256 Pages
$9.91 Paperback
$11.99 Kindle
Atria Books
Released: September 29, 2009
6/5 Stars
6 stars

Book Description:

 The internationally bestselling heartfelt memoir from movie legend Patrick Swayze and his wife of over thirty years, Lisa Niemi, about Patrick’s remarkable career and brave battle against pancreatic cancer.

An entertaining and inspiring behind-the-scenes look at a Hollywood life and a remarkable love, told in the words of beloved actor Patrick Swayze and his wife, Lisa Niemi, shortly before he passed away.

In a career spanning more than thirty years, Patrick Swayze made a name for himself on the stage and screen with his versatility, passion, and fearlessness. Always a fighter, Patrick refused to let the diagnosis of stage IV pancreatic cancer in February 2008 defeat him. Patrick and Lisa’s bravery inspired legions of fans, cancer patients, and their loved ones, yet this memoir, written with wisdom and heart, recounts so much more. Revealed in vivid detail is Patrick’s Texas upbringing, his personal struggles, his rise to fame, and how his soul mate Lisa stood by his side through it all.

The Time of My Life opens the door for families, individuals, and husbands and wives to grow, bond, and discover entirely new levels of love and sharing, proving that life shouldn’t be lived as a series of endings, but rather as the beginning of greater strength and love.

My Thoughts:

The book starts out at a high school football game that would change the course of Patrick’s life and ended with his decision to move forward with filming The Beast (a television series) even though he knew his days were numbered.  You see glimpses into Patrick’s life and things you never really would have known about him without being a close friend or reading this book. He  details his life as a son of a cowboy and strict dancing mother to his days in New York City working endlessly for a performance school.  Patrick tells of fun behind-the-scenes stories of many of our absolute favorite movies and heart wrenching moments that he had to face as a regular human being. We learn more about his relationship with Lisa and the ups and downs that they faced along the way. It truly is a memoir/autobiography of his life.

This is a book that I’ve been wanting to read since it’s release, but for some reason I kept thinking, “Not now, maybe later.” I guess I mentioned it enough times because my husband bought it for me, for my birthday last May…but it still just wasn’t the right time.  I finally picked it up over the holidays and I can tell you one thing, I was not disappointed!  Not only did it relight that reading spark that had dwindled a while ago, but it also tugged at all of my heart strings. This book made me laugh, cry, ponder, appreciate and just plain smile.  I was truly amazed at the many talents that is Patrick Swayze AND his wife!  He is one of those people who is just amazing at everything he does.  I’m sure a lot of it has to do with natural talent, but I also think a lot of it has to do with the drive that he has to constantly prove that he’s worthy. You see, Patrick had major insecurities throughout his life and constantly felt this pressure to be better than everyone else. While that drive wasn’t always the healthiest, it did push him to limits he never thought possible.  He’s a talented sportsman, dancer, actor, composer, carpenter and even equestrian! It still baffles me thinking back on the book and all the fun things I was able to glimpse.

As I mentioned earlier, the book gives you glimpses behind-the-scenes of many shows/movies that Patrick acted in…probably all of them really. I honestly want to have a Patrick Swayze moving marathon now and read each chapter relating to that show/movie and then watch it. It might seem obsessive, but if you read it you’ll completely understand.  He’d talk about a specific scene in a movie with things you just didn’t realize watching it, then you’d like, “Well now I have to watch the movie to see this scene and understand the crazy story behind it.” Or it would spark that nostalgia of having watched the movie in the past and it being too long since I’ve seen it. The shows/movies really made up a good portion of the beginning of the story and it was interlaced with things also happening in his real life.

Towards the end of the book though it flip-flopped. He was mainly talking about things going on in his life and interlacing bits and pieces about the shows/movies he was creating at the time.  I’m guessing that life has a way of putting things into perspective more and more as you get older.  You start realize how important family and friends are. How you should really be appreciating the day to day things and how some things that you use to think were important, really aren’t. The vulnerability that Patrick put into this book was very apparent, but maybe that was because he knew his days were numbered and had a story he wanted to tell.

Final Thoughts:

I honestly don’t want to go into too much detail since I personally enjoyed unraveling the story as it went. I will tell you that if you are a Patrick Swayze fan on any level, you enjoy reading a good autobiography/memoir and have some spare time to read a book that you can’t put down…you should DEFINITELY look into reading this book! I’ve already recommended it to my Husband, Mom, Mother-in-Law, Father-in-Law and Sister-in-Law.

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