AJ LeBlanc's Reviews > Never Have Your Dog Stuffed: And Other Things I've Learned

Never Have Your Dog Stuffed by Alan Alda
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Jul 29, 10

bookshelves: audio-version, memoirs
Read in July, 2010

If you're going to read something by Alan Alda, get the audio version and have it read to you by Alan Alda.

I knew nothing about his life and I am so glad I picked this up. He grew up in the world of vaudeville, learning the theater from the wings. For anyone interested in acting, this is a good look of what to do and what not to do.

It's not a study of acting though, but you can't have Alan Alda's autobio without information on acting.

The most powerful moments for me involve his mother. She suffered from mental illness, possibly schizophrenia, but in her day and age, mental illness was not to be discussed and brought shame to everyone involved. She was hospitalized briefly and Alda was furious with his father for letting it happen. Long after his parents had both passed, he was finally able to get to a place where he was able to ask questions and learn about mental illness to try and understand what his mother went through. He later begins to show signs of depression and his wife gently suggests he gets help.

Alda's wife Arlene is a new hero of mine. If it wasn't for her, he wouldn't be the success he is. She would ask questions that pushed him to examine his decisions and helped him become better, both as an actor and a human being.

I, of course, loved the sections about MASH and was thrilled that it covered his Scientific American Frontiers, which I'm still hoping will come to Netflix. I wasn't sure how much of his life his book covered, so having it run this far into his career was great. He even mentions his amazing role on The West Wing.

I can recommend this to anyone that likes memoir and biographies because there are so many great stories. Even if you aren't a huge Alan Alda fan (is that even possible?) it's a wonderful read.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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kvon Was your edition read by Alan Alda? Mine was read by some other guy, which I thought was a strange choice. I kept imagining what it would sound like in Alda's voice.


message 2: by AJ (new) - rated it 5 stars

AJ LeBlanc kvon wrote: "Was your edition read by Alan Alda? Mine was read by some other guy, which I thought was a strange choice. I kept imagining what it would sound like in Alda's voice."

It was read by Alda. I also think it's weird when people don't read their own memoirs or autobiographies.


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