Thursday, January 23, 2014

Review: Unbearable Lightness by Portia de Rossi

Unbearable Lightness
by Portia de Rossi

Publisher: Atria
Pages: 320
Format: book
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  Portia de Rossi weighed only 82 pounds when she collapsed on the set of the Hollywood film in which she was playing her first leading role. This should have been the culmination of all her years of hard work—first as a child model in Australia, then as a cast member of one of the hottest shows on American television. On the outside she was thin and blond, glamorous and successful. On the inside, she was literally dying.

In this searing, unflinchingly honest book, Portia de Rossi captures the complex emotional truth of what it is like when food, weight, and body image take priority over every other human impulse or action. She recounts the elaborate rituals around eating that came to dominate hours of every day, from keeping her daily calorie intake below 300 to eating precisely measured amounts of food out of specific bowls and only with certain utensils. When this wasn't enough, she resorted to purging and compulsive physical exercise, driving her body and spirit to the breaking point.

Kritters Thoughts:  Portia de Rossi is known for portraying hard, self-confident women in tv shows, but in reality she lived a life lacking of self confidence and fighting internal demons.  As I wasn't aware of Portia de Rossi until she was out and dating Ellen, most of this story was completely new to me and very interesting.

Interesting to say the least that this now proud gay woman who is married to an outspoken lesbian, there were some moments where I was ready for her to meet Ellen and her life to start changing!  There were quite a few pages devoted to the body issues she was having and the means with which she was manipulating her exercise or eating habits to achieve what she thought would be the perfect body.  I am not sure this was touched on enough, but I think a big part of her issues started with the modeling at a young age and a mother who supported a 12 year old dieting.  I wish she had put more detail into the mother/daughter relationship and how that probably brought her to the issues she was trying to overcome.  

Overall a great celebrity book, that I would recommend to readers who are interested in reading the details of how Portia de Rossi came onto the Hollywood scene and the things that she hide from the outside world.

Rating: definitely a good read, but can't read two in a row

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