also has stories about the inside news of Hollywood makes movies, masses finances, sets casts, decided on scripts and things like that. His stories about running for Governor is also very interesting. I think everyone will learn about why he did what he did. I also think his tactics offer great lessons for all about politics today. The last chapter about his rules of life is very educational.