Thursday, October 21, 2010

Losing it - Book Review

Losing it - And Getting My Life Back, One Pound at a Time
by Valerie Bertinelli
Free Press (Simon & Schuster) 2008

Valerie Bertinelli has several claims to fame.
1 - she was acting on a hit TV comedy show at the age of just 16  (One Day at a Time)
2 - she married one of the founding members of the famous Van Halen rock group - one of the more famous heavy metal music bands of the 1980s
3 - her son (Wolfgang Van Halen) now plays with his father for Van Halen some 25 years later
4 - while her marriage was falling apart, Valerie comforted herself with eating. Now she has lost weight in public and on TV. She does this while working as a spokesperson for Jenny Craig.

There are also a number of other nuggets of information that I never knew.

I was never a heavy metal music fan although I loved listeing to the music of the 1980s. I preferred pop, disco and rock music. While I know what and who Van Halen and Bon Jovi were, I was never into their music so I never bothered to read up on any of their group members or their history.

Did you know that Edward Van Halen (Eddie) was not born in the USA? His mother was from Indonesia and his father was Dutch. Eddie was born in the Netherlands. Remember Indonesia used to be called the Dutch East Indies. The Van Halens immigrated to the USA in the early 1960s.

Eddie unfortunately could not cope with the pressures of fame and so he began drinking and doing drugs - marijuana and cocaine. While Valerie also experimented with drugs, she never went further than marijuana. Her drug of comfort was food. Slowly the weight piled on. The the comments began. Mostly they were small things where she looked great but her ass could be a bit smaller.

Valeries sitcom TV show One Day at a Time was a hit. I remember that I loved watching it. Valeries's TV sister was played by MacKenzie Phillips - daughter of John Phillips of the Mamas and Papas. Mackenzie also struggled with drug addictions. Mackenzie was eventually fired from the show.

If you want to know what life is really like, backstage of a rock concert and what it is really like to travel on the road with a music band, then you have to read this book.

I really enjoyed it.

Valerie has a new biography out now - a follow up to Losing It. Her new book is called Finding It and was published in October 2009.

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