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Primetime TV Book Reviews
This Is Your Captain Speaking: My Fantastic Voyage Through
Hollywood, Faith & Life by
Gavin MacLeod (Author), Mark Dagostino (Contributor)
This was a very enjoyable read. I watched all of the
episodes of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and most of "The Love Boat", so
it was interesting to read about Gavin MacLeod's life and the TV shows
he was in. It moved along very nicely, and he writes well enough.
He is such a positive guy and loves everyone, so it
doesn't have much bad "gossip" or anything like that. He really admires
other actors and loved his work and his job. He's also very good at
introspection and being able to perceive what's what.
Gavin had a tough upbringing, being poor, and his dad
was a drunk, and then he died of cancer. Gavin had a great career in TV,
movies, and stage, but he also had a drinking problem for a while, and
he was divorced twice.
The fun part of the book is reading about all of the
shows and movies he was in, and all of the big stars he met and worked
with. It's clear that Gavin has always been very confident and
filled with optimism. Some might also say that he was incredibly
lucky as well as talented.
There are many great photos of Gavin and the famous
people he's met, and also from the two big shows he was on, as well as
of his family. I loved all the photos.
After his second marriage split up, Gavin gave up
drinking and found Jesus. He was born again and remarried his second
wife, who was also born again. He quit acting after a while and just
focused on religious pursuits. Also, he had a couple of heart attacks.
He's in his 80's now.
I would definitely recommend reading the book if you
loved TV in the 70's, and even more if you are religious and enjoy
reading uplifting stories about people finding god.
MacLeod's Tell-All Memoir Sets Sail On October 22
THIS IS YOUR CAPTAIN SPEAKING:
My Fantastic Voyage Through Hollywood, Faith & Life
NASHVILLE, TN - Iconic characters of television are imbedded in our
culture and mindset. Two classic and endearing TV characters, "Murray
Slaughter" and "Captain Stubing," have become household names thanks to
the actor who lovingly played them, Gavin
In his upcoming autobiography, This Is Your Captain Speaking: My
Fantastic Voyage Through Hollywood, Faith & Life (Thomas
Nelson/October 22), Gavin MacLeod not only
shares stories and memories of his long and distinguished career, but
candidly reveals the highs and very lows of his life, and how his
discovering faith gave him true happiness.
Gavin MacLeod, in his six decades on television,
will always be readily identified for his roles in the groundbreaking
Mary Tyler Moore program and the entertaining The Love Boat series. But,
like many in the entertainment industry, he was "no overnight success."
Written with Mark Dagostino, This Is Your Captain Speaking
takes readers on a pleasure cruise through MacLeod's youth, from his
childhood in upstate NY and studying acting at Ithaca College, to moving
to New York City and his days as a young "starving artist," trying to
break onto Broadway while surviving on buttered rolls, hot dogs and
MacLeod then goes behind the scenes to provide vivid details and
memories of the cast and creators of The Mary Tyler Moore show, where
playing Murray Slaughter changed his life forever.
As Captain Merrill Stubing, MacLeod sailed the Pacific Princess into
America's living rooms for nearly 10-years. Indeed, his joy of traveling
the world as "The Captain" continues today, serving as an ambassador for
Princess Cruise Lines.
Gavin MacLeod does not hold anything back in
discussing his personal and professional life in This Is Your
Captain Speaking, including:
- His encounters with some of the world's biggest stars, including Frank
Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, Ronald Reagan, Steve McQueen, Bette Davis and
Robert Redford, among others.
- His battles with depression and near-suicide while working on McHale's
Navy, and with alcoholism that led to quitting cold turkey in 1974 (He's
been sober for some 39 years).
- His audition and near-casting for the role of Archie Bunker in All in
- The painful divorce from his first wife, finding new love with
actress/dancer named Patti Steele, then a second divorce and their
- The emotional moment when he gave his life to Christ.
- MacLeod recalls how he brought longtime friend and Mary Tyler Moore
co-star Ted Knight to Christ just before he died.
- His surviving two heart attacks, a quintuple bypass and other health
- Why MacLeod retired from commercial television and film work, and what
he focuses those efforts on today.
"My life has taken one incredible turn after another," writes MacLeod.
"I've gotten to do what I wanted to do. I've been a captain! I've been
given this incredible gift of life and now I want to use it to give
back. That's why I'm sharing my story here, the fun parts and even some
not-so-fun parts, in the hopes that maybe someone will take a nice walk
down memory lane with me - and maybe I'll even give someone a little bit
This Is Your Captain Speaking hits bookstores and online
outlets nationwide on October 22, 2013.
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